Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by Twig, May 12, 2010.
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Having better background information will help us to help you. It doesn't seem like we have gotten to the heart of the matter yet. Can you provide more information about the house, the heating goals, and options you would or would not consider? I'm wondering about things like floor plan, house size, insulation, chimney location and condition, the Cozy fireplace, the budget, etc. If you go with the furnace, how much sheet metal experience do you have or will this be contracted out?
Also, do you already have a good several cords of wood, split, stacked and drying for next fall?
lol make it 10-12 cords ready to go!
I have some pics and a short video of my home layout. Is there anyone I could email pics to so you could post them. I can't post pics from my phone and our Internet has not been hooked up yet.
Do any of you guys live near Duluth,MN?
I am really puzzled by the firebox design. The hole where the smoke exits on the back, there appears to be a built in ridge/channel just below the hole that is filled with soot/ash. It is literally 2 inches deep and I don't seem to see a way to clean it. Also, I just noticed that directly on the top and bottom of the furnace there are 2 spots where something could be screwed in. I am so confussed. Should I just sell this Shurheat Wood Furnace? Does this appear to be a homemade unit?
You can email me the pics, but I'll pass on the video. Click on my member name (over the avatar) and then click on the Email button.
These are not plug and play appliances. Even if the unit was new, there is a degree of skill to run it well. That's why I'd like to see the floorplan and options. It could be that a stove on the first floor is a simpler and safer introduction to wood burning. The All Nighter you have is not the most efficient, but it was a good stove in its day. If it's in good condition, that may be a better starting point. It is a simple stove to operate., so let's take a looks at all options before committing to one.
Is the Hotblast furnace already installed, in good condition and functional? How long have you been using it and how has it worked out? Same question for the fireplace.
Based on what has been posted so far, I would get rid of the Shurheat if for nothing else, because you have no documentation or knowledge of its operation or the controls. If its safety controls or automatic damper control are defective, will you be able to test and determine this before putting it into service?
And last, how much wood do you have already? By now you should have several cords of wood drying for next fall. Damp wood is the number one problem we deal with here when folks start burning in the fall. It leads to poor performance and creosote accumulation. If you don't have wood already, maybe consider buying it (now) for this year?
I have around 4 cord of wood drying right now.
The Hotblast is operational right now, I can put 3 fair size pieces of wood in it and it burns thru the entire night. And it does seem to put out alot of heat.
I just don't really have a clue as to how much of a house it can heat.
FirePlace, I just started my very first fire in it last night. I used some newspaper and a couple of small pieces to get it going, once it was going I put a big piece of wood on and it burned all night. It was actually quite nice to look at and my wife loved it. After an hour of burning I noticed a lightswitch on the side of the fire place, I flipped the switch and man did it throw out the heat.
Ok, my house has a staggered 4 story plan. The chimney for the Wells-McLain Fuel Oil Furnace and Bock Fuel Oil water heater runs pretty much thru the center of the home. If you enter on the side door you will be entering the basement, this is where fuel oil furnace, water heater, fuel oil tank, washer/dryer, mudd room, deep freezer, cold storage, and Bowtech Bow reside.
You then walk up 6 stairs and you will be entering the family room area, here you will find a bathroom, cozyheat fireplace, this space is open 100% with exception of the bathroom. There is also a 10 pound Walleye above the mantle. 5 large windows and material is mainly barnwood on lower walls with barnwood covered steel support beams.
Ok, now go up 6 more stairs, you are now directly over the basement. This is the common area, kitchen and small living room for guest. This is also where the main entrance to the house is. If you notice in the pics there is a giant fat cook man picture, that covered box directly behind him is the chimney. If you notice on the floor I have 2 white boxes, this is where I wanted to put a grate in and run duct from the Hotblast in the basement. These 2 white boxes sit straight above the Hotblast Stove.
Ok, now go up 6 more stairs. You are now right above the 2nd floor family area. This floor has the master bedroom, 2 kids rooms, and bathroom. In the master bedroom closet there is a what appears to be a stainless pipe for the chimney, seems to be 24". It is kinda weird, it is not the brick chimney that I grew up seeing. It is literally a pipe running thru the house.
Thanks for listening, I await your advice.
Is this your first year in the house? How many sq. ft total? I think you might be fine with what you have. It's certainly worth trying it out for a season. I would suspect that the fireplace will cover you for fall and spring and then run the Hotblast in the winter. If the oil furnace comes on occasionally or during the extreme cold days, it's not a big deal.
4 cords is a good start, but for Minn. I don't think you can have too much wood drying.
We have been in the house for 2 weeks. We just purchased it, this is our first home. BeGreen, can you please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will send you over pics to post.
What do you think I should sell the Shurheat for on Craigslist?
Sorry, I'm in the middle of a remodel on our nursery so I am busy. Heres a couple pics that show the house and the furnace. Its a 1300 hotblast, the smaller of the hotblast models. From what I have seen you have baseboard heat. To really get the benefits of a furnace you should have it ducted. Otherwise if it sits in one room and heats the house, then maybe a stove would do the same thing while burning less wood. Having a multi-level home it may not heat evenly if the woodfurnace isn't ducted. With a woodfurnace like that and where you live I would have at least 6 cords, but I wouldn't doubt if you use more. Looking at the home and the age, if its well sealed that shureheat would be too much. I would follow begreens advice and get rid of the furnace. Your hotblast 1300 looks like its been used very little. We heated our 2400 sqft home with a furnace like the hotblast for over 20 years before retiring it and going with something thats more efficient.
