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small home, how about wood boiler in garage

Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by steelejones, Mar 27, 2013.

  1. steelejones

    steelejones Member

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  2. Blue Tornado

    Blue Tornado Guest

    To me, your idea is a good one. There will be many considerations before making a final decision. This is the place for your research. There are many good boilers available from various merchants. For a thousand dollars more, you could go with a gasification boiler and not make enemies of your neighbors. The EKO 25 is $4,100 delivered, you can view at the following link.

    http://www.newhorizonstore.com/Products/88-eko-gasification-boiler.aspx

    There is talk about this company going belly-up but it did not discourage me from making the purchase. Being a do it myself type, I have no problem dealing with any maintenance and repair issues. In fact I had drawn plans for three gasifiers and settled on one. After pricing all parts and materials it was too close not to buy the EKO.

    What you will find after further questions and planning is the total cost of a system can be twice the price of the boiler itself. Piping, pumps, circulators, boiler protection valve, heat exchanger, storage tank, insulation, aquastats, thermometers, sensors and on and on.....Basically a person can do without some of these items and still have a functional system.

    Keep in mind that you have to get a good supply of seasoned wood stock piled (two years seasoned is a good bet for gasifier).

    Good luck and enjoy your research.
  3. stee6043

    stee6043 Minister of Fire

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    I would not buy that boiler you linked. The ad says "just wrap normal house insulation around it" if you want to insulate the unit. That should be a big red flag for anyone in the market for a boiler.

    If you plan to have your installation properly permitted and insured you likely won't be able to install the boiler in a garage without some construction even if you never keep cars in it. Most folks have to wall off a section of their garage and install an outside access door to become code compliant. Details will no doubt vary by location of code officials.
    mikefrommaine likes this.

  4. +1 I think the EKO is one of the better buys available right now. To be clear I believe that EKO boilers are no longer being produced/imported but the company that sells them here is not bankrupt. And there is a large user base so presumably parts and consumables will be available in the future.

    /could be wrong, just based on what I've read here.
  5. CTFIRE

    CTFIRE Member

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    The problem with a garage is gasoline vapors. Storing gas in cans or your car could be an issue.
  6. flyingcow

    flyingcow Minister of Fire

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    To follow up, the ins co probably would have a problem. Any building with a garage door might cause a no go with the ins co/ or code officer. But that being said, i got my garage re-classified as a wood storage facility. In the very back of the 'garage" I built an 8x12ft boiler room. piped the boiler water underground to my house. Works very well. I have a tractor and stack my wood on pallets. Spoiled? Yes.
  7. dogwood

    dogwood Minister of Fire

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    Read you local building codes to find out the restrictions on a garage install. There are a couple of ways to do a legal, safe garage install per the IBC Residential Code, which is used in our locality. But like CTFIRE said, gas fumes and fire are a bad mix.
  8. Chris Hoskin

    Chris Hoskin TarmSalesGuy

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    steelejones, I really like this concept a lot. A couple of things to keep in mind: local code will determine how/if you can install a boiler in a 'garage' as others have said; be sure to size the underground piping and related pump correctly; use good quality, factory insulated (closed cell foam) underground piping; you mention having a small home - not sure what that means, but it would be very easy to oversize the wood boiler so I would strongly recommend you include thermal storage in your system (a single 400 or 500 gallon tank at a minimum). If you have high ceilings in the garage, you should plan to install your thermal storage tank(s) vertically. Lastly, you will want to make some kind of allowance for keeping the boiler and thermal storage from freezing if/when the wood boiler is not running (glycol is generally too expensive for a large system volume of 500+ gallons). Good luck with the project!
  9. flyingcow

    flyingcow Minister of Fire

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    Good post Chris. FWIW I run a 2 inch pvc electrical conduit between house and garage. Buried when i installed the underground piping. Always figured if i needed extra heat i could run a small line out(my thermal storage is in the basement of house) and feed a panel rad with a t-stat on it.
  10. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    NFPA code says you can operate a heating appliance in a garage IF the air intake for the burner is over 18" from floor level. Otherwise no no.
    That being said, many local jurisdictions have different requirements and I would sure recommend checking with your insurance company about it first.
  11. dogwood

    dogwood Minister of Fire

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    The other method, which I used, is to completely wall off a section of your garage from the rest of the garage, with a door to the outside only.

    Mike

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