Wood burning stove with integrated boiler

In the process of buying an old farmhouse with 3 bedrooms. We are going to insulate well everywhere and looking at a way of heating water/radiators particularly in the winter months. We are going to install evacuated tubes and solar panels but wondering about a wood burner with integrated boiler . Has anyone any other ideas. 

Comments

  • Ground source heat pump? The problem with a wood burner in constant use is that it requires a lot of logs which need to be moved from storage to the stove.

    A biomass boiler might be an option but from what I read they need a lot of maintenance plus storage for the biomass.
  • lohr500
    lohr500 Posts: 947 Forumite
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    edited 1 October 2022 at 6:16PM
    It is many years ago since I had a wood burner with a back boiler.

    It was in a very small converted barn property with one open plan room downstairs and a single bedroom and separate bathroom upstairs.

    Upstairs there were two radiators, one in the bedroom and one in the bathroom, along with a hot water cylinder located in a cupboard in the bedroom.

    The problem I had was regulating the wood burner so it didn't start boiling the water in the back boiler. It was a very basic installation with no valve control or pump. It relied purely on thermal circulation of the water.

    Perhaps modern installations have better controls to prevent the water boiling.

    To avoid spending money on wood deliveries, it also involved a lot of wood foraging through the summer to keep the place warm through the winter. And a dry storage area outside to keep the wood and to let newly felled wood season.

    In the end, it just turned out to be too much hard work for the benefits and I converted to Economy 7 storage heaters. 

    I kept the wood burner to heat the downstairs room at the weekends and the heat also rose upstairs to keep the bedroom warm. 

    What are the current heating/hot water arrangements in your new property?

  • Apodemus
    Apodemus Posts: 3,384 Forumite
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    I guess the question is what will be your main source of heating for the house?  By "wood burner with integrated boiler", I presume you mean a standard woodburner that has a integral water jacket that can provide hot water to a tank/radiators rather than a wood-fuel CH boiler?  Such wood burners always sound like a good idea, but I've yet to hear of anyone who has replaced one when it has failed or reached the end of it's life.  A wood-fuel CH boiler might be a better option, but perhaps only if you are the sort who doesn't mind doing the odd bit of hands-on fettling to keep it running properly.
  • dunstonh
    dunstonh Posts: 116,283 Forumite
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     We are going to install evacuated tubes and solar panels but wondering about a wood burner with integrated boiler . Has anyone any other ideas. 
    We pulled one of the burners that heated water and radiators for the old servants' quarters.   When the house was upgraded to central heating many, many decades ago, they decided only to the main part only despite it being pretty easy to plumb it through.     Then when the servants were no more, and only a  housekeeper was left, I guess no-one saw a need to change it as the heatsink radiator was in her room and it would probably have been fairly cheap back then.  She would have kept the fire running as part of her duties and because she benefitted from it and no-one else in the house did.  These days, with it being little more than a little used wing of the house that is mainly used for guests,  we pulled it out as it was too much faff and the burner was very old and inefficient and dirty.     And it would need to be on in hot months which would make it too hot.

    I am a bit of a traditionalist, but that was one thing I did not want to keep.


    I am an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA). The comments I make are just my opinion and are for discussion purposes only. They are not financial advice and you should not treat them as such. If you feel an area discussed may be relevant to you, then please seek advice from an Independent Financial Adviser local to you.
  • In the process of buying an old farmhouse with 3 bedrooms. We are going to insulate well everywhere and looking at a way of heating water/radiators particularly in the winter months. We are going to install evacuated tubes and solar panels but wondering about a wood burner with integrated boiler . Has anyone any other ideas. 
    We have a multi fuel stove with the back boiler, it has two thermostats, one turns on the pump for the central heating when the water cylinder reaches a certain temperature and the other turns the pump on depending on the temperature of the return flow on the central heating. 

    It works well for us but they do need a lot of fuel, we have a normal wood burning stove in another room, the log basket can be filled up 13-14 times from a cubic metre of wood and we'd burn a basket full each day if the fire is running all day long, I would say the back boiler stove wants twice this which is very expensive depending upon how you source your wood. 

    It works for us except in the summer when need the immersion for the hot water although I assume the evacuated tubes would help you reduce this cost. 
  • You could also install a thermal store (Advanced Appliances, Multifuel Thermal Store). This will link your multifuel boiler stove, combi boiler and solar panels together creating a buffer. Excellent system giving you many options for heating. 
    Current Mortgage Debt = £81,485.41
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    Minimum Target OP Per Month =£500.00
    2023 Current OP Total = £3500.00
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    Forever Home Purchased March 2014
  • mmmmikey
    mmmmikey Posts: 1,623 Forumite
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    You could also install a thermal store (Advanced Appliances, Multifuel Thermal Store). This will link your multifuel boiler stove, combi boiler and solar panels together creating a buffer. Excellent system giving you many options for heating. 

    Yes, that's the way I would go. You'll need some form of hot water cylinder anyway for the solar hot water system and a thermal store would be ideal. If the system is appropriately sized you may well find that the solar tubes provide you with enough hot water for all but the darkest, coldest winter days. Those are the days when you'll want the fire lit anyway, and diverting some of the heat to the hot water cylinder won't make a huge difference to the amount of firewood you'll need.
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