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Heating a Garage

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botamac
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 71 MI
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2005-01-11          104044


Iíve been thinking of heating my soon to be built 30 x 50 x 10 tall insulated garage with hydronic floor heating using a wood fired boiler to maintain a 65 deg. Temp. in the winter for wood working and some auto repair I also can use it to heat the house. Has any one used one of these and if so, how much wood does it use? I know the amount of wood is based on temp. and I understand that, Iím looking for an estimated amount wood it would burn. My other options are forced air gas and or wood burning furnace.

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kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
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2005-01-11          104045


I cannot answer your question, but I considered doing this and thought it just wasn't an effective way to heat a garage. Hydronic heat has a very slow recovery rate so you can't just walk into a cold garage anytime and heat it up quickly for a work session. You'd end up running the boiler almost constantly. And it seemed that it would get old mighty fast to keep the boiler fed. I concluded that gas fired infrared heaters were best, quick heating, low hassle, and economical if you only run them warm when you're actually working in the garage. ....

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dklopfenstein
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 125 Southern Indiana
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2005-01-11          104048


I don't have a wood boiler (I have an 85% propane boiler instead) but I do have floor heat in my 44 x 38 garage. It has the Icynene system for isulation, 2 x 6 walls, and three 10 x 11 overhead doors and one 8 x 8 overhead door on the side. If you are planning on heating it all the time, it is the way to go. I keep mine at about 60 and heat our 1,000 sq. ft. apartment to 72 (which is above it) on one 500 gallon tank of propane per year. We do have an electric water heater (oops!) and oven however so the boiler is the only thing that runs on propane. I absolutely love it and would recommend floor heat to anyone who want a consistent and economical heat. ....

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brokenarrow
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 1288 Wisconsin
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2005-01-11          104050


I soon will be building anouther house. If you have access to wood for free (then it would be a no brainer especially if it is hardwood) Or can get wood hauled in to your place by a flat bed (bulk). If any of those apply I would go with the wood boiler and floor heat. If your planning on your house along with the garage then it is doubley effective since you will keep the fire going anyway to heat your house. A good outdoor wood buner will only need to be stocked once a day. What ever the company say's the time inbetween stocking is, subtract 25-50% LOL. Most of my neighbors where I am moving to have these systems (atleast the ones with newer houses or revamped houses. I stock up a friends wood furnace once a day for him over the christmas holiday (not this year but for the last 3 before). He leaves for a trip every year. This is the one down fall I can see. You need someone willing to come and fill it up once a day. This takes all of 3 minuits.
The heat is awesome, staedy and warm. Never again will you have cold feet and we all know that if your feet are cold you are too, or soon will be. It is not the most conveinant but if wood is available it will pay for itself shortly instead of losing money every year on the furnace as it gets older, you will be making money reducing the initial cost which is higher. One thing I worry about is the price of LP. I have not seen it below .88 in many years, most of the time I pay $1.10 or so. Wood on the other hand is made locally for most of us.
I vote for the wood heat but if conveinance is a factor like Kwschumm said then go anouther route. Cool thing about the heated garage is that it will always be workable, keep it at 50-55 degrees (which is very tolerable) When you plan on working out there open up the valve a bit more. Nothing like laying on warm concrete in the winter!
Good luck ....

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harvey
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 1539 Moravia, NY
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2005-01-12          104053


You would probably be in the 7-10 std cord range. You have minimal splitting. That is based on the systems here. All of the systems her run year round for domestic hot water and 90% have their own wood.

If you travel, I'd recommend using the anti-freeze mixture and have a secondary furnace, oil or propane, for back up tied in the circuit.

A heat exchanger does the swap.

A small generator is also very desirable if you live far enough out in the skicks. ....

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brokenarrow
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 1288 Wisconsin
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2005-01-12          104084


Harvey
Thanks for that tip, I never gave it a thought about a generator! Great advice! ....

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botamac
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 71 MI
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2005-01-12          104087


Thanks for the info. I too have heard they use about 7 to 9 chords of wood per year depending on the out door temperature at the time. I found out it would not be to economical just to heat the garage alone with one, you would have to also heat your home with it to recover the cost of one of these units, since the price range I was quoted by about six different companies was in the ball park of about 7 to 8 grand now that is for heating both the house and the garage. That is a whole lot of dollars when I could hang 2 ceiling mounted NG heaters and use a wood burning furnace (when Iím out there) for about 1600.00 for all three pieces. The pay back cost is in about three years. I do thank you for the input on the subject. ....

