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Wood or Gas
Posted by: mattkime
Date: October 12, 2019 09:17AM
Poll
Wood or Gas?
Only registered users are allowed to vote for this poll.
30 votes were received.
Wood 16
 
53%
Gas 10
 
33%
Things that annoy me 1
 
3%
You are M A V I C 3
 
10%



Fireplace
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: Zoidberg
Date: October 12, 2019 09:25AM
Have had both wood and gas fireplaces for a number of years at different houses. Gas, if you can choose, is definitely the way to go for a good number of reasons.



It's spelled " y'all "

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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: davester
Date: October 12, 2019 10:47AM
We have two fireplaces at our house. One is gas and one is wood. The gas one is in a bedroom. While I enjoy the ability to turn on the gas fireplace with a remote, nothing can beat the sound and smell of burning wood. There's something primeval about staring into a fire. Sadly, burning wood creates toxic pollution so these are dying out. We only light ours infrequently now.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: ztirffritz
Date: October 12, 2019 10:55AM
So long as there is gas, that is a clean option. I chose would because I can burn anything in a pinch. I’ve heated my home with a woodburning stove.



**************************************
MacResource User Map: [www.zeemaps.com]#
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: Markintosh
Date: October 12, 2019 11:00AM
We burned wood exclusively when we lived in a more rural area for 20 years. There's a lot of satisfaction to be gained from cutting, splitting and stacking your own wood. Plus the heat and experience of a wood burning fire is great.

But in moving to our current suburban location, our new home only offered gas. Wood burning appliances are very limited here due to air quality issues. So we have a remote controlled propane fireplace now, as well as a forced air furnace. We don't miss the constant mess of burning wood. We enjoy being able to leave for a vacation in the winter and not worry about frozen pipes. It's nice to come home from a long cold day and click a button for fire.

More importantly, fire danger is a real issue in California, especially in the dry fall season. Insurance cancellations are frequently occurring in the Sierra. One factor agencies look at closely are wood piles. You are not allowed to store wood anywhere near your house, and piles must be covered by ember proof coverings. Rules for cutting wood are also much stricter. We pretty much have to eliminate our backyard fire pit and consider putting in something that burns propane if we want the ability to enjoy a fire during the cold months.



“Live your life, love your life, don’t regret…live, learn and move forward positively.” – CR Johnson
Loving life in Lake Tahoe, CA
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: Rolando
Date: October 12, 2019 11:01AM
Fired up the fire pit last night, first time since March! Family just sat outside, drinking wine and hot cocoa for my daughter!

I throw broken branches in an old metal bbq grille, they dry out over the summer and burn real good!



San Antonio, TX (in the old city)


"All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: Wags
Date: October 12, 2019 11:08AM
I had both this morning. Sort of a blessing at my age.
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: mattkime
Date: October 12, 2019 11:16AM
I’m strongly in favor of wood. IMO, almost everything that makes it troublesome also makes it deeply satisfying. I grew up with a wood burning fireplace which has likely influenced my views.



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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: NewtonMP2100
Date: October 12, 2019 11:40AM
....gas is easiest and cleanest......wood you have to clean, carry the wood.....chance of fire....



_____________________________________

I reject your reality and substitute my own!
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: freeradical
Date: October 12, 2019 11:52AM
Quote
Wags
I had both this morning. Sort of a blessing at my age.

The mystery of morning wood...
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: mrbigstuff
Date: October 12, 2019 12:09PM
Wood. A gas fireplace is just a euphemism for a gas heater, the kind covered in metal and sitting in the living room. I had one in an apartment for a while until the owner got too nervous.
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: Cary
Date: October 12, 2019 12:41PM
I've had wood burning fireplaces s in my houses for about 30 years. During a recent remodel, we demolished the brick wall (about 15' long, floor to ceiling brick) with integral fireplace.

It was a good thing, because whoever built it did a really job, and there was plenty of framing that had been messed up.

Rebardless, we replaced with a hang-on-the-wall gas direct vent fireplace.

