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Installing Stove in Middle of Home

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by jhambley, Oct 12, 2012.

  1. jhambley

    jhambley Member

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    Should I build a hearth and surround for a stove that will be sitting in the center of a home or is it OK to just place it in the open? People will be walking around the open stove with about 4' clearance on all sides. Just want to be smart about the install.

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  2. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    The stove will need a minimum hearth if nothing else, for ember protection unless the floor is concrete slab. Some stoves require a lot more. How much protection will depend on the mfg's. tested requirements. Do you have one picked out?
  3. jhambley

    jhambley Member

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    We are planning on staining the concrete with an acid wash and sealing. I've heard great things about the Blaze King but don't know if I want a stove that uses a consumable catalytic combuster. Would like to get a steel stove that can burn thru the night in an 1800 foot well insulated home.
  4. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Just to confirm, this is on a concrete slab floor, right?

    There are several non-cat steel stoves that will do the job for you. To determine the best fit it would help to know more about the installation. Will the stove be located in the basement or on the main living floor of the house?
  5. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Heed begreen's advice.

    As for the cat and wanting a stove that can burn through the night, a cat stove can really assist you in getting long overnight burns. We once feared a cat but have come to love them. The reason is that we burn so much less wood and get more heat. Another bonus is the clean chimney. We cleaned our chimney after 2 years with this stove and got about a cup of soot. We checked this fall and it does not need cleaning yet and it has been 3 years since cleaning.

    Steel stoves have their place as do cast and soapstone. We now can say we've had each type. Soapstone rocks!
  6. jhambley

    jhambley Member

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    Yes, the final floor finish will be stained concrete. We are looking at 1800 sq feet ranch (30 x 60) with 9' ceiling height. 2X6 exterior wall construction with R-19 walls. No basement. Thinking of placing stove in the center of the home. Large open floor plan.
  7. jhambley

    jhambley Member

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    Went to several stove stores today. Really concerned that most don't seem to know much about heating with wood. One says it's better to undersize the stove and run it hot. They other says a bit oversized and then throttle it down :)

    I've read a lot of posts on here and some state "Nice and cozy with the stove holding at 77-80 degrees) :eek: Yikes...I'd have to open the doors and windows at that temperature. We normally keep our home cool (around 65).

    Any suggestions/rules for sizing?
  8. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Sounds like a convective stove would work fine. In steel, take a look at the Enviro Kodiak 1700, Osburn 2000, Pacific Energy Super 27 or Spectrum, Regency S2400, Quadrafire 4300, Buck 85 for starters.

    PS: Hope there'll be a couple of inches of insulation under the concrete slab.
  9. timusp40

    timusp40 Feeling the Heat

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    Gotta agree with Backwoods about the stove. Your original question about the hearth seems obvious. Ya gotta have some kind of hearth under the stove and if it is in a traffic area, I would be concerned about that accidential contact.
    Take care,
    Tim
  10. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    That has also been our experience with almost every stove shop we have visited. Some like to talk a good talk but really don't know much.

    Experience says go bigger rather than smaller. You can regulate the temperature by how much wood you put in the stove. If you go smaller, then you have short burn cycles, which means running the furnace at night or getting up during the night to add wood.

    For your 1800 sq ft home that is well insulated I would think something in the 2 cu ft firebox should do the trick but that would be minimum size. Something like our Fireview would do the trick. It has 2.1 firebox but that is not all useable space because it has andirons to keep the wood off the glass. The largest home I've heard about this stove heating is 2200 sq ft but I do not think that heated it very well. I have heard of many with 1700-1900 doing well so long as they had good insulation.

    My advice is to go bigger rather than smaller.
  11. RichVT

    RichVT Member

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    Don't worry - you will very quickly adapt to living in a nice warm house. We used to keep our house in the low 60's during the day and 50's at night when we used propane. Now 65 feels cold.
  12. Wood Duck

    Wood Duck Minister of Fire

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    I think the idea to have the stove in the middle of the room is a great idea. I'd look for a stove that can be burned long and low - in other words I'd look hard at a big cat stove. Personally I wouldn't worry about people bumping into the stove unless you have toddlers around, in which case I'd have a moveable gate or fence to put up.

    I like adding wood to the fire as much as anyone, but I'd like my stove to burn longer than it does.
  13. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Very good advice here . . . in going slightly bigger rather than smaller and with the size of the firebox.

    Ditto on the advice on regulating the temp by the amount of wood you put in the firebox, how often you reload and what you put in the firebox . . . you can make things as cool or as hot as you want (within limits) depending on those three factors . . . and with experience.

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