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Author Topic: Chilly night in the Great North Woods....  (Read 759 times)

Raineyrocks

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Re: Chilly night in the Great North Woods....
« Reply #30 on: January 26, 2013, 11:44 AM NHFT »

Yup, it's been really cold!  I'm not looking foward to the next electric bill or propane fill up. ::)

Rick's been gone for a couple of weeks too so I've had to use my pillow for extra heat. :P  We keep it at 64 degrees downstairs and 50 degrees upstairs but the heat has been pouring out of the radiators, (sp?), for days now, downstairs anyway.
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Pat K

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Re: Chilly night in the Great North Woods....
« Reply #31 on: January 26, 2013, 05:03 PM NHFT »

Lumberton,NC. 56 deg.
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Jim Johnson

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Re: Chilly night in the Great North Woods....
« Reply #32 on: January 26, 2013, 07:50 PM NHFT »

Saaaaalute!
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KBCraig

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Re: Chilly night in the Great North Woods....
« Reply #33 on: January 26, 2013, 09:30 PM NHFT »

Hundred gallons of heating oil yesterday, at $3.69/gallon.  :o

I guess that's not too bad for a drafty old house. Since the initial fill in October, we've had fill-ups of 76, 100, and 100 gallons. While I'm here burning wood, the furnace has hardly kicked on at all, even on those -20 nights.

I'm going to look at options for next winter. If I leave the fireplace as is instead of switching to an insert, I'm going to add some convection tubes to really pump out the hot air.
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Silent_Bob

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Re: Chilly night in the Great North Woods....
« Reply #34 on: January 26, 2013, 09:41 PM NHFT »

Fireplaces are grossly inefficient, if your goal is heating. :)

Probably a lot better off bricking up the fireplace and porting a woodstove pipe into the existing chimney.
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MaineShark

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Re: Chilly night in the Great North Woods....
« Reply #35 on: January 26, 2013, 09:41 PM NHFT »

I'm going to look at options for next winter. If I leave the fireplace as is instead of switching to an insert, I'm going to add some convection tubes to really pump out the hot air.

There are a lot of options with that place.  Let me know if you want to chat, at some point.
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MaineShark

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Re: Chilly night in the Great North Woods....
« Reply #36 on: January 26, 2013, 09:43 PM NHFT »

Probably a lot better off bricking up the fireplace and porting a woodstove pipe into the existing chimney.

That's what he was talking about, when he said, "insert."  A fireplace insert is a woodstove that's designed to fit fully or partly inside a fireplace, and connect to the existing chimney.
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KBCraig

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Re: Chilly night in the Great North Woods....
« Reply #37 on: January 27, 2013, 12:29 AM NHFT »

I know how inefficient fireplaces are. My glass doors and the firebox convection vents almost make it work like an insert already. With the doors closed I can control the draft, and get a lot of heat out of the vents, plus residual radiant heat from the thermal mass.

With a bit of trickeration, I think I could make the current glass doors work like a true insert, without the flue cleaning difficulties. And I know I can get a lot more hot air out of it. I might even add a thermostatic intake damper.

The first thing the house needs is better weatherizing and insulation. That will be our big project after I sell the Texas house and move up here full time.
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Kat Kanning

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Re: Chilly night in the Great North Woods....
« Reply #38 on: January 27, 2013, 05:59 AM NHFT »

It was warm and foggy in Texarkana when I went thru, in case you were wondering.
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MaineShark

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Re: Chilly night in the Great North Woods....
« Reply #39 on: January 27, 2013, 08:20 AM NHFT »

I know how inefficient fireplaces are. My glass doors and the firebox convection vents almost make it work like an insert already. With the doors closed I can control the draft, and get a lot of heat out of the vents, plus residual radiant heat from the thermal mass.

Indeed.  The efficiency can depend dramatically upon the design.  Some older fireplaces can actually be reasonably-efficient, and some newer woodstoves may actually not.

For another example, there was a third-party test done on outdoor wood boilers, which one would imagine are engineered for some level of efficiency.  They found that the actual efficiency varied from about 80%, down to 15%.  The median was around 60%.  There are fireplaces which are that efficient...

With a bit of trickeration, I think I could make the current glass doors work like a true insert, without the flue cleaning difficulties. And I know I can get a lot more hot air out of it. I might even add a thermostatic intake damper.

Depends upon the insert, whether there's any flue cleaning difficulty.  Some use a pretty straight shot with a flex liner, meaning the ash dumps straight into the firebox.  Some may have a "cleaning mode" lever, which opens a flap to create that straight shot, even if it's not present during normal operation.

The first thing the house needs is better weatherizing and insulation. That will be our big project after I sell the Texas house and move up here full time.

Yup.  Insulation, weather stripping, and the like, is the best bang for the buck.  A quality energy audit is often the best first step... it's not just a matter of identifying where work is needed, but classifying them by how much impact each one has, and how much it will cost to fix.  For example, I know someone who found that a quarter of the air leakage into his house was due to one particular door, which he had not actually suspected was a significant problem.  He had originally planned on re-insulating some walls where he knew the insulation was lacking, which would have cost thousands of dollars.  Instead, he was able to attain the same impact on his overall energy use, with a few dollars spent on weatherstripping.  An audit probably costs $400-500, but it usually saves far more than that, by allowing you to prioritize which projects you tackle first, to get the most bang for your buck.
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KBCraig

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Re: Chilly night in the Great North Woods....
« Reply #40 on: January 28, 2013, 01:56 AM NHFT »

It was warm and foggy in Texarkana when I went thru, in case you were wondering.

Still is.

When I got up this morning in Lancaster and went out to fill the truck for the drive down to Manchester, it was -4. When I landed in Dallas this evening at 8, it was 73.

Blech.  :P
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