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Wood furnace in a "Manufactured Home" Basement

Discussion in 'Firewood, Heating and Wood Burning Equipment' started by smbassman, Jan 6, 2012.

  1. smbassman

    smbassman ArboristSite Lurker

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    I have been looking at wood furnaces to put in my basement and heat the basement, upstairs manufactured home and addition. When I built the addition, I had a new upflow lp furnace installed in the basement and heat /cold air runs to the addition. They also added cold air returns for the upstairs mfg home. The main floor heat runs are still the original foil backed fiberglass mat rectangular heat runs -not sheet metal.

    Issue #1 - all wood furnaces seem to have "not approved for use in mobile/mfg home". Why?

    Issue #2 - I wanted to add the wood furnace in the basement at one end (below bedrooms) due to chimney location and wood supply. This isn't very close to the lp furnace ~35ft away. Can I just connect the hot air ducts from the wood furnace to the ends of the original upstairs heat runs, connect into the cold air return end above the wood furnace and use the wood furnace blowers? I assume this would put the majority of the heat into the bedrooms where I want it since I have a pellet stove in my addition and a fireplace on the opposite end of the house. THe bedrooms are the coldest part now with running the pellet stove.

    Question #3 - with the wood furnace being tied to the heat run and the cold air return, is there any issue with creating a heat duct loop through the wood furnace if the lp furnace kicks on?

    Question #4 - with the hot air ducts blowing upstairs, does the wood furnace radiate enough heat for a large basement .

    Thank you very much!
     
    upsnake likes this.
  2. Suz

    Suz AboristSite Guru

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    Probably one reason wood stoves are not approved for mobile homes is because of the "stigma" that is associated with some of the people who live in trailer homes. The stove manufacturer probably is afraid that the home owner will just run a smoke pipe out the wall and burn the trailer home down. But, if a "manufactured" home is sitting on a basement what is the difference between that and a built on site home????
    I'm not a HVAC person, but I had a wood fired forced air system in my first house and it worked great. However, it sat right next to the oil fired unit and the hot air plenum from the wood stove was piped directly into the plenum from the oil furnace.
    I would think that if the wood furnace had it's own blower and the piping was hooked up to the existing heat and cold air return lines, everything should work together.
    Maybe someone with more experience in forced air systems will chime in.
    Meanwhile good luck and welcome to the forums. (I noticed you have only two postings.)
     
  3. logbutcher

    logbutcher Banned

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    Tarm is one manufacturer that we've seen installed and running here. Good rep.
     
  4. olyman

    olyman Tree Freak

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    as suz said..it has top do with the stigma of a trailer home..not what you have.. just put the furnace where you want,,if it has a blower. pipe it into your heat run,,should heat the house
     
  5. zogger

    zogger Tree Freak

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    Issue#1 is because manufactured homes are typically much tighter than built on site homes, and must have a dedicated air intake for the wood burning device. Most built on site homes are so leaky they have no problem pulling in air from outside. If you look at any "approved" heaters for mobile homes you'll see the air intake plumbing connection.

    The other issues can't help you, I have only ever owned just regular room wood heaters, and one spiffy cookstove.
     
  6. mizzou

    mizzou ArboristSite Operative

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    +1
     
  7. Streblerm

    Streblerm Addicted to ArboristSite

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    You might want to check with stove manufacturers, but to me mobile/manufactured home is the PC way to say trailer. If you have a basement then your home is not mobile. As I have looked at stoves, one thing that strikes me about all the ones certified for "mobile/manufactured" homes is a very close clearance to combustibles. This is very important if your home is 8-12' wide. Not so much if your wood burner is going in a basement. As far as how "tight" a manufactured home is compared to a more traditionally built home, I don't see how that could be quantified in a meaningful way across the board. For example, stoves never say "not for use in homes with spray in foam insulation". I would say outside combustion air is almost always a good idea regardless of what type of home you have.

    Pick a stove, check with your insurance company and check with the stove manufacturer to put your mind at ease. I wouldn't hesitate to put a stove/furnace in the basement of a manufactured home. I would however be nervous to put one in a trailer.
     
  8. smbassman

    smbassman ArboristSite Lurker

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    I can see the airtight issue

    Since the entire floors are insulated, then sealed with heavy plastic & all the exterior walls are glued osb sheathing to 2x6 it makes sense that a stove would require outside air to burn in theory. In the basement, I can add outside air intakes without an issue if needed.

    My real concern was that they did not recommend wood furnace type heat through the pre-fab ducts. But I can't see that being much problem.

    So the last part of the question is - does a wood furnace radiate heat like a stove or does the majority of heat get blown into the ducts? I am in the process of finishing the basement for a work room, game room, bar & stuff, so I would like that to be heated too. If needed, I can add drop vents from the heat ducts, but I think I will need all the cfm's the furnace will blow to heat the upstairs.

    Thank you for all the help!
     
  9. zogger

    zogger Tree Freak

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    Whichever brand you are looking at will have recommended ducting instructions. Your question would be a very common one I would guess, that is, tying it into existing ductwork, with the do's and don'ts.

