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How Much Wood Should i Get For The Winter
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Cam77punk



Joined: 21 Apr 2014
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 14 10:54 pm    Post subject: How Much Wood Should i Get For The Winter  Reply with quote    

Hi People, i am moving soon and have discovered the gas fire in my house is fired by a back boiler, this must make it quite old, So i am toying with removing it and having a wood burning stove instead,
I was just wondering if anyone had any recent experiences of having one fitted ,a rough guide on costs and lastly, How many wooden logs would i need to see me over the wintertime.
Any thoughts or advice will be gratefully recieved,
I thank you in advance, Cheers Cam77punk

Cathryn



Joined: 16 Jul 2005
Posts: 19829
Location: Ceredigion
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 14 6:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I can help with the last part of your question.

We get through about two or three baskets of log on a winters day. We have a big stove, heating quite a big room in an otherwise unheated room. We use a mix of logs, mainly larch but also bits and pieces of lime, oak. Unfortunately you have asked a how long is a piece of string question but perhaps this will give you some idea.

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 8518

PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 14 6:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

If it will be your only form or heating you will need something like from 2-6 cu m of hardwood, possibly more of softwood. You may need more if it id is very cold weather or the house is exposed to the wind or cold. When you are buying it, if you are buying in, make sure you know what a 'load' is. It can vary from a 1ton sand dumpy sack upwards to 2-3 cu m.

Lorrainelovesplants



Joined: 13 Oct 2006
Posts: 6469
Location: Cornwall
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 14 6:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

What size of house are you heating? Will you want rads and HW, size of rooms? And how much space do you have to store wood? Think hard about all of the above.
Woodburners come in a range of sizes, specs and prices.

We got a woodwarm with a back boiler - its in our living room , heats 4 rads and gives us HW for the kitchen sink and the bath.
Our wood is free and we burn between 3 and 5 tonnes a year. This means we have 3 stacks outside (but we have an acre so its not a bind). We work from home so during the day we burn in the woodburner in the kitchen only (yes, we have 2 woodburners)

Cathryn



Joined: 16 Jul 2005
Posts: 19829
Location: Ceredigion
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 14 6:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Are you sure if your wood is free. You have to drop the trees and then reduce them to logs. Jack would kill me if I said our wood was free.

oldish chris



Joined: 14 Jun 2006
Posts: 4148
Location: Comfortably Wet Southport
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 14 8:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I once heated a three bed semi with a wood burning boiler. You'll need a shed-load, literally. A stack that would fill completely a 6x8 shed. During the other 8 months of the year I burnt a similar quantity for hot water and evening heating.

Read Cathryn's reply three times, and then work out how much effort her slave expends.

I calculated that for me, being employed at minimum wage and spending the pay on gas, involved less time and a lot less effort. (Only self-employed farmers work harder that wood collectors, it seems).

Nicky Colour it green



Joined: 25 Jun 2007
Posts: 8617
Location: Devon, uk
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 14 8:46 am    Post subject: Re: How Much Wood Should i Get For The Winter Reply with quote    

Cam77punk wrote:
Hi People, i am moving soon and have discovered the gas fire in my house is fired by a back boiler, this must make it quite old, So i am toying with removing it and having a wood burning stove instead,
I was just wondering if anyone had any recent experiences of having one fitted ,a rough guide on costs and lastly, How many wooden logs would i need to see me over the wintertime.
Any thoughts or advice will be gratefully recieved,
I thank you in advance, Cheers Cam77punk


the flue is usually the expensive bit - if you need one fitted - and you usually do, you can be looking at 800+ on that alone. It's worth shopping around for getting a new flue fitted, the stove shop may well not be the best price. A stove will be a few hundred - depending on how big, how fancy and if it has a back boiler etc. If you take the room dimensions and a rough guide to height of chimney along to a woodstove showroon, they will be able to give you a better idea

how much wood? much more than you imagine. But you can supplement it with free wood such as pallets etc, once it becomes known you are willing to take scrap wood, it is surprising how much you get given.

but do it anyway, regardless of economics - a woodburner is a lovely thing.

