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Help choose new stove for very cold Canadian winters.

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Rudy, Nov 21, 2012.

  1. Rudy

    Rudy New Member

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    I am looking for a wood stove that will burn overnight, is cast iron, I prefer north south loading ability, but not absolutely necessary, and it has to be able to heat a small house (500sq ft) even in -40 cold winters. I'm thinking about the rangeley, regency/hampton h300 or Alderlea t5. The thing I need to know is if it will heat the house in very cold weather but also in mild weather without it being too hot in there. I am new to wood stoves. If i get the smaller stove, will it heat the house in -40? Will it last overnight? Also this house has a wooden floor and a partial basement where the pipes are. I don't want them to freeze. The house has blow-in insulation in the walls and in the attic, but old windows. Not too drafty. Anyone out there in very cold regions with experince? I'm in central Canada.

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  2. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Welcome Rudy. You are talking about at least an 80 degree outside temperature span. The main thing that is going to help is insulation first, stove second.

    Now, on to the stove. For an overnight burn you are going to need capacity or a catalytic converter. For non-cat stoves the Alderlea T5 is worth looking at because it will provide long burn times and can burn a smaller loads. You might also consider a Woodstock Keystone in a catalytic stove.

    Your concern about the pipes in the basement freezing is understandable and correct. With a wood stove heating the main floor, the pipes in the basement may get too cold. I would have a small supplemental electric heater down there on a thermostat or run the central heating system hourly during the extreme cold.
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  3. bag of hammers

    bag of hammers Minister of Fire

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    Just a thought - if you don't have too much pipe to worry about you can look at self regulating heat trace /tape products + some pipe insulation. Heat-Line, Easyheat, etc. I'm looking at these now for a small application. As for the stove, the veterans here will give great advice. I can only note fwiw that PE brand was a top pick for me and only lost out to a great deal on an Osburn a few years ago. If i recall PE stoves had a great reputation for long burn times, and they were (I assume still are) very nice looking units.
  4. weatherguy

    weatherguy Minister of Fire

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    BG nailed it (again) the woodstock would be a perfect stove since you have a small house, or either of the new blaze kings, you can run the cat stove low when its not too cold and have the ability to crank it up when the temps get frigid.
  5. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    We have the rangeley and that thing really really throws the heat I would think that would be way to much stove for 500sq ft. Keep in mind that you can go larger than needed and in your case you should if your going to -40 range. There is a point where too big is going to happen as well it becomes inefficient. It would be worth fixing the windows because you will find that you wont need anywhere near the stove size once that is done which means less wood to heat. Overnite burns are really hot coal beds not flame. This means that with drafty windows coal may not be enough in -40 with a drafty window. We could not heat our home in Michigan winters which can reach -15 to -20 after wind chill at times without the furnace to until we insulated everything. Now the Rangeley is almost to much for 1500 square foot.

    Pete

    Woodstock cat stove
    http://www.woodstove.com/keystone

    Pacific Energy T-5
    http://www.pacificenergy.net/alderlea/t5.php

    Blaze King Chinook
    http://www.blazeking.com/EN/wood-chinook20.html

    Jotul Oslo
    http://www.jotul.com/en-US/wwwjotulus/Main-menu/Products/Wood/Wood-stoves/Jotul-F-500-Oslo/

    Pete
  6. Todd

    Todd Minister of Fire

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    For 500 sq ft you need a smaller Blaze King. There's no way a medium sized non cat stove like the T-5 or Rangely will give you a long overnight burn without having to fill it up full and this will roast you out. You would be burning 1 or 2 sticks every few hours to control the output. With the BK you can fill it full every time and control the heat output by the air controlled thermostat and it won't overpower, it will maintain a nice even temp all night. My vote is for the Sirocco or Chinook 20 or you could wait til the new cast iron Ashford 20 comes out this year.
  7. Rudy

    Rudy New Member

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    Todd,
    Will the chinook 20 with only 38000 BTUs keep good room temperature even when it's -40 outside?
  8. Malatu

    Malatu New Member

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    I don't know how many windows you have in a structure of 500 sq ft, but I agree with a previous thought of getting new windows. If you have a single pane window, you are loosing so much heat. Even if you have storm window over them, it's not an ideal situation. There are some pretty good double pain window that are reasonably price. It would be worth the investment, particularly at minus 40 degrees.
  9. Rudy

    Rudy New Member

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    Pete, the windows are painted shut and have spray foam around them. The are only R1, but I read somewhere that even double and triple pane windows only rate R2. I get some draft by the back door, because the house shifted a bit.The rest is OK, since I got the blow in insulation a few years ago. My heating bills went from $250/m to about a $100 in winter. I'm hoping that the stove will replace my heating and I can use the furnace as backup, but I wanna make sure the stove is able to heat the whole house if the power is out. Look at what happened to people in NY!
  10. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    With a good double pane window you save some where around 40% heat loss. Single pane windows do not have a gas barrier which means all the warm air gets sucked right out the window. The gas barrier among other things keeps heat in much better. R-3 - R-5 is a good window it may not sound like much but I can attest to how much heat loss is saved by a good window the difference is night and day. They also make triple pane windows which though expensive are amazing.

