My 50-year-old furnace went out last spring and I ain't got the money
to replace in time for winter.
My house is a 1200sq ft ranch built in the late 50s.
I do not have central air but window unit that run off a dedicated
outlet that used cartridge fuses off the main service panel
last winter to cut down on the high gas cost I used my oven to help
keep the house warm and it does a good job for about half the house.
The other hlaf is where the bedrooms are at and I'm thinking that all
I need to get one convection type free standing heater unit and run it
off the outlet that the air conditioner used.
Of course it probably won't be a good thing to just plug it in(a 230v
I would like to know two things:
1) Is there a heater unit I can get retail that I can plug into tha
higher voltage ports like I can get varoius type of air conditioners.
2) If not, is htere a adapter where I can plug a standard voltage
device into a higher voltage port?
The why is that I do not want to plug it into regular outlets in the
house because I jut have the original 100amp service panel and when I
used my oil-filled floor heater and I can hear thre service panel
humming when I'm in the basement and have that heater on.
Using th 230 outlket I can turn up the higher heat settings
Sent: Tuesday, August 02, 2005 4:12 AM
Subject: portable heater on 230v outlet
Somehow, even if you have to get an small furnace from
a mobil home or some such, you should try to find a way
to afford the furnace. You could be pretty hard
pressed to meet the electrical bills if you heat with
it and also need to collect money for a furnace repair.
Kero or nat gas space heaters are also available until
you get the furnace maybe? They'd heat better than
electric, I think.
In alt.home.repair on Tue, 02 Aug 2005 03:12:18 -0500 jlc2
Gas or electric? I'm told that gas ovens are not designed for that
much heating**, that they will use all the oxygen or put out carbon
monoxide and kill you. I think I have read such stories in the
newspaper, so despite my inquiring footnote, I'm sure they're
Not only that, it's more efficient to boil water on the stove and
raise the humidity in the house. Efficient in that you will feel
warmer for the same amount of fuel. I don't know how much this cost
me -- since electricity is more expensive than fuel oil, but when my
furnace has been broken, I've boiled water on the stove and run the
shower to fill the second floor with steam. I stop the bathtub and
don't let it drain until the water is cold. (make sure not to let the
bathtub overflow. :) ) It still got colder and colder as the days
went on, so I'm not saying you can get through the whole winter like
You can evaporate water off of radiators and in front of air vents and
with a humidifier in the furnace duts, too.
**That isn't exactly what they say, but if you can leave the oven on
425 for 3 hours, why can't you leave it on all day for days on end?
If emailing, please let me know whether
or not you are posting the same letter.
Change domain to erols.com, if necessary.
to claim 69 F at 35% RH and 72 F at 19% RH are equally comfortable, but
the the ASHRAE 55-2004 comfort standard says 69 F and 35% RH and 69.8 at
9% RH are equally comfortable (PMV = -0.542.)
If a 2400 ft^2 tight house has 0.5 ACH and say, 400 Btu/h-F of conductance,
turning the thermostat down from 69.8 to 69 saves (69.8-69)400 = 320 Btu/h.
Air at 69 F and 100% RH has humidity ratio w = 0.015832 pounds of water per
pound of dry air, so 19% air has wl = 0.00301 and 39% air has wh = 0.00617.
Raising 69 F air from 19 to 39% requires evaporating wh-wl = 0.00316 pounds
of water per pound of dry air. Dry air weighs about 0.075 lb per cubic foot.
With 0.5x2400x8/60 = 160 cfm or 9600 ft^3/h or 720 lb/h of air leakage,
raising the indoor RH from 19 to 39% requires evaporating 720x0.00316
= 2.275 pounds of water per hour, which requires about 2275 Btu/h of
heat energy, so humidifying this fairly airtight house wastes 2275/320
= 7 times more energy than it "saves." Many US houses are less airtight,
so humidification would waste more energy.
You are going to be chilly with anything you can plug into that outlet.
It is limited by the number of amps it can deliver. In addition your 100
service is .. well marginal to supply your home and heat it also
I suggest you figure out how to replace the furnace. In the long run it
will save you money.
I expect you are a troll, (I have trouble believing anyone would heat with
their oven) but just in case you aren't...
240v heaters are readily available; just call some people in the phone book.
If they don't have them, ask who does.
However your electric bill will be huge.
Your best option would be to get a kerosene heater and, just to be safe, a
CO detector. Don't know where you are, but it should keep your house
habitable unless you are in Minnesota. They don't smell too good, but I
used one for a week during a power outage and we all survived.
I grew up using a space heater at home, and thought
nothing of it. Well, until I left for the military,
and came back; by then I was smart enough to know there
were better ways if you could afford it <g>. We had
one wood stove, in the kitchen, which we also used.
During the evening the portable heater heated the
living room. At night it got carried between our two
bedrooms: Whoever woke up had permission to go and get
the heater and move it into their own room. Never
thought much of it, really, as it was "just that way it
was" at that time.
I"ve still got that old portable space heater and
even used it during the infamous "ice storm of '98" for
We've used our oven a couple of times for heat during
more minor outages, but it shouldn't really be run for
more than an hour or so unless you live in an
uninsulated, very drafty house. The gas is odorless
and colorless, and is heavier than air, so especially
if you're sleeping it would be easy to succumb to it.
Thank heavens life's not like that anymore, but I've
always found it strange how, when you're raised rather
poor, it's OK because as a kid, you don't really know
it. If you're happy, and we were, everything was just
Thanks for the replys:
here's more info:
1) Everything electric except the furnance amd water heater. No I
wouldn't use a gas oven to heat the house.I should have mentioned that
in my original post.
2) No, I'm no troll. I did go thru a winter with no gas a few years
ago(financial crisis - long story). During this period I did use my
oven, it got cold and it wasn't fun but it was never got freezing and
my highest light bill was $175 which I would say was a bit over double
normal(oven setting at 350). Typical gas bill during this time would
be around $200 a month (at 68F setting)i. The worst time period is Jan
thru Feb of course. So it is double from actual experience.
3) During the milder days the oven does decent(not perfect) job, but
the bedrooms are on the opposite side of the house so another heater
placed in the hallway may do the trick
4) the amp is 15 using two catridge type fuses that is sepearate from
the main service panel. when my dryersometimes trips over the main
breaker, my oven,stove and window air conditioner still have power.
Which is why I want to use the 230 outlet
5) If I see a special where it has no payment/no interest for x months
special on furnances then I'm there but I simply cannot afford another
montly payment until next year. I'll may be hard pressed to even
purchase the heaters that was mentioned here. But its only for this
6) Thanks for the Grainger web link
7) I take take there is no electrical type device to allow me to plug
a 120v applicance into the 230 volt outlet?
Thanks to all
I take that
Thanks to all
I may be wrong, but if what you say is true, I believe it is not code.
That should be changed, and I would suggest having all the wiring in your
home checked as you never know what someone who does not follow code may
That depends on the outlet. 230 - 240V outlets can be with or without a
neutral. Without the neutral there is no safe way of doing it.
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