What is wrong with using wood to heat your home?

tinytn

Well-known member
Location
Tenn..
My hubby is from Maine and we lived in Maine for 25 yrs.. we had an excellent wood stove (the name escapes me now) and we also had a poured Chimney Liner called the Golden Flue. keeps the flue clean of soot ... we lived up a hill and off the highway but in a forested area. We also helped clean of most of the old fallen oak trees to use for our firewood too, hubs also had a wood splitter.. we enjoyed stacking the wood , was all good exercise for us too..
Then when we retired we moved south near the western end of Tenn,,We do not need to worry about freezing temps, snow or ice storms anymore.. !!! But I do miss all that good seafood the most..
 

Lakeland living

Retired in cottage country and loving it.
Location
Ontario Canada
Original Poster
If you're talking about particles in the house, as the poster below you mentioned, you shouldn't see much if at all. How do you even know?
Particles will coat flat surfaces eventually you will see that. Like dust in the air that rests on the flat surface. Keep in mind that open the stove door or an open fireplace that more will escape the unit.
 

IrisSenior

Member
Location
Ontario, Canada
I do love the smell of wood smoke but after reading that there are toxins released from burning wood I tend to stay away from the wood smoke now. I am sure if you know what you are doing then it is ok.
 

Lakeland living

Retired in cottage country and loving it.
Location
Ontario Canada
Original Poster
I don't burn anything that has been treated by man. Stain, paint weather proofing. Oils to make it last longer etc. Of course breathing in smoke is not healthy either. Fire scares me and makes me very very cautious too.
 

AnnieA

Well-known member
I am glad to learn that the newer ones are made more airtight and better, because I did love to heat with it, many years ago, but there was smoke in the house, and I found it difficult to lower it, with the stoves I had back then.
Smoke itself is a combustible fuel source. The higher efficiency stoves utilize both wood and smoke for combustion which reduces the amount of wood needed as well as reducing pollutants.
 

Lakeland living

Retired in cottage country and loving it.
Location
Ontario Canada
Original Poster
You are correct AnnieA, my stove has a system that circulates fresh air in through a baffle, through the fire box. Then that mixture is fed through a steel plate on top feeding it through the fire again. Tricky to light in warmer weather, You see the fire burning the wood then other flames coming from the top of the wood box.
 

Keesha

Playful Scamp
Location
Canada
-4 c called for here tonight. Crystal clear night. Brought in some wood , I would bet sitting watching that will put me right to sleep..
We did too. It’s our first fire this season. I love the smell of the wood burning. My plants were put into the greenhouse for warm and protection too.

We got 7 bush chords of ash. It’s got such a straight grain that makes it easy to cut.
 

Lakeland living

Retired in cottage country and loving it.
Location
Ontario Canada
Original Poster
Covered my plants over with some light plastic, I intend to get to them in the next couple of days.
Most of my wood is Beech, like that Ash nice straight grain and burns for hours. The rest is some maple the wind knocked down.
 

Old Dummy

Active member
Location
NYS
Supposed to get a light frost here in the Finger Lakes tonight, a hard freeze (23°) in Saranac Lake in the Adirondacks.

I've had a wood fire going for a couple of days now. My house is warm again!
 

Keesha

Playful Scamp
Location
Canada
Covered my plants over with some light plastic, I intend to get to them in the next couple of days.
Most of my wood is Beech, like that Ash nice straight grain and burns for hours. The rest is some maple the wind knocked down.
Good plan LL.
Yes beech is lovely wood also and burns clean for hours. I love the golden colour it’s leaves turn which stay on the tree long into the season. It’s often used for ax handles and such.
 

Morgan62

I am always OK ...the trouble is "the others"
Absolutely nothing wrong with that
until 1999 when I lived in England I had an AGA with a back boiler which was fueled by chopped wood. What wouldn't I give to go back to that ?
 

