Gross amount of creosote

brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
6,154
NE Ohio
I was going to say, dig a hole. Cheaper, easier, and everybody has a low spot that needs filling.
That's a good solution for HY-C furnaces too! ::-)
 

Brokenstone

Member
Jan 13, 2017
17
indiana
I would suggest a FC1000E or the SF1000E as long as you go by the manual, most of the people in this forum think they know everything when it comes to wood burning... Times have changed most of them have been burning wood for 30+ years and think they know it all and won't take any suggestions.. you can lead a horse to water but you can't make it drink.. Not saying the furnace is perfect by any means but if they can pass EPA standards how can they so quickly disown it.. Also not saying these people don't know what they're talking about I read a lot of these Forums and most people do know what they are talking about... you don't have a whole lot of play with the unit {as far as draft goes} but if you have a correct install it seems to work just fine for 95% of people.
This is about the worst advise i have ever seen posted to this forum.
 

FixedGearFlyer

Burning Hunk
Oct 8, 2010
207
Michigan's Upper Peninsula
So, what is your job title at Hy-C? ;hm ;lol

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Just joined yesterday at 8:51am and the same day commented on two Hy-C products and that's it. One of them happens to be recommending a product which is known on this forum to have multiple issues from multiple people.

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Ha! Just in case you needed more confirmation, I viewed his profile a few times today and he's cruising the Shelter/HY-C threads, exclusively.

Screenshot_20210212-180657_Chrome.jpg
 

Brokenstone

Member
Jan 13, 2017
17
indiana
Well, JMac appears to have decided not to appear again in this thread.
Kind of hard to do when you know you will get dog piled on. I guess they thought better of it.

What strikes me is how as an owner and operator of a company manufacturing a heating appliance, you keep making and selling the same one when you know there are so many problems with it?
 

brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
6,154
NE Ohio
What strikes me is how as an owner and operator of a company manufacturing a heating appliance, you keep making and selling the same one when you know there are so many problems with it?
You see that a lot with unscrupulous companies...wring a brand or individual product out for all its worth...burn it right to the ground!
Pun intended... ;) :p ::-)
 
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deadtvs

Member
Apr 3, 2014
32
CO
Since this thread is fairly recent, hoping to drag it back (sort of) to the original topic. I'm buying a 3800SF, off-grid house in May. It already has a large wood stove in the (smaller) lower level, but there are no fans/ducting, and I'm worried the very open upstairs with vaulted ceiling will not get sufficient heat. There is a nice-looking Charmaster near me for $500, including some pipe/metalwork. The house has dual propane furnaces in the garage already, one each for upstairs and downstairs. I was wondering about sliding the Charmaster in there to help with heating. I currently heat a 3200SF house exclusively with propane, and it's $$$$ in the winter. I have plenty of wood, pinon mostly, and can definitely let it dry sufficiently. So - is this a bad idea, or workable? Here's the unit I'm looking at: https://westslope.craigslist.org/app/d/cedaredge-charmaster-wood-burning/7293846943.html

And let me know if you think it would be better to start a new thread! I assure you I'm not looking at a Firechief :)
 

brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
6,154
NE Ohio
Since this thread is fairly recent, hoping to drag it back (sort of) to the original topic. I'm buying a 3800SF, off-grid house in May. It already has a large wood stove in the (smaller) lower level, but there are no fans/ducting, and I'm worried the very open upstairs with vaulted ceiling will not get sufficient heat. There is a nice-looking Charmaster near me for $500, including some pipe/metalwork. The house has dual propane furnaces in the garage already, one each for upstairs and downstairs. I was wondering about sliding the Charmaster in there to help with heating. I currently heat a 3200SF house exclusively with propane, and it's $$$$ in the winter. I have plenty of wood, pinon mostly, and can definitely let it dry sufficiently. So - is this a bad idea, or workable? Here's the unit I'm looking at: https://westslope.craigslist.org/app/d/cedaredge-charmaster-wood-burning/7293846943.html

And let me know if you think it would be better to start a new thread! I assure you I'm not looking at a Firechief :)
FYI, Charmaster is no longer in business...so no parts unless you can find it elsewhere, or make it.
And they are major smoke dragons too...my neighbor has one and there is almost always a smoke trail from his chimney...until its time to reload...
 

deadtvs

Member
Apr 3, 2014
32
CO
Yeah, I already got they aren't liked much around here :). But I've seen it mentioned that they ARE good at heating large spaces, so it seemed it might be a good fit. And, it seemed like a good price on something that could knock a hole in the propane expense - I spend that much on propane (or more) in one winter month in my current house. I know it might be problematic splicing it into the ductwork, but the existing furnaces/ducts are very exposed and there is plenty of space where they are located, so I thought it might be fairly easy. It is also very close to the wood pile in the breezeway between house and garage, which would be convenient. Here's a pic of the propane furnaces, though it's not very good a showing the ducts. https://photos.app.goo.gl/9xGmWMjrsXc4g38f8.

