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solar vs RMH  RSS feed

 
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We need a better heating system in our house, but air pollution is a concern. Right now we are heating with a somewhat efficient iron stove and a very inefficient fireplace. There are solar panels on the house which produce enough electricity so we could do radiant heat with electricity or hot water in the floor. I've also suggested that we consider a RMH or a masonry heater. However, we are concerned about air quality and don't want to be adding to global warming via our heating system if at all possible. We are located in the mountains between the ocean and SF bay and have winter spare the air days when no wood burning is allowed (with exceptions for homes that are only heated by wood). We have more than enough wood on our lot, and need to do additional thinning to reduce fire load. So I'm hoping that someone can tell me what gasses are given off from the RMH, especially how much carbon and volatile gasses are released into the atmosphere. I'm open to other ideas about how to heat the space as well.
 
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Location: latitude 47 N.W. montana zone 6A
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Barbara; The only time a rmh will smoke is on start up or if you add pitchy wood while it is running , the rest of the time all you get is steam or just heat shimmers. People are building / running these in downtown high rises and getting away with it ...as the steam looks like a dryer vent !
 
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Location: Colorado Front Range (7000')
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Our domestic hot water solar system has served us nicely for decades. One could be adapted to provide some home heat, but might have to be rather large. Ours (three 4'x10' panels) has often brought 120 gallons of water up to 150-180*F (from ~50*) in a single good day. The output sounds similar to one or two RMH batch burns. Of course there have also been many "poor" days when the output was far less substantial.

You may have enough PV solar panels to get some heating, but it would take quite a few to generate substantial home heat.

You've probably considered Solar PLUS RMH...? The whims of weather & sunshine pretty much beg for some such combination.
 
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Location: Western Montana
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Barbara Du Mond wrote: However, we are concerned about air quality and don't want to be adding to global warming via our heating system if at all possible. We are located in the mountains between the ocean and SF bay and have winter spare the air days when no wood burning is allowed (with exceptions for homes that are only heated by wood). We have more than enough wood on our lot, and need to do additional thinning to reduce fire load. So I'm hoping that someone can tell me what gasses are given off from the RMH, especially how much carbon and volatile gasses are released into the atmosphere. I'm open to other ideas about how to heat the space as well.



One of the things I like about burning wood for heat is you're releasing carbon back to the atmosphere that's been stored for what, 20 to 50 years maybe? Much preferred to the eons old carbon being pulled out of the ground, IMO... And if you're burning fuels off the property, you'll release far fewer pollutants than if they were consumed in a wild fire...every year we have to live through a smoke filled valley during fire season. A forest fire is not exactly a model of efficiency lol. And as others have said, a properly running rocket stove won't smoke at all once it's up to speed...the smoke is fully consumed by the fire. Even carbon monoxide should be pretty well burned up.
 
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