Monday, October 1, 2007

Alternative Heat Source

Late last summer we bought and installed a corn burning furnace. It's an outdoor-type that heats water which is piped into the house in a closed loop. Blow some air across the heated water pipes and you've got your heat.

It was a dismal failure. It burned corn, all right--lots of corn. And it kept our house warm. But most of the heat blew right out of the chimney. Waste, waste, waste! What a shame. What an expensive shame. No help from the company (contact me before buying one of these babies, and I'll tell you which company to avoid).

As good midwesterners, we try to make the best of a bad situation. Especially when money's involved. So, today's project was to move the outdoor corn burner into the workshop. We'll capture the wasted heat that floated away last winter and heat my new weaving studio with it. And perhaps The Farmer's woodshop, too.

The photo is of The Farmer digging up last summer's hard work. The pipe (with heated water inside) will be insulated to help keep the water hot longer. Notice our border collie's plumed tail in the hole under the cement. She decided to come in from the other direction and help dig.

1 comment:

  1. What a bummer this did not work out as hoped, Lona. Praying it will provide wonderful heat for your workshop though!

    I am getting ready to order a cord of wood, and as you know, most of the heat it generates will go straight up our chimney! But I can't resist the ambience of a fire in the winter.


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