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Basement Install: Looking for advice

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by StuckInTheMuck, Apr 24, 2013.

  1. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    Hi all. I'm looking for some advise on a basement install of a Buck Stove model 85 in my new house. I'm planning to do a Class A stainless steel double wall chimney, but don't know enough about the clearances that I need from certain things. I've got a walkout basement and I've attached pics of both the side of the house and back as well as corresponding pics of the interior of the basement.

    Considerations that I have are as follows:

    Windows
    Propane tank for stove and oven located under the back deck and line entering the house (visible on the back wall of the basement embedded in the drywall.
    Exhaust vent for stove. (upper left corner of basement window)
    Interior basement partition wall (located just to the left of the cross country skis)
    Exterior door located under the screened in porch in the lower left corner of the back of the house.

    I'd like to put the stove in the larger part of the basement. We have all hardwood floors on the first floor so the heat should radiate up through the floors nicely. Any advise on clearances to the above obstacles as well as recommendations as to how to set myself up for success are all welcomed. Thanks in advance for your replies.

    Back of House.JPG Back Wall.JPG Side of House.JPG Side Wall.JPG

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  2. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Depending on radiant heat alone through the floors is not going to cut it unless the intent is to heat the basement to 150::F_g. It looks like there is insulation in between the ceiling joists so the odds of that happening are even slimmer. How will the heat convect upstairs is important, as is basement wall insulation. Is there a stairway to the first floor in the large area? Are you prepared to insulate the walls?
    downeast likes this.
  3. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    Thanks. I was planning to pull down the insulation between the joists and will likely use foam board insulation on the basement concrete walls for somewhere between an R-6 and R-12. My heat loss from the upper part of the house is not great, although I will need to insulate the walk up attic. The house was built in '90 and 2x6 framed, so the wall insulation on the first and second floors is pretty good. When we purchased we were told that the house uses 1200 gallons of oil per year. I'd like to cut that in half to start and then maybe look into doing a wood fired furnace with 1000 gallons of storage. Thoughts?
  4. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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  5. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    Thanks Matt.. Will take some measurements and see what it looks like. Do you know if a door can enter the clearance space when open as long as it is out of the clearance space when closed? I'm thinking the back right corner of the house might be the best place, but that's where the basement door is.. Muck
  6. downeast

    downeast Guest

    Yes "heat rises". Stand alone wood stoves are space heaters where warm bodies spend time.
    Efficient convective heat will never rise enough to heat through floors to be comfortable for you upstairs. Put wood stoves or inserts where you spend the most time:

    The foundation/basement walls unless well insulated FROM THE OUTSIDE (or with SIPS ) will absorb and direct the heat from a cellar stove out to dirt.
    And that long, tall, outside chimney has some questions for you to think about .

    Rethink the wood stove install.

    JMNSHO
    Laurent Cyr and Oldhippie like this.
  7. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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    I personally wouldn't worry about the door as long as it's closed most of the time. It really comes down to what the inspector says though.

    If you are using 1K gallons of oil, you might find it more cost effective to put that money into insulating the upper walls with foam and doing the stove next year. Make sure you get your wood ahead of time. Many (most) wood sellers sell their wood with way too much moisture still in it. Letting it sit in the sun and wind is the only way to get it out.
  8. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Do you have an oil fired boiler (hot water heat) or furnace (warm air heat)? How many sq ft total in the house (with basement sq ft separately listed)?

    You would have much better success by putting a stove on the first floor and treating the basement as a separate zone. I'd give that some serious thought. Is there a first floor fireplace? If so, can you post a picture of that area?
  9. northwinds

    northwinds Minister of Fire

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    I've heated two walk-out basement homes with my wood stove. I don't have any comment on installation issues. The key to moving heat upstairs is your
    staircase. Is it wide open? We have had wide open staircases with no door or doorway at top and ceiling fans at the top of the stairs.
  10. Dave A.

    Dave A. Minister of Fire

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    I would say no if it's combustible. With clearances, you need to think worst case scenario. If it's left open inadvertently, could it catch fire.
  11. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    I have forced hot water. I referred to it as a furnace since it doesn't acutally "boil" water. Not sure what the actual term is. The house is 2900 sqft total (1st and 2nd floors) with a little over 1500 in the basement.

    attached is a pic of the first floor fireplace which opens on both sides to the kitchen on one side and to the family room on the other side. I was hoping to not use that for the wood stove (as an insert) so we could use it on the holidays for a nice fire in the fireplace.

    Thanks for the reply.

    Attached Files:

  12. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    Good point.. Thanks!!
  13. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    The staircase is in the middle of the house and has a 90 degree turn with landing and a door at the top. I would consider removing the door to get the heat to flow up the stairs.. Thanks.
  14. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    I considered the foam, but don't have the time now and I already own the stove. The house is acutally pretty tight and well insulated execpt for the walk up attic (which has a fix in progress) and the basement concrete walls. . I'm starting to gather wood. I've got a half cord of Red Oak for 2015-16 that I cut a month ago, but nothing yet for this coming winter. Time to get to work.. I did buy a moisture meter a month ago too, so I'm on my way. There's lots of dead and down in my backyard, so I'm going to try to "get it before it rots", as Zap would say. Thanks for the reply.
  15. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    JMNSHO. just curious why it wouldn't help to insulate the basement from the inside? I know I'd lose the heat storage capacity of the concrete foundation but it should still keep the heat inside the basement. I did think about doing exterior insulation on the basement, but just don't have the time to dig up all of the landscaping and don't know how I would insulate the area between ground level and the siding without making it look bad. I understand that there are products out there that make it look like some kind of masonry. Too late for SIPS.. Maybe when someone does a major renovation in 100 years.

