Hi guys, my name is Pete. I am new to the coal scene, but after this winter's oil bills, I don't plan on keeping it that way. I've been doing a fair amount of reading of this forum, learning all that I can. My house is a bit unique, so I'd love to hear any ideas and inputs you guys may have.
Anyway, my house is a 1850's vintage stone farmhouse. It has an addition, put on around 1950, that doubled the size of the house (roughly 30x30, two stories plus a finished attic). When they build the addition, they managed to find the original source of stone, so the addition isn't noticeable unless you are looking for it. The original walls are 18" thick solid stone, and the addition is 12" of stone, then framed out with 2x4's and sheet rocked. The attic is well insulated with fiberglass, not sure what is in the wall of the addition, and needless to say, there is no insulation in the original structure. Original windows all around, with storm windows. Believe it or not, the place is not drafty.
The current heating "system" is a bit of joke. There is a oil fired furnace in the basement, with duct work running to three registers. Two in the living room (which sit above the cellar), and one into the kitchen (1st floor of the addition). That's it. We use electric space heaters upstairs to heat the bedrooms.
I've been pondering what to do with the HVAC in this house since we bought it five years ago. I've considered a heat pump, geothermal or otherwise, to get heat and AC in one shot. What complicates matters is the way the house is built. Since the house was built in two sections, there is a 18" thick stone wall running down the center of it (the old original exterior wall). Makes it difficult to run duct work
So now I am planning on taking care of the heat first. Our heat loads are far in excess of our cooling loads, so the most money to be saved is there. I am thinking of going with hot water baseboard heat. The piping will be much easier to run through the walls than ductwork. I can do bits and pieces of it over the summer as money allows, and I can change the heat source without getting into the rest of the install.
The thinking is to install both a oil boiler and a coal boiler. Mainly because my wife isn't going to take care of a coal stove in our basement (very wet, low ceilings, lots of spider
), and so we can leave for a winter vacation without worry the coal fire is going to go out and freeze the pipes. I have one 8" chimney flue, and the chimney is 30' tall. From reading, I know it is not to code to pipe both boilers into one flue, but I would prefer to do things that way.
I've done a heat load calc using the Slantfin program, which says I need 90k btu. I'm in talks with a craigslist seller on a Keystoker KA6. Am I going to have problems with this being too large of a unit? I'm also looking for a used oil boiler. Any advice there?
I am thinking of zoning each bedroom (4 in all), and the first floor. The house is 2500 sq ft, is this too many?