No OAK Increase Heating Cost Downstairs?


Feeling the Heat
May 4, 2008
Catskill Mountains
Recently I have been thinking about the increased heating cost downstairs in my ranch with Pellet stove upstairs with no OAK. I have had my pellet stove heating the upstairs in my typical Ranch house since 2008 with no OAK . The downstains was being heated by baseboard hot water boiler . This is the first year since 2008 I stopped using my Pellet stove. Reason for the change is Propane at $1.50 gallon would not pay to heat with Pellets

What I have noticed is the heating required for the downstairs recorded by my Ecobeee thermostat seems to be reduced this year compared to last years. My thinking is the Pellet stove with out the outside air intake meant the cold air flowed downstairs which required more heat to heat the downstairs.

Am I right to assume all that fuel to heat the downstairs last year while running Pellet stove upstairs could have been significantly reduced if I had an OAK installed?


Minister of Fire
Jan 15, 2013
It would be hard to say if that's the case. I would suspect other factors, namely the outside air temperature, would have a greater influence.


Jan 19, 2019
SE North Carolina
Every cubic foot sucked into the stove and blown outside had to be replaced by outside air moving into the house. So technically yes you are correct. Now can you measure it that is the question. If you knew how many CFM your combustion blower operates at it would be a fairly simple calculation.
  • Like
Reactions: FirepotPete


Minister of Fire
May 5, 2017
Miller MO
Read the wiki thread on oaks. If you people will give you all kinds of answers but that thread will give you a good understanding.


Minister of Fire
May 5, 2017
Miller MO


Minister of Fire
Oct 25, 2010
Titletown U.S.A
That is one of the worst, if not the worst wiki references I've ever read.

No mention of CFM and the amount of cold air that has to replace that air. Who ever wrote that or approved it should either pay a lot to heat their house or freeze their ass off.

And to the OP, yes, especially drawing air from the basement to feed you upstairs pellet stove you are not only cooling the basement, you are turning it into a refrigerator.

ETA: The entire article linked with so called scientific research makes NO mention of draft induced appliances, whether modern negative pressure or the blower before the fire causing positive pressure. The entire article is about basic wood stoves and fireplaces, presumably non forced air to the burn chamber in a sealed appliance as proven by their continued mention of fireplaces.

How a fireplace uses air is much different than a sealed pellet stove with forced exhaust.

IMO this article in the wiki has no place in a forum about pellet stoves. Even the article itself is questionable for the appliances they are referring to. Physics, differential pressure says that who ever wrote that doesn't know what they are talking about.
Last edited: