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What is your rule on when to burn???

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by claybe, Jan 24, 2013.

  1. HomeBruin

    HomeBruin New Member

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    Loc:
    Califon, NJ
    There are a lot of great answers here, but this was the first one l read first thing in the morning that gave me my first grin! For me, when the house drops below 65F, and I can keep the stove on continuously for at least 24 hours. I don't have time start up from cold iron every day. I'd rather bump on the forced air oil burner to take the chill out than relight the stove every day.

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  2. HomeBruin

    HomeBruin New Member

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    Dec 2, 2012
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    Loc:
    Califon, NJ
    Mtcox, does that heat pump system you have operate using a central air blower? I know I can turn mine on manually without the furnace on, which runs the air through the electrostatic air cleaner. That might help if you wanted to burn more often. It also runs the air through the whole house humidifier on my system. Doesn't humidify as efficiently as when furnace is running since the air passing through the water pad is not very warm, but it does help. The inside air has not dropped below 35% so far despite bone dry outside air.
  3. mtcox

    mtcox Member

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    Apr 6, 2007
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    Loc:
    Stafford, Virginia
    HomeBruin,

    It does have a central air blower and I've run it on occasion. However, the duct work runs through an unconditioned crawl space. After about 20 minutes of running the fan, the temperature in the house drops 2-3 degrees. I have a second estimate this week on re-insulating the crawl space and turning it into conditioned space. However the first estimate was over $6,000. That included a new vapor barrier and spray foam insulation. Too rich for my blood.
  4. TheBaron

    TheBaron New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2012
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    88
    Loc:
    Eastern ON, Canada
    Being new to woodburning in our current home, I try to light the stove whenever I can. That being said, its always been around 0° F (or below) with this damn cold snap! My wife seems indifferent, but seems to enjoy my excitement with the fire going.

    We are burning 24/7 now and will do that until it goes above 30° F - then I'll probably only run it for evening pleasure. We are on natural gas and its actually cheaper to heat with that (central heat) than buy wood around here.
  5. Slow1

    Slow1 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2008
    Messages:
    2,663
    Loc:
    Eastern MA
    Pretty much with many others - the "rules" as they exists are simple -
    1) if wife asks for a fire
    2) if wife is cold/chilled
    3) if I want a fire
    4) if forecast is calling for overnight temps to fall below freezing, there will be a fire when I go to bed.

    Never really thought of them as rules though, just how things have evolved. Note that #3 can be extended to "3a - if one of the kids mentions starting a fire" - which generally falls back to #3 unless I'm an unusual mood or big hurry.
  6. oldspark

    oldspark Guest

    +1
  7. Flatbedford

    Flatbedford Minister of Fire

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    Croton-on-Hudson, suburbs of NYC
    No rules here. If t is cool in the house we start a fire. That can be any time between September and May. I have a great stove and plenty of wood no reason not to be comfortable. I just wish I could run the central AC on wood too!
    jackatc1 likes this.
  8. Adabiviak

    Adabiviak Feeling the Heat

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    Dec 7, 2008
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    294
    Loc:
    Sierra Nevadas, California
    Seconded - when the wife says go or when we're otherwise cold. I don't even know what temperature it is when we start the fire now that I think about it.
  9. claybe

    claybe Member

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    Nov 13, 2008
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    Loc:
    Colorado
    So I guess those of you that have alternate sources of heat leave them off and your temps tell you when to burn??? I guess I need to turn the heat off and let the wife get cold so I can burn a fire every night!!!!
    Wildo likes this.
  10. ArsenalDon

    ArsenalDon Minister of Fire

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    Meadow Valley, CA
  11. ArsenalDon

    ArsenalDon Minister of Fire

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    Meadow Valley, CA
    The smartest man around! Take it from a thirty year married man (this Aug)....my standard line is "happy wife, happy life"
  12. ArsenalDon

