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Outside Wood Burners

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sofaking
sofaking
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3/14/08 12:59 PM CST
Just wondering if anyone has one and how do you like them. I currently heat the house now with an inside wood burner and am tired of the mess from hauling wood in all the time. Either going to go with an outside wood burner or inside corn/pellet stove.

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Everbreeze4ever
Everbreeze4ever
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4/19/08 9:48 PM CST
And my post was a suggestion some people out there may want to consider in addition to outside wood boilers. Like I said I was leaning towards getting one myself until we compared Geo prices to updating to a boiler system with a new furance and AC unit.. People need to keep an open mind and explore ALL of their options before making a decision. Just like before you buy an outside wood boiler you need to compare the different models and makes out on the market. Some are just plain junk and others are good quality. Same goes for Geo systems.

Our heating costs are now essentially ZERO, combined with no longer having to buy fuel and with the new heating/cooling geo system's efficiency, overall our electric bill is essentially the same. Only about $30/month higher in the winter months compared to what it was 4/5 years ago even with the price increase WE engeries pushed through on electric rates this past winter. (Before we had an older oil furnace...at least 30 years old when it was replaced. When the blower fan kicked in you could watch the meter spin so fast you thought it might fall off.)

better fish
better fish
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4/19/08 12:56 PM CST
Why copper,what do you think is in your exchange coils,pex is made of oil ya know that stuff selling for over 110 a barrel was alot less 2-3 yrs ago,shipping of products have seen a 75% increase,not that wood furnaces haven't gone up some,but not like anything with copper involved,hell just the power to the unit has doubled,we all know prices have increased several fold.Again we get it you like geo,most people will go for the wood facts are facts,geo cost way more bottom line,you can heat more area with wood for same cost as geo,yes you will have to do some work.Finally wasn't this post about OUTSIDE WOOD BURNERS NOT ALTERNATIVE HEATING.

FULL DRAW
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4/19/08 8:01 AM CST
So how much are one of the regular outside wood burners installed? Not the Geo ones

Everbreeze4ever
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4/18/08 10:59 PM CST
No kick-backs sorry. Just a $500 rebate from the federal government. I think it expires sometime in 2008. We heat our 3000sqft house, attached 4 car garage and the 1200sqft apartment above the garage. It cost $3K extra to heat the garage and apartment, but the main system was initially installed for just the farm house as the garage/apartment were not built when the system was installed. However they did size the system appropriately when it was installed for the added load. We went with the 10yr parts/labor warranty on the system it came standard from the company. Not sure why you are quoting copper prices... very little copper involved with the entire system. Most of it is Pex tubing. Been using the stuff in the barn for the past 10 years without any problems.

We seriously looked into using a wood boiler system. For us it was not worth the hassle or the cost. I would rather spend the day or two, NOT cutting wood and take a vacation away from the farm. And for those people out there burning creosote treated telephone poles in there wood burners the smell travels for miles and is nothing special.

better fish
better fish
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4/18/08 5:04 PM CST
EVERBREEZE4EVER,YOU GETTING KICK BACKS FOR PROMOTION OF GEO,WE GET IT YOU LIKE IT,ALSO I BET THAT SAME SYSTEM TODAY WOULD BE AT LEAST 18,000 JUST FROM THE RISE IN COST OF COPPER AND TUBING ALONE,I'VE SEEN 1 IN COPPER GO FROM AROUND 1.30 TO WELL OVER 4 DOLLARS A FOOT OVER LAST 2 YRS. ALSO I BUY MY WOOD AND STILL WILL SAVE WELL OVER 45,000 DOLLARS AFTER PAYING FOR THE UNIT IN 10 YRS THAT MONEY WOULD HAVE GONE TO THE OIL COMPANIES,THATS CONSERVATIVE FIGURES,I'M ALSO HEATING 2 BUILDINGS AROUND 6000 SQR.FT. I CAN ALSO CUT IN 2 DAYS ENOUGH WOOD FOR ALMOST ENTIRE SEASON,YOUR NOT CUTTING IT 16 IN ,NOT TO MUCH TIME FOR ME,VERSES THE ALTERNATIVE OF PAYING THE GAS MAN. DID YOU GET LIMITED LIFETIME WARRANTY ON YOUR GEO UNIT??

