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What would you do?

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Shelbylyn, Sep 12, 2013.

  1. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    You would need to cut a hole through to the side of the existing flue.You may also want to consider a new full length s.s. liner.
    I have never done a tie in to the side of an existing flue. You will need a wall thimble for the piping to pass through and a "T" or elbow on the inside of the original flue, then a liner up to the top.

    Something I read on here all the time, but wonder if folks think about....
    Many state that they don't want a fan or blower, yet many free standing stove owners do have & use them, and enjoy the benefits they bring.
    Some of the same folks and others state that they are better off during a power outage with a freestander &/or no fan/blower, as it will still heat their home.
    I am lucky I guess, because my insert will heat my place fine during a power failure, and I have cooked on it. Not a huge roast, but I can cook smaller things on it, and some larger inside.
    Some of these same folks use box, door, pedestal fans etc to circulate cooler air towards the stove. I highly doubt these folks have any advantage with their freestander, over me with my insert, as I will still get a very good convective loops throughout the open layout of my home, compared to some other whom need to use fans to circulate air to and from other rooms.
    The bottom line, is research your options, which you are doing, pick minimal 3 stoves/inserts whatever, that fit your wants and needs the best. NONE will fit the list completely, but some will fill more slots than others do.
    Then narrow it down from the 3 favorites to 1.
    House layout will dictate the most, or what you need, and how well it will or won't heat a larger area or the home.
    If fans are a must for circulating heat throughout the house, a freestander might not heat much better than an insert during a power failure or not, and both may heat the hell out of the room they are in, with less traveling outward with no help.
    With the cathedral ceiling, loft and convection loop I get here, I don't need a fan on the insert, or the ceiling fan, but I like to use them to circulate even more air and even the temps out more.
    If you house is a bunch of boxed off rooms, you will have a challenge heating more of the house.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2013
    Huntindog1 and dafattkidd like this.

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  2. dafattkidd

    dafattkidd Minister of Fire

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    Welcome to the forum. If you like the look of a freestanding stove on a hearth over an insert than that's a great reason to go with a freestanding stove. Don't do it because you worried you won't get enough heat. We heat our drafty 1,700 sf house with our insert. Even when it was below zero at night and 10* high for a week straight, we didn't need the oil burner. So I hope that helps. Good luck with your purchase. Wood heat is super fun and pretty addictive.
    teutonicking likes this.
  3. Oregon aloha

    Oregon aloha Member

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    If your going to re-brick why not take off the brick up to the mantel and remove the damper and brick back from the smoke shelf around the liner. That will give you room to install a freestanding stove without having to extent the hearth. One more idea.
  4. Shelbylyn

    Shelbylyn New Member

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    Okay, here are the measurements I got today:
    Total width of hearth and brick going up the wall - 84"
    Height of hearth from floor - 13"
    Debth of hearth - 18"
    Width of opening at front: 34"
    Width in back - 25 ( this is the measurement of current metal insert so probably a little more)
    Height of opening - 23" but we can open this up to the point of the air vent above making it a height of 30" or so
    Depth of opening - 21"
    Hearth to mantel is 46"

    So what idea do you all have for me now?
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 14, 2013
  5. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    I'm leery of the suggestion to remove front brick to increase the size of opening. Often there is a steel frame at the front of the opening establishing a lintel. That support is important, you don't want to structurally weaken the fireplace. Looking at the fireplace it may be a heatform unit. If so the front shouldn't be violated. Speak with a mason first about whether this is an option, or not.

    To keep installation simple, I would go with an insert here. There are several fine units that are excellent heaters. The further the insert projects out onto the hearth the better it will naturally convect in the case of a power outage. A PE Super or Enviro Kodiak 1700 insert look like they would fit.

    Do you have any new pictures of the fireplace? It's hard to see very well with all the stuff on the hearth. Shoot it with the cell phone held horizontally and it will be oriented correctly when posted to the forum.
    Huntindog1 likes this.
  6. Shelbylyn

    Shelbylyn New Member

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    I forgot to take more pictures. However, I just googled heatform unit and found a picture that is very similar to the look. It does have the lintel at top and two vents to each side on the bottom of the hearth. So what does this mean? I do know the chimney has two flues running up it. One from the basement that is connected to a wood cook stove and the other flue is connected to the fireplace. The chimney is concrete block at the base outside and brick everywhere else. There are two ceramic type caps at the top of the chimney, which I was told today is where each flue comes out at the top. So, please help me understand this heatform fireplace please. Is the lintel separate from the metal inset because this one appears to be. The metal doors and frame shown in the picture could have been pulled out today. We are planning on pulling it out too. Thanks so much for helping me!
  7. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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  8. Shelbylyn

    Shelbylyn New Member

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    Yes, it is definitely a heatform. Real masonry fireplace and chimney. Steel box. Definitely. So what are our options? Is an insert our only option?
  9. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    An insert is not the only option, but it's a good one if you are trying to keep this project relatively simple and cost effective.
  10. Shelbylyn

    Shelbylyn New Member

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    Talking to hubby and based on what we have learned today, we will do an insert. We are definitely looking for simple and cost effective. We also want something that will heat the entire house, which hopefully an insert that fits will be big enough. Now to figure out our options for inserts. Hubby said the Lopi Inserts we looked at might fit. Anyone know how much inserts run? Any other insert suggestions with a cooktop surface that would work wi the measurements I gave above?
  11. Shelbylyn

