New to EFM...(and coal in general)

New to EFM...(and coal in general)

PostBy: lundys On: Tue Nov 25, 2008 8:17 am

Could someone summarize what EFM provides? What's the difference between some of the EFM stokers and other company's stokers? How "automatic" are their stoves? (i.e. how long could I go without having to feed coal?) Which stove would work best for a small 1100 squ ft. house, being put in a finished basement? What is the rough price range for their stoves?

I sorted through all of the Announcements informational section, and even downloaded one of the manuals off their website, but couldn't answer these questions. All of the information here appears to be specialized for people who already know what EFM is about, and what their stoves do, what are their benefits, etc... :)

Thanks!
-Steve
lundys
 

Re: New to EFM...(and coal in general)

PostBy: billw On: Tue Nov 25, 2008 9:12 am

I have an EFM 520. It's a boiler that provides heat through baseboard radiation. I'm heating 2,400 sq ft not including the basement/workshop. It also has radiation but only heated as needed. This unit may be overkill for what you have. I'm not sure of all of the other EFM models. It's auger fed so you don't need to shovel coal daily. How often you have to handle coal is up to your design. Some people run the auger into a 55 gallon drum and keep it full, others, like me, have the auger run directly into a coal bin. Mine is 10 X 8 X 6. I haven't had to shovel coal yet since I started the unit up on October 5. I'll probably have to move coal around in my bin a couple of times this year.

There are two things that need to be done daily check/empty the ash tub and blow out the fines (coal dust) at the bottom of the stoker pot. The first is self explanatory, the second is nothing more than pulling a handle while the stoker is running. My daily maintenance takes about two minutes.

As far as sizing what you need there are a few very knowledgeable folks that I'm sure will chime in when they read your post.
Good Luck.
billw
 
Stove/Furnace Make: EFM 520
Stove/Furnace Model: GOODBYE OIL COMPANY

Re: New to EFM...(and coal in general)

PostBy: slb04786 On: Tue Nov 25, 2008 11:27 am

Steve,

You have come to the right place for answers. To better help you we need some more info. Are you looking to put into a coal boiler or furnace (forced hot air)? Will it be plumbed in with an existing oil boiler or furnace? Do you have an extra flue (chimney) available to connect the coal boiler to? They can't be hooked into a flue that has other appliaces attached to it.

In a boiler range I would think a EFM 350 would be a good fit. I don't know if they are still available new but a good used or refurbished one would be a good investment. Here is a link from another post about people who may have EFM's avaiable to sell. http://nepacrossroads.com/about4037.html

A stoker burns a smaller size coal (buck or rice size) because it uses an auger inside a piece of pipe to automatically feed coal into the burner pot. You don't have to shovel coal in. A hand fired coal stove burns larger chunks of coal (nut) and requires a daily or bi-daily replenishment by the owner (shovel, bucket) to stay running. I am by no means an expert but I'll share my thoughts anytime.

I see you are in PA. A lot of our members are in PA. I'm sure if you check some of their profiles and find one near you they would be glad to "show off" their EFM's so you can see one in operation. That is the best way to get a handle on the terminology used on this site. i.e. burner pots, augers, stoker, etc

Best of luck
slb04786
 
Stove/Furnace Make: EFM
Stove/Furnace Model: DF520

Re: New to EFM...(and coal in general)

PostBy: stoker-man On: Tue Nov 25, 2008 12:30 pm

The 350 is available on the used market, but have been out of production for 30 years. They are still a good buy.

Buck coal is used, but not recommended by efm.

If your coal bin is big enough and built with removable boards, you may not have to touch a piece of coal all Winter.

You are only a few miles away, so I recommend coming to visit us in Emmaus to see one.
stoker-man
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: 1981 efm wcb-24 in use 365 days a year
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite/Chestnut
Other Heating: Hearthstone wood stove

Re: New to EFM...(and coal in general)

PostBy: bubba On: Tue Nov 25, 2008 4:02 pm

I have one running and I am onlly 2 miles away from you . 4035 Zionsville road. stop anytime
bubba
 

Re: New to EFM...(and coal in general)

PostBy: CoalJockey On: Tue Nov 25, 2008 6:20 pm

Steve

The one thing I can tell you is no matter what size EFM you go with (if you do).... these stokers are built for the long haul.