[This post was last edited on 4/18/08 at 5:13 PM]
Everbreeze4ever
Everbreeze4ever
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4/17/08 11:49 PM CST
Legitimate local company here in Wrightstown, WI. They installed a horizontal loop system and we have no complaints. Granted we had to have 300ft of somewhat straight-a-way run for them to install the system. If we had to do a verticle system it would have been 20K. We looked at wood burning systems and to have them installed with a new furnace and A/C unit our estimates were coming in the 10-12K range for a boiler, dual-stage 95% propane furnace, and a 3 ton 16seer A/C unit. Plus unlike many farms we do not have a source of free wood (woods) on our land so we would have to buy wood. Not to mention I have better things to do with my time then cut wood for a burner unit.

So for people out in the country with the 300ft front or back lawns it is not as costly, ours is under an alfalfa field.

http://www.alternateenergys.com/

[This post was last edited on 4/17/08 at 11:58 PM]
better fish
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4/15/08 2:25 PM CST
Being in the busn. of outdoor furnaces for 7+ yrs now it comes down to design of the unit ,what happened is that a lot of manufacturers got into the busn. to make some cash allot of badly made furnaces that are not very good at burning up the smoke were sold for less than a quality furnace with a proven design,i've installed these that I sell near towns and have never had a complaint as of yet good design burns up the smoke=no complaints.I've also known of the EPA working to get standards in place for these units,this has been in the works for over 3yrs,and I say bring it on its time to get rid of all the substandard junk out there and be left with only a few brands that will be able to make the cut.The market does need to be regulated to keep these other junk units from being sold,but there will still be outdoor wood furnaces just not as many brands,there are some that will meet accepted exhaust levels.The same thing happened back in the 70's with the indoor wood furnace market,it's just finally happening to the outdoor market.As far as complaints this happened in New York a congress women brought to the floor a ban in her dist. With over 200 complaints,Some investigation into the case discovered that the 200 complaints came from the same 6 people ,and that the oil lobyists had given her a lot of money,long story short there never was a ban.Overall I say this will be good all around,less smoke,better built units,less junk being sold. Cool

4Lakes
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4/15/08 11:29 AM CST
We put a fireplace extraordinaire in our new cabin. It was expensive, but so far I am very pleased. Once the firebox gets to temperature, there is no black smoke. We have a LP furnace to run when we are not there, but when we are there, the wood fireplace is what we use to heat the place.

4Lakes

Route66
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4/15/08 10:31 AM CST
""just smoke"" Its more than smoke, a real acrid thingy comes with the smoke that makes it intolerable. It burns your eyes and stings your lungs. Not for a densely populated area.

Route 66

Jeremy
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4/15/08 7:46 AM CST
Stray, around here its much worse than that. I think the whole fuss about the outdoor burners started when people started installing them in towns, a couple I saw were kicking out black smoke. A guy I work with lives in town and has a neighbor with an outdoor burner and he has to scrub his vinyl siding to get the black crap off- not much of a neighbor.

These are a lot different than the indoor woodburners and a big reason is the water jacket around the firebox, it doesn't allow the fire chamber to get hot enough to burn efficiently- I know my indoor woodburner never had any creosote buildup inside it and the outdoor one has quite a bit- both have blowers forcing air into the firebox

straydog
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4/14/08 10:26 PM CST
How annoying. Find a good way to make ends meet with energy costs, and John Q. Public begins to complain about the smoke. Burning oak smells good. I like the smell of my outdoor stove. Beats the heck out of the Diesel fumes we choked on in Milwaukee. Shows how out of touch many of the people that are moving outside of cities are. People in rural areas have always used wood to heat their homes.

Thanks for the article, even though it makes me mad.

newoodhntr
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4/14/08 8:33 PM CST
Here is a article in the local news paper today. Smoked-out neighbors call for boiler laws

Wisconsin is one of six states with at least 10,000 wood-fired stoves, organization says

By ROBERT IMRIE The Associated Press

WAUSAU — An explosion in the number of outdoor wood-fired boilers to heat homes is creating a new air quality problem — their smoke is choking neighbors.

Over the past three years, the Wisconsin Department of Health has received nearly 200 complaints related to thick smoke from the stoves that look like tiny sheds — or an old-fashioned outhouse — with a short smoke stack.

Some local governments are passing laws regulating the boilers, essentially banning them. Two years ago, Wisconsin's top environmental official urged the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to take action. Several states in the Midwest and Northeast have looked at the issue, too, after they started turning up in more urban areas.

"It was bad, just choking smoke," said Karl Wojtalewicz, describing the problem that his business, The Wellness Spa near Whiting, experienced. "Somebody called the cops a couple of times because you couldn't see the highway."

Why there can't be more regulations on the boilers — what some describe as little more than a steel box with water circulated around it and a smoke stack — baffles him.

