Using the gas cooker to heat the house...

On Aug 30, 7:51pm, "ARWadsworth" wrote:

OTOH they can be picked up second hand for a pittance if you can collect them yourself.
(Note to OP: they are heavy, need to be dismantled, and older ones can contain asbestos.)
Owain
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Yes, that's a good point. I can even imagine people being willing to pay for them to be taken away, due to the weight!

Ah, thanks for that. I never thought of that when I destroyed my old one a few years ago!
Al

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Storage heaters are still popular because they are low capital cost and reliable. Not difficult to get 25yrs out of a storage heater.
Early storage heaters had poor insulation and leaked the majority of their heat overnight. Anything after about 1985 used microtherm silica- board or rockwool. They are the "slim" type which is 130-150mm or so vs "250mm". There are still 250-285mm depth storage heaters, but they are the better commercial type (less heat leakage overnight, heat on demand via a thermostat, but cost about 800-1400).
Storage heaters work ok when you have a *lot* of insulation and they are sized correctly (not too large or tool small), but they still need a fair bit of adjustment even if an "Automatic" model.
Simple storage heaters just charge overnight and leak heat out during the day. They retain about 50% or so of their heat and are relatively cool by about 7pm.
Fan assisted storage heaters do the same, have slightly better insulation, retain more of their heat and are somewhat warmer by about 7pm.
Commercial fan storage heaters have very high levels of insulation, retain the bulk of their heat and are basically "heat on demand" as long as you charged it the night before. They can have a wall mounted thermostat, Elnur do a 4kW model which is a lot cheaper than the other commercial types (Creda & Dimplex VFM).
Dimplex Duoheat storage heaters take a different approach. They have a smaller than usual storage heater part (such as 2.55kW compared to 3.3kW) and a peak-rate boost heater on the front of 0.4kW which acts to top-up from 2pm to 12pm-2am. They avoid the "roasting overnight, cold the following evening" by saving a bit of money on the night charge and spending a bit more money on the peak rate period - they cost about 20% more than an all-E7 heater but provide better comfort control (it is by a thermistor rather than cruder bimetallic strip & capillary thermostats). Creda Credanet are the same thing. Both have remote programmers if required.
To make Duoheat work you need very high insulation levels because otherwise you end up needing two DUO500n because of the night storage capacity (they are only 2.55kW) which at 1m long can be difficult to fit in.
It is worth having a storage heater in (say) a hall as backup for if the GCH fails, either that or a gas wall heater (which has the benefit of on-demand heating). If you have a living room with no chimney, but an outside wall, look at the various gas wall heaters - I think there are decorative versions with balanced flue. Balanced flue means it draws in combustion air through one duct and exports combustion byproducts through the other duct, they are called "room sealed". Some are available with thermostats, but most are not. I think Robinson Wiley do a cheapish one at about 150 online. It still needs fitting, gas piping to it with valve & pressure test point, but they are very good on-demand & backup heaters.
Storage heaters are good for the retired, because they are at home all day.
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[trimmed]
Many thanks for the informative response. A lot of useful info there. Yes, I was thinking of siting something in the hallway, as the hallway is kind of central to the house and right at the bottom of the stairs. I am at home most of the day due to long-term disability, so maybe I should hunt around for a used storage heater or two or three.
Al
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AL_z wrote:

really, the only time most storage heaters heat a house, is midnight to midday. After that they have given up the ghost.
They are bloody USELESS in the evenings.
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wrote:

Insulation is key - it needs to be to 2010 standards, then you can combine typically off-peak combined with peak via controller. It still needs to be "rabbit hutch sized" though, not some sprawling place :-)
For the OP, a gas mounted wall heater would be a good quick solution. Cheap to buy, cheap to install, cheap to run, do not rip icy cold air through the house and up a flue so the real world efficiency is double that of a radiant gas fire which in a nutshell is why CH was adopted.
Either that or live in the easiest to heat room, heating just that.
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You are wasting your time TNP doesn't know anything about heating really and doesn't care. For example how about masonry heaters, they are just big storage heaters and they work quite well.

