Worst burners in the your neighborhood?

rideau Posted By rideau, Mar 2, 2013 at 5:52 PM

  1. rideau

    Minister of Fire

    Jan 12, 2012
    southern ontario
    Most notorious burners in our neighborhood have had so many chimney fires that the fire department has warned them they won't respond anymore.

    Was actually surprised to hear they can do that.

    But, knowing that house, maybe it has been condemned or something and they are just letting them live there.

    They cut a tree when they run out of wood. Then cut pieces off it to burn.
  2. billb3

    Minister of Fire

    Dec 14, 2007
    SE Mass
    The guy two houses down cuts pallets until it's just far too dark.
    Every night. Circular saw and a ten ( or more ) pound mallet. saw, saw, saw - bang, bang, bang
    I'd still rather hear that than smell trying to burn the green oak sitting in his back yard.
    Every now and then I go split some really knotty pine just to add to the neighborhood cacophony.
  3. begreen

    Staff Member

    Nov 18, 2005
    South Puget Sound, WA
    We've got one down the road. Proudly put in a masonry fireplace with a short chimney last year. He's been smogging up the neighborhood since.
  4. Elusive


    Oct 10, 2012
    Linden, Michigan
    My street ends into a downtown area. The guy at the end of the street was running a smoky outdoor boiler last year. This year he has quit using it. Not sure if the city shut him down or if he got sick of dealing with wood burning.
  5. Thistle

    Minister of Fire

    Dec 16, 2010
    Central IA
    I can smell a little faint smoke from a distance on some days but dont know any other burners in the immediate vicinity.Nothing I can see unless I just happen to notice a chimney on a house when driving or walking by sometime.Maybe 20% tops of the houses in a several block radius in my older neighborhood has a big masonry chimney on outside wall.Either its closed off inside,converted to something more effecient or its never used.
  6. Hogwildz

    Minister of Fire

    Nov 3, 2006
    Next to nuke plant Berwick, PA.
    There are two outdoor boiler users out on the main road. Both burn green wood. The one really burns super dirty. Then those days where there is no air movement, the cloud just hangs round his boiler and house. This is about a mile from me, so I don't have to deal with it, cept when I drive through it.
  7. bubbasdad

    Burning Hunk

    Feb 12, 2012
    Howell, Michigan.
    I have a neighbor, his house is about 800 ft away, when he is burning, I can smell it whenever I go outside. But he has a very old stove, and he burns everything, paper, scrap wood, even treated scraps. At 89, he won't be burning much longer.
  8. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage
    Minister of Fire

    Feb 14, 2007
    We are so thankful to live on a dead end road. There are only two of us on this road and we both burn wood. His is not dry wood but we are far enough apart that his smoke does not bother us. Not only are we thankful for living on a dirt road, but also very thankful we live in the country.
    tfdchief and Pallet Pete like this.
  9. BrotherBart

    Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division
    Staff Member

    Nov 18, 2005
    Northern Virginia
    Impossible to describe the house on the place to our South. But the center section is single story with the ends two story. The fireplace chimney is on the front of the single story section and only a couple of feet higher than that roof. They put in a wood stove years ago with the chimney exiting the single story and only three feet tall above the roof and dead between the two story sides. A couple of times a year when the propane bill comes in they start up the stove or the fireplace with wet wood. And fog the whole neighborhood and surely the inside of the house. Until they obviously dump water on the fire to kill it because you can smell that wet ashes and embers smell for a mile for a while and the smoke stops. We don't like each other so I ain't offering any wood burning advice.

