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Thursday, 6 March 2014

A Stove on the Roof

No, we haven't elected a Pope.   This is the chimney of our newly fitted roof room stove on its first day of action.   It is deliberately set back far from the edge of the roof room roof so that it is invisible from many perspectives of the tower from ground level.
 And here is the very neatly installed stove and inner flue pipe.   HETAS installer Richard McGeoch fitted it in full accordance with building regulations.   As Settle's former fire chief he has knowledge of the consequences of badly fitted stoves.   The embarrassment quotient if our roof room caught fire would be high.
 The stove is small - just 4kw but it heats the otherwise cold roof room magnificently.   We knew it would from experience of these little stoves on canal boats.   We have found we have had to open all doors and windows on canal boats in the bitterest of winter weather so knew it would deal with the roof room.   Besides that, 4kw is the maximum output you can have without recourse to fixed ventilation to feed the fire.
Today has been dull and dry but when it blows and snows this will make the roof room really cosy.

The water tower has been designed to be as green as an old building can be - rainwater harvesting, high insulation, solar panels, heat recovery ventilation and so on.   All that gives a certain satisfaction that we are doing our bit for the planet.   Why then the solid fuel stove?   Besides being psychologically warmer than the electric devices that have heated the roof room so far (some days assisted by the sun when shining) the roof room is very cold in winter, perched on top of a tower and heavily insulated from the floors below it.

The solid fuel stove also makes us reasonably independent, in extremis, from the politics of energy.   Unlikely but possible the Russians COULD turn off the gas.   The electricity supply is vulnerable short term to outages and longer term to rationing.   Then where would we be?   Cold in winter!   Everybody should think about alternative sources of energy - heating especially.

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