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Gas Fireplace for mountain home?

Post in 'It's a Gas!' started by jotul8e2, Jun 2, 2009.

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  1. jotul8e2

    jotul8e2 Feeling the Heat

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    Ozarks
    I am trying to figure out how to heat a 1300 sq. ft. mountain (9,000 ft. above sea level!) home. It has a basement, half finished, half garage; 20X35 main level, half of which is open, and a half second story that is only open to below through the stairway.

    The house is currently heated with electric strip heaters - the most expensive heat source known to man. There is no duct work, so a forced air furnace would be a problem. There is attractively price natural gas, however. Then there is the problem of space - there isn't any. Not one room of the house can accept even the smallest stove without basically eliminating that room from use.

    Question: Could I install a vented, thermostatically controlled gas fireplace and achieve reasonable efficiency? Is there any other solution that occurs to anyone? I don't have to heat every room - we can retain the heat strips as a supplement. My idea was to to build an insulated chase on the main level to receive the fireplace so as to have the face of the fireplace flush with the interior wall of the open kitchen/dining room/living area which makes up half the main level. There are ceiling fans to assist air movement.

    Mark

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  2. woodsman23

    woodsman23 Minister of Fire

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    Pellet stove?? pellet insert??. Propane...?
  3. summit

    summit Minister of Fire

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    check out the fireplace extrodinair 864hh or 36dvxl. both have knockouts fora heat duct option, so as to route the heat to other rooms (much like furnace ducting) when in operation. this provides more even heat thru the house, rather than blasting yourself out of a single room. I must stress to you, do not let the dealer talk you into an 864trv or 564 space saver.. these units are more for looks and price point than efficient heating. while they look nice, and are less money, i do not think that you would be happy w/ the output for whole house heating.
  4. jotul8e2

    jotul8e2 Feeling the Heat

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    Thank you, I will do that. I am not sure how I would go about ducting forced air, but it might be possible. I do not actually need to heat the whole house, but if I could get most of the main level it would be a big help.

    Mark
  5. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    To answer your question, yes, you can heat the cabin with a gas fireplace. The heater rated fireplaces have very similar efficiencies to the free standing stoves, same thing with wood stoves and inserts. These gas stoves are made to heat and frankly I would consider them ideal for a thermostatic heat source where natural gas is available.

    Seriously though, 1300 SF and nowhere to stick a freestander? Some of these stoves have very tight clearances. I like freestanding stoves but the heat comes from the blowers and the face so it really doesn't matter which way you install it.
  6. jotul8e2

    jotul8e2 Feeling the Heat

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    Hard to believe, but true. 350 sq. ft. are in a half-story upstairs, another 350 in the finished half-basement. The only possible room is the open kitchen/dining/living area which is about 17X19. This area contains the kitchen cabinets and appliances, eating area, and whatever chairs, sofa, television, etc. are attendant upon a living space. Oh yes, there is also the stairway, the six-foot sliding glass door, and a hallway, none of which can be obstructed. Even with the minimal footprint of some stoves, by the time you space the furnishings so that no one is getting cooked you end up with almost no room at all.

    However, If I could install a gas fireplace in one of the few wall spaces available, building an insulated exterior chase to contain it, I can arrange to have a sofa and at least one, and possibly two, upholstered chairs.

    Thank you all for the suggestions, they are most encouraging.

    Mark
  7. summit

    summit Minister of Fire

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    This area contains the kitchen cabinets and appliances, eating area, and whatever chairs, sofa, television, etc. are attendant upon a living space. Thank you all for the suggestions, they are most encouraging.

    Mark[/quote]

    also, if footprint is a big concern, check ou the 21DV also known as the bed and breakfast... its only good for @ 600 sq ft, but weve crammed them into some small niches before... i've even recessed one into a guy's kitchen cabinets!!!
  8. Wood Heat Stoves

    Wood Heat Stoves Minister of Fire

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    none of my customers are ever too happy with this type of stove direct ducting... expensive piping, inefficient design

    ceiling mount airhandlers use cheap ducting and move far more heat ime
  9. SteveKG

    SteveKG Minister of Fire

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    We, too, live in a mntn cottage [1100 sq. ft. including 275 sq. ft. greenhouse...small] at 8500 ft. MSL. I can feel your lack of room for a stove. Our upstairs room, the bedroom, is only 10 x 12 and only open to downstairs via the stairwell. We heat with wood, all downstairs, but the heat travels up enough to keep the bedroom fine.

    Can you build on a small addition to one wall that would house a stove? I did this in our bath to make room for a compost toilet, just a three-sided little space that cantilevered out from one wall three feet or so. Think of a windowless bay window sort of space, don't know what the architectural term would be.... Wouldn't necessarily need much, if any, foundation work, depending on the weight of the stove. Mine didn't.

    Unless you really want the fireplace look.

    Couple of quiet fans might move the air around the place from the central location.
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