    Shelbylyn New Member

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    After reading more about this heatform fireplace, do we need to have it inspected. I did not notice any rust glancing around the firebox today. The chimney also has caps, so I don't suspect rust. The chimney is straight and I'm also wondering if this can be a DIY project that is worth the savings?
  12. dafattkidd

    dafattkidd Minister of Fire

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    An insert install can definitely be a DIY project, especially with the assistance of the folks on this forum. Usually the most challenging part is removing the existing damper to allow for the 6" liner. That being said, I would recommend having the fireplace and chimney inspected by a pro before beginning the install.
  13. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    The chimney must be cleaned before lining. While cleaning have the sweep measure the clay tile liner interior dimensions to see if it is narrow or wide. If wide, you may be able to drop a rigid liner down and just use flex from the damper to the stove.
  14. Shelbylyn

    Shelbylyn New Member

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    My hubby and FAther in law were going to clean it. He is a mason and can measure the tile and check out the chimney. Guess I will ask around for inspections.

    I'm having trouble finding an insert with a cooktop surface that has a local dealer. So, it looks like Lopi may be our best option. Based on this diagram http://www.lopistoves.com/product-detail.aspx?model=303#dim-tab
    It appears this insert will fit our setup. The death of the hearth is 18" so the cooktop extended surface will still fit. As long as we add 10" of brick or tile on the floor, it will still meet clearance requirements right? Also, what is the difference if the 8-12" borders around the inserts? These panels are what I'm not crazy about...so can we use the smallest at 8" around since we have brick about a foot to each side? Thanks again for the insight and help!
  15. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Given the tall height of the hearth you can probably get away with just ember protection for the floor below. If you don't like the surround maybe leave it off? See if you have any Buck dealers near you. A Buck 74 looks like it will work for you too and might save some bucks.
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2013
  16. Shelbylyn

    Shelbylyn New Member

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    I didn't know if you had to have he surround for some reason? I definitely will consider leaving it off depending on the model we decide. Do you happen to know what the Buck 74 would cost approximately? The closest dealer is a little over an hour away. I was just looking at the Avalon Rainier but the back width is the measurement stopping that option from a local dealer. :(
  17. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    With a full liner connected to the stove the surround is for aesthetics. It is not required for safe operation of the stove and with it removed you have more stove top exposed.
  18. Shelbylyn

    Shelbylyn New Member

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    That is great news because without the surround, it will look more like a hearth mount stove...which is what I really wanted but just is not feasible with the heatform and our budget.
  19. Mr. Kelly

    Mr. Kelly Member

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    Dennis,

    What characteristics of your Woodstock do you believe have made the difference in your comfort, as compared to your old stove???
  20. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Perhaps because in the interim the house was "super-insulated" including new doors and windows, all of which has a significant bearing on comfort and wood consumption. Regardless of stove or heating source this is a wise investment that pays off year round. In this environment there are several stoves that would do the job well as compared to the old smoke dragon.

    http://www.hearth.com/talk/threads/sealed-combustion-appliances.112200/#post-1491800
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2013
  21. Shelbylyn

    Shelbylyn New Member

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    If the chimney is in good condition, do you have to install a liner for use with the insert? We had thought we would put one in no matter what for extra safety. However, if the insert is going to cost more and we don't need one...we would maybe wait to install one next year.
  22. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    Put the liner in. It is safer, will prolly draft much better, and you won't have to pull the whole damn insert out each year for sweeping the chimney.
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2013
    dafattkidd and fossil like this.
  23. Shelbylyn

    Shelbylyn New Member

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    Thanks Hogwildz. So we have narrowed down our insert choices to the Lopi Republic 1750i or the Avalon Olympic. We are getting scheduled for an installation quote, even though, we may install ourselves. This way a pro has measured and we will know for sure if the Olympic will fit. Since it doesn't go far into the fire place, it may fit. Any pros/cons of these two inserts? We have it narrowed down to these two because we want a cooktop surface and a reputable dealer ( which I have come to favor one based on customer service).
  24. mfglickman

    mfglickman Minister of Fire

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    Hi there, and welcome! I just wanted to mention that I have that same house layout (antique farmhouse on one side, then a 19X32 addition that's a family room with master BR above, and 2 big doors, one to kitchen and one to dining room). And I have to say in my first 2 years of doing this I've not been able to get the heat to move from the stove room to any other room of the house, effectively. We do have a pellet stove in the old cooking hearth of the old house, that helps, but it's really hard to get any heat upstairs, ever. I've tried every configuration of fans all over the house and still the upstairs is no better than 60-62 when it's freezing out, and in the morning you can see your breath.

    Just FYI, as you plan this out, to think hard about centrally placing the stove and playing around with options to move the air about.

    Good luck!
    Huntindog1 likes this.
  25. Shelbylyn

    Shelbylyn New Member

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    Do you have vents in the ceilings to your upstairs? We are opening the original square vents that were shut from when the house had a coal stove. Our guess is that the two upstairs bedrooms on the opposite side of the house will need supplemental heat if anything. I will have to let you know how we make out with our insert. I'm going to try to stay optimistic because I want to be self sufficient with heat.

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