Chimney closer than 10 feet to neighbor

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
4,697
Downeast Maine
We have a Wave6 catalytic heater for the RV. We're good to outside temps in the teens. It does produce some condensation at those temps, but with better insulation we could alleviate that. The heater sips fuel though, and is silent.
The silence is a nice selling point, but for a long term living space the water emissions from room vented LP appliances are a deal breaker.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
84,790
South Puget Sound, WA
water emissions from room vented LP appliances
Yes, un-vented gas appliances are a no go for me. I know they say they are safe, but I have been in a room with one and smelled it right away. My wife said it gave her a headache. The owner took it out due to mold concerns from the excess moisture.
 
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Sawset

Minister of Fire
Feb 14, 2015
1,028
Palmyra, WI
Yes, un-vented gas appliances are a no go for me. I know they say they are safe, but I have been in a room with one and smelled it right away. My wife said it gave her a headache. The owner took it out due to mold concerns from the excess moisture.
I would hesitate in a permanent dwelling also. Out somewhere with no power and limited LP reserves, it does serve it's purpose. They need ventilation, which defeats some of the advantages.
I still think a small electric heater would be better for the heat needs of the OP. LED lights, and other minimal power use would leave enough with a 20 amp circuit to run the place. Get a solar panel to charge a laptop and run the lights, as far as that goes. Or run the heater on low when other things are running.
 

rwhite

Minister of Fire
Nov 8, 2011
1,664
North Central Idaho
Based on limited space I'd be looking at salvage yards for a RV furnace. Low power use, small and easily installed just about anywhere.
 

Sawset

Minister of Fire
Feb 14, 2015
1,028
Palmyra, WI
Based on limited space I'd be looking at salvage yards for a RV furnace. Low power use, small and easily installed just about anywhere.
The RV furnace I have here is only 50% efficient. If 5000btu would be needed, then LP consumption would be double that.
Just as a comparison, the wave6, 6000btu, would use a 20lb tank in about 80 hours. The furnace used the same in around 36hrs.
 

StoveHopeful

New Member
Oct 27, 2020
9
Vermont
@begreen Totally, I think if we were doing everything in the house (cooking, bathing, etc) we would look into a larger electric system. Fortunately we are living at my brother in law's house and the tiny house is in his yard - so we still plan to cook, bathroom, etc. in his house. Right now Im living in his garage (uninsulated in Vermont) so the tiny house is more of an insulated bedroom and multi-purpose space. The 20A would be only for heating and perhaps some charging of laptop/phone. I really like your idea of a oil filled radiator or small direct vent propane, I just spent a few hours today researching both options. I know space heaters are dangerous to have on 24/7 but it appears that oil radiators might be OK and are less than $100. I would love to have a wood stove but if I go through the cost and trouble of installing one and then need to move the house because of a smoke issue it would really get me down, so thank you for mentioning those other options to explore.

@Maj92az Wow! I had no idea, but your (and others like @Sawset ) personal observations about dancing smoke is definitely pushing me away from a wood stove at least until my house is further from neighbors. Thank you for sharing this.

@SpaceBus thank you for sharing this first-hand information. Our winters are super cold, but with only 80 square feet its not a lot to heat. I like the idea of a direct vent propane heater - called a propane company today, and propane is very cheap at $1.79 per gallon. Initial cost of the unit is about $800 and then would cost more to get someone to install the gas line but its definitely on my radar now as a viable option, thank you.

@rwhite Ill look these up!
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
4,697
Downeast Maine
We had an oil filled radiator in our RV for a while, until one of my dogs chewed through the cable when it was unplugged... It worked well in combination with the propane heat but was insufficient by itself when temps were below 40 df.
 

Smolder

Member
Dec 25, 2019
111
Ashton, Ontario
Although the potential exists for a safety issue with smoke entering the adjacent house I think the nuisance factor is a bigger problem. If your BIL has any soffit or gable vents the smoke is going to hang under the eaves and permeate everything.
Yeah, an attic full of smoke sucks.... I have no such vents, but on the last house I did, and if I smoked jerky you could smell it slowly permeate into the house through the ceiling if there was no breeze.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
84,790
South Puget Sound, WA
We had an oil filled radiator in our RV for a while, until one of my dogs chewed through the cable when it was unplugged... It worked well in combination with the propane heat but was insufficient by itself when temps were below 40 df.
Yes. RV insulation often sucks. Hopefully, the tiny home is much better insulated and sealed. A 1500w electric heater puts out 5,100btus and is 100% efficient. No chimney losses. Be sure to use at least a 12 ga extension cord from the house.
 
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gthomas785

New Member
Feb 8, 2020
45
Central MA
I stayed in a 10x10 cabin for a while which had a wood stove. After I ran out of dry wood I switched to an oil-filled radiator on about 250ft of extension cords from my aunt's house. They both worked fine but the radiator definitely has more of a "boring" factor to it (esp for a pyromaniac like me :)).
Most fanless electric radiators are 100% safe - or at least as safe as a woodstove - especially if you don't have kids or pets to knock them over.

Keep in mind, the way you run a stove makes a difference in the smoke production. If you burn a few hot fires a day, you will create much less smoke than if you smolder it continuously while probably getting a comparable amount of heat. That's one way to reduce the nuisance factor.

It's also not a bad idea to have a couple of different heating options. Just cause you have a stove, doesn't mean you always have to use it, and the same goes for the radiator or gas heater.
 

Village Idiot

Burning Hunk
Sep 10, 2011
182
No. Va.
Have you considered a diesel heater for an RV/boat? They run on 12v and blow out hot air. Do a search on eBay for "diesel heater" and you will see what I am talking about. They seem to be pretty efficient. Lots of install and review videos as well.

I have been toying with the idea of installing one in my shed and maybe my garage when I am feeling crazy.
 

firefighterjake

Minister of Fire
Jul 22, 2008
19,203
Unity/Bangor, Maine
We had an oil filled radiator in our RV for a while, until one of my dogs chewed through the cable when it was unplugged... It worked well in combination with the propane heat but was insufficient by itself when temps were below 40 df.
We had some "tenants" stay in our house a couple years ago -- a married college student and her husband -- kids in their early 20s. They stayed the first year in a hobbit house made by a local guy. They said it was cozy, but an adult really couldn't stand up and cooking was limited. The next year they tried living in a RV. As you mentioned, RVs are not meant for winter living. I think they made it until November and then they were looking for options -- we had an extra bedroom so we let them stay there rent-free when they returned in January for the second semester.
 
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peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
5,602
Northern NH
Talk to someone who winters over in boat that is moored. Its cost to tiny house with tides. I have run into a few brave souls who have done so but few did it again. There are winterized RVs that have a heated "basement" but otherwise they tend to freeze.

Heck I hiked with someone a few times who went to four years of college and graduate school living in teepee in Southern NH with no power on someones back forty and they had to snowshoe in from the street in winter. The hiking club I am a member of has a high a mountain cabin in Northern NH, its just below treeline in the northern Presidential's. They have year round caretakers who live up there for week long stints. They have Heartstone Wood stove that burns Biobricks and one small closet sized bedroom with a propane heater that runs off of gas grill cylinders that is used for emergencies. They routinely hit -30 below and 6 to 8 feet of snowpack. The rest of the cabin is kept above freezing.
 
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