Wood burning stove question

Jdow Posted By Jdow, Apr 3, 2019 at 6:34 PM

  1. Jdow

    Jdow
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    hello- I’m trying to decide what I should do with this stove from the early 90s. It takes up a fair amount of space and prevents efficient use of space. I really don’t like the aesthetic and would rather see a zero clearance in its place with a flatscreen above but I can’t find any info on whether it’s possible to replace it without having to change out the flue. I can’t find any estimated costs on switching it out.

    We have also considered doing away with it completely but If we pull everything out and don’t put anything in it’s place, we will have to rip out a large portion of the flooring and redo it or else there will be a noticeable square patch job.

    Has anyone had a similar experience in switching out a wood stove for a zc? Does anyone have advice on how to modernize the stove situation so that it’s not as rustic looking and without breaking the bank?
     
  2. begreen

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    Installing a ZC fireplace is not cheap, but there are some lesser cost units like the Flame Monaco that still burn cleanly and do a decent job of heating.
     
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  3. bholler

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    Yes a zero clearance unit would require a different flue. Depending on the unit you pick it could be anywhere from $5000 for a cheap builders box that will provide no heat. Up to well over $10000 for a high efficency prefab
     
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  4. begreen

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    The Flame Monaco comes in just under $2500 I think which is a much better choice than a builder's box install.
     
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  5. bholler

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    Yes but add in the chimney framing finishing etc and it will get pretty expensive. Still a much better option than a builders box.
     
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  6. Simonkenton

    Simonkenton
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    That is a good looking wood stove and a nice install.
    You don't like wood stoves. Just take it out and use your central heat.
     
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  7. bholler

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    Good looking stove yes. Good stove no.
     
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  8. bholler

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    There are lots of more modern looking stoves that will perform much better than that one. Have you had the chimney inspected?
     
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  9. Simonkenton

    Simonkenton
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    What is it, an old VC?

    If so, like I said, ditch it and use that thermometer on the wall for the gas furnace.
     
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  10. bholler

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    Yes it is an old vc. I am not sure why you are pushing them away from wood though.
     
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  11. begreen

    begreen
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    The thermostat on the wall appears to be for the mini-split above it.
     
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  12. Ludlow

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    If you are multi-talented and can do the work yourself you can save a boatload on a ZC. Personally Id just stick a newer wood stove in it's place.
     
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  13. spudman99

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    If you decide to tear it all out, floors can be matched pretty well by professional finishers. Depending on if the current is laminate, engineered hardwood or true 3/4" hardwood, its a case of wood species and stain to match. Then you can minimize its influence in the room with an area rug, perhaps an end table next to a sofa, etc.

    Sounds like you may not be sold on wood burning as a way of life. If you are going to replace, then you need to have a sufficient supply of 2 year old spit and stacked wood. If you do not have that now, and do not want to collect/purchase wood, then tear it out. Remember, its your house and you get to enjoy it. Don't settle for working around a wood stove you don't like or wont use, do what works for you and your family and your lifestyle.
     
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  14. Ludlow

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    Yep. You gotta want it.
     
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  15. Jdow

    Jdow
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    Definitely. And though I love the heat and look of fire, I just can’t get past the fact that it eats up so much floor space and is a hazard to the pets and kids. My husband and I stopped into a fireplace store in the area and was told about Fpx Avery 42 clean face zc. It’s absolutely gorgeous but I imagine the price tag is not. It looks like we might be ripping out the stove and selling it and patching up the floor and wall considering that a whole new flue etc would need to take place. Unfortunately we’ll do without the warm glow of a fire. Thank you for the advice. I’ve really been struggling with this decision because I know how cost effective a wood burning stove can be- but like Ludlow stayed, you gotta want it.
     
  16. illini81

    illini81
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    Don't feel too bad. Stoves are cost effective in some cases, but in many they are not. I don't know how much it costs to install a ZC fireplace, but several people quoted 5-10k. After that, you will have to pay for wood, unless you are going to go through the work of scrounging it yourself. Based on some of your posts, my guess is that your heart would not be in it enough to spend the time scrounging and splitting (a ton of work!).

    If you scrounge for wood yourself (lots of work), you run your stove 24/7 (lots of work), and your alternative source of heat is fairly expensive (e.g. electric), you may save a few thousand a year. In this case though, you will most likely need to shell out additional cash for a splitter and possibly a wood shed. You will need to put quite a bit of thought, time and energy into figuring out how you will store cords and cords of wood on your property. In other words, the tradeoff to saving $$ is that heating with wood becomes a bit of a lifestyle.

    If you buy wood instead of scrounge, and/or you run your stove intermittently, and/or your alternative source of heat is lower cost (e.g. natural gas), you really won't save much - maybe a few hundred a year if that. You will be lucky to pay for the cost of the fireplace over its lifetime.

    To sum it all up, the idea that having and using a wood stove/ZC fireplace automatically means you will be saving boatloads of cash isn't really true, and so you really don't need to feel like you're losing out on savings by removing the stove if you weren't going to throw yourself into the whole woodburning thing with gusto.
     
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