07 Feb '13, 8pm

Can I upgrade my fireplaces to heat the whole house? I want to eliminate oil heat. #energy

You are correct; heating a house with an open fireplace is not the most efficient method of heating your home for the reason you had mentioned; the heat goes straight up the chimney along with the indoor air, this is known as the chimney effect. There is a solution though which does not utilize your fireplaces but replaces your oil furnace and would cost less than rebuilding your fireplaces and or adding fireplace inserts. The solution which I am referring to is a whole house wood burning furnace . This is not the same as the stand alone wood burning heating systems which you typically see installed outside of the home. This whole house wood furnace system is installed in place of your oil or gas furnace and is located in the home in the basement. The furnace utilizes the same duct work from the oil/gas furnace and can even use the existing blower motor on the oil/gas furn...

Full article: http://greenhomeguide.com/askapro/question/how-do-i-elimi...

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