Cook Stove DHW Range Boiler

SpaceBus Posted By SpaceBus, Apr 3, 2019 at 5:05 PM

  1. SpaceBus

    SpaceBus
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    Nov 18, 2018
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    I've been researching how to heat domestic hot water with a wood cook stove. In some older literature I've seen range boilers mounted horizontally. Can any range boiler be mounted in this way? I would like to mount a range boiler above my kitchen in the bathroom plumbing closet. Unfortunately I am limited in height and how I ended up making this post. So far Vaughn seems to be the only company making range boilers. They do have a unit short enough for my space, but it is only 30 gallons. If I can't mount the larger tanks horizontally could I use two or three of these 30 gal range boilers like folks do with large wood boiler hydronic heating systems and multiple tanks? I want the range boiler(s) to feed a propane on demand water heater. I'm hoping to greatly reduce electricity and propane usage.

    Currently my house has a rusty electric resistance heater in need of replacement. I like the propane unit since it's cheaper than running a resistance electric unit and even if I'm not using the cook stove I'll have a nice buffer for the summer. Our well water comes out around 43f, I think. I also consider a HPWH, but they are huge and I'm already limted for space.

    Photos of the utility room and the plumbing closet for the bathroom above it are attached. The kitchen is on the right hand side of the utility room. My house is plumbed for a SWH, but it was bypassed long before we moved in.

    My plumber will be doing the installation for the on demand heater, tanks, etc. I just want to get a plan together and see how much this will all cost or if it's even feasible.
     

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  2. SpaceBus

    SpaceBus
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    I actually managed to speak to someone on the phone who could answer my questions. Range boilers can be mounted horizontally and 40 gallons would probably suit me just fine, especially since I can run it pretty hot.
     
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  3. Fred61

    Fred61
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    There are other questions that may pop up. One that comes to mind is: Will you need to overheat your space in order to get your water up to useable temperature? there is a good chance of that happening.
     
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  4. SpaceBus

    SpaceBus
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    Fortunately I do not think so. The cook stove we are most interested in, Elmira 1842-G, isn't really designed to heat the room. I would most likely light two or three fires throughout the day, maybe more, and wouldn't have to make the house very warm. Plus my wife likes it 80 in here, but that's too hot for me. A few folks I've spoken to that have used the Elmira say it's much like using any other cooking range. It has a propane side cart, so no worries about cooking in summer. Often times it will drop into the 40's at night even during the summer, so perfect for warming the house just a little bit.
     
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  5. maple1

    maple1
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    So are you heating DHW with LP now? I'd likely stick with that if so.

    Honestly, there isn't a much better choice for DHW heating than an ordinary resistance tank heater. Cheap & easy install and it's not that expensive. Ours is only around $25/mo. That's with extra insulation under & around it & heat traps. I have a very good setup for heating ours with wood, that would require weekly burns through the summer, but when heating season is over, I let electricity do it.

    Someone who uses a lot of DHW, picture might change.
     
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  6. SpaceBus

    SpaceBus
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    I'll be using LP when not in heating season. Currently we have a resistance tank that is from 1975 that needs to go. My wife wants a tank less heater for saving space and limitless showers and baths. I want the wood cook stove to at least offset the majority of the cost of DHW and to have an amazing cooking appliance. It's going to be like having a chefs kitchen that provides hot water.
     
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  7. salecker

    salecker
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    I have endless hot water coming into my house from my boiler room,for heat,in the heating season.
    I was thinking of using it to heat domestic water. After looking at what i would need to invest,and the fact that i have my own septic system in marginal ground.
    Electric wins,simple cheap and acts as a shower limiter.Once the electric heater runs out of hot water the showers quit.If you have unlimited hot water you need somewhere for it to go.Plus heating DHW with wood isn't free,all the BTU's used to heat the water have to come from the wood that is should be heating your home,so bigger wood pile required,ect,ect.
     
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  8. maple1

    maple1
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    I would not go on-demand (tankless) using electricity. But doing it with LP would likely be OK, I don't know much about those and we don't have LP here. Have heard lots of complaints about electric on-demand, plus it takes big breaker capacity in your panel. And big expensive wire.

    Certainly understand the cook stove thing, as long as it is a fairly easy & fairly economical thing to get set up (and safe). It could at least supplement whenever using the stove.
     
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  9. SpaceBus

    SpaceBus
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    No wood cook stoves are cheap, but with the range boiler and the LP tankless should save me around $150-200/month here. The initial up front expenses will be high, but I think it will be worth it in the long run. Plus everyone I talk to that has gone wood cook stove has never gone back. I hate the current electric glass top that costs on average $0.50/hr to run with local electric costs. The stove I'm looking at also has two propane burners, but that's still cheaper than electric at $0.30/hr to run.

    I think one of these days I'm going to get the solar collector off the roof and see what is going on with it. Tom In Maine mentioned in another post that they can be repaired. Perhaps nothing is wrong with it and it's just not being used right now, nobody knows. They left it up there when the roof was redone in 2014-ish, so maybe it's fine.

    I got hammered on taxes this year (and probably will next year too) because I took early disbursement on a pension, so I'm probably not going to go with solar any time soon, perhaps with financing, but I don't know.

    With replacing our major appliances and making the house more efficient I hope to significantly reduce our $200-300/month electric bill. Before moving here I looked up the electric rates and they didn't reflect the transmission fees and other fees included with the bill. This has been a big area of frustration for us expecting $50-100/month bills.
     
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  10. SpaceBus

    SpaceBus
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    Nov 18, 2018
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    So I decided to try and figure out what's going on with the solar water heater. I think they just disabled the pumps and closed the valves after draining it. Unfortunately they didn't leave the timer wired up, so I can't even see if it works. This is kind of overwhelming for me to look at since I don't know anything about plumbing or SHW. 20190405_101305.jpg 20190405_101330.jpg 20190405_101359.jpg 20190405_101407.jpg 20190405_101351.jpg 20190405_101355.jpg

    Should I make a separate thread for this?
     
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  11. maple1

    maple1
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    Likely, yes.
     
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