Can a pellet stove legally be the primary source of heat?

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tjnamtiw

Minister of Fire
In western New york it is not considered a legitimate "primary heat" source for homeowners insurance, because it is not central heating. Insurance wants a normal furnace and ductwork. Free standing stoves are considered "zone heaters"...this also includes B-vent and direct vent gas space heaters. One way to get around the insurance BS is maybe to think about slapping some electric baseboard heaters in. I wonder if you could consider the electric baseboard your legal heating on "paper". It sounds like the home you are building is small, like a cabin. Anyway, you should put in another space heater-heat source, because pellet stoves need to be shut down for maintainence and also they act up- fail to ignite and dont always keep room temperatures as consistent.
You need to read ALL of the posts and you'll see he isn't talking about a 1000 sq ft house but a MUCH LARGER one.
 
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bnther44

Member
Dec 17, 2014
38
Kalamazoo
In western New york it is not considered a legitimate "primary heat" source for homeowners insurance, because it is not central heating. Insurance wants a normal furnace and ductwork. Free standing stoves are considered "zone heaters"...this also includes B-vent and direct vent gas space heaters. One way to get around the insurance BS is maybe to think about slapping some electric baseboard heaters in. I wonder if you could consider the electric baseboard your legal heating on "paper". It sounds like the home you are building is small, like a cabin. Anyway, you should put in another space heater-heat source, because pellet stoves need to be shut down for maintainence and also they act up- fail to ignite and dont always keep room temperatures as consistent.
It's my fault for the confusion. This is one of those deals where I started the conversation in the middle and then wondered why everyone was so confused.

The plan - at the moment (which is subject to change) - is to install 3 mini-splits as my primary heat source. These should heat and cool everything - excluding the basement. We will also install the Harman with the intention of using it exclusively when the weather drops below 45 deg. I'm anticipating some initial temp variations throughout the home which we will tweak after behavior has been established. Baseboard elect units will be installed where necessary to satisfy the 'experts' >>

Hope this clears up some of the confusion
 
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pageyjim

Burning Hunk
Oct 9, 2014
229
Deleware
Sounds like a good plan as far as I can see. I wonder if using the fan only on one of the minisplits may help circulate the air to aid the Harman.
 

bnther44

Member
Dec 17, 2014
38
Kalamazoo
Sounds like a good plan as far as I can see. I wonder if using the fan only on one of the minisplits may help circulate the air to aid the Harman.
That is one thing that I've been wondering on myself. The whole wild card in this heating thing is the cupola. The initial idea was to open the windows on the east side of the cupola (house faces east) and open the window on the west side of the house. In that area, the wind generally travels west to east which means I would draw air across the patio concrete - kept cool from being in the shade all day - and vent the hot air that has risen up into the cupola. What we realized after designing the cupola is that we could essentially store some hot air from the pellet stove. This would allow us to place vents in the cupola and duct it down to the bedrooms or even the mechanical room in the basement if necessary.
 

pageyjim

Burning Hunk
Oct 9, 2014
229
Deleware
Well one good thing about the minisplits they are usually placed high up on the wall the fans are efficient and usually have a sweeping action with many settings. So good chance they can aid in air circulation. I don't know if this can be directed or is hit and miss. I have a feeling it will work out pretty well. Congratulations and good luck. When you're done post pics and room temps room to room lol.
 

bags

Minister of Fire
Oct 12, 2014
2,400
Kentucky
Not real sure mini splits can circulate hot air the Harman would throw out simply because there isn't duct work. Box fans. Mini splits operate differently than a central heat pump system. They are not forced air systems. Think hotel room thru the wall type units.

HVAC guys chime in. I am a contractor and no expert on HVAC. Been around it long enough to know and understand more about moving air and how it all works than most 3rd graders though.
 
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