1. Welcome Hearth.com Guests and Visitors - Please enjoy our forums!
    Hearth.com GOLD Sponsors who help bring the site content to you:
    Hearthstone Soapstone and Cast-Iron stoves( Wood, Gas or Pellet Stoves and Inserts)

How hungry is your gasifier?

Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by GS7, Sep 16, 2013.

  1. GS7

    GS7 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2012
    Messages:
    131
    Loc:
    Connecticut
    Since I'm sooo close to getting a gasifier, I'd love to know:

    1. How many square feet are you heating?
    2. How many gallons of storage do you have?
    3. How many cords of wood are you averaging each winter?

    ...and anything you'd like to add:)

    Helpful Sponsor Ads!





  2. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Messages:
    3,108
    Loc:
    Falmouth, Michigan
    1. How many square feet are you heating? About 2,800
    2. How many gallons of storage do you have? Just what's in the boiler and system ....maybe 50
    3. How many cords of wood are you averaging each winter? About 4.5 tons

    I'm halfway pulling your leg. ..... The gasification boiler doing the heating chores in my humble adobe burns pellets at an modulating firing rate of 23,000 to 71,000btu so I'm cheating ==c
    hobbyheater likes this.
  3. Fred61

    Fred61 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2008
    Messages:
    1,777
    Loc:
    Southeastern Vt.
    1. Heating 1100 sq. ft. plus 1100 sq. ft. basement.
    2. 500 gallons unpressurized storage.
    3. Three + - cords/year. One three to four hour fire per day, batch burn to recharge storage.
    4. Boiler is in basement to take advantage of heat loss from boiler and storage. Big benefit, radiant zones never run while firing the boiler.
    hobbyheater likes this.
  4. GS7

    GS7 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2012
    Messages:
    131
    Loc:
    Connecticut
    You got me good LOL, what boiler are you heating with?
    hobbyheater likes this.
  5. BoilerMan

    BoilerMan Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2012
    Messages:
    1,623
    Loc:
    Northern Maine
    The square footage thing is quite variable as some houses are tighter than others. As well as the climate.

    Heated space: 3,200 ft^2
    Storage: 62 yards^3 of concrete (slab on grade with pex 6" deep)
    Wood used: 3.5 cords for 100% heating and 100% DHW in a climate with 9,600 heating degree days

    TS
  6. GS7

    GS7 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2012
    Messages:
    131
    Loc:
    Connecticut
    I can't wait to move up from the insert space heater, One fire a day I could get used to!
  7. GS7

    GS7 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2012
    Messages:
    131
    Loc:
    Connecticut
    It's amazing how little wood can heat large areas with the right set up, even with the variables of insulation, ect
  8. maple1

    maple1 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Messages:
    4,248
    Loc:
    Nova Scotia
    1. How many square feet are you heating? 2700 on two floors, with 1500 of basement underneath where the boiler & storage & the winters wood all sit. Standard 20 year old construction/insulation but on an exposed windy hill top.

    2. How many gallons of storage do you have? 660

    3. How many cords of wood are you averaging each winter? For all our heat & hot water: about 5.5 cords last year, the first one with the new one. Add $30/month for electric DHW in 2-3 summer months. Before that with our old one, it was about 7.5 cords + 150 gallons of oil for the year for heat & DHW.

    To add: our house was never as warm with the old one as it is with the new setup. Not sure how you'd factor that into the equation, but I'd say we'd burn easily another tank of oil to keep as warm if we still had the old combo unit. If sticking to just wood, the old one just wouldn't have been able to keep the house that warm, period. And not worrying about feeding a fire until noon at the earliest on the coldest days (more typically later afternoon), along with not playing chimney sweep two storeys up on a slippery steel roof 3 times a year, has all been well worth the price of admission so far.
    arngnick, BoilerMan and hobbyheater like this.
  9. JP11

    JP11 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    May 15, 2011
    Messages:
    1,239
    Loc:
    Central Maine
    If you're close to buying a boiler.. you BETTER already have your dry wood.

    JP
    BoilerMan likes this.
  10. GS7

    GS7 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2012
    Messages:
    131
    Loc:
    Connecticut
    I almost bought a combo unit, but I really want to completely get off oil. There is light ahead! Do you think there is any noticeable benefit to going over 660 gallons in storage? I'd imagine at some point adding more could become too much? Those tanks have quite a footprint too!,
  11. nrcrash

    nrcrash Member

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2012
    Messages:
    158
    Loc:
    MA
    The more storage the better!! Wish I had another 1000 gallons!
    BoilerMan and hobbyheater like this.
  12. infinitymike

    infinitymike Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2011
    Messages:
    1,711
    Loc:
    Long Island, NY
    I don't know how you guys can burn so little and be in colder places than me!:confused:

    My house was built in 1951 with no insulation in the walls or attic.
    In the early 70's the original owners added 500 sq ft of second floor and 300 sq ft of first floor. While they were at it they blew some cheesy powder in the walls which has settled about 3/4 way down the walls. And some r15 fiberglass in the attic.

    My house is 2700 sq ft of heated living space (which includes 700 sq ft of heated finished basement) also I have 800 sq ft of uninsulated/unheated basement and the 500 sq ft of uninsulated garage that the WG is in.