    ArsenalDon Minister of Fire

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    Meadow Valley, CA
    So last season we used our hydro zoned radiant heating system and it cost us over $600 per month....this season we are exclusively heating via wood. As a new burner I have found that when it was dropping into the single digits (actually hit -5::F10 days ago or even the teens I was burning through the wood so fast to keep up. Now the nightly lows are about 32 or so and the highs are in the mid 40's so we are burning less than 1/3 of the wood, maybe even 1/4 of the wood, so...the answer to the question is like KaptJaq said...when my wife says crank it up...came home today to 80::F which made me happy as a clam
  13. northwinds

    northwinds Minister of Fire

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    Loc:
    south central WI
    I set my thermostat for 55F. The furnace is a non-issue unless we're out of town overnight.
  14. SlyFerret

    SlyFerret Minister of Fire

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    Loc:
    Delaware, Ohio
    I burn when I need heat.

    To refine that a bit... The shoulder season sucks for me.

    I can't burn if temps aren't at least down around 45 degrees. I don't get a strong enough draft and I'll overheat the house.

    I usually run the space heater in the bedrooms if overnight lows will be in the 40's and daytime highs in the mid 50's.

    If daytime highs are mid 40's, I usually don't light the stove in the morning, only burning one load in the late evening.

    Most of the winter, I burn one morning load and one evening load.

    Lately, with this cold snap, i've been able to keep the stove hot, reloading around 250 and relighting with hot coals.

    -SF
  15. firecracker_77

    firecracker_77 Minister of Fire

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    NWI office - 2 Heritages; Chicago home - Woodstock
    I burn whenever it's cool outside..all my burning is tax deductible heating
  16. Dakotas Dad

    Dakotas Dad Minister of Fire

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    Central Kentucky
    If it's below 40 out, we maintain a fire. If it gets above that, the heat pump takes over if needed to keep it warm enough.
  17. clr8ter

    clr8ter Member

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    Southern NH
    When I'm cold, and/or when I don't want to spend money on oil. Usually both, and most of the time.
    Mitch Newton likes this.
  18. jackatc1

    jackatc1 Burning Hunk

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    Loc:
    Port Crane ny
    Ditto.
  19. Seanm

    Seanm Feeling the Heat

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    Loc:
    SE BC Canadian Rockies
    When the furnace comes on I get twitchy. Its 2c above today and hasnt been that warm for a long time but man the house got warm quick when I lit the stove. Only have to do that a few times a month as there are often enough coals in the morning to get er going. Since we were at school, work etc today we let it go out but when we got home this evening (furnace off of course!!) the house was almost down to 20c and we were cold! Not anymore ;-) Full load of Larch and 23c upstairs. So easy when its warm out!!
  20. blacktail

    blacktail Minister of Fire

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    Sep 18, 2011
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    Loc:
    Western WA
    I light a fire if it's October or later in the season.
  21. Excavator

    Excavator Burning Hunk

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2011
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    209
    Loc:
    Central NJ
    Wife makes rules, light it in early October and let it go out late April. ;)
    Prolly use 3 matches in all that time
  22. simple.serf

    simple.serf Feeling the Heat

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    269
    Loc:
    Sherman, NY
    We set our thermostat at 50 most of the time. This past week was so damn cold (for the way our house is insulated, vermiculite that I DON'T want to mess with...) that I have been using the oil a bit to get the upstairs, bedrooms, and the boiler room/garage warm and keep pipes from freezing. Other than a relight due to cleaning the stove and stack, I haven't let the stove go out since December.

    It killed me this month, I had to get oil for DHW, $600 for a partial load. That should get us until July, and yes, wood fired DHW is currently in the planning stages.
  23. suprz

    suprz Member

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    Loc:
    Rhode island
    I light the stove whenever me and the wife feel the need. But we got our natural gas bill for last month (we have natural gas for DHW and for the forced hot air furnace, and cooking) and the bill was only $9.00. And that was with us only using the stove occasionally....i think we will be using the stove more...
  24. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    Whenever its cold in the house. I don't care what the outside feels like as it doesn't really effect the indoors. We have had a fire in august a few times just because the house was chilly !

    Pete
  25. etiger2007

    etiger2007 Minister of Fire

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    as soon as the wife reaches for the gas thermostat
    Pallet Pete likes this.

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