Are you fed up of increasing oil prices?...
There are numerous reasons for looking at other options.
How about an inexpensive and pleasant solution such as a slow combustion stove.
According to the Canadian Government, just one cord of hard dry wood will produce as much heat as 100 gallons of oil.
Some important facts about fire wood.
- It is a natural and renewable heat source.
-Soft woods such as aspen, spruce and poplar do not have much calorific value and should be used mainly as fire starter or for ambiance fire place.
-For efficient heating, hard woods are recommanded. They should be dry and without sap. Therefore for the best results, use wood that was cut in the winter time since it will not have the sap that comes up mainlyin spring and summer. Here is why you should buy wood in the spring.
-Your chances of getting winter wood are greater by avoiding sappy wood which boils more than it burns creating less heat.
-Suppliers will be more open to give you rebates since most customers wait in autumn to order.
-In cording properly the wood at home, it will be drier for the next winter.
Here are few rules to follow when buying fire wood.
Buy from a company that has a listed address and that will supply an invoice. This will provide you with some protection in case of dissatisfaction.
A cord of wood is 4' high by 8' long and 16' deep. More and more suppliers offer a cord of 32 cubic feet. You than get only 3/4 of a cord since a real cord is 42 cubic feet.
The size of wood
For optimum efficiency, make sure you specify to your supplier the diameter of the pieces you wish to obtain since a smaller piece will burn more quickly. The average diameter is 5". If you burn 6 cords or more per winter, you should request "night pieces". These are pieces, not split, of about 8" to 10" in diameter. They will last longer during the night. We recommend 10 "night pieces" per cord purchased. If you have a smaller stove, you will specify a maximum lenght of 12".
Storage of wood
-You should store your wood on planks or pallets against a wall but not higher than 5', it becomes very dangerous for the wood to fall. Do not forget that a cord of wood weighs close to a ton.
-The wood will be left outside to dry or inside (if no other choice) with a dehumidifier and a fan. Outside, it will be covered only on top and not on the sides to let it breathe and dry, otherwise it won't dry and will eventualy rot.
-In all kinds of wood you could find bugs. If you are worried when bringing the wood inside, just spray lightly with an insecticide.
Reasons why wood is more efficient for heating.
-It is the most inexpensive way to heat.
-Remember that a cord of good hard wood will produce as much heat as 100 gallons of heating oil.
-The romantism of a heating stove is incomparable to any other heating devices.
-If you use your stove as the main heating system, you will need 10 to 15 cords per winter.
-Custumers that works during the day and use their stove at night and on weekends will need from 6 to 9 cords.
-Custumers that use it occasionally an during Hydro breakdowns will need 3 to 5 cords.
-Climatic variations, frequency of blockouts and the type of stove used will all have an impact on the quantity of wood required for a season.
-As it was mentioned previously, soft woods are not recommanded to heat your house (poplar, spruce) but they represent a good choice to start your fire if they are dry.
-You can use unpainted scrapwood which is inexpensive and easily obtainable.
-We also recommend the fire starter that is also unexpensive, secure, practical, clean and that makes it very convenient to start your fire. They will burn for about 20 minutes. They are the size of a chocolate bar and can be cut in 2 or 3 pieces without loosing efficiency.
Make sure that fireplace-stove-chimney are cleaned at least once a year.