If you look at the photo of the hot blast, the two holes on top are directly below the 2 white boxes on the floor above. I was going to run one duct pipe straight up and have a grate. I think once I get heat on that level it will rise to the top staggered level. I talked to the builder who lives a few houses down and he said he built that house and designed it for efficently burning and heating with wood.
Thanks for all the great help and anymore advice would be great.
So the Shurheat and All Nighter Big Moe is now for sale. How much should I ask for each one?
That is great news. I think I would go through the next winter with the existing equipment. Could be that you are all set.
If you don't have it already, download the Hotblast manual:
http://www.usstove.com/Downloads/Owners Manuals/1500-1537G Manual.pdf
The manual mentions ducting into an existing plenum (main trunk duct) but does not cover thru floor ducting. I think this might be because there are safety concerns with the distance from combustibles for the duct(s). This is something to consider before cutting holes in the floor. It might be safer to connect the Hotblast to the existing furnace plenum. I would call US Stoves and ask them about the proposed ducting through the floor into the kitchen.
Also, is the Hotblast the only stove connected to this chimney flue or is the furnace also on this flue?
As for selling the Shurheat and All Nighter, can you hold on to them until about October? You'll get a better sale price once things get chilly. I don't know squat about the Shurheat, but considering it is without blower and the controls are untested, in peak season I'd ask about $350 for the Sureheat and the same for the All Nighter if it's in good condition.
Thanks a ton. The fuel oil furnace is also on the same Flue/Chimney as the Hotblast. After looking, the hotblast goes in the flue/chimney about 2 feet above the fuel oil furnace piping and they are both on opposite sides. There is no plenum, if plenum means duct work. The house has water baseboard heat.
Hey laynes69 (Matt), what did you mean by more efficent unit than the hotblast? Does that mean you can burn less wood and get the same result?
PS- any chainsaw recomendations? I wanted to try cutting wood the old fashioned way, but my hands are raw from sawing all day!
OK, that is a problem. The Hotblast furnace is not supposed to share the chimney with the oil boiler (not a furnace). This should have come out in the house inspection when purchased.
What problems could this cause? Is there anything I can do in order to run them both out of the same chimney?
If the chimney plugged up from creosote and the oil furnace would happen to run, it can flood the house with CO and potentially kill. Also having oil in the same chimney can kill draft for the wood and cause all sorts of problems. You need a seperate chimney for the woodfurnace so the oil has its own chimney. We replaced our old woodfurnace with a more efficient model, but they are pricey in the tune of 2500-3500 just for the furnace. I would get those problems you have fixed and go from there.
Two problems are that this is a hot-water boiler system, not a hot air furnace and both are on the same flue. I would hope the ducting issue is solvable, with correct clearances for the duct. The flue must be separate.
An opposite scenario might be if the chimney had an accumulation of creosote and caught fire, and then the oil boiler tried to kick in. This would most likely be on a zero degree night, when you most need the heat.
They really need to be vented independently. One option might be to power vent the boiler.
Ok, so what you guys are saying is that I need to do one of the following:
1. Power vent the boiler. (how is this done)
2. Seperate the chimney/Flue. (how is this done)
can you please explain the best way to do each of the following and which one would be the cheapest fix. We are on a budget.
These are both options. Either has the same goal of separate flues. For the power venting option, call your oil company. This should be determined by a pro. If the setup is complicated by also having to serve the HW heater, then they may be against this option. Another alternative is to install a separate, new flue for the HotBlast. It may mean moving the Hot Blast to a different location that works better for connecting to the new flue. Cost will depend on what works best for the house, but plan on $1500-2000. Another option is to forgo using the Hotblast and just use the fireplace this winter?
By new flue are you refering to building a seperate chimney up thru the entire house and up thru the roof? Can I not just run flexible duct (not sure of correct term) down the chimney from the top and connect into the hotblast? That way the hotblast has it's on seperate flue. Am I making any sense? Would that be possible? Seems like it would be the least expensive option.
The flue tile would have to be large enough for two dedicated, insulated liners. It's unlikely for a furnace flue. From the picture it looks like the flue appears to be a standard block chimney. My guess would be there is an 8x8 tile liner in it. If a new flue is required for the Hotblast, a new flue could be run exterior, up the side of the house if that is the only option.
How do I determine if a new flue for the hotblast is required?
Ok, I just went downstairs and measured. The block is 21"x17" and I opened the tiny door on the bottom of the chimney and the inside appears to be 12"x8". The house was built in 1980. I just don't understand why there is 2 holes in the chimney if you can't safely use them both.
So tell me where to go from here.
now I am really confused, I just pulled this off the Internet.
Wood and Oil Fired Appliances
A wood-fired heating appliance may be vented into the same chimney flue as an oil-fired heating appliance provided that they are on the same floor - in some jurisdictions.
I called my insurance company today "Safco" and they said by adding a wood furnace worse case secerino my preimum would go up by $50 a year! That was great news. Also, they do not require another inspection, they just add it on the paperwork and away we go.
Also, today I called Fireplace Corner, they said I would need to run 2 dedicated lines for each appliance. Well, the fuel oil furnace and fuel oil water heater share a line into the chimney. I guess my question in why can't I just run one line to the fuel oil furnace/water heater and leave the hotblast as is? It seems using one line down the chimney would do the same thing, and that would be seperating the two...
Where is everyone?
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