traderfjp wrote:I really want to get off oil all together. I still heat my basement with oil, and from Oct. 4th to April 4th I've used 200 gallons
traderfjp wrote:I wouldn't get a coal boiler for several reasons. First it will burn lots more coal than a stoker
traderfjp wrote:I may install a pellet stove down there just because a coal stove would be over kill and there is much less work with a pellet stove. The ash doesn't build up mearly as quickly as it does with coal.
trader, I'm having a hard time following your logic. You don't want a coal boiler because you think it will burn more coal than a stoker stove...I agree that it takes more btu's to heat the entire house than just part of it, but it sounds like you want the entire home heated anyway...hence the 200 gallons of fuel this year and the pellet stove you mentioned.
Maybe I'm missing something, but considering what you've already spent heating the basement, and what it would cost to install a pellet stove (couple grand?), wouldn't you have been money ahead to install a refurbished stoker boiler on day 1? I am referring to the cost of the stoker stove, fuel oil heating the basement, and cost of an additional pellet stove vs. tying in a stoker boiler to the existing heating system.
I started out with a stove, and I've done the math...I would have been money ahead to just install a stoker boiler to begin with. I've got $5,000 invested in my EFM, and that includes the cost of the boiler and self installation. My oil boiler is still there and ready to shoulder the load if I want to go on vacation, hurt my back, etc etc. Like I said in my earlier post, it is all about goals...mine was to have a house that was warm from top to bottom and corner to corner, and I didn't want fuel oil to be part of the equation.
Oh, about the pellet stove. You are certainly correct that the ash pan doesn't fill up as fast, but you still need to shut them down about once per week for a cleaning/vacuuming. Ask someone that owns one.