Do not be afraid of a used one. We have two of them running here that were used when we bought them and are probably 30 years old (havent verified)

They run forever and are built like a tank.... and engineered simple enough to understand. There is hardly anything on them that will wear out. If it does wear out, all of the parts are still available if you know where to look.

Very good investment for the money. If you ever go to sell it.... you would certainly recoup your value.

Best thing is like someone else said.... go and see one in action and form your own opinion.

Take care 8-)

Tyler
CoalJockey
 
Stove/Furnace Make: EFM
Stove/Furnace Model: 1300 & 520

Re: New to EFM...(and coal in general)

PostBy: lundys On: Tue Nov 25, 2008 7:15 pm

Well thanks for all the helpful replies. Does EFM only makes "boilers"? And by the word "boiler", I assume that means it burns coal to heat up water which travels through existing baseboard plumbing and heats your house? If I do not have baseboard plumbing (currently I have electric baseboard heat throughout my house), does EFM make anything that fits this application?

I do have an old hand-fired coal stove in my basement with a large coal bin next to it. This came with our house when we bought it a year ago - I have no idea when the last time it was used. The stove is connected to a chimney. You can read an earlier post of mine where I was asking about how to use this stove in the short term, and there are some pictures. http://nepacrossroads.com/about7918.html. I am looking at how I could best use coal to heat my house in the long term.

So, I assume I would want a "forced air" type of application. There is not currently any duct work going to the rooms from the basement, but since I have a small ranch house with a (currently) unfinished basement, I could put in duct work to the bedrooms...

Any other thoughts? Thanks in advance!
lundys
 

Re: New to EFM...(and coal in general)

PostBy: stoker-man On: Tue Nov 25, 2008 7:56 pm

efm also makes a stoker warm air furnace (AF 150). It is shown on the home page of the website. 150K BTU
stoker-man
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: 1981 efm wcb-24 in use 365 days a year
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite/Chestnut
Other Heating: Hearthstone wood stove

Re: New to EFM...(and coal in general)

PostBy: billw On: Tue Nov 25, 2008 10:31 pm

You could always run baseboard radiators instead of duct work. There are trade offs though. I'm partial to hot water baseboard because the heat is more even than forced air. The trade off is it's a lot more work installing because you most likely will have to remove the electric baseboard. Also if you run duct work you can add central air down the road. Good luck.
billw
 
Stove/Furnace Make: EFM 520
Stove/Furnace Model: GOODBYE OIL COMPANY

Re: New to EFM...(and coal in general)

PostBy: lundys On: Wed Nov 26, 2008 8:32 am

We do actually already have central air in our house... but the unit is up in the attic. I was assuming I wouldn't want to tie into the central air duct work because it's in the attic and heat rises. Is that a bad assumption? Would I put a return or something beside the coal stove, directly vent it, or what would be the best approach here?

Also, for the AF150 stove, can that stove tie right in to a coal bin the same way the boiler stove can, such that it needs minimal attendance throughout the winter?
lundys
 

Re: New to EFM...(and coal in general)

PostBy: stoker-man On: Wed Nov 26, 2008 1:06 pm

The furnace and boiler are the same, except for the heat exchange. You can see pictures of both on the efmheating.com website.
stoker-man
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: 1981 efm wcb-24 in use 365 days a year
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite/Chestnut
Other Heating: Hearthstone wood stove

Re: New to EFM...(and coal in general)

PostBy: coal berner On: Wed Nov 26, 2008 2:59 pm

lundys wrote:We do actually already have central air in our house... but the unit is up in the attic. I was assuming I wouldn't want to tie into the central air duct work because it's in the attic and heat rises. Is that a bad assumption? Would I put a return or something beside the coal stove, directly vent it, or what would be the best approach here?

Also, for the AF150 stove, can that stove tie right in to a coal bin the same way the boiler stove can, such that it needs minimal attendance throughout the winter?

look at the link below it will explain how the AF150 works

http://www.efmheating.com/manuals/Stoke ... urnace.pdf
coal berner
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1986 Electric Furnace Man 520 DF
Stove/Furnace Make: Electric Furnace Man
Stove/Furnace Model: DF520