Six states — Wisconsin, Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Minnesota — have at least 10,000 wood boilers, said Paul Miller, deputy director of Northeast States for Coordinated Air Use Management, which represents air pollution control agencies in eight states, including New York.

The group estimates that 500,000 outdoor wood boilers — emitting nearly 900,000 tons of fine particulate matter — could be installed nationwide by 2010, more than double the number now in use.

About 27,000 wood boilers have been installed throughout Wisconsin in the past decade because of skyrocketing fuel prices, experts say. Some burn barely 50 percent efficient and some were installed too close to neighbors, critics say.

"They tend to smoke a lot," said Neil Baudhin, an air quality supervisor for the state Department of Natural Resources. "If you can smell it, your nose is detecting some kind of chemical."

Some people have complained that illegal materials, including trash and tires, get burned, Baudhin said.

Jerry and Jean Blenker installed a wood boiler at their rural Athens home about a decade ago, saving "thousands and thousands of dollars" in heating costs. The family cuts its own wood.

A neighbor who lives about a half-mile away complained, causing state regulators and police to check whether something other than wood was being burned, Jerry Blenker said.

"It is just smoke and I am allowed to burn firewood," he said. "I am real happy with it."

In an hour, an outdoor wood boiler can emit as many particles of pollution much smaller than the diameter of a hair, as 1,800 natural gas furnaces, Miller said.

Courtney Welch, a policy analyst for the National Conference of State Legislatures, said three states — Connecticut, Maine and Montana — have passed laws regulating wood boilers, including setting emission standards. New Hampshire, Vermont and Rhode Island have pending legislation.

The American Lung Association of Wisconsin is exploring whether new laws are needed in Wisconsin, said Dona Wininsky, a spokeswoman.

"We have got calls from asthmatics saying they have smoke pouring into their homes 24/7. The problem is they are just so unregulated and they are appearing in a lot of these newer subdivisions where people are closer together," she said.

Two years ago, then-DNR Secretary Scott Hassett wrote the EPA urging a national strategy. But no mandatory rules are under consideration with the agency.

Leslie Wheeler, a spokeswoman for the Hearth, Patio and Barbecue Association, a Virginia-based group that represents some manufacturers, said complaints about smoke are a black eye for the industry, which has worked with the EPA on voluntary standards so the boilers, which typically cost $6,000, burn cleaner.

"If they want to stay in business, they better try and meet these standards," she said. "Eighteen months ago, there wasn't a furnace that met the voluntary standard. Now, there are at least two that do."

But the voluntary standard is too weak, according to Northeast States for Coordinated Air Use Management. The group recommends a two-phase standard that initially would lead to 25 percent fewer emissions than the EPA's voluntary standard allows and eventually 50 percent fewer, deputy director Miller said.

"These things smoke because they are incredibly inefficient," he said.

Central Boiler of Greenbush, Minn., a leading manufacturer of outdoor wood boilers, promotes them as environmentally friendly because they burn wood, a renewable resource, Vice President Rodney Tollefson said. A homeowner can recover the investment within five years, he said.

This article does not have any comments associated with it Add Comment | Submit Comment to the Editor | Contact Administrator y. It also was on the tv news.

[This post was last edited on 4/14/08 at 8:36 PM]
better fish
better fish
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4/13/08 10:08 AM CST
I'd like to know how you got yours for 14,000 i'm in the heating and cooling busn.and know guys in the state that do geo,and right from them they won't even do a writen bid unless the customer is ok with 20,000,i'm sure if you used the cheapest crap out there to install it you could save some money,but it won't last near as long.20,000 is industry standered price using quality equip.and tubing,ect.I have seen many customers put in cheap stoves and cheap underground tubing only to have to replace it with a quality products,It's not always smart to get it from the cheapest guy. Wink

Everbreeze4ever
Everbreeze4ever
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4/13/08 3:34 AM CST
I would like to know where you got your estimate for a 25K geo system. Our cost two years ago was $14,000 total and it heats a 3,000 sq foot 100yr old farm house. It stays a nice toasty 72 degrees all through the winter!

better fish
better fish
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Joined: 2/7/2007
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4/12/08 11:33 PM CST
There's an outdoor furnace that has corn or wood the corn burner set up can be taken out and separate controls for the wood,this unit can be set up with a fuel oil nozzle/burner to act as a back up,these were not very popular though with the fuel oil,the corn are very popular because you have the choice of corn or switch over to wood.

Displaying Posts 1 through 15 of 43
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