    In older houses with a wood or coal burner in the basement, if it wasn't steam heat and radiators, they just used floor vents, and no ducting with fans, all passive. I've lived several places that had them. Heat rises, it'll get there if there is a way for it *to* get there easily.
     
  10. olyman

    olyman Tree Freak

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    nuh uh!! manufactured homes,,are the ones built in pieces,,then erected on site. theres one in prairie de chein,wi,,and one in ames iowa......NOT a mobile home!!! one was erected by new hartford iowa..it came from prairie...4 pieces,,two story home...cranes to erect it!!!! on top of a already built full basement...
     
  11. smbassman

    smbassman ArboristSite Lurker

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    That's modular home.

    Modular homes (BOCA) come in pieces and need cranes to place them. Manufactured (HUD) homes are built on long steel frames that have tongues and axles bolted to them. The two halves (13ft wide each) are placed on Ibeams across the basement and joined together in the middle. Tongues and axles are removed. Thats what I have.
     
  12. cantoo

    cantoo Addicted to ArboristSite

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    There is a big different in Manufactured homes. Check with your local building department and insurance company. You will likely have to provide some information on the home you have such as building system used, wiring type, existing heating system etc.
    We built 100's of houses in Michigan.
    Lots of pictures of our houses here. Home - Royal Homes
     
  13. Steve NW WI

    Steve NW WI Unwanted Riff Raff.

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    I live in a manuf... no, f it, I live in a trailer, 16x70 on a full basement. Check with your insurance agent. Mine says as long as it's on a basement, it's a permanent residence, not a whatever you want to call it.

    Wood furnace in my basement, just blowing hot air out the top, not running into the ductwork, is OK by my insurance man.

    If you're tying into the ducting, there are specs for clearance on the ducting, that might be hard to meet without an 8' basement. I have been looking into a new furnace, and I'll basically lose a room downstairs because of clearance issues in the first 6' of run, making the ductwork at about 5' off the floor. After 6' of horizontal run, the clearance goes away, and you can use the ducts on the trailer (AS I READ THE RULES, PLEASE DO NOT TAKE THIS AS GOSPEL!)

    Not sure I want to meet this code, and I'm changing heating systems in the next year. I'm torn between the basement wood furnace, a new gasifier OWB ($$$), or a wood stove in the basement and a smaller one upstairs (huge pain in the rectal area).

    No good answers for those of us that are proud residents of the trailerhood!
     
  14. CrappieKeith

    CrappieKeith Addicted to ArboristSite

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    hello......I'd like to point out that a wood furnace is a high heat appliance and code asks for "ALL OF THE DUCTING BE MADE OF METAL"
     
  15. smbassman

    smbassman ArboristSite Lurker

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    Thanks crappiekeith

    That answer isn't really what I wanted to hear, but it answers a major question I had. I have not read that anywhere though. I knew there was a first 6ft rule of increased clearances to ducts, but I have 10ft basement walls along with 6-7ft of horizontal distance to get tothe heat runs. That gives me 12ft minimum of metal before it hits the prefab ducts. But that still isn't "ALL OF THE DUCTING BE MADE OF METAL".

    Just for my information - isn't a 135,000btu gas furnace a "high heat appliance"?
     
  16. laynes69

    laynes69 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Sure a 135,000 btu furnace is a high heat unit, but if the power goes out it produces no heat. With woodfurnace, that power goes and you can go well above the heat ratings for the pre fab ducting. You cannot stop heat instantly on a wood furnace.
     
  17. aaronmach1

    aaronmach1 ArboristSite Operative

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    what is the quickest way to "stop heat" on a wood burner?
     
  18. laynes69

    laynes69 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I've used ash to smother a fire when needed. You can cut the air inakes, but the ash works well.

    As far as a manufactured home, I've seen many that had little utility closets that held the furnace with a return grill on the door. Obviously theres no way to tie into the furnace. If the home has a basement that houses the furnace and all the ducting is metal I don't see why it would matter. You would have to do some changes to meet clearances. If outdoor air was required, then that could be put in for the furnace.

    As far as a 8' basement meeting ducting clearances, I wish ours was 8' tall. Our basement is 6.5-7' tall. I had to step up our ducting to meet clearances, I just duck a little when loading our furnace.
     
  19. Zachary Pollard

    Zachary Pollard New Member

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    I am looking to do this kind of set up, I have a similar home but my original furnace is upstairs on the main level. I am looking to install the wood furnace in the basement. how did you end up tying into your duct work?
     
  20. blades

    blades Addicted to ArboristSite

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    First off almost a 3 year old thread. Typical trailer home construction heating unit is a down draft forced air running down the middle under the floor. May or may not be of metal construction. solid fuel appliance require metal duct-work. Plenum of solid fuel appliance requires 18" clearance vertically to combustibles, first 10 feet of duck work from there require 2" clearance all around to combustibles, there after 1". All solid fuel appliances in a trailer require outside air intake for combustion air. Most of the time your main water lines are run right next to the duck-work then branch out to sinks and such. Another issue to deal with will be the under floor insulation and belly skin everything you will need to get at is above this.
     

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