    I have about 800 sq ft of my 1st floor that has a poorly insulated attic above it and poorly insulated walls. I did reinsulate the 500 sq ft of second floor attic with R38 last year.
    The second floor and the extension on the first floor have fin tube baseboard.
    The rest of the first floor has sun-rads that are recessed in the wall. They are just a short piece 3'+/- of wide fin tube baseboard. There is 6 of them total. Real stupid design because they cut out all the framing and recess them, the only thing separating the heat from the outside is a piece of 3/4" sheathing and the vinyl siding.!!!


    I keep the house at 70* from 5:30 am- 11pm and then the Tstat is set to 66


    I burned about 7 cord <>of maple, locust and cherry that was barely 10 months old from
    Nov 1st thru end of March, ( about the same the first year with even less dry wood) I'm on my 4th cord of pallet wood for DHW which I started burning in end of march. Actually it was the week before Easter that I got my first cord of pallets. It's 90% southern yellow pine and 10% oak. They are small chunks and blocks of pallets they cut up and load in 4x4x4 cribs


    Man o man do I need to really insulate this place.
    last year I replaced the front windows and siding. I took off the sheathing and found the powder insulation. I reinsulated with r15 roxul. I also redid my roofing and the 2nd fl roof plywood was shot so I pulled it and was able to reinsulate the attic.

    image.jpg

    Attached Files:

    hobbyheater likes this.
  13. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Messages:
    3,108
    Loc:
    Falmouth, Michigan

    Windhager Bio Win running at 21KW maximum which is actually about 72,000btu. It spent nearly all of the winter last year between 35-65% output.
  14. chuck172

    chuck172 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2008
    Messages:
    1,030
    Loc:
    Sussex County, NJ
    I too am confused about reports of low amounts of wood consumed. Simple math of the cu. ft. of the firebox, everyday for 5 or 6 months, even one load a day brings one to at least 5 or 6 cords a year.
    infinitymike likes this.
  15. GS7

    GS7 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2012
    Messages:
    131
    Loc:
    Connecticut

    I'm guessing that's where the heat loss and square footage variables come in?
    BoilerMan likes this.
  16. Fred61

    Fred61 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2008
    Messages:
    1,777
    Loc:
    Southeastern Vt.
    In the shoulder seasons, there is not a fire every day. Only in the coldest months. Some days the fire chamber does not need to be completely filled. Weatherproofing has become a hobby with me. Can't wait for winter when my wife goes back to work to dive into my next project.
  17. maple1

    maple1 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Messages:
    4,248
    Loc:
    Nova Scotia

    Completely off the oil = very good thing.

    I was always leery of electricity when it came to heating DHW, thinking that means big power bills. I was way wrong all those years - can't believe it was 17 summers of listening to my oil boiler cut in multiple times per day just to keep itself hot even when we weren't using any hot water. All the money I wasted...

    Anyway, I would like more storage, yes, but I have pretty well all my practical space for it used up. I would recommend 1000 gallons to anyone thinking of storage, if they have the room for it. The difference in footprint space isn't that much - for two stacked tanks it's 30" wide x 9' long, vs. 36" wide vs. 9 1/2' long. That 6" extra width was too much for my space.
  18. maple1

    maple1 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Messages:
    4,248
    Loc:
    Nova Scotia
    My firebox is only 3.5 cu.ft., measuring the useable space inside. I don't try to cram it full, I stop when the wood stops going easily in - that plus a couple inches space fore & aft and my loads are likely less than 3 cu.ft..

    Thinking more on what I posted above, I was actually pretty close to 6 cords & not 5.5 - not much of a difference but I should likely call it 6.
  19. flyingcow

    flyingcow Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2008
    Messages:
    2,410
    Loc:
    northern-half of maine

    What are you using for heat now?
  20. willyswagon

    willyswagon Burning Hunk

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2012
    Messages:
    218
    Loc:
    PEI, Canada
    Weatherproofing, insulation, and trees.
    Not just the ones you burn, but the ones that block the howling winds of off the frozen Gulf of St Lawrence!

    Oh ya 4.5 cords, 2700 sq ft
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2013
  21. hobbyheater

    hobbyheater Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2011
    Messages:
    1,006
    Average heat loose 15,000 BTU,S per hour Nov./ April
    In Nov 1985 seen 10 days where the heat loose was 60,000 BTU,S per hour.
    Summers are damp night day temperature range can get down to 40 f to a day time time high in the low 60,s . this summer being warmer than normal no heat draw days June through to now .
  22. BoilerMan

    BoilerMan Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2012
    Messages:
    1,623
    Loc:
    Northern Maine
    One load is not a full firebox, and it does not get fired every day.

    TS
    arngnick likes this.
  23. GS7

    GS7 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2012
    Messages:
    131
    Loc:
    Connecticut
    About how much does an electric hot water heater add to the electric bill for 4 people?
  24. maple1

    maple1 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Messages:
    4,248
    Loc:
    Nova Scotia
    I put in an 80 gallon heater. Two adults & three teenagers (two boys, the oldest a girl). Bill went up about $30/mo @ 0.16/kwh.
    hobbyheater likes this.
  25. skfire

    skfire Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2010
    Messages:
    317
    Loc:
    NEPA
    1. How many square feet are you heating?
    2,950 sq ft with some tall glass facing south & DHW
    2. How many gallons of storage do you have?
    800+45
    3. How many cords of wood are you averaging each winter?
    4-5 cords(2-3 YEARS DRY) from Oct 1st to end of May
    ...and anything you'd like to add:)
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2013

Share This Page