It is summer now, but the issue of heating the house is always relevant. Today, we want to talk about the heating topic again, this time we will try to understand how to choose a good solid fuel heating boiler for a private home.
Most modern houses have heating systems based on the use of natural gas or electricity, such as gas boilers or electric convectors.
However, there are alternatives where the use of these main sources of heat is impossible or economically disadvantageous for various reasons. Often in such cases it is necessary to look for alternative sources of thermal energy.
On the other hand, people often want to have spare heat supply options to avoid possible discomfort in case of issues with major variant.
In these cases there is a very interesting possibility of installing a special heating appliance in a house.
What is a solid fuel boiler?
A home solid fuel boiler is a heating device designed to produce heat as a result of combustion of solid fuels.
The first prototype of such solid fuel heaters was an ordinary peasant rough, which burned firewood.
Even today, fuel for solid fuel boilers has not changed much, its main species are also wood, coal, peat and other energy-efficient combustible materials.
Let’s look at the main characteristics of a home solid fuel boiler:
1. Types of solid fuel boilers for used fuel.
Depending on what kind of fuel can be used, the following main types of boilers are distinguished:
- Wood boiler
- Coal boiler
- Pellets boiler
- Combi (multi fuel) boiler
We think it is clear what type of fuel is used in each of the above types of boilers.
A combi (multi fuel) boiler can uses several types of fuel.
Accordingly, choosing a solid fuel boiler is necessary considering what type of fuel you plan to use.
2. Types of boilers depending on the method of fuel combustion.
According to this characteristic it is accepted to distinguish between the following types of boilers:
- Natural draft boiler.This is a simple solid fuel boiler, in which the fuel burns without additional air supply.
- Boilers with additional draft.There is a special fan in such models, which supplies an additional stream of air to the combustion zone, which provides faster circulation.
- Pyrolysis (gas-generating) boilers.The principle of a pyrolysis boiler is the following:There is a division of the combustion process into two chambers in a boiler: in the first chamber there is charring of fuel and the extraction of a special gas (pyrolysis) which is already burning in the second chamber. Most household pyrolysis boilers work on wood.
- Long burning boilers.Their name itself indicates that in such model the combustion process of a certain volume of fuel takes place relatively longer than in other types of boilers.The peculiarity of long-term burning boilers operation is that in them, unlike other ones, the principle of “upper combustion” is realized.That is, first the burning of the upper layers of fuel, and then the lower, which provides more long combustion and uniform allocation of thermal energy.
Well, what can we say about which solid fuel boiler to buy.
If you need an inexpensive heater – buy boilers with natural or additional draft.
If you want a solid fuel boiler with high efficiency – it is better to buy a pyrolysis.
If you want to provide heat without frequent reloading of fuel – your choice is a solid combustion boiler.
3. Power of a solid fuel boiler.
As already mentioned in the article on electric convectors, a power of heating devices should be calculated based on the expected area of heating, taking into account the following proportion:
1 kW Power = 10 sq.m. Area
Calculation of a solid-fuel boiler power should be carried out, at least with a rounding to the bigger side, and it is better to buy a boiler with a certain more power.
4. Heat exchanger type.
Most solid fuel boilers manufacturers install cast iron or steel heat exchangers in them.
A cast iron heat exchanger is characterized by a lower tendency of corrosion, a large heating and cooling time, and also a low resistance to sharp changes in temperature.
Cast iron heat exchangers have a sectional structure.
In a steel heat exchanger, the heating/cooling time is lower.
It has higher resistance to temperature changes, but also higher corrosion susceptibility.
Steel heat exchangers are made in the form of a monolithic product.
Choosing a type of heat exchanger is really not easy, but personally, we think it’s best to buy a boiler with a cast-iron heat exchanger.
5. Additional parameters.
The most important additional parameters of boilers include the following two:
- Possibility of a cooling exchanger connecting – to avoid overheating. This is a very important point, since the work of a solid fuel boiler is associated with high temperatures.
- Possibility of conversion to gas or liquid fuel. This will allow you to change the way you use an appliance in the future if necessary.
What about producers of solid fuel boilers?
The German companies Buderus, Viessmann and Junkers can be considered as flagships.
Hopefully, now you will know which solid fuel boiler is the best to choose correctly in the purchase process.