Advantages:
Clean
Easy to use
Thermostatic
No drafts
Insulated
Don't have to schlep/store wood
Don't have to clean ashes
No creosote

Disadvantages:
No. crackling

I wholeheartedly recommend gas...
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: freeradical
Date: October 12, 2019 01:02PM
Can you roast marshmallows over a gas fireplace, or would that muck things up?
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: Grateful11
Date: October 12, 2019 01:30PM
We burn wood to supplement our heat pump/oil furnace kinda hybrid system. We put in an
EPA certified fireplace insert with glass doors about 6 or 7 years ago and it's been great.
A straight fireplace is huge waste of heat.

Made in Canada. Ours is the small one.
[www.century-heating.com]

Hard to beat this price. It does need a 6" flue liner to work properly.
[www.ruralking.com]

Our stove fired, damper is probably wide open but these new stove aren't meant to burned while
smoldering. We can get 6-8 hours burn time. Hot coals enough to restart a fire for up 12 hours.
[youtu.be]



Grateful11
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: chopper
Date: October 12, 2019 01:40PM
<<Sadly, burning wood creates toxic pollution so these are dying out.>>

Blank stare.
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: hal
Date: October 12, 2019 03:21PM
Quote
chopper
<<Sadly, burning wood creates toxic pollution so these are dying out.>>

Blank stare.

If you ever backed away from a campfire, you'd understand. I've been to mountain communities where everyone is burning a woodstove for heat and it can be worse than LA in August.

That said... a wood burning fireplace is warm and cozy while a gas fireplace feels sterile. Gas is nice and clean and safe, wood is messy and more prone to a dangerous accident. I simply choose to have neither these days.
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: jdc
Date: October 12, 2019 03:35PM
We have a gas fireplace. I turned it off an blew out the pilot in 2005. Its just a waste of space on the wall.



----


Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: Acer
Date: October 12, 2019 05:50PM
I grew up with a wood fireplace in the house, but I don't miss it. I don't care for the inevitable smoke in the house even with an insert or stove, plus all the mess and having to manage the fuel. A gas fireplace feels too artificial. Currently we have neither.

The downside is that we have no alternative source of heat should the power go out.
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: mattkime
Date: October 12, 2019 06:41PM
>I don't care for the inevitable smoke in the house

Had a fireplace growing up, did not have this problem.
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: freeradical
Date: October 12, 2019 06:55PM
Quote
mattkime
>I don't care for the inevitable smoke in the house

Had a fireplace growing up, did not have this problem.


I didn't either. My father used to prime the flue with some burning paper.
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: Ammo
Date: October 12, 2019 08:10PM
Quote
Acer
I grew up with a wood fireplace in the house, but I don't miss it. I don't care for the inevitable smoke in the house even with an insert or stove, plus all the mess and having to manage the fuel. A gas fireplace feels too artificial. Currently we have neither.

The downside is that we have no alternative source of heat should the power go out.

That’s one reason I like having our gas stove on a thermostat. If our gas furnace were to quit in the winter, I hope the gas fireplace would keep the pipes from freezing until we get back home.



Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about. —Wendy Mass
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: DinerDave
Date: October 12, 2019 08:42PM
All we have is a fire pit in the back yard.
Only gets occasional use.

Dave



Welcome to Dave's BBQ!

Many have eaten here....

Few have died
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: davester
Date: October 12, 2019 08:53PM
Quote
Acer
I grew up with a wood fireplace in the house, but I don't miss it. I don't care for the inevitable smoke in the house

That only occurs if you have a poorly designed fireplace. Unfortunately, a huge fraction of fireplaces in US homes are horribly designed and do not draw properly. If you have one of these, hire a chimney sweep to come over and advise you on inexpensive modifications that can eliminate this problem. Usually the problem is simply that the fireplace opening area is too large for the flue, rectifiable with a simple baffle in many cases.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: mattkime
Date: October 12, 2019 09:21PM
>Usually the problem is simply that the fireplace opening area is too large for the flue, rectifiable with a simple baffle in many cases.

I suspect a baffle is present on my fireplace. chimney inspectors mentioned it was likely put in place to fix a problem. must be what you're describing.



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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: Grateful11
Date: October 12, 2019 09:50PM
Quote
hal
Quote
chopper
<<Sadly, burning wood creates toxic pollution so these are dying out.>>

Blank stare.

