Thursday, September 25, 2008

Getting ready for winter

Pictures coming...

We got our first frost a couple days ago, and we're getting ready for winter just in time.

Firewood stack: Marcy and I cut all our firewood, which turned into two huge space-hogging piles in the middle of our driveway. Marcy just finished stacking the bigger pile, and should get the rest done this weekend. Of course there are more small stacks around the property, but this is the bulk of it. We should have about 3.5 cords of wood under the roof overhang. This is all from our lot, and would have cost over $1000split and stacked, here in Fairbanks. Also, it will offset about $1700 in heating costs. There's another two cords or so already cut on the lot.

This brings me to the more exciting news: We finally got our wood stove! We had this picked out a long time ago, and should have bought it then because the price went up. It's a Norwegian Jotul F400 Castine, sized to efficiently heat our entire house. There's a 3 day break-in process, but we'll post action photos when that's done.

The Garage slowly continues. It is fully insulated and the exterior is done. Much better than the October siding we did on the house. It was way too cold.

I hooked up the floor heat. Everything works well, but I had a small 1 drip an hour leak in one of my connections. Turns out I damaged an o-ring when installing it. Simple fix, and I guess 17 out of 18 leak-free connections isn't bad for a non-plumber. The Rehau pex tubing and manifold is a very high quality and easy to use system.

The manifold has little flow meters and thermometers on the supply and return side to help determine how much fluid is moving through the floor. From this, it's easy to determine how much heat is going into it. As I hoped, there is about twice as much heat as is needed for the coldest day, so at -50 degrees, the heat should only have to run half the time.

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