Im new to the forums and he whole permaculture life so I apologize if this question has been asked and answered already. I live in a standard family home. Basement, main floor, 2nd floor and attic. My grandparents have always heated their home with a wood stove in the basement and open vents were cut into the floors of each room to allow heat to circulate through the house. I wanted to know if anyone has built and used a rmh in this type of home. I live in N.E Ohio, My idea was to build one in the basement and use it for my main heating in the winter with a gas furnace as emergency backup. Eventually I want to get rid of the furnace. If this is possible i want to get started immediately so it is more than ready by fall/winter.
Michael Linger : Welcome to Permies.com and our Sister site Richsoil.com ! _And a Big Welcome to the Rocket and Wood stove forum threads.
Yes this is a common question, but it is your question so lets start to find you good answers !
Speaking of finding, Location, Location, Location ! Look at your Name space to the left of your post and L@@K at mine !
At the Top of the page, under the Permies Banner of the Week is the Permies Toolbox. Find the My Profile Click-on and click-on.
This will take you to a new page that will help you share the information you feel safe to put out there . This will help your Fellow Permies and Near Neighbors
find you, You may already have a near neighbor with Rocket Mass Heater RMH or CobExperience !
The Rocket Mass Heater is a space heater designed to have a house built around it! Adding an RMH into your home can be made to work with varying results,
mostly good ! The colder your climate the more likely it is to work well for you - also the greater the need.
The Rocket Mass Heater Works best if located within the very core of the home, close to the operators elbow where it can be tended with relative ease, the
RMHs gentle roar being a specific clue to the health and hunger of your unit. Tending the RMH becomes a natural function done with as little thought as you
use to adjust a pair of glasses on your nose !
Any attempt to place the RMH in a Remote location is veery problematic, filled with pitfalls and all of the safety issues of other wood stoves. Attempts to main-
-tain a well run RMH in a remote location would find you interrupting your quite time to periodically run to check on its condition, often arriving just too early or
to late and hover-ing over the RMH like a vulture waiting on the right moment!
This will result in a Feeling that the RMH is a Drudges task, and excuses will be found /created for not attending your RMH - It can only serve You as well as you
As part of your research to help you decide if you want to make these modifications to your home you will have to 'Google' and clearly understand the physics
behind "Stack Effect " And '' Whole House Stack Effect ''. Generally this makes an RMH located within the Basement more difficult to operate under difficult conditions
especially when needed most.
You can also run into specific problems that will cause 'smoke-back' into your house from your RMH if anyone tries to use any appliance that exhausts air from
the house to the outside, this includes Clothes Driers, Exhaust fans over your Cook stove, other Space heaters, The exhaust fan in your bathroom and any woodshop
dust collector that exhausts outdoors !
Your RMH requires its own separate chimney, ideally running up through the center of the house, exiting on the Lee or downwind side of the house 3- 5 ' above
the peak of the roof ! Most craver D.I.Y. Rocket Builders usually find that a safe UL Rated chimney will represent 50% or more of the cost of the entire installation !
Do a little more research and come back here with your questions, if there is a Rocket Mass Heater in your Future we will help you find it !
For the Good of the Crafts ! Big AL
Success has a Thousand Fathers , Failure is an Orphan
Yes, you can do it, but I too highly recommend building it on the floor of the main living space.
But you must research the weight, the distribution of weight & supports (most likely a modified post and beam under the floor in the basement), and the means of safely burning a 2,000 F firebox above a wooden floor (yes, it can be done, I just ran my first test build, on a carpeted wooden floor this past winter - look up Ernie and Erica Wisner's posts for among the most thorough explanations of this technique). Also research the proper chimney design. I suspect few really work well without a good chimney, just like any wood burning stove would need.
Location: Northern New York Zone4-5 the OUTER 'RONDACs percip 36''