If you ever backed away from a campfire, you'd understand. I've been to mountain communities where everyone is burning a woodstove for heat and it can be worse than LA in August.

That said... a wood burning fireplace is warm and cozy while a gas fireplace feels sterile. Gas is nice and clean and safe, wood is messy and more prone to a dangerous accident. I simply choose to have neither these days.

Yes because those people are burning wood fired boilers and they choke them down to where it's just smoldering, no active flame. Once my EPA certified insert is lit and burning properly in about 5-10 minutes and the flue liner has warmed up you don't see anything, by eye, but a small amount of heat vapor coming out the top of my chimney lined with a stainless steel liner, no smoke. Some communities are banning the boilers due to all the smoke. The old boilers are grandfathered in and there's not much they can do about them. The new ones have to meet EPA regulations. These specs were what impressed me about ours: Average particulate emissions rate 2.6 grams/hour and 75% optimum efficient.

Here's the specs on my insert.
Fuel type Dry cordwood
Recommended heating area (sq.ft.) () 500 - 1,700
Overall firebox volume 1.5
Maximum burn time () 6 h
Maximum heat output (dry cordwood) (3) 65,000 BTU/h (19.0 kW)
Overall heat output rate (min. to max.) (3) (4) 11,900 BTU/h (3.5 kW) to 25,600 BTU/h (7.5 kW)
Average overall efficiency (EPA cribs / Douglas fir) (4) 63.9 % (HHV) (5) 69.1 % (LHV) (6)
Average overall efficiency (dry cordwood) (4) N.A. (HHV) (5) N.A. (LHV) (6)
Optimum efficiency (7) (8) 75 %
Average particulate emissions rate (1) 2.6 g/h

Mine meets these standards as far as I know.

Choosing the Right Wood-Burning Stove
[www.epa.gov]



Grateful11
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: Grateful11
Date: October 12, 2019 10:00PM
Quote
mattkime
>Usually the problem is simply that the fireplace opening area is too large for the flue, rectifiable with a simple baffle in many cases.

I suspect a baffle is present on my fireplace. chimney inspectors mentioned it was likely put in place to fix a problem. must be what you're describing.

Matt to get these new stoves to burn correctly a liner 6" or smaller needs to be attached directly to stove otherwise it'll never warm the flue enough to draw correctly. Our old stove was a 40 year old Buck made in the mountains of NC and it was a wood hog but it was here when we moved in so we used it. Highly inefficient, I bet I burn 1/4 of the wood I used to burn. I once got three 5 gallon buckets of creosote out of our firebox and flue due to improperly seasoned wood and improper burning of the stove and an oversized 6x12" terracotta flue.. There's a learning curve to these new stoves. Hearth.com is the best forum online for this type info.

OT: I've never cut a tree for the sole purpose of using it for firewood. When your son has about 100 acres and and a fair amount of those are wooded there's always a tree that's dead or dying or has been struck by lightning. We burn most anything but Pine.



Grateful11
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: Michael
Date: October 13, 2019 05:39AM
We just have wood and historically I've had it going on weekends in the cold weather. Now that I'm retired I assume it will be going most of the time in the cold. We don't have gas available without an LP tank and I'm not particularly interested in one of those sitting by the house.
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: mattkime
Date: October 13, 2019 08:12AM
I’m a bit confused by the overlap between discussion of fireplaces and stoves. FWIW we have a fireplace,



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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: deckeda
Date: October 13, 2019 11:09AM
Matt,

Wood stoves today are essentially wood burning furnaces. The primary difference would be if the top has cutouts or something to use with pots and pans. All the rage like 100 years ago? Before gas and electric stoves/ranges came into vogue.

A wood burning fireplace insert is like a wood “stove” (furnace, actually) that lacks most of the chamber; it uses the fireplace and chimney to complete the “furnace.”

We live in a house currently that’s never had permanent heating and winters suck. I find this ironic because my wife hates being cold. There’s a small propane heater (looks like a small wood stove) in the basement I’ve never seen going (can’t light pilot) and a propane faux fireplace in the living room. Oh, and s small propane wall heater in one bathroom. We have a heat pump but that only goes so far. I’m considering another non-permanent solution, supplemental infrared room heaters. The elec bill would go up but the annual propane refill bill would go down. And maybe the walls and windows would have less cloudy filth on them.

