Heat without electric or gas

Discussion in 'Survival & Sustenance Living Forum' started by Jim1611, Feb 3, 2012.

  1. Jim1611

    Jim1611 New Member

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    We talk about the day that things will fall apart in our country and if that happens many of the services we take for granted may not be working. If that's the case what ideas do you folks have for heating your home?
     
  2. JTJ

    JTJ Well-Known Member Supporter

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    My problem would be air conditioning.
     

  3. bkt

    bkt New Member

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    Firewood. (we always have at least a couple cords seasoned and split and a huge back yard full of trees...)
     
  4. Jim1611

    Jim1611 New Member

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    Well where you live I can see that. :)

    I'm going that direction too but was wondering what brands or types of stoves.
     
  5. trip286

    trip286 New Member

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    Fire wood for heat, it's worked for thousands of years, it's laziness that is the reason it's not so mainstream anymore.

    terra cotta jugs of water in the window with a crossbreeze through a window on the opposite side of the house for A/C.

    And, I learned in Iraq and Afghanistan, a person can survive some pretty nasty temps with no A/C, just so long as they stay hydrated. In fact, you get to the point where you hardly even miss it.
     
  6. hiwall

    hiwall Well-Known Member

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    Those that have a large propane tank could last quite a while if they had a gas space heater(no electric required). Wood or coal for most. Down here we would just put on a sweater.
     
  7. orangello

    orangello New Member

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    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Passive_solar
    Passive solar can help.

    http://www.motherearthnews.com/hand...s-burn-efficiently-in-airtight-woodstove.aspx
    Wood pellet heat. That magazine spends a good bit of time on renewable energy and had a nice article on choosing a wood stove http://www.motherearthnews.com/modern-homesteading/how-to-choose-a-woodstove-zm0z11zphe.aspx .

    http://www.motherearthnews.com/Renewable-Energy/2006-12-01/Build-a-Simple-Solar-Heater.aspx I have seen applications of this idea as small as a window sitting below the actual window on the south-facing side of the house. It won't do it all, but it could save some saw gas.
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2012
  8. bkt

    bkt New Member

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    It depends on what your house can accommodate easily. There's usually room in a corner of the kitchen or living room or family room for a freestanding stove. Most modern ones have damper systems that burn wood efficiently.

    If you have a fireplace with a working flu, a cast iron insert may be an option. That's what I have and it has a firebox surrounded by an outer iron box. An electric fan blows hot air into the room along with the stove itself radiating heat. We can heat the entire first floor to about 85 in less than half an hour. The fan will run fine on a generator if necessary. But even without power it will keep the house comfy.

    I have a couple friends who recently did this - one got a freestanding stove and the other got a fireplace insert. If you want, I'll ask them specifically what they got. Both are efficient and very effective.
     
  9. Chainfire

    Chainfire Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Your AC solution will not work where I live. Our humidity is too high to get much evaporative cooling.

    We have all become spoiled. The first AC I lived in was when I went to boot camp. I do not remember being miserable as a kid in the summers, but I sure would be now.
     
  10. vincent

    vincent New Member

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    Well, here's kind of a poor man's fix...save all your metal cans, soup, coffee etc. Center a candle inside the can, light candle (obviously:D) and the can will radiate heat. It'll take several cans and if you can confine the airflow to one area of the house, eventually it'll warm you up. Last ice storm we hung plastic sheets in the doorways of the living room and it worked like a charm. We used around 15 cans and candles, small area. It's not going to be exactly balmy but it sure takes the edge off.
     
  11. trip286

    trip286 New Member

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    I've been in north Florida in the summers and winters, it's climate is not very different at all from north Mississippi.
     
  12. ellis36

    ellis36 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I have and use a free-standing stove for winter, and plenty of trees. The only propane I use is for the cook-top, and I have a 300 gallon tank of propane. No A/C would be a real problem. Unfortunately, my house isn't conducive to cross-ventilation.
     
  13. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    For heating for any period of time beyond the amount of fuel you have stored, replacement fuel becomes the driving factor.

    Unless you have a natural gas well, then NG, Propane, etc will stop when your tank is empty. Getting through a week long ice storm- not a problem. If you are looking at TEOTWAWKI, then something else is needed. For most, that will be wood- for a few folks, coal.

    Wood pellet stoves are nice, but need a specially processed fuel, and electricity to run. A wood stove, wood burning furnace, fireplace or fireplace insert can burn most of what will fit. Stay away from stuffing a wad of paper trash in one unless you want to learn about chimney fires.

