Advice for wood stove in small new home

telkwa

New Member
May 21, 2020
2
Telkwa, BC, Canada
Hi everyone, I joined this forum in the hopes of getting some advice on the type of wood stove we might be able to install in our new home. It's currently being built at the moment and my husband and I have been going back and forth on wood vs pellet heat, and where we might be able to put it.

Some information: Our house is small. 1100 sq ft. total. The floor plan is attached with the location of the would-be wood stove circled.
Our biggest concern is that with the size of the house, we will end up with a wood stove that will either overheat the house, or burn out in the middle of the night. We'd rather not have to get up in the morning to a freezing cold house, if we can avoid it. We are located in northern Canada, where winters can be frigid.

Any advice for a wood stove that would meet this criteria would be appreciated. We have been looking at the Jotul F370 and the Heartstone Bari 8170 so far, as well as a couple of cube-shaped stoves. The Stuv 16 Cube has been considered as well. We may be able to put the stove in the middle of the windows rather than off to the side, but must consider how that would affect seating in the living room.

Thanks in advance!
 

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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
82,950
South Puget Sound, WA
Greetings. Unless the house will be super-insulated it wouldn't hurt to go a bit large. You can always make a smaller fire in milder weather. The stoves mentioned are contemporary looking, but are not what I would choose for an overnight fire. I'm not sure if the Bari is still sold.
Good stoves exist for overnight burns. The first thing to do is to look at the heat loss calculation for the building. What is the primary heating system design output?
 
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telkwa

New Member
May 21, 2020
2
Telkwa, BC, Canada
Greetings. Unless the house will be super-insulated it wouldn't hurt to go a bit large. You can always make a smaller fire in milder weather. The stoves mentioned are contemporary looking, but are not what I would choose for an overnight fire. I'm not sure if the Bari is still sold.
Good stoves exist for overnight burns. The first thing to do is to look at the heat loss calculation for the building. What is the primary heating system design output?
We planned to have the wood stove be the primary source, but have an alternate as well that we can call our primary to reduce insurance costs (possible electric heated floors or baseboards. We will have a crawl space so that increases our options a bit).
A more "modern" looking stove is not a must-have, especially if they are not as efficient and need more attention; those are just the ones that we liked right off the bat and the cylindrical designs worked well to put in the corner. The window design has changed a bit but the stove will be going close to our large living room windows, which will likely be a source of heat loss. As for the house being super-insulated, I don't think that applies. I can't remember the R values and such, but we met the minimum requirements for code and not much more than that.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
82,950
South Puget Sound, WA
Take a look at stoves in the 2 cu ft range. Pacific Energy makes a time tested design that comes in various forms. The base model is the Super. It will do overnight burns and does well with partial loads of fuel. Also look at the Osburn and Regency lines of stoves. All are made in Canada.

Another approach would be to get a catalytic stove. They are higher maintenance, but some offer a wider range of burn temperatures. Blaze King stoves have a thermostatic operation and long burn times which could work well here.

You are shopping at a time when the market is in a transition toward cleaner stoves with new EPA mandates. That has eliminated some models but has also introduced some new hybrids that may work out well, it's just too early to tell as many models have been out for just a year or less. The Hearthstone GreenMountain line is an example that has some favorable early reviews.
 
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Zack R

Feeling the Heat
Sep 27, 2017
398
Sisters, OR
flic.kr
Check out the Jotul F45. It's big enough to burn overnight but its small enough for the space you describe. A really small stove won't hold a fire overnight and will need constant attention. it also has a cast iron jacket so the heat output isn't as harsh, plus it maintains a gentle heat output for a longer time once the fire dies down.

In addition, when you configure your stove/chimney placement I'd recommend that the chimney exits at the tallest point of the roof rather than toward the edge. You'll get a better draft, more heat, less creosote buildup, easier to start a fire, etc. etc.... Also locate the wood stove centrally since the heat will radiate outward.

Like this:

1590083433773.png

Not this (too much of the chimney is exposed to the cold):

1590083502663.png
 
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Zack R

Feeling the Heat
Sep 27, 2017
398
Sisters, OR
flic.kr
And one more thing.... if possible run the chimney straight up with no 90 degree bends. It's amazing how much the draft is reduced when you introduce bends into the chimney.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
82,950
South Puget Sound, WA
Yes, the F45 would be a nice choice too.
 
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moresnow

Minister of Fire
Jan 13, 2015
1,186
Iowa
Looks like it would be worth considering placing the stove on the wall between the living room and bathroom to more centrally locate your heat source and reduce the amount of exposed chimney above the roof line, as noted.
Take your time on stove selection. Lots of research here will give you a better handle on your options.
If you intend to heat your home predominately with this stove. Definitely pick a stove that will comfortably burn/keep the place warm if you are away during the day or night. Restarting the stove in a cold house, in your climate, sounds miserable:eek:
 
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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
82,950
South Puget Sound, WA
In either location most of the heat produced is going to head straight up to the second floor. Overheating in the loft area is definitely a likelihood. I know that cathedral ceilings are an in thing, but before starting, consider the option of not having the open space. That area could provide a lot of usable space for the future (art studio, yoga space, play area, entertainment nook, office, etc.) and it would help balance the heat load. With the open space a ceiling fan will be a necessity in order to stop the hotter air from pocketing near the roof peak.

FWIW, a neighbor built new about 5 yrs ago. They made a gallery loft with 20 ft ceilings in the center of their house. Speaking to the wife recently I asked how it worked out. She dryly commented that it was hubby's want of grandeur and a waste of space. With two kids she is trying to figure out how to retrofit some of it and recover sq. ftg.
 
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moresnow

Minister of Fire
Jan 13, 2015
1,186
Iowa
@begreen

Ceiling fan/fans may mitigate a bit of the natural heat transfer. Thoughts.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
82,950
South Puget Sound, WA
@begreen

Ceiling fan/fans may mitigate a bit of the natural heat transfer. Thoughts.
Yes, as noted, it will be necessary. It just bothers me that people create unnecessary issues when building new.
 

moresnow

Minister of Fire
Jan 13, 2015
1,186
Iowa
Yes, as noted, it will be necessary. It just bothers me that people create unnecessary issues when building new.
Agreed completely. However. To each there own.
 
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Dix

Minister of Fire
May 27, 2008
6,315
Long Island, NY
Welcome to the forums!!! Always nice to see another Sistah here !!

Which ever way you go, get yourself ahead on firewood !!!!!
 

Woodfire2019

New Member
Dec 27, 2019
20
DC
Be super careful of over-sizing your wood stove. It was a big regret of so many of my friends. We love our MF Fire Nova stove. It is a little under 2 cubic feet, is catalytic, has constantly beautiful flames through the front glass, and is easy. There are lots of people who seem to be anti catalytic because they are added maintenance, but frankly, our Nova is so straight forward and the extent of maintenance is brushing off the catalyst. Anyway, here is a link to their site and a picture of our Nova. We love it. https://mffire.com/product/nova-wood-burning-stove/
 

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