A few years ago when we came to live in the house her mom and husband basically moved into the basement. Bought a wood furnace and tended it. Perfect heat, even distribution just from radiation with the natural give and take of the wood floor above. Glorious. The thing is less than a yard wide or deep and can run freely (wood is free here.) They moved elsewhere and now the basement is filled with crap and unusable for people, or heating.
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: mattkime
Date: October 13, 2019 12:41PM
Quote
deckeda
We live in a house currently that’s never had permanent heating and winters suck.

Where do you live?



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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: Grateful11
Date: October 13, 2019 06:10PM
Quote
mattkime
I’m a bit confused by the overlap between discussion of fireplaces and stoves. FWIW we have a fireplace,

Matt the only reason I brought it up is because burning a fireplace is a big waste of heat
not only from the fire but the heat from the room being drawn out. We found an insert
that would fit our budget and our fireplace opening. If it's ambiance you want a fireplace
is fine.



Grateful11
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: Racer X
Date: October 13, 2019 07:29PM
we really want a nat gas forced insert in our upstairs fireplace, but my pertner's dad passed away before we did the work. He was "the" installer in the '60s and '70s for the gas company before he switched to steamfitting and nuclear boilers. We could have easily run a stub straight up from the garage furnace/dryer, and gone gas in the kitchen, then across between the floors and straight to the fireplace.

Oddly enough, his oldest son was involved with the demo of a number of nuke plants Pops built decades before. He's pretty sure he pulled out coolant piping his dad put in.
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: deckeda
Date: October 13, 2019 08:17PM
Quote
mattkime
Quote
deckeda
We live in a house currently that’s never had permanent heating and winters suck.

Where do you live?

middle TN near the KY border

Many older houses here seem to have large heat pumps like ours that are "self contained," meaning everything's in the outside unit, with both coming and going ducts going to it, with only one return vent inside apart from whatever duct work gets added for supply. These are easy to retrofit to old houses that never had central air but it means there's no furnace that's part of the equation.

Got down to upper 30s last night and so I switched over the heat (the heat pump). It does fine until about 25-30 or so outside and then would run constantly if let it, which of course I don't. That's when we use the living room propane fireplace thing (ventless, I hate it.) Heat is not even throughout the house of course but it keeps us alive.

Our is 70 some years old with a major add-on done like around 1980 that gave it modern electricity and redone plumbing. My inlaws have 2 other houses side by side they bought "for fun" that had had very little ever done to them. Built 1939. One had a modern HVAC put it but without ductwork to the second floor, making the second floor mostly pointless. The other never got A/C. Both had built-in electric wall heaters everywhere never removed, and before that radiators mostly never removed ... the long-ago defunct coal furnace boilers are still in each basement. They were likely put together in the basements because they'd never fit through any doorway.
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: mattkime
Date: October 13, 2019 08:34PM
>the long-ago defunct coal furnace boilers are still in each basement

Our house had a coal boiler at one point. and then fuel oil and then natural gas. (and currently natural gas)

---

Yeah, I suspect you get enough cold weather that you'd want a good heating system.



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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: NewtonMP2100
Date: October 13, 2019 08:41PM
......most ladies [ and some men ] prefer handling wood......



_____________________________________

I reject your reality and substitute my own!
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Re: Wood or Gas
Posted by: Zoidberg
Date: October 15, 2019 10:58AM
Our gas fireplace warms our entire house (under 3000 sf) nicely; thanks to the layout, it will warm both the upstairs as well as the downstairs. We almost never turn on central heating (I usually leave it set at 55F just in case it gets really cold b'f we wake up or back at the house).

Having had a wood fireplace as well, I'll say that, yes, the cracking fire is nice but I'd still rather have the gas fireplace. No wood to deal with, flue stays cleaner longer, etc.

About the only thing I really want to do is replace the blower above the fireplace so it'll move the heat out a little better. Had all but forgotten we have a setup for that.



It's spelled " y'all "

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