    Wood stoves can be as simple as an inexpensive sheet metal heater, which has a SHORT service life, or as pricey as an airtight soapstone wood stove. An intermediate cost is a heavy steel wood stove, such as the Englander or Papa Bear style. Us? Wood burning furnace, connected to the ductwork in the house.

    Where/how are you going to get wood? Under normal circumstances, you can buy it, or harvest your own. Armageddon- what do you do when there is no more gas/oil for the chainsaw? We do have axes, handsaws, and splitting mauls- but the chainsaw gets everyday use. Spare chain, file, and 2 cycle oil is good to have on hand.

    It would be very difficult to build a wind power electrical system that could heat a home, but solar can help with heating- active or passive systems. There are also systems that produce methane gas from digestion of organic matter- but would be better used as a fuel for engines or for cooking than trying to heat with it.

    Wood heat CAN reduce your utility bill a lot, and keep you going when the grid is down. Be prepared to spend time educating yourself about stoves, chimneys, and wood. The attraction of the thermostat and heat pump is that you don't get up a 4 AM because the house has gotten chilly, and you do not have the work of hauling wood, cleaning out ashes, and maintaining the stove and chimney.
     
  14. JTJ

    JTJ Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We had an Earth Stove when we lived in Washington. I would cut and stack quite a few cords. The Earth Stove was nice because you could cook on it and we did several times when we had power outages. Just make sure you have an outside air source as a wood stove or fireplace will use up the oxygen quickly.
     
  15. HockaLouis

    HockaLouis New Member

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    Use oxygen and produce Carbon Monoxide and other junk. Fire fumes inside without fesh air, you die. That's clear to everyone, right?

    There are radiant heaters that consume the fuel and do not produce CO, but be careful. For Y2K I had 120 lbs. of propane. 40 now and the intent is to use it to cook, along with liquid fuel stoves, if electric is out, not heat. I'll freeze to death? Hope not. We keep the heat below 65 in the Winter anyway and about 60 at night. 'course that's not 12-degrees below 0. Layers of clothes might really have to work and get me thru an emergency that I suppose could be as bad as Valley Forge. We have oil heat which is relied upon and kept accordingly at least halfway filled at all times as part of the plan here...

    Only so much wood we could gather vs. everyone else trying to do the same thing (though we are amongst alot of timber). And would hate to fight over it. Gas chainsaw eh? Mine's electric. Might have to think about that someday...
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2012
  16. fireguy

    fireguy New Member

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    I would love to be able to build a thermal mass rocket stove in my house. I need to butter the wife up a lot more before that'll happen though. These things are very efficient and still heat after the fire goes out through the thermal mass that radiates for a good long time.

    [ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LfKHVoCY2so[/ame]
     
  17. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    Fireguy- please do NOT build what is shown in the video- your homeowner's insurance is going to go away if you do!

    Don't get me wrong- thermal mass can be VERY useful- we have a triple flue chimney that has about 12 tons of concrete- takes 3 days to fully warm up- and radiates heat for 3 days after fire is out- BUT- that chimney is concrete block,with a clay tile liner, and space between block and liner is concrete.

    What that video shows is an unlined chimney made of adobe, with no way to clean the creosote that WILL eventually build up. Serious violation of bulding codes.

    The Latin word holocaust denoted a type of furnace where the flue passed under the floor- warming the room, and using thermal mass to even out delivery of heat.

    You can also look up Trombe Wall- uses thermal mass to store solar heat. Saw one that outer glass wall had a fold up cover- inside was lined with 55 gallon drums of water, laid on side, painted black. Daytime, open cover, sun's heat warms water in drums. Night, close cover, warm water radiates warmth into house.
     
  18. fireguy

    fireguy New Member

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    I know what you are saying about the chimney problem. If constructed correctly these rocket stoves burn almost all of the particulates and flammable gases before they even reach the outflow. If I ever get a shtf cabin I'll give it a try, code name "Hunting Shack".
     
  19. mcb

    mcb New Member

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    Wood in the winter. If you are going to heat with wood educate yourself on how to do it safely.
    I have an old farm house built before ac. Many new houses are designed to have ac older houses on the other hand took advantage of things like cross breezes and knowing when to open or close windows and curtains.
     
  20. OzarkRecluse

    OzarkRecluse New Member

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    Nothing different than we do now. All we use for heat is wood. It's saved our butts several times when electrical lines have gone down.