As for the wood stove, it's a Woodstock "Ideal Steel Hybrid 210" - just not sure how much that will help actually heating the upstairs. There is a fairly wide and open stairway that is the only way the heat could circulate to the upstairs, but then it would also have to migrate down a 30' hallway to the bedrooms, and I can't see that happening much.

If you don't have anything better to do on a Saturday morning, here's a crappy/blurry 3-minute cell-phone video walkthrough of most of the house, starting in that breezeway: https://photos.app.goo.gl/9xGmWMjrsXc4g38f8. The garage is on the left, shown in the first 10 seconds. The only thing not shown is the hallway and the upstairs bedrooms - they are down to the left of the kitchen.
 
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brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
6,154
NE Ohio
When you say the house is off grid, does that mean solar power?
FYI the furnace blower will be pulling 2-3 amps almost all the time when you have a fire going...unless you plan to set it up to gravity heat...which generally doesn't work the best with ductwork, unless it's specifically built for such.
 

deadtvs

Member
Apr 3, 2014
32
CO
Yes, solar power. It's a big system with automatic generator backup. According to the previous full-time residents, the gen rarely kicked in, but I take that with at least a few grains of salt. I wondered about the fan draw (and that might be why they didn't go that way with the Woodstock. I THINK it could handle that draw, but not really sure. Likely won't know until I'm actually in the house. But there's always the gennie, though that would at least somewhat defeat the purpose. Energy is never really free, is it!
 

brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
6,154
NE Ohio
I know Daryl Lamppa said they used to sell a bunch of VF200's to off gridders because the smaller blower had a low draw...but that is probably too small of a machine for that size house...the VF100 would work, but you are right back to a larger blower.
The wood stove would work for warmer weather probably...does the basement have insulation? Concrete can soak up HUGE BTUs if not insulated!
 

deadtvs

Member
Apr 3, 2014
32
CO
Here's a link to the listing with a bunch of pics: https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/501-Galloping-Goose-Ln-Ridgway-CO-81432/2089630908_zpid/?mmlb=g,0. Pic #22 shows the garage and the configuration of the existing furnaces. Seems to me the Charmaster would fit nicely next to them and patching into the existing plenums wouldn't be all that much work, but I'm likely being too optimistic (I usually am!). If the retrofit/install wasn't too hard or too $$$, seems it might be worth a shot. For $500-$1000, if it didn't work, I'm not out that much, and hopefully the metalwork would work for a newer/better furnace down the road. I know I'm ignoring your comment about them being out of business, but I'm thinking these are fairly basic units, so fabbing parts should be feasible - unless it's controls, I suppose.

Sorry I'm being so wordy. I figure I need to jump on this soon if I'm going to do it, so trying to make a decision today/tomorrow.
 

deadtvs

Member
Apr 3, 2014
32
CO
I know Daryl Lamppa said they used to sell a bunch of VF200's to off gridders because the smaller blower had a low draw...but that is probably too small of a machine for that size house...the VF100 would work, but you are right back to a larger blower.
The wood stove would work for warmer weather probably...does the basement have insulation? Concrete can soak up HUGE BTUs if not insulated!
The house is very well insulated throughout, yes. Not really a basement, the first level is at grade, with crawl space below.
 

brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
6,154
NE Ohio
A wood furnace is out then...you would have to use down flow ducts, can't do that with a solid fuel furnace, if the power or blower fails things get very hot, very fast. There used to be emergency heat dump's for this purpose, but nobody makes them anymore.
 

brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
6,154
NE Ohio
Here's a link to the listing with a bunch of pics: https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/501-Galloping-Goose-Ln-Ridgway-CO-81432/2089630908_zpid/?mmlb=g,0. Pic #22 shows the garage and the configuration of the existing furnaces. Seems to me the Charmaster would fit nicely next to them and patching into the existing plenums wouldn't be all that much work, but I'm likely being too optimistic (I usually am!). If the retrofit/install wasn't too hard or too $$$, seems it might be worth a shot. For $500-$1000, if it didn't work, I'm not out that much, and hopefully the metalwork would work for a newer/better furnace down the road. I know I'm ignoring your comment about them being out of business, but I'm thinking these are fairly basic units, so fabbing parts should be feasible - unless it's controls, I suppose.