    Just curious what you think the issue would be with a long tall chimney? If it's installed correctly, it will have a good draft. Is it possible to have too much of a draft? Would the brackets not support it if it gets too tall? Thanks ahead of time for your response.
  16. downeast

    downeast Guest

  17. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    Basement heating with a stove isn't a lot of fun. I do it, but wouldn't advise it to others unless that is their only option.

    That being said, if you already have a stove and have plans for a wood-fired boiler in the future, locate the flue where you want to have the wood boiler, and put your stove there. When you are ready to make the leap to a boiler, if ever, you'll have no further use for that stove and already have your flue in place.
  18. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    It's called a hot water boiler probably as a carry over from steam system days. This is a big home. A whole lot of wood is going to be used just to heat the basement with its own heat losses before convecting upstairs. For the first season I would strongly consider a nice quality insert in the fireplace.You will still be able to enjoy yule log burning on Christmas in it. As a matter of fact you will be able to enjoy beautiful fires all winter long. And more importantly, you will have heat where you need it. I would start with the biggest insert that will fit in the fireplace. Is there a fireplace on each side, dining room and living room? If so, you can have the best of both worlds.

    What is your source of wood and how much do you have on hand? If the answer is none, order at least 5 cords now and try to avoid oak for your first load unless you are buying for a couple years from now. This is a big place. It's going to take a lot of wood to put a major dent in that 1200 gallon oil bill.
  19. Laurent Cyr

    Laurent Cyr Burning Hunk

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    I`m with downeast on this one. Install the stove where the bodies are. I did an install in my basement because that is where the previous smoke dragon was, and there was a hole drilled in the basement concrete walls for the chimney. I regret my install, because I am constantly struggling to get the heat to rise. It does get up to the first floor, but I lose a lot of efficiency, even though the basement is insulated properly. During the cold winter days, it`s 80F downstairs, and barely 70 upstairs.
    Go with a 1 st floor install.
  20. stoveguy2esw

    stoveguy2esw Minister of Fire

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    just to add to your thoughts , you mentioned the house is pretty "tight" remember installing in the basement puts you below the "zero pressure" plane of the structure, making draft a bit tougher in a tight house. seriously consider an OAK as part of your installation.
    if practical and the stove has an adaptation for it a direct OAK connection would be best case, if not an "indirect OAK" is easy to fabricate and can be made to control the cold air entry into the house to only what the stove needs.
  21. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    okay.. well, just wanted to send an update.... I decided to take the advice of those who thought I should put the stove in the existing fireplace.. I got a Rock-Flex Deluxe 316Ti 6 inch by 30 foot liner and the insulation kit from Rockford. Getting the liner up on the roof was a challenge but I ended up getting an ascender from Eastern Mountain Sports and used a 1/2 inch climbing rope from my old days of climbing to keep myself steady on the roof. I used some Roxul to block off any draft going up the chimney and topped it off with a standard chimney cap. The pic is of the install and the small amount of wood that I have for this coming winter. Fortunately a lot of it is oak that has been down for 10+ years and isn't rotten. 6000 miles away now with Uncle Sam's Misguided Children, so I won't be able to build the pile any more before the snow starts flying. Of note, the 11x15 (inside measurement) clay tile chimney looked like it needed to be cleaned prior to installation. I ran a wire chimney brush through several times an nearly FILLED a standard paper shopping bag with creosote. I'm glad that I didn't use the fireplace right after we bought the place as we could have easily ended up with a chimney fire. Thanks to all of you who offered your advice for my install. This should keep the wife happy for at least part of the winter.. IMG_0579.JPG IMG_0581.JPG
  22. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Looks like a good start. If you are away it might be worth buying some wood and paying some local boys to stack it.

    Is this a double-sided fireplace?
  23. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    Thanks begreen. unfortunately, even though it would be cheaper to pay for wood, I don't think what I would get at this time of year woud be good for this coming winter. I've got a couple of other stacks around the yard that I can use. I did get started on a 15-16 pile of red oak (below).. Need to do some more scrounging around the yard when I get home and see what i come up with. Fortunately, my new neighbors have invited me to scrounge in their backyards too, so I should be good for at least a little while before I need to start pulling firewood from my other land.

    It is a double sided fireplace. I didn't really want to put the insert in there as it would have been nice to keep the fireplace for use during the holidays for a big blazing fire. The insert is facing the larger part of the house and the bonus room behind it should receive enough heat from the back side.

    IMG_0582.JPG
  24. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Well, you've got to work with the hand you're dealt. Are you military overseas?
  25. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    I am.. 175 days and a wake up.. Deployed to one of Japan's tropical islands this time, so I've got it a lot better than some.. Winter 14-15 is my year to try to heat exclusively with wood..
    stoveguy2esw and fox9988 like this.

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