I am pretty seriously thinking about installing a coal stove in the basement of my 1892 two family. My basement is roomy but unusable due to being very cold (45-50 degrees most of the winter) and very damp. The previous owner tried to make the house really energy efficient, and removed the old natural vent boilers and replaced them with direct vent units, installed fiberglass insulation and a sheetrock ceiling in the basement. The boilers throw no heat, there is no ventilation at all now that the chimneys are plugged, and the sheetrock plus insulation seem to just trap all that moisture in the basement. I am thinking of opening up one of the chimneys, ripping down all the sheetrock and insulation, installing a coal stove, and USING my basement. I had thought about going with natural gas down there, because I live on the second floor and schlepping up and down to the basement to tend a coal stove seemed like too much, and natural gas and coal are pretty close in price these days in Connecticut, but I like the idea of not having all my eggs in one energy source basket. I think a stoker down there will be ideal. I am picturing adding 1500 square feet of usable space to my home, nice warm dry space. Moving the laundry down there, my television, my tools... I think my tenants will like having the heat trickle up into their apartment too. Anything tips or suggestions? This site has been massively helpful in my research. My uncle up in Maine heats his home with a coal boiler, and I remember a relative had a Surdiac in their house, but I have never burned coal myself.