I'm looking for other people's experience with a similar situation to mine.
I rent, the heat bill was $500.!!! That was just for 3 months of oil in a house that we had the heat turned off most of the time, and when I felt like living a little I turned to heat all the way up to 62. We set the thermostat at 58 and when we were out of the house turned it off. It isn't all that cold here either, and yet being frugal as possible it still cost us a gob smacking $500. for oil. I could sort of justify it if I wasn't cold all the time.
This obviously can't go on, so I want to build a RMH that is temporary because we have to move from this money sucking hell hole. We are getting a cold front next week... this is kind of really urgent.
Tell me, has anyone else had to deal with this kind of situation where you need an urgent short term solution that wont wreck the house and cost us more than our damage deposit to fix?
I wouldn't suggest a built from scratch RMH right now--first one will take a while to build and you can't really get clay unfrozen right now.
You could possibly do a dragon heater core and a pebble mass, if you can support the weight. Exhaust through a window using a piece of hardie board (fireproof cement board) as the thimble. Your landlord would probably not be pleased, even though that is a completely non permanent solution.
How much space do you have, do you have a basement, is it multi-story, how many rooms do you want warm, etc.
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posted 4 years ago
we're in a 4 bedroom, two floor house, the basement is warmer than the upper floor (which is a steady 53 degrees), the ceilings are high... there is a fireplace and a wood burning stove. The basement could support the weight, how heavey are we talking?
You could look at the 6" portable metal box. It weighs about 100 pounds without the burn tunnel. You need a barrel. If you get the cast dense refractory barrel cap, you can run it without any mass. The barrel cap has 63 pounds of mass, but other than that is all radiating heat, as opposed to storing heat.
We do not promise that it will draw properly without a proper chimney, however.
Berry Chechy : I am one of the top 5 Rocket gurus here at Permies and You are not going to build any thing that resembles a rocket stove in a week or less that
will not endanger your family. Sorry but there is a steep learning curve, and you have to crawl before you can walk. With carefull scrounging can lower the price
of a rocket mass heater to a couple of hundred dollars -buying everything to speed thing up will triple or more the cost of your project -with that much again, spent
on a safe outside chimney
You could call your oil dealer and ask about the history of oil consumption for the rental you live in. They should be able to access a computer program that
compares a couple of recent winters, and their '' number of Degree Days'' with this winter, month by month, or delivery by delivery, and tell you for the number
of '' Degree Days '' a comparable number of gallons you should have gone Through !
This is important because if there is a difference from expected performance, you will have a Case to make to get an Oil Burner Tech to your place without paying a
"Emergency No-Heat'' call Premium price. They can schedule a visit when it is convenient for Them ! You should do this yourself.
With this information in hand, you should talk with your landlord, especially if there is a major difference in Real and Expected number of gallons used ! As a minimum
he should let you pay for a service call by taking it off of your rent ! OR- he may get a better deal from the oil dealer, I bet you are using that dealer because the
Landlord recommended that Dealer Right? Does the landlord Know when and by whom the oil burner was serviced !
If this is a house cut up into multiple apartments and there are empty units sharing a common wall or above you, you should ask him for a walkthrough. so that both
of you can check on things like windows left open doggy doors with missing flaps, or ways animals could have gotten into a crawl space and torn down the insulation.
Is there an attic window out? has some one left and took a drier connected to the outdoors and left a hole in the side of the house, or left bathroom fans or range hoods
on and running !
By now you know how dry winter air is, if you are still using a cloths drier yourself do Not vent it outside, plug the drier vent outlet remove the hose, fasten a pair of
pantyhose to the exhaust vent on the Back of the drier, and look to get or make a 5 gallon bucket 1/2 filled with water as an indoor lint trap. lots of information on
line under drier lint trap buckets, if you have to run the drier, see if you can move it to the living room or kitchen?
ELectronics stores throw away yards and yards of bubble wrap, if you simply use a squirt bottle to moisten your window glass the bubble wrap will cling from one side
of the window frame to the other, and cut your cold air infiltration in half at your windows. You will still have as much light !
Can you close off a room in your house, if you have forced air heat you can lift up a floor mounted register, block it with rags and close off the room.
Like the inspection of crawl spaces, you should be able to check your basement, go down there during the day, use card board to cover all basement windows,have a
flashlight, but turn it off, you are looking for daylight around where the foundation wall meets the sill plate, if you need to you can google a picture, also look where
the the sill plate meets the floor is there moisture or even frozen water trapped in the insulation at the outside wall? Poor construction techniques allowed a decade
ago are destroying foundations, and sills, codes have changed, your landlord will not be happy if you find this problem, but if he gets mad at you. you have the wrong
Several heavy blankets thrown over a kitchen table with a small electric heater underneath is something you can set the family around and play board games. Or you
may have a larger register where your oil burner heats just your family till bed time. then just move the table !
At the very bottom of this page is a Cartoon of a beaded 'old guy' holding a skillet, to the right find and click on the words Electric Heaters, here too some of the best
advice would have been great to have 2 months ago, but learn what you can!
Do not leave any space heaters unwatched ! For the Craft ! Big AL !
Success has a Thousand Fathers , Failure is an Orphan