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Heating a Garage

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grassgod
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 566 ct
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2005-01-13          104115


I had a forced hot air gas furnace installed in my garage & it suites the needs perfectly. Very efficiant & I dotn have to think about it when I am working out there. ....

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shortmagnum
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 848 Wisconsin
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2005-01-13          104117


With the high cost of propane I usually start thinking about wood heat about this time of year too. But as someone who grew up in a house that was heated with wood exclusively, it seems that much of our life was centered around the woodpile. From cutting wood to ash removal you handle firewood nine times before you're finished.

So just as I did this morning, I write a check to the gas supplier. :)
Dave ....

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grassgod
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 566 ct
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2005-01-13          104124


I am paying $1.60 per gallon for propane right now. I only consume about 80 gallons a month for the garage but it has been a mild winter. ....

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grinder
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 677 central Maine
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2005-01-13          104154


Botamac
About 5 yrs. ago I was looking at way's to heat my garage.
I called a solar supplier/installer he told me he could keep my cement slab 80 deg. in the winter. Only problem was that I had already poured the floor.
Not sure of cost's but since you are putting in floor heat in, it may be worth exploring?
Good luck. ....

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grassgod
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 566 ct
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2005-01-13          104159


I have radiant heat in my kitchen floor which is a concrete slab. it's soo nice to walk barefoot, the floor is always toasty warm. I wonder if that is simular to the solar floor heat? ....

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Heating a Garage

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kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
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2005-01-13          104163


We have radiant in bathrooms and it is very, very nice but still - to do a garage that is empty of people most of the time seems a big waste of energy unless Solar works in your area. It won't work here in Oregon. ....

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dklopfenstein
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 125 Southern Indiana
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2005-01-13          104181


Heating it to 75 degrees would be a waste but to 55-60 isn't in my opinion. When you have tools (like saws, wire welders, battery chargers, even hand tools), tractors, campers, motorcycles, classic vehicles or any other odds and ends that continually go through a freeze/thaw like we do in southern Indiana, condensation is a real problem. Things begin to rust and pretty soon they not only look rough, but might not work properly or at all. It is by far cheaper to keep things a steady temperature than it is to begin replacing things. Heat is also needed to keep any pipes from freezing if you have a sink/bathroom. ....

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kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
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2005-01-13          104184


That's a point. I've never experienced that problem. ....

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Heating a Garage

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StoneGate
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 23 Ohio
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2005-01-14          104188


I have a 40 x 60 steel pole barn w/concrete floor. I am slowly insulating the vertical walls and so I don't know the overall efficiency of my system yet. Because I receive free natural gas (under a lease w/local gas provider for their underground storage), I elected to install a hanging unit heater. I went with a 200k btu Reznor. It provides a quick heat time (comfortable w/i two hours from a beginning tempurature of 20 degrees farinheiht. One thing I know about this system is that it is simple to maintain and use. That fits my lifestyle. If I know I will be using the tractor the next day I will turn it on at night. I use a thermostate with a low setting of 40 degrees, so I can keep the edge off at all times if necessary. I will watch the gas bill to see what it uses throughout this first winter. ....

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grinder
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 677 central Maine
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2005-01-14          104189


grassgod
Yes, the type of system I am referring to is a solar panel
with antifreeze type liguid in your in floor radiant heat.
I understand the concrete slab will retain heat for sometime
for those cloudy days. I suppose a person could have a small back-up system. I was surprised to learn it would work here in Maine. ....

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lbrown59
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 931 First Organized Permanent Settlement In The Northwest Territory.
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2005-01-14          104192


I receive free natural gas I will watch the gas bill to see what it uses throughout this first winter.
===========
If it's free why do you get a bill?

....

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lbrown59
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 931 First Organized Permanent Settlement In The Northwest Territory.
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2005-01-14          104193


I receive free natural gas :
Boy must be nice.
====================
If I had free gas I would not pay an electric bill either. ....