Sorry I'm being so wordy. I figure I need to jump on this soon if I'm going to do it, so trying to make a decision today/tomorrow.
Nice place, I think that stove will do better than you think...it will take a big bite out of the heat bill anyways... probably what the former owner did. If the back corners of the house are cool you can always run a small fan on the floor pointing back toward the stove...that works well to move cool air toward the stove, and heat to the back of the house...that and a ceiling fan in the great room to push the heat back down.
 
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deadtvs

Member
Apr 3, 2014
32
CO
A wood furnace is out then...you would have to use down flow ducts, can't do that with a solid fuel furnace, if the power or blower fails things get very hot, very fast. There used to be emergency heat dump's for this purpose, but nobody makes them anymore.
Ok, thanks. I thought the upstairs was updraft, but honestly didn't check very carefully. I guess that does look like return air on top, now that I look at the pic more carefully. Oh well - it was a thought!
 

deadtvs

Member
Apr 3, 2014
32
CO
Nice place, I think that stove will do better than you think...it will take a big bite out of the heat bill anyways... probably what the former owner did. If the back corners of the house are cool you can always run a small fan on the floor pointing back toward the stove...that works well to move cool air toward the stove, and heat to the back of the house...that and a ceiling fan in the great room to push the heat back down.
Wait - a fan on the floor pushing back to the stove? Ok, I guess that makes sense, push the cold air toward the stove to get convection current going. Sure wouldn't have thought of it myself!
 

deadtvs

Member
Apr 3, 2014
32
CO
Ok, so your comment on the fan had me searching, and I came across this (old) thread: https://www.hearth.com/talk/threads/moving-heat-convection-air-currents-in-your-house.118583/, which talks about several different "fan" configurations. Given my layout, would you suggest a fan in the farthest bedroom, at the top of the stairs, or just experiment?

Oh, and that ceiling fan right above the stairs is obviously there to help - just not sure how much. Maybe it's all I need? It's a big sucker, at least 6' diameter.
 
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brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
6,154
NE Ohio
would you suggest a fan in the farthest bedroom, at the top of the stairs, or just experiment?
Start at the back....fan on low, pointing down hall toward the stove... but ultimately every house is different and you will need to experiment.
The principle is that cooler air is easier to move than warmer lighter air is....
 

Case1030

Feeling the Heat
Dec 12, 2017
352
Manitoba
Looks like HYC got the FC furnace re-tested. But still won't qualify for the 26% tax credit... thankfully. Maybe this will finally force them to design something safer and worth owning.

Nice to know the market currently has both the Heat Commander and VF100 to choose from to claim the tax credit.
 

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brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
6,154
NE Ohio
Looks like HYC got the FC furnace re-tested. But still won't qualify for the 26% tax credit... thankfully. Maybe this will finally force them to design something safer and worth owning.

Nice to know the market currently has both the Heat Commander and VF100 to choose from to claim the tax credit.
I did see that a couple weeks ago...can't believe it legit passed...maybe it didn't, maybe some pockets got lined... _g
 
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Highbeam

Minister of Fire
Dec 28, 2006
18,731
Mt. Rainier Foothills, WA
The Woodstock IS is a reasonably stout heater at 3.2 cubic feet. It’s more efficient than any of the furnaces and no power consumption. Plus, it’s installed. You don’t need to go 100% wood heat. Even 75% replacement with wood will save you a ton of money on propane and really, keeping that IS going 24/7 might be all the effort you want to make.

The furnaces occasionally kicking on during the coldest weather will mix the air and exercise the units.

Try it as-is and see how it goes.
 

deadtvs

Member
Apr 3, 2014
32
CO
The Woodstock IS is a reasonably stout heater at 3.2 cubic feet. It’s more efficient than any of the furnaces and no power consumption. Plus, it’s installed. You don’t need to go 100% wood heat. Even 75% replacement with wood will save you a ton of money on propane and really, keeping that IS going 24/7 might be all the effort you want to make.

The furnaces occasionally kicking on during the coldest weather will mix the air and exercise the units.

Try it as-is and see how it goes.
That sounds like good advice. I was probably getting carried away. It's just that 2/3 of the SF is on the second floor, the stove is on the first, and I'm worried mostly about circulating warm air to the bedrooms. But I'll try those fan tricks and see how it does. I'm definitely not trying to go 100% wood heat, just cut that propane bill down to size!
 
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