Who Heats with Wood?

What skills to learn, what tools to get
billc
Posts: 94
Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2011 4:13 am

Re: Who Heats with Wood?

Post by billc »

Not exactly a wood stove, but pellet stoves are also popular.

We have a pellet stove and an oil furnace. This year the cost of oil has dropped but the cost of pellets has not - thus no pellets this year.

Pellet stoves produce very little smoke and produce good heat.

Unfortunately it requires electricity to run (so won't work when power is out) and the fuel has to be purchased.

jacob
Site Admin
Posts: 12999
Joined: Fri Jun 28, 2013 8:38 pm
Location: USA, Zone 5b, Koppen Dfa, Elev. 620ft, Walkscore 73
Contact:

Re: Who Heats with Wood?

Post by jacob »

My parents heat with wood. I did it growing up. Specifically, we/they have a stove in an outside building that burns charcoal and wood to heat water that goes into a circulation tank. A pump then moves the hot water around into the house radiators. They mainly feed it with pallets they get for free. These are cut up with chainsaws. They go through a lot of chainsaws :-P

When I grew up the house was [poorly] insulated like any 1890 farm house. This requires restoking the furnace several times over a day. It was always cold in the morning. After I moved out they renovated and super-insulated the walls. Now they only need to fire it up once and it's still warm in the morning. It's quite nice.

SilverElephant
Posts: 130
Joined: Mon Jul 22, 2013 12:40 pm

Re: Who Heats with Wood?

Post by SilverElephant »

My experience is that the purely rational case for heating with wood is made from these points:

- Availability and cost for hardwood
- Quality and cost of wood oven

Here in Germany, wood is prohibitively expensive to buy (about €120 per pre-cut m^3 of hardwood). All in all it works out to about the price of oil on a J/m^3 basis, at least it did before oil started to drop.

The thing is that a good oil furnace will burn much more efficiently than the average oven, not to mention open chimneys.

My SO's dad has his own little patch of forest. Taking care of it is his hobby. He's amassed mountains of dry wood through this and the fact that you're allowed to pick up wood in public patches of forest below a certain diameter.

The heat is a totally different one from central heating, though. If your place has a layout that allows heating the central parts, e.g. where everything but sleeping happens, with only an oven, combining that with central heating that is used only sparsely or for hot water can at least make for a very comfortable kind of heat with a renewable energy source.

riparian
Posts: 650
Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2011 4:00 am

Re: Who Heats with Wood?

Post by riparian »

I heat with wood and my expenses are maybe $10/year for chainsaw gas and oil....

Post Reply