we would really like to build a RMH in germany and would like to know if anyone knows of anyone that tried getting that approved...
germans have a mass of regulations and as i am no lawyer i find it really hard not to get lost in the regulation jungle.
I would probably just build one but the thing with the insurance is a big problem. never mind if the RMH was responsible for the house burning down or not you would probably never see the money.
So: is there anyone out there in germany that knows what would be the best way to approache this?
well I am starting 3 next week, 1 in my conservatory, 2nd in my house and the third for in my workshop.
I'll poswt photos when I am online next in a couple of weeks, oh by the way these are to be built in lower saxony.
thing is: who checks your fireplace? the official chminey-sweeper (bezirks-schornstein-feger). he has to approve of a fireplace. the law ("feuerstättenverordnung") seems not to be very specific on that.
AFAIK schornsteinfegers can approve of self-built stoves if they like and see these ovens as safe and enviromentally friendly. they might require that the project is done or supervised by a professional oven builder. there are lots of masonry-heaters in germany. each is somewhat unique. maybe RHMs would fall into that category.
i think, the schornsteinfeger will check for things like the height and type of the chimney, the ventillation, the clearanc to combustable things etc. he might even measure exhaust gasses, but that would not be a problem with RMH.
concerning home-insurance: i think, if the schornsteinfeger says your stove is safe, they can t argue that.
AFAIK woodstoves need some kind of ceramic-filter that filters particles from the exhaust. which would not be a problem with RMHs, anyway.
i m not sure if it would be wise to talk to the schronsteinfeger about your plans. maybe it would be wise to say that you like to build one in a greenhouse or outdoor-patio. and then ask: "oh, by the way, what about this inside? would these be possible?". a demonstration of a working RMH outside might help. but i don t think that it would guarantee successful approval.
I´m just about to finish one in northern Germany, I´m investing every bit of free time to get it lit before the next cold spell.
I dealt with the laws in two ways: Since it´s my first one for testing it´s not in a house but in a 2 room brick workshop that I want to keep warm.
And since all the laws and restrictions refer to stationary fireplaces ("ortsfeste Feuerstätten") I built the combustion unit on wheels. This way it´s more like a big barbecue oven
Here´s a pic of the combustion unit that can be rolled around.
Already tested without mass and working like a charm.
I documented the build with a lot of pictures and some videos starting with the chassis, I hope to put a Youtube video up once the thing has proven its functionality.
The thermal battery however is fixed.
SInce I discovered this kind of heaters I´m totally nuts about them, got both books (Ianto Evans and the Wisners) and Pauls 8 DVDs.
And I´d be happy to connect with other RMH builders in Germany. Maybe there´s a way to get them established here.
And even though my first heater is not completely finished (I just started to mortar the bench after a lengthy chimney liner install) I´ve got the second already planned in my head. This will be more of a micro batch rocket instant heater without mass, for sure on wheels again.