    Pete
  11. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

  12. Malatu

    Malatu New Member

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    Yes, Going from 1-R to 4-R is four times better. I just put in new triple pane windows in my home. If I remember, the up-charge for triple was only $30 extra per window. On a $200 window, I thought it was worth it. Also, if my memory serves me, the third pane in a triple glazed window is primarily for reducing heat gain when that window is getting direct sun. It's similar to putting tint on a window to reduce heat gain from direct sun. That third pane also greatly reduces sound penetration.
  13. Rudy

    Rudy New Member

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    Here is an attachment of layout of the house. The star is where I wanna put the stove. The porch will be unheated, so that makes the heated are 500 sq ft.

    Attached Files:

  14. Rudy

    Rudy New Member

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    Oh I forgot to draw a backdoor. It's on the south side (right side) of the kitchen.
  15. Malatu

    Malatu New Member

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    I sort of like the unheated porch. You could us it as part of the main living area if your stove is over heating the main room. That may not be the most logical or efficient approach for your decision making process.

    If the porch walls are insulated and it has a quality door you could keep the door and windows to the porch open make the porch part of your main living area. If it's a screened porch ..... scratch that suggestion.
  16. Rudy

    Rudy New Member

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    Hmm, I guess I underestimated the power of R2 windows. :)
    I figured if my walls are R10 then the difference between R2 and R1 isn't that great.
    Malatu, do you see a noticeable difference in your heating with the new windows?
  17. Rudy

    Rudy New Member

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    The porch has uninsulated walls, drafty 6x4 and 4x4 foot wide windows and drafty door with a mail slot in it. I use it as a fridge in the winter. And my van as the freezer! ;) The porch actually has a heat register vent from the furnace there, but it just brings the temperature up a little. Water will still freeze there.
  18. Malatu

    Malatu New Member

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    Like night day! Yes, I'm saving money, but the comfort level is priceless. No drafts or cold spots in front of window.
  19. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    How big are your rooms ! That is an awful lot of rooms for 500 square feet.

    Pete
  20. Malatu

    Malatu New Member

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    I believe the R factor is just a measurement of the insulation qualities of the glass, not the entire window. If the window is leaking air, it doesn't really matter what the insulation qualities of the glass. So if your widows are leaking air, new windows not only increase the efficiency of the glass but the entire window. I was shocked at the difference of comfort once I installed new windows. I replaced single pane that had storm windows.
  21. rijim

    rijim Member

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    I would consider going with the big stove to get all night burns at with greater heat output; go with smaller loads and/or softer wood in the warmer weather. Too small of a stove may leave you with a few coals after 8 hrs but the heat output will have dropped off too much to keep the place warm after maybe 5-6hrs.
  22. Todd

    Todd Minister of Fire

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    I think you would be fine. You may have to burn hotter at those extreme temps but you still have a good sized 1.8 cu ft fire box which is the same as the PE T-5 but more controllable burn. When I talked to the BK VP he said people in your area were eating up the smaller Blaze King's for the smaller homes and cabins of your size. This is why they made this smaller stove.
  23. Rudy

    Rudy New Member

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    The bedrooms and kitchen are about 10x10 each and the living room is 10x20.
    See the layout in the previous post. The porch is about 7x20. Ceiling are 10', but in the living room there is a suspended ceiling, made out of a 2x4 frame and paper (cardboard like) tiles. I placed an old Huron oven stove where the new one will be to see how it will look. The old stove has some rust holes, not to mention must be inefficient and probably needs tons of clearance. I bought it without knowing anything about stoves.

    Attached Files:

  24. kingquad

    kingquad Minister of Fire

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    This has blaze king or woodstock written all over it. I'd seriously consider the Keystone. If it's not enough stove, then woodstock has a six month guarantee and will exchange it for a larger fireview. The BK chinook/scirroco 20 would be perfect too.
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  25. rijim

    rijim Member

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    A CAT stove would certainly give you wider range if your not limited to just the models you listed.

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