Finsky



Joined: 10 Sep 2011
Posts: 847
Location: Notts.
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 14 9:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

We used to have gas fire with back boiler and it was burning money.
About 5 years ago we changed it into small multifuel stove and new combi boiler...total job was around 5000...it was lot of money even then but we did have to rip down 'half of the living room' and rebuild the fireplace.

In mild winters..like this one...we hardly need our combi for heating..it is more of 'back up or boost' should we need it and off course its for hot water. Even ours is small stove, it is able to keep our 3 bed terrace in comfy 18'C..and we get through 3-4 cubic meters of 'free' logs in a year, about 3 of them during winter.
We do use few bags of coal too, as that will kick heat more during cold spells...no need help from central heating with coal.
We were thinking to have more extensive woodburner option, but for not knowing how long we have access for all the 'free' wood, decided that combi would be good idea ...hmm...

'Free'...we only need to get them to our house..chop, stack, dry and store them..ONLY...
It is LOT of work...takes quite a LOT of room in garden and results LOT of cleaning...but its all worth it!

Last edited by Finsky on Tue Apr 22, 14 12:46 pm; edited 1 time in total

john of wessex



Joined: 18 Jun 2007
Posts: 2099

PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 14 10:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

How are you heating the rest of the house?

Our woodburner also heats the hot water - might be worth looking at getting Solar in for the summer BUT I think that running radiators as well is pretty ambitious.

You will need some sort of heat for the rest of the house also think about what happens if you are away in winter

My advise would be

1. Best insulation you can get
2. New boiler
3. Woodburner possibly heating hot water tank as well
4. Solar hot water

PM me if you want

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 32664
Location: yes
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 14 11:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

smokeless zone or not makes a difference to both the price of the burner (exempt cleanburn burners are a grand or more)and what wood you can use(in a smoke less zone there is a maximum moisture content, no treated timber etc etc specified for exemption)

how much wood depends on how much heat you require and what type of timber you can obtain .have a look at the archives for the characteristics of various types of wood

Lorrainelovesplants



Joined: 13 Oct 2006
Posts: 6469
Location: Cornwall
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 14 12:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Hi all, yes our wood is free.
We get the occasional tree offered, but its usually down already. We also get sacks of joiners offcuts, old fence panels(great for kindling), and builders joists etc. 2 years ago we had wood from 3 demolished houses - big storage, but we can spensd a few days in the summer, sorting, cutting and stacking.
Yeah, we have to expend energy on most of it, but so what?

alison
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 29 Oct 2004
Posts: 12907
Location: North Devon
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 14 9:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Still not free then.

We often do the same sums.

We have an oil boiler, that we try not to use. (Comes on when it is really cold for an hour in the morning.)

We have a log burner which is joined to all the rads (6 bed house) which also does all the hot water, and we have 90 tubes of solar for hot water.

All heat goes through a tank and feeds the house and hot water filled washing machine.

Cathryn



Joined: 16 Jul 2005
Posts: 19829
Location: Ceredigion
PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 14 6:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

We (we ) have a days work pulling it out of the wood. A day of bringing it down to the shed and two days of having it converted into logs. We need to do this about once every three years.

A friend of mine goes and collects wood after the forestry have cut down and cleared areas. You can purchase the right to do this. She regards the several days of chopping it into logs as good exercise.

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 8518

PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 14 6:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I would suggest getting a stove that will take at least 10" long logs and that will heat more than one room with doors open. The bane of our life is tiny stoves calculated to heat only one room that only take matchsticks. In fact if it takes less than 8" long we have to pass, as we can't cut them, and we charge a premium for 8".

Even if you have to buy in logs they are probably better value per calorie (joule if you prefer), than other fuels. The calculations have been done, and it is fact (try looking on the Forestry Commission website; it might be there somewhere).

Yes, log fires are a lot of work, even if you buy the wood, do make dust, but if you get a flat topped one you can cook on, you aren't stuck if you get a power cut. Solar water heating is also a good idea as this means you don't use power to heat water, particularly during summer.

Lorrainelovesplants



Joined: 13 Oct 2006
Posts: 6469
Location: Cornwall
PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 14 1:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Cathryn
I was told the license form the Forestry people was no longer available. Is there any way of checking as we have loads here we could go and 'tidy'.

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