Is A Wood Burning Stove For You?
Everyone who has experienced a power outage during the
winter knows how cold the house can get in just a couple of hours. Most outages are repaired fairly quickly, but
there are times when an emergency or disaster will mean that there will be no
electric power for days, and sometimes weeks. Ice storms, blizzards, high winds, or trouble at the power plant can all
mean that your electric service can be interrupted. How well will you and your family be able to
survive if your furnace is not working when it’s -20 F? If you have a wood burning stove, you will
have no trouble keeping warm during a disaster as long as you have a supply of
Will You Be Able To
Where you live will have a good deal to do with whether or
not you can use a wood burning stove.
Those who live in more rural areas will generally be able to install and
use a wood stove without any problem.
However, if you live in a housing tract or suburbs, you may find that
your stove will be prohibited outright or neighbors will complain about the
smoke. Some developments have covenants
built right into the sales agreement that will forbid the use of wood
stoves. Living in a city is even more
problematic, and some cities require that you get a permit before you install a
It is important that your wood burning stove is installed
correctly. Remember, there will be fire
produced, and unless the stove has been installed properly,
you could get a house fire. There will
usually be a certain clearance from walls necessary for safe installation. Larger stoves will require up to 3 feet from
a surface that could catch fire, while some smaller stoves only require a
clearance of 18 inches or less. While
our stove only needs a small clearance, we have installed cement shields
ourselves as an added safety measure.
Attention must also be paid to the stove pipe, which can
become very hot. If your pipe is not
insulated, there must be a 3 foot clearance where it goes into the wall or ceiling. An insulated pipe will basically do away with
this, but these pipes are very expensive, and will cost as much as the stove
itself. Having professionals install
your stove is probably your best protection against trouble. You also will have to clean the chimney pipe
every year, to clear out any creosote that has accumulated, as this is very
If your home already has a fireplace, you may well want to
upgrade to an insert. Fireplaces are
actually very inefficient heaters, but the addition of an insert will mean that
you will have all the heating benefits of a regular wood burning stove.
Sit Back and Relax
However, if your stove is properly installed and you have a
good supply of wood, you will be able to sit back, relax, and stay warm regardless
of whether you have electricity or not.
If you live in an area subject to severe winters, it may well be a good
idea to install a wood burning stove.
Besides providing dependable warmth, considering the price of heating
oil or natural gas, it will also save you a considerable amount of money.
Whether or not a wood burning fire place is right for
you, make sure to stock up on lighting and heating in case of
an emergency. No matter where you live a disaster can strike at the most