Wood Burning Stoves Through The Looking Glass

Burning wood to produce warmth has been around since the existence of human race on earth. Early men burnt wood to stay warm, cook, and drive away wild animals. The practice of burning wood gradually modified into sophisticated furnaces over the centuries and today you have refined models. However wood burning stoves have lost a bit of popularity as they emit large quantities of air pollutants. The exhaust gases of wood burning contain harmful chemicals such as nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, organic gases, and particulate matter. These can affect human health. As a result other means of space heating are being preferred today by homeowners. Many municipalities do not encourage using wood heating appliance when the local air quality reaches unacceptable levels. In some regions installing a wood burning stoves in new constructions has been proscribed. If you are interested to have a wood-burning fireplace in your new house, do so only after getting a confirmation from local building codes department, state energy office, or state environmental agency, about whether it is allowed in your area.

But there is no denying of the fact that wood burning stove has a traditional appeal about it. That is why they are still loved by people. If you have wood burning stove in the house and you would like its look and feel, you can upgrade it to one of the newer appliances certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Always consult a professional to choose appropriate size of the stove and to install it for perfect installation and efficiency.

Catalytic Stoves

Modern wood stoves have undergone many improvements. They have catalytic combustion which is designed to make combustion gases burn at lower temperatures. This will produce more heat and bring down emissions. Buy a wood stove that have an EPA tag on them. If emissions are less, the build-up of creosote on the interiors walls of the chimney will also be less. Catalytic stoves have inefficiencies of up to 83% HHV (higher heating value).The temperature can shoot up to 1,100°F. This is enough hot to burn combustible gases.

What makes these stoves stand out among other wood-burning stoves is that heat produced by these stoves also burn combustible gases as well as particulates, before they can make their way out of the chute. The stove has a metal channel that heats secondary air feeds it into the stove. This hot air burns the gases above the flames.

Placing the chimneys

• Chimneys are one the most important parts of wood burning stoves or any appliance that works on combustion. The warm exhaust air from the heater rises up and escapes though the chimney. As this air goes out, the cool air rushes into the house from the vents. This oxygen helps to flare up the fire. The better the furnace and its chimney work, the better will be gentle flow of draft. So the pacing the chimney is a critical job that should be done appropriately. This will ensure a gentle flow of air into the stove and out of the chimney even when it is not working.

• A chimney placed inside the house is better than placing it along the outside of the house. The latter leads to loss of valuable heat to the outside air.

• The size of the chimney should be proportionate to the stove outlet. If the chimney of the wood turning stove is too big, the speed at which the exhaust air goes out will slow down. This will increase creosote build-up and decreasing efficiency. High-performance chimneys are also insulated.

• Some wood stoves vent out into a connecting pipe which is joined to a chimney. If the connecting pipe is too long, buy a double-layer pipe. This is to avoid radiation of heat from a longer length of single-layer pipe. This can slow down the draft and reduce overall efficiency of the system.

To keep a wood burning stove at the peak of its efficiency, get the chimney swept by a certified professional. They will also inspect your whole system.

Advantages of Wood Burning Systems

• Wood is a cheaper than oil, gas and coal.
• It is renewable, sustainable and available in large quantities.
• EPA has a certification program for wood stoves; it recommends using catalytic stoves, which emits much less than a conventional unit.
• Efficient models of wood stoves generate lesser emissions. The fuel is burnt completely producing lots of heat.
• Wood and wood chips that are used in wood-burning stoves cover large part of forest wastes. Using forest wastes improves forest health.

Cons of Wood Burning Systems

• Emissions from word burning stoves produce life threatening exhaust gases such as nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide and particulate into the air.
• Installing a wood burning stove is high upfront expenditure
• Wood stoves are robust and you also need space to store its bulky fuels.
• Waste ash that remains after burning needs proper, safe disposal.



Get Estimates

AC Repairs Near Me - Air Conditioner And Heat Units

Get Service Calls