Alternate fuel heating

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Old 02-16-15, 03:30 PM
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Alternate fuel heating

Woke up this morning at 4am and it felt a bit cool, 62, stat set at 69. Hmmm! I was expecting a call today from my furnace guy to set a date for a cleaning, but gave him an early call and he was here by noon. Bad blower motor, replaced and did the cleaning so all is well by 4 pm. But, between 4am and 4pm it would have gotten rather cold, single digits and a strong wind, but a few logs in the wood stove and it held about 60 in the far room. Now, my wood stove is intentionally sized on the small size so we can sit in the room without it driving us out. Being smaller we understand it can't carry the entire house at 70° on a very cold day, but it can buy us some time.

Even with our older style oil furnace, it has an electronic control board and on the wrong night (holiday or bad weather) parts and service may not always be immediately available and I live close to town. Planning on the inevitable failure or power outage and having some form of alternate heating option sure makes a cold winter much more tolerable.

House is back to 69° and I'm happy
Bud
 
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Old 02-16-15, 04:48 PM
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Nicely done Bud. If I didn't have the fireplace, I probably would have put a woodstove in. I know the fireplace has negative efficiency, but I like the ambiance too much to replace it with a stove.
 
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Old 02-16-15, 05:02 PM
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Up where you live you MUST have some type of backup heat. I have a 35kbtu gas insert that does a great job of heating. It's fan forced so it moves the heat well. I also have a 50kbtu portable propane heater that runs on 120v. It's like a gas salamander. I'm prepared.
 
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Old 02-16-15, 07:09 PM
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droo, when we picked out our current air tight stove it was important to us, as you, to be able to enjoy the view of the fire, similar to this one, F1100 Wood Stove - Wood Stoves - Regency Fireplace Products

Our previous home had the traditional open fireplace with a screen and as you said, not entirely efficient, but soo nice. The compromise with the glass front comes with the efficiency advantage plus less risk of sparks snapping out onto the floor.

I know the wood creates a little mess and the ashes have to be cleared once in awhile, but there is no $120 annual service like my oil furnace and no $250 unexpected repair bills, although for an emergency call he was extremely reasonable.

I hate to say it, but I'm reaching that age/stage where I'm budgeting my future to be able to eat and pay the bills until I'm very old. And seeing hot dogs just hitting $6 a pound and ice cream about $9 a gallon I hate to think what everything will cost in 20 years.

Like the story about the astronaut that returned after a 30 year space trip, he races to a phone to call his investment broker who tells him his investments are now worth ten million dollars. As he is jumping for joy the operator interrupts and says, please deposit one million dollars for the next 3 minutes.

Bud
 
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Old 02-17-15, 04:44 AM
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Personally I wouldn't want to be without my wood stove. My wife prefers the heat pump but if you come inside chilled to the bone a HP will not warm you back up! Works during power outages too or in my current situation where the heat pump quit and I haven't gotten it fixed yet

When I started working by the hour, minimum wage was 60˘ and what is it now - $7 something?
 
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Old 02-17-15, 05:06 AM
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I had our fireplace upstairs cleaned and ventless gas logs installed, flue closed 90%. Puts out great heat. Super back up is the plenum heater in the basement. Heat controlled fan and ducted to the main plenum. Heats entire house nicely, like tomorrow night when it gets to -1.

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Old 02-17-15, 05:12 AM
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Larry, we have the same forecast but what about the next night? here they are saying -11° I've lived in north east tenn for over 20 yrs and it's gotten down around zero 4-5 times but never sub double digits .... I hope they are wrong!!!
 
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Old 02-17-15, 05:59 AM
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Got a friend near Grenville SC and he and wife decided they needed to take a drive to anywhere in south Florida. He said enough is enough.
-9 this am, but you guys are getting it as bad as we are.
Bud
 
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Old 02-17-15, 06:18 AM
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I don't know, Mark. WX underground says 6 and 7, Weather channel says -1 and 6, NWS says 7 and 8. I know there was a profession I should have gone in to. You are never wrong, and when you are, you have the inevitable disclaimer of inaccurate science on your side.
 
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Old 02-17-15, 02:31 PM
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I found NWS to be all around reliable. I have a weather station on my property, the the WX temperatures forecasts are usually more accurate than NWS.
 
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