I agree. One or two of those will be pretty effective and cheaper to run than a gas cooker as they require no additional ventilation. They are also cost less to run than most gas fires.
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Well he knows that electric storage heaters are shit.
--
Adam



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ARWadsworth wrote:

Of course. I have used em.
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js.b1 wrote:

I had a storage heater which worked fine in the evenings in a 1970s house. (Central storage heater with hot air heating. I had added loft insulation and had cavity wall insulation and double glazing done. It was a small house, and being in the middle of a terrace two walls were effectively perfectly insulated. But neighbours in the end of terrace house had individual storage heaters (their central system had died), and it worked for them.)
If you have undersized storage heaters in a poorly insulated sprawling house, then they will be useless in the evening, obviously.
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They haven't contained asbestos for a very long time ('70s? '80s?) At the same time they removed the asbestos content on safety grounds, the new forms of brock and insulation that came into use were also far more effective at storing energy without loss, then releasing it when you needed it. They were also lighter.
So disregarding any asbestos hazard, you just don't want one of the old sort of storage heater. The post-asbestos ones are far superior. Not IMHO very good, but certainly the better sort of storage heater.
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Yes they are often given away.
But they still would need an electrical installation and probably a new CU to supply them.
--
Adam



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The laws of pysics haven't changed, but I thought the materials (heat- storing blocks, etc., might have improved a bit, over tha past three decades, along with the internal insulation materials. I'll take your word for it that things haven't improved.

That seems to be the answer then. I must look for a couple of (relatively) hefty fan heaters with integrated thermostats. Mind you, those things do tend top make a racket! perhaps convector heaters would also do the trick but without the noise...
Cheers,
Al
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Sadly, no you can not because of the amount of water vapour produced :-)
#1 - You will probably qualify for free loft insulation. Despite what some say, it DOES make a big difference in that less heat is required AND you do not get the same cold air plunging down from the ceiling (particularly the hall). It does matter that the installers do it right (I have just drilled the upstairs ceiling in 6 places and I am met by a howling gale in my mouth).
#2 - If you have chimney's do you have a working gas fire? If so, you can heat a house off 1 radiant gas fire, many people right through to their 90s do. It is not as cheap to run as GCH but it gives you radiant warmth.
#3 - You may qualify for GCH or E7 Storage heaters under ?StayWarm? Yes, they also install E7 heating which is low capital and relatively low running cost - if you have both Loft AND Cavity Wall Insulation (assuming you have a cavity wall).
Heat only the areas you need to. #1 - Heat the living area to 19oC minimum, ideal is more like 21oC. #2 - Heat the bedrooms to about 12oC minimum, ideal is about 14oC. #3 - If you see black mould anywhere you need to a) increase heating or b) increase ventilation (and increase heating a little). #4 - Wear more clothing (look around now in the charity shops or Ebay for "Fleece" sweatshirts and ideally jog pants which you can slip over normal clothing. #5 - Use a high TOG duvet #6 - If single glazed, open the window on the upstairs bedroom for 30min every morning. That will clear the water (mop up the rest) and get fresh air into the house. #7 - Draught excluder is cheap and effective, letterbox brush, door floor-level brush, windows & doors.
Alternative. You can get Gas Wall Heaters for about 190-250. This would be ideal if you do not have a chimney in the living room. They are 90% efficient, they draw in cold air from *outside* and so do not create a howling draught through the house like a roaring gas fire with class-1 chimney, they are reliable and no CO or oxygen depletion risk. They are great as a standalone backup solution which at 1.5-2kW output is quite capable of heating a house (48kW in a day without drawing in freezing cold air to do it).
Do not try to heat a house by a gas oven. If you need an oven cheaply beware buying second hand without knowing how to check things work (especially for gas). However do not try to heat a house by it.
A colleague lived in the box-room of his house last winter having had to put up so much money due to the "credit crunch" for a business which was still operating fine, just high leverage (plant hire company, "UK & Dubai PLC stopped building"). He glued 50mm celotex to the walls for a neat foil-coloured wallpaper effect, added felt on top of carpet underlay as it rockets the TOG rating, the loft insulation was ok, cost very little to heat it over the winter. Heat from a laptop was welcome, crunching the numbers so the business is now booming (in business you often do not have to do more than survive your competitors, because you get their business when they fail).
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Thanks for the ideas. I've just done the loft (170mm rockwool).

