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Are you planning to use a wood burner to supplement your central heating this winter? Poll is created on Sep 26, 2023

  
  
  

Are you planning to use a wood burner to supplement your central heating this winter?

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Mars
 Mars
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As the cost of living continues to rise, many homeowners are looking for ways to save money on their heating bills. One option is to use a wood burner to supplement central heating. So, are you planning to use a wood burner to supplement your central heating this winter?

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(@kev-m)
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Posted by: @editor

As the cost of living continues to rise, many homeowners are looking for ways to save money on their heating bills. One option is to use a wood burner to supplement central heating. So, are you planning to use a wood burner to supplement your central heating this winter?

Yes, but more as a nice to have  than a money saver. I don't think paid-for wood will save money over an ASHP.  From what I can see it's going to be 20-30p per kWh to heat with wood.  That's not going to beat an ASHP even on a COP of 2.  Of course if you have free wood or are only going to heat one room then it's different. 

 


   
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Majordennisbloodnok
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I agree. @editor’s post assumes cost is the only reason for having a fire and circumstances vary far more than that.

 

Our wood burner is primarily so we can enjoy the odd fire for its feel-good effects, but if it gets really cold outside why would we ignore another readily available heat source? In addition, we had to take down a couple of birch trees so have had a lot of logs gently seasoning over summer; with a stash of free energy, once again who wouldn’t?

105 m2 bungalow in South East England
Mitsubishi Ecodan 8.5 kW air source heat pump
18 x 360W solar panels
1 x 6 kW GroWatt battery and inverter
Raised beds for home-grown veg and chickens for eggs

"Semper in excretia; suus solum profundum variat"


   
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(@derek-m)
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Posted by: @editor

As the cost of living continues to rise, many homeowners are looking for ways to save money on their heating bills. One option is to use a wood burner to supplement central heating. So, are you planning to use a wood burner to supplement your central heating this winter?

No. But not having a wood burner may have something to do with the decision. For some reason 'she who must be obeyed' frowns upon me trying to build a log fire in the middle of the lounge. 😋 

 


   
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Morgan
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Yes but not to save money.  Sometimes it's just nice to sit in a room with a fire.

Retrofitted 11.2kw Mitsubishi Ecodan to new radiators commissioned November 2021.


   
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(@allyfish)
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Yes. We light the log burner some evenings now, more for the aesthetic rather than the comfort. It takes the chill off the house and saves putting the ASHP on, which is still switched off in summer mode!

When those 'problem' freezing fog mornings arrive and the ASHP is in continual defrost and struggling to heat the house, we'll also light the log burner as a secondary heat source that's cheaper to run than the 3kW direct electric immersion back-up in the heating circuit. We opt to do this rather than over-sizing the ASHP unit, by going up a model size, accepting that, on occasion, the ASHP will struggle, and we'll need supplementary heating. The trade off is a more efficient ASHP in part load that has lower turn down and is more efficient for the majority of the year.

Seasoned hardwood costs me around 11.5p/kWh, electricity costs me 22.5p/kWh (average rate on Cosy Octopus after VAT & standing charge) With the ASHP my 22.5p will provide about 3kWh, whereas, at best, the log burner will provide 0.75kWh. The ASHP is 400% more efficient, but no-one sits on the patio in winter admiring their ASHP monobloc with a glass of wine in hand, but we do with the log burner 😉

This post was modified 8 months ago 2 times by AllyFish

   
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Abernyte
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Having felled, cut, split, stacked, dried and burned vast cubic meters of hardwood logs in the past 30 years as the main heat source for the house, one of the prime reasons for fitting the ASHP system was to free myself from the tyranny of the three heats, one when you fell the tree, one when you cut and stack and one when you burn it!  The other was the growing alarm at the output from the air quality sensors which I own and operate as part of a pan European citizen science effort. 

Even in our very rural location the PM2.5 readings on a still, cold winter evening were worryingly high although taken in perspective we generally have very clean air from both PM2.5 and PM10.  So no... the log burner was part of the past and really should remain so.


   
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Majordennisbloodnok
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Posted by: @derek-m

Posted by: @editor

As the cost of living continues to rise, many homeowners are looking for ways to save money on their heating bills. One option is to use a wood burner to supplement central heating. So, are you planning to use a wood burner to supplement your central heating this winter?

No. But not having a wood burner may have something to do with the decision. For some reason 'she who must be obeyed' frowns upon me trying to build a log fire in the middle of the lounge. 😋  

I assume she's also unreasonably arguing that the fridge should be organised so as to sacrifice valuable beer space to make way for food. 🤔 

 

105 m2 bungalow in South East England
Mitsubishi Ecodan 8.5 kW air source heat pump
18 x 360W solar panels
1 x 6 kW GroWatt battery and inverter
Raised beds for home-grown veg and chickens for eggs

"Semper in excretia; suus solum profundum variat"


   
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Jeff
 Jeff
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Having recently suffered from cancer, albeit nothing to do with wood burners, it did make me question the risk of using our log burner on my own and others health. We stopped using it during last winter but can't say we will never use it again.

I am definitely no expert on the level of risk or impact. 


   
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Dunlorn
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Posted by: @editor

As the cost of living continues to rise, many homeowners are looking for ways to save money on their heating bills. One option is to use a wood burner to supplement central heating. So, are you planning to use a wood burner to supplement your central heating this winter?

Yes, definitely planning to use it, particularly on very cold Highland evenings (which we have quite a few of). I've bought a box of long burn briquettes and am planning to experiment with an all night burn to keep the thermal mass topped up and allow a night time set back of the ASHP, rather than keep it running all night in very low external temperatures. Last winter I was trialling different night time set back arrangements but the house was taking so long to recover in the morning that it just wasn't comfortable. 

 

2 x 12kW Samsung Gen6 ASHP, 5.6kW solar PV ground mounted c/w 10kWh Puredrive battery & Solis inverter.


   
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