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Friday, December 17, 2010

Anyone heating with a woodburning add-on furnace?

Does anyone out there heat their home with an add-on woodburning furnace?  As we inch closer to ownership of the farm, we are trying to figure out our heating options.  We know we want to use wood heat as our main heat source.  There is a newer high-efficiency gas furnace, which would use tons of propane to heat this huge farmhouse (we had a contractor estimate it would cost us $4000 per winter to heat the farmhouse with propane).  We can use this as a backup, as needed, but don't want to use it as our main source.

So now we're really leaning toward a woodburning furnace, the type that adds on to the existing ductwork and sits in the basement next to the existing furnace.  Does anyone heat with one of these?

The only problem I'm wondering about is this:  the newer addition on the farmhouse is 3 stories tall.  The wood furnace will be in the basement.  Has anyone used a wood furnace to heat a home this tall / large?  It's about 3200 square feet, but I'm mostly worried about getting the air up that high to the 3rd story.  I guess it blows it through, just like a regular gas furnace, so maybe I'm worrying for nothing...?

We may also add a regular woodburning stove to the living room eventually, we like to be able to see a fire, use the top to heat food, etc.  But for now we're mainly concerned with heating the house & keeping our costs down.  Thanks, all!


  1. I'd like to get a wood burning add on but we don't have one. My parents, however, do have one that they use as the primary heating for their home. Theirs sits in the garage rather than in the basement with the gas furnace and Dad has a separate blower for that furnace. They only have two floors and minimally heat the basement so I don't know how well it would do for three stories. Having it in the garage makes it much easier to bring in the wood.

  2. You msy want to consider an oudoor furnace if this will be main source. I had an addon to a furnace years ago which greatly reduced the cost of heating the home. What is your wood source? this factor can greatly effect your cost savings john