It's do-able, as I do have a fireplace in the lounge.

Half of my house has cavity walls with a 1.5" sheet of foam polystyrene in the cavity. The other half has solid stone walls (built in 1850).

Good advice. I kept warm through last winter using duvets (three on top and one underneath!) and warm clothes. I was living in a van, while looking for a house. The hot water bottle was a good invention.

That sounds very interesting.

Thanks again for your helpful interesting input.
Al
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Insulation, insulation, insulation. And draughtproofing. Cheaper than heating and works better too - you get a more evenly warm house, rather than one that's hot and cold in spots. Spend some time sorting out draughts around doors and windows. Install secondary double glazing, either plastic sheet in a simple wooden frame, or even the stuck on flexible plastic sheet. Either the re-usable plastic sheet or the one-season "cling film" that you tension with a hairdryer afterwards is worth the trouble. Loft insulation is a messy, but easy, job.
You might also shrink the house a bit. If there's a spare bedroom you aren't using, not only insulate that to the outside, but also close its door and tape the gaps shut. Draught proof the door of the main living room and keep it closed when you're in there. It's not too difficult or expensive to heat a single room, certainly not compared to a house. Let the bedrooms go cold (this is just how things were, back when I was a kid) and keep the bed warm with a good duvet and wearing something in bed. A good dressing gown is an encouragement to getting out of it.
I doubt if the gas cooker is terribly effective as a heating appliance, and it certainly won't be cheap.
Your best bet is probably to try and address personal comfort vs. house temperature, rather than trying to raise the temperature so much. Dress warmly. Don't expect to be wearing just shirtsleeves in the depths of winter, even indoors. Also try to get one room comfortable, at the cost of the others, rather than trying to heat the whole house as you'd like and not really achieving it.
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On 30/08/10 10:41, Andy Dingley wrote:
> Let the bedrooms go cold (this is just how things were,

Never underestimate the joy of socks! They keep you warm in bed and avoid the shock of bare feet on a cold floor in the morning. A woolly hat isn't the sexiest nightware but it will keep your head warm.
--
Bernard Peek
snipped-for-privacy@shrdlu.com
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I totally agree. When I was living in my van at minus 6 degrees, I had some 2.5 tog socks which were just the ticket. I found that half the trick of staying warm was to make sure head, hands and feet were well insulated. I had a fleecy helmet thing, rather like a medieval knight's chainmail head- thingie, but made of nice soft fleece, with drawstring to adjust the sice of the face-hole! It really, really helped.
Al
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That's a really good idea - thanks - and thanks for the other good suggestions.
Al
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They are also perfectly awful adding large amounts of water to the room, causing black moulds and asthma and hence being responsible for the deterioration and ultimate demolition of a lot of '60s "Piggeries" style housing.

I would guess that a diversity factor is applied to the use of gas cookers. IE. the assumption being made that not all rings / burners are always on at once, and not in continuous use 12, 20, 24 Hrs /day.
Part and parcel of this would be the assumption of the provision of adequate ventilation. If the room air runs out of oxygen the appliance *will* produce CO2.
Trouble is if adequate air from outside is provided for an open flame appliance the induction of cold air and the removal of heated air make the setup very inefficient and expensive to operate. It was precisely this problem that led to the general adoption of central heating in the 50's and 60's. The cost of primitive heating for one room equalling or exceeding the cost of heating the whole house with CH.

Derek
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