    They had lived there 15 years when they expressed surprise when they found out that we heat with wood. ==c
  10. rideau

    Minister of Fire

    Jan 12, 2012
    southern ontario
    Well, Brother Bart, Wood burning is such a demur activity, how could you expect your closest neighbor to be aware of the process?;)
    BrotherBart likes this.
  11. Hearth Mistress

    Hearth Mistress
    Minister of Fire

    Jan 24, 2012
    Pt Pleasant, PA (SE PA)
    There aren't too many burners right here, most of my neighbors are weekend New Yorkers. Two houses down is my neighbor that burns a lot, good guy. We cut/split together, he has a monster Jotul heating about 2000 sq ft of an old farm house. Since we are both bank barns, I can see his stack from my back yard. I will often look over there to see if he's smoking more/less than me. It's sick, I know but I can't help myself ;) The only other burner is not burning anymore since she had a chimney fire. I tried to warn her, always saw the thick black smoke and fresh, green wood in the driveway, but she wasn't listening. At least no one got hurt but the fire crumbled the brick chimney and gutted most of the second floor.
    loon likes this.
  12. MasterMech


    My neighbor two houses up constantly emits blue smoke from his chimney. He's a cut it today, burn it tonight kind of guy. He's unemployed, she works. He also complains that I have much better equipment than him so I must have an unfair advantage. I am "stealing his trees" (with the owners permission of course ;lol) from all the surrounding properties. But I was feeling generous one day, left him a good bit of 18-24" diameter hickory rounds from a tree that fell near his property line. He still hasn't touched them. Too big, he prefers to cut 6" dia or less so he doesn't have to split it. I did catch him out there splitting a couple rounds yesterday morning tho.

    Two commercial establishments on my way home running OWB's. One smokes out the state highway/interstate just about every morning. It looks like a repair shop of some sort with the OWB out back. Located in a bowl/valley too so the smoke just hangs.

    The other is a well-known diner/ice cream stand/used car lot (these guys are in every business.... ;lol) that has an OWB set a good distance away from the buildings it's heating. That smoke trail is visible for miles.....

    There was another OWB genius running one with a 18" stack on it near (within 50') a busy intersection. He burnt anything that would fit in the door, including his trash. The town finally made him do something. I hear he now has a very tall piece of heavy metal pipe for a chimney.
  13. blacktail

    Minister of Fire

    Sep 18, 2011
    Western WA
    This thread makes me appreciate my neighbors even more.
    My parents used to have a neighbor on the corner who smoked out the whole neighborhood when he burned. He must have burned nothing but green wood and kept the air shut off.
  14. dougstove

    Feeling the Heat

    Aug 7, 2009
    New Brunswick, Canada
    I have a neighbour who must burn garbage; a terrible, toxic plastic stench pouring out.
    This behaviour is going to wreck it for everyone.
    I get very frustrated that people will protest industrial scale emissions (tar sands, fracking, coal generation etc.), but millions of small scale bad behaviours add up as well.
  15. Jags

    Moderate Moderator
    Staff Member

    Aug 2, 2006
    Northern IL
    No neighborhood - no neighbor. Closest residence that is lived in is a mile away. Across a field. I like it.:cool:
  16. peakbagger

    Minister of Fire

    Jul 11, 2008
    Northern NH
    My neighbor used to have to clean his chimney monthly to the point where his ladder was left up permanently. Then he had a couple of chimney fires until the liner cracked. Then he got a liner and continued on the monthly cleaning. Then when the liner failed he bought a used OWB that doesnt comply with state law and stuck it over near my house. When its overcast with no wind my smoke detectors would go off in the attic. He has been trying to make it better by adding stack and currently has about 30 feet guyed off. The latest stack addition was a few weeks ago so I am giving it a bit to see if its any better.

    His prior boiler was an old Tarm with no storage and he typically seasons his wood 6 months.
  17. gmule

    Feeling the Heat

    Feb 9, 2011
    Conifer Colorado
    Down in the bottom of the canyon by my place I drive through a plume of smoke on the really cold days. I think it is more of a temperature inversion keeping the smoke low or I happen to drive by after a reload. I can see his wood piles as I drive by and it looks like he has about 3-4 years worth. Most of my neighbors burn propane or pellets. I am one of the only cord wood burners which is fine because my neighbors let cut down their dead trees.
  18. Locust Post

