Whole-house wood-burning furnace from 1980?

edge-of-the-woods

Feeling the Heat
Nov 21, 2014
285
Hamden, CT USA
Hi there! So my parents are looking to buy this house, and it has a "whole house wood burning stove" listed as a feature. I got in there today to see it, and it's interesting, but the firebox seems tiny. The firebox looks smaller than my Regency insert, and this is for a 2,500 square foot house.

What do you think about this thing? I'll add some pics.

Thanks!

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Woodman1

New Member
Jan 15, 2018
77
Michigan
Looks like a nice clean install of a add on wood furnace from 40 years ago when fuel prices first spiked. Considering it's age it looks relatively clean, probably from lack of use. I would be very cautious with it for the first few fires making sure there are no hard to see cracks that show up. Im sure it will make heat at the cost of a healthy wood appetite. As far as adding value to the house....maybe, but I think you would have a hard time trying to get $200.00 if you wanted to sell it
 

edge-of-the-woods

Feeling the Heat
Nov 21, 2014
285
Hamden, CT USA
Thank you!

We had the home inspection, and the inspector recommended having the whole thing removed, for homeowner's insurance reasons. the town building official said the same thing, and doubled down on it because the owners didn't get a permit for it when they had it installed. Looks like we'll need to get a licensed contractor to come out and remove it.

I love the concept of this furnace, but not if wasn't done properly and could be a liability.
 

Wood1Dennis

Member
Jan 17, 2016
82
Eastern Wisconsin
You could always look into getting the permits, lining the chimney and installing a new one.....
 

KC Matt

Burning Hunk
Oct 29, 2016
116
Kansas City
I wouldn't let the code inspector influence your decision. Those people know absolutely nothing about wood heat or most anything else. They come out, look at the thing listed on the permit, and sign off or not. Whether they sign off or not has nothing to do with codes, best practices, common sense, or safety. Most of those guys have zero experience in construction, engineering, or any related field. The permitting process is a joke because they don't dedicate the resources to hire qualified inspectors that actually know what they are looking at.

As to your furnace I can't help you. I'd employ qualified help in that area.
 

KC Matt

Burning Hunk
Oct 29, 2016
116
Kansas City
I'd assume the deal is done by now but taking another look at this install it's apparent that somebody took great care to do a quality install and I would be hard pressed to remove this system. A great deal of time and effort was invested in this install and it appears to be done by a qualified person so my inclination is that this is a good system.

Realtors, inspectors, code enforcers and the like generally know nothing about wood burning appliances. It's obvious in this case.