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General Advantages of Using a Wood Burning Stove

It has been a record breaking cold few months throughout large parts of Europe, with temperatures dropping to previously unheard of levels in certain parts. Europeans are faced with travel delays, closed schools, dangerous road conditions, cancelled sporting events, cuts in power supply and long periods of being forced to stay indoors. Which brings the question of home heating to the foreground. Moreover, when it comes to wood chopping there are wood saws that comes in real handy. You can buy a good wood saw that is suitable according to your requirement and enjoy your wood burning stoves.

A viable option to deal with the cold would be a wood heating system which offers various advantages over other methods of warming your house. Some of the reasons to consider using wood heating as opposed to other systems of heating includes the following:

Energy efficiency

Most people enjoy a fireplace but the problem with an open grate is that they are simply not very efficient when it comes to heating a room. It is estimated that a grate fire is only approximately 20 % efficient, with most of the heat being lost up through the chimney or being sucked out of the room. A wood burner on the other hand operates in the 75 – 80% efficiency range which is a huge difference in effectiveness. An additional advantage is that the top of the stove can be used to boil a kettle for a coffee break or even to make some toast on, ideal for when you next have to face those inevitable power cuts, a frequent occurrence during the particularly cold months.

Green heat

Wood is the oldest source of fuel known to man and is considered as “carbon neutral” which simply means that it doesn’t release any more carbon dioxide than would naturally occur when a tree falls or decays in the forest. The CO-2 that is released in the burning process is recycled and will be used in new plant growth thereby continuing the natural cycle. It is therefore a much cleaner source of fuel than fossil fuels like oil, gas and coal which contribute to the greenhouse effect. With most modern combustion wood heaters there is the additional advantage of a cleanburn system that re- circulates the gasses produced, burning these off and thereby further increasing heat production. Of course, it is up to the wood stove owner to use properly seasoned wood as opposed to green wood which will produce a lot more smoke and thereby influence the efficiency of the stove and the comfort levels of the inhabitants of the home.

Control

With a good wood burning stove comes a lot more control over those dreaded monthly electricity bills. After some trial and error it is certainly possible to plan and calculate exactly how much wood is needed to heat the parts of the house that you most often use, eg the living or dining room.It is also possible to plan how you would like the wood to burn by the kind of wood you elect to purchase. Different types of wood have different combustion qualities, hardwood like beech or oak for instance have a much longer burning time as opposed to a softer type of wood like birch or white cedar which tends to burn very hot but also very fast. Ensure that you purchase wood well before the winter months so that you can store it under a cover or in a shed to ensure dryness. Also try to ascertain the age of the wood before buying to ensure that you get a properly cured wood. An ideal age would be between 18 months and 2 years.

When deciding to buy a wood stove there is some questions the prospective buyer should ask himself. Factors to keep in mind when choosing a stove includes selecting the size that will best suit his needs, stoves are also constructed of different materials with unique pro’s and con’s ,catalytic versus non-catalytic systems ,heating capacity and of course there is also the question of aesthetics. Wood burners are manufactured in a variety of styles to choose from, some designed in period detail or more modern and sleek. You will surely find the perfect stove to complement a room’s unique décor.

The only real draw back in deciding on using a wood burn heating system is all the chopping and carrying that it entails, on the other hand that will certainly compensate for all the missed gym time that is so easy for one to justify during a particularly cold spell.

Nicole Hennig
Nicole Hennig
Nicole Hennig is a freelance writer, content writer, blogger, and also a photographer. She graduated from the University of Caloocan in Johannesburg, South Africa in 2015.

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