    Locust Post
    Minister of Fire

    Jan 12, 2012
    Northeast Ohio
    Only one or 2 occasional burners close by. One OWB about 1/2 mile away that I can smell occasionally. One of the close occasional burners I had come over last year and haul a few good dry loads home that way I know I am good to go.
  19. tfdchief

    Minister of Fire

    Nov 24, 2009
    Tuscola, IL
    Hardly anyone in my city burns wood anymore. Back in the 70's and 80's there were a bunch, but they all got tired of it. Thinking about it, I only know of one other person in this city that burns 24/7, We went to his house on a fire call one night and put it out with out to much damage. It was electrical and in the attic. When we finally found it, and opened up the attic, it flashed and we had a fight on our hands for a while. We knocked down the bulk of the fire quickly, but there was considerable overhaul, and it was a cold night. A good fire was going in his Lopi insert and some of my guys thought we should put it out. I said why? It is keeping us warm in here and had nothing to do with the fire in the attic. Of course when we came through the door of the 2 story and saw that insert cranking, that was everyone's first thought.......check the chimney in the attic. Had to give the home owner an "at a boy" before we left.;) He is still burning and me, and that's about it. There are a few occasional burners.
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  20. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete

    Our town smells like a pile of burning tires covered in dead skunks wrapped in....... You get the picture lol. The guy who owns a trucking company right in the middle of our village is well the village idiot! If it burns it goes in the out door burner thanks to that guy we now have an outdoor burner ban and a possible ban on all new indoor stove installs. O yes he still gets to burn because he said he would leave with his business if they told him he couldn't what a doofus.

  21. rideau

    Minister of Fire

    Jan 12, 2012
    southern ontario
  22. thewoodlands

    Minister of Fire

    Aug 25, 2009
    I can't complain,most in our area have been burning (wood stoves) all their lives so they burn responsible. There is a guy on route 56 south of us by about 3 miles that has a OWB, went by one day, he was burning plastic of some type. The smoke was black, it smelled horrible too.

    We do have one OWB in our area but he burns it pretty clean compared to some.
  23. MasterMech


    It can be done. The traditonal OWB is a dirty burning appliance by design, no way around it. The firebox will never get hot enough to burn nearly as clean as even a smoke dragon stove. But, if they burn wood and wood alone, especially dry wood, they will put out minimal smoke compared to most similar units.

    The problem really lies in how they were marketed/sold. Rediculously oversized for the heat loads they were connected to, "yeah it'll burn anything" sales pitches, and largely unregulated installs. Most owners of these things that I've talked to proudly state that they don't have to spit and dry their fuel, they can fell a tree and feed the logs into the OWB directly. Some even built hoist systems/jib cranes to load pieces in that you otherwise couldn't lift by yourself. _g Two of my co-workers have Central Boiler units and one cooks his way through nearly TWENTY CORD a year. (Heats roughly 5000 sq ft). Think about that, that's two grapple loads every season. Crazy!

    Go ahead and mention the newer gasifier-type boilers available today and how they are much more efficient and will burn much less wood for the same amount of heat. They're interested (typical OWB owners) right up to the point of where you say they have to CSS their wood just like for a stove. Then they opt to keep feeding Belchin' Betsy in the backyard.
    firebroad likes this.
  24. bmblank

    Minister of Fire

    Jan 17, 2013
    Just saw a bad one on my way into work this morning. Smoke wasn't billowing out the stack... It was shooting out like a jet. It was a column of black about 30 ft vertical where it hit a thermocline and then went another 30 ft or so before dissipating in any sort of fashion.
    Most people in my neck of the woods are pretty good about burning. There's plenty of wood available and its not unusual to see a couple cord css in the yard of people who only burn occasionally. But that guy this morning must have Ben burning styrofoam or something...
  25. Paulywalnut

    Minister of Fire

    Nov 29, 2012
    Kennett Square, PA
    I'm the only one around my area that burns. I get alot of people gawking
    at my stacks though.

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