Lakeland living

Retired in cottage country and loving it.
Location
Ontario Canada
Original Poster
Have found a lot of people regret not heating with wood. Unlike oil it regenerates at a decent rate. To me, I live in the bush, not a log cabin but I can never really run out of fuel. On my walk this morning I found two huge beeches down on the ground, I own part of the property and help myself to all the dead or dying. Just those two trees will give me at least half of my fire wood next year.
Fitness, health being very careful and winter heat. I count myself extremely lucky to be able to do this....
 

Old Dummy

Active member
Location
NYS
I have to question the premise of this thread title.

Who said it was "wrong" to heat with wood in the OP, and what was their point?
 

Keesha

Playful Scamp
Location
Canada
Have found a lot of people regret not heating with wood. Unlike oil it regenerates at a decent rate. To me, I live in the bush, not a log cabin but I can never really run out of fuel. On my walk this morning I found two huge beeches down on the ground, I own part of the property and help myself to all the dead or dying. Just those two trees will give me at least half of my fire wood next year.
Fitness, health being very careful and winter heat. I count myself extremely lucky to be able to do this....
We live in the bush as well where wood is plentiful so we are never out of wood and doing all this work is not only enjoyable but contributes to a healthy lifestyle for sure. Beech wood is great.

Most of our hardwood is ash.
 

Pecos

Well-known member
Location
South Carolina
A few years ago we had a serious ice storm that knocked out power for five days. Downed trees and limbs had us trapped the whole time. I had built up a good sized stack of firewood in the back part of our lot and used it to heat the house. I sure did get tired of dragging all that wood into the house and dodging falling limbs as the ice storm worsened. We lost a lot of trees and it looked like a giant had stomped around with the intend of doing as much damage are he could. At the rate limbs came down, it sounded like a war zone. My insurance company USAA did their job and I was happy with their performance in helping us recover from the damage.
A couple of years earlier I had hung a chain with hooks inside the fireplace. I felt like a real pioneer making coffee and cooking in pots hanging off that chain. My wife was fairly impressed, but not too happy about the effort to get the smoke off of her pots after it was over.
Nonetheless we stayed warm and well fed until the roads were cleared and power was restored. Wood in a regular fireplace makes a good backup plan, but I was sure happy to get our regular heating system back on line. Living by candlelight isn't much fun either.
But I did not miss the TV.
 
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Lethe200

Active member
Just FYI, from Wood Smoke Myths and Facts:
....
The basic rule of thumb is this: if you can smell wood smoke, you’re breathing pollution that is hazardous to your health.

EPA certified woodstoves are the solution.
While it is true that EPA certified wood stoves may produce less particulate air pollution than uncertified ones when new and operated according to manufacturer specifications, they produce orders of magnitude more particulate pollution than appliances that burn natural gas.

In addition, the stated performance of EPA certified wood stoves degrades with use to the point where the particulate emissions are comparable to non-certified wood stoves.

Another key issue: EPA certified wood stoves emit highly toxic dioxins at levels equal to, or even greater, than levels emitted by conventional wood burning devices.

Wood smoke rises, so what’s the problem?

Most of the harmful pollutants from wood burning don’t rise. They hang around at ground level for up to ten days.

On cold winter days (when people tend to burn wood) the problem is even worse, because the weather conditions create temperature inversions that put a lid over the lower atmosphere, trapping hazardous pollutants close to ground level.

I can just shut my windows and I’ll be fine.

The fine particle pollutants from wood burning are so small that they infiltrate even the most well-insulated and weather-stripped homes. Scientific studies have shown that particle pollution levels inside homes reach up to 70% of the pollution levels outdoors.
 

squatting dog

Well-known member
"The basic rule of thumb is this: if you can smell wood smoke, you’re breathing pollution that is hazardous to your health. "

Using that logic, isn't breathing any kind of pollutant hazardous to your health? So, should we just stop breathing when near an automobile, bus, factory, cigarette smoker, etc. Where does one draw the line?
 


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