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havoctec
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 56 Minnesota
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2005-01-14          104199


Our pole shed is 26x40 with twelve foot sidewalls and it has the in floor head. The in floor seems to be the most efficient way to heat if you want to keep it warm all winter. It cost me around $300 for the winter at 50 degrees using an electric boiler wite off peak electric. The only drawback to the in floor is the longer recovery time. ....

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kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
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2005-01-14          104203


Another thing to consider is your equipment needs. If you have to bolt equipment to the floor you don't want to accidentally puncture a heat tube. ....

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grinder
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 677 central Maine
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2005-01-15          104256


Botamac
Not sure if you saw this, I am definetly checking this out on my next house,cellar floor and garage. ....

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Art White
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 6885 Waterville New York
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2005-01-15          104262


Grinder, what is the company name of the solar unit? I've been getting quotes for an expansion on one of our shops and they tell me to figure about 3.50 to 4.00 dollars a square foot. Trying to run the numbers and figure which system is the most economical in the long run is fun. We do burn waste oil in all of our stores and have been looking at one company that does use a boiler instead of the forced air style. The heated floors in our area allows commercial plow people quick thaw downs after plowing and the heated floors are great to work from. Ken did bring up a good point about having to fasten things to the floor could get nasty! ....

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Heating a Garage

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hardwood
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 3583 iowa
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2005-01-15          104264


I've never been involved in puting water lines is a concreet floor, but I know there are several in our aeria. My queston has allways been about the cracks in the floor where they saw the expansion joints. What keeps the pipes from cracking too when the concreet shrinks back from the crack? Frank. ....

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dklopfenstein
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 125 Southern Indiana
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2005-01-15          104266


As long as you are pushing heated water through the lines, the concrete does not change temperature much, therefore there is very little expansion. The lines that I used were covered with an industrial vinyl type coating and are guarenteed for 100 years by the manufacturer. There is no question that heating from the floor up is the most economical in the long run. And since the conctrete does not crack due to temperature change, it should last right through your children's lifetime. I will never put concrete in a building again without it. FYI - Some people who burn wood simply use a water heater as a back-up to their wood boiler. It is very effective and inexpensive...what more could you ask for? If you are bolting things to the floor, put in anchor bolts prior to pouring to prevent the disaster of damaging a line. LOL ....

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grinder
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 677 central Maine
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2005-01-15          104268


Sorry, thought I posted the company. I'm sure there are many.
It would take a little planning, but you could put all your anchor's in at the time of the pour. I would also take some pictures before pouring for future ref. I suppose you could take some measurments as well (to the pipes).One thing that is for sure Art, the price of sunshine.
Frank, I believe they use Peck(sp?) tubing, very rugged platic water line.
I would want to have a very compacted base with a 6 mil poly
laid in first, so the cement won't dry to fast. I would keep it wet for several day's as well. This should min. cracking. ....


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grassgod
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 566 ct
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2005-01-15          104269


Frank - When we dod my kitchen floor we tie strpped the tubbing to metal mesh which comes in rolls...simular to chicken wire only thicker. We rolled the metal mesh outfirst & stacked it down, then we ran the same tubbing that dk is speaking of. We ran it like a radiator zig zaging the lines & spaced them about 12" apart. then the concrete gets poured over the whole thing. the tubbing is about 3" under the surface. If you wanted to bolt something to the floor after is was poured...I would suggest making a diagram of exactly where each tube is like first pipe starts 3' 4" from outside eastside wall & 12" apart from there. Or depending on what your mounting to the floor use a bolt that you will only penetrate 2" into the concrete. ....

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steve4300
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 71 NH
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2005-01-15          104276


a friend of mine has 3 buildings for his buisness , they are 75x125 metal insulated, with sheetrock. the first 2 are oil forced hot air with programable thermostates that lower the temperture after everyone leaves at night. The third building he was talked into radiant floor heat. After it was fully adjusted it usses less oil then the first 2. he also keeps the temp. a little less then the other 2 but it feels nicer.Something else he found out was that it doesn't spread the dust around as much. ....

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grinder
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 677 central Maine
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2005-01-16          104328


Art,
If you are going to try to heat the floor with a liquid,
you may want to ask about a buried storage tank.
A friend has two 1000 gal tanks buried in stone hooked into his hot water system. He can let it shutdown for several days and still have all the heat he wants. Just a thought. ....

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