Less wood consumption

Chas0218

Minister of Fire
Sep 20, 2015
502
Beaver Dams New York
Over the summer I finished our dining room walls and kitchen. I am a little excited (probably too excited) to see how our house does with heating this year now that we have insulation in all of our walls. We started our re-model/addition going on 3 years this coming April and are about done with the big things. Upon tearing into the old part of the house we found that the cinder block house had no insulation what so ever in the walls. Living in the NE and the Applachian plateaus we get some pretty cold temps throughout the winter. This coupled with some good valley winds it can be downright frigid. Well as of last week it has been a little too warm to run a fire but the last couple nights it has been dipping into the 20s and I lit a couple fires.

I don't know how much wood I'll be going through this winter but I am thinking I might be able to get away with 2 burns per a day vs 3. I think this will bring my wood consumption down 2 cords so I would be burning about 4-5 cords a season. This would be fantastic and allow me to get further ahead over the next year or so. Right now I burn 6-7 cord per a season so I'm looking forward to a little less work and more time to work on other things.
 
Last edited:

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
10,781
Southern IN
Wow, that's a lotta wood! _g I would think that insulating the block walls is gonna help quite a bit. What did you do, install foam board or what? If you are running two stoves, maybe you are heating a lot of sq.ft?
We are in a similar situation here. Log cabin with no wall insulation, only 1" of a two-layer wall board. Wind gets behind the logs through gaps at the corners, etc, and the wall board becomes a cold thermal mass. I at least need to seal up some of the breaches in the envelope such as electrical outlets, attic access and ceiling light fixtures to reduce the air flow.
wall board.jpg
With only 1000 sq.ft. to heat, I'm pretty sure I'm under two cords. Never got a good read on usage since I pull from different stacks over the course of a season.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Chas0218
I live at 4000 ft. elevation in northern California mountains. Winter lows regularly in the teens, sometimes lower. Two storey 1800 sq. ft. house, 2x4 framing with r-12 in the walls, r-30 ceilings, mostly single pane windows which I cover with plastic shrink film. I burn 3-4.5 cords/yr.
 

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
4,694
Northern NH
insulating the spaces in the blocks on a cinder block wall does not really have a lot of benefit to cost. The R value of concrete is next to 0 and the continuous sections of concrete at the joints carry most of the heat out the building.Far better to spend the money putting isoboard foam over the entire wall.
 

HisTreeNut

Minister of Fire
Nov 3, 2014
1,020
Burnsville, NC
We re-sided our house this past year and have about 1 1/4" foam insulation behind the siding. Huge difference in the summer keeping the heat out...our lone window A/C unit kept the humidity in the house 10%-15% lower than the outside.
We have only built a few fires so far (mainly at night to keep the chill out of the house) and are not burning 24/7 yet. The house in general feels a lot warmer and the stove seems to blow heat for a couple hours more than it used to. Burning scrap wood, we have to load a little more often & it seems like we are getting a little more smoke in the house but I figured that as the house is significantly tighter than it used to be. That being said, leaving the stove door cracked open longer (at least 1-2 minutes) seems to do the trick. I am also curious if we will burn less wood also...I think we will as well.
We burn about 4-ish cord per year.

Sent from my VS835 using Tapatalk
 
  • Like
Reactions: Chas0218

billb3

Minister of Fire
Dec 14, 2007
4,617
SE Mass
Four or five courses of concrete block (sometimes clay bricks ) is common here (older houses, pre-WWII) on top of basement walls made of local stone and/or mortar. They can be ice cold when it is cold out.
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
10,781
Southern IN
curious if we will burn less wood also...I think we will as well.
We burn about 4-ish cord per year.
I'll lay five bucks on three cords this year, what with the foam, plus 'climate amelioration'... ;)
 

Chas0218

Minister of Fire
Sep 20, 2015
502
Beaver Dams New York
Wow, that's a lotta wood! _g I would think that insulating the block walls is gonna help quite a bit. What did you do, install foam board or what? If you are running two stoves, maybe you are heating a lot of sq.ft?
We are in a similar situation here. Log cabin with no wall insulation, only 1" of a two-layer wall board. Wind gets behind the logs through gaps at the corners, etc, and the wall board becomes a cold thermal mass. I at least need to seal up some of the breaches in the envelope such as electrical outlets, attic access and ceiling light fixtures to reduce the air flow.
View attachment 250876
With only 1000 sq.ft. to heat, I'm pretty sure I'm under two cords. Never got a good read on usage since I pull from different stacks over the course of a season.
Only running 1 stove I went through 6 cords my first year and 5 cords my 2nd year. I'm hoping this 3rd year I will be down to 4.
That is alot of wood.. im well nort of you.. my consumption is between 3 and 4 cords and my home is alot larger.. i hope you have cut your consumption...
Me too! Lol.
insulating the spaces in the blocks on a cinder block wall does not really have a lot of benefit to cost. The R value of concrete is next to 0 and the continuous sections of concrete at the joints carry most of the heat out the building.Far better to spend the money putting isoboard foam over the entire wall.
I have 1" foam board on the outside and R15 on the inside walls (where there wasn't anything before) so in essence I should have an R20 to meet the NYS Energy conservation code in the old part of the dwelling. Before I insulated the inside all I had was the r5 insulation on the exterior.

All in all 2 fires per a day right now with outdoor 20* is keeping the house no colder than 66* so I am beyond happy.