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  1. #1

    Blown Foam Insulation and Wood burning Fireplace

    My new home being built in South Carolina and will be a single level 2400 Sqr foot with foam insulation encompassing the home. There will be a wood burning fireplace insert installed in the family room as well as one on the three season porch.

    Does it make sense to have a barometric damper installed in the Family Room Fireplace? How can I get the most out of these fireplaces?

    Thnx
    Last edited by Foodeefish; 09-20-2010 at 05:51 PM. Reason: misspelling

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Madison, WI
    Posts
    1,078
    Quote Originally Posted by Foodeefish View Post
    My new home being built in South Carolina and will be a single level 2400 Sqr foot with foam insulation encompassing the home. There will be a wood burning fireplace insert installed in the family room as well as one on the three season porch.

    Does it make sense to have a barometric damper installed in the Family Room Fireplace? How can I get the most out of these fireplaces?

    Thnx
    What kind of fireplaces? Make / model?
    Where would this damper go?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Madison, WI/Cape Coral, FL
    Posts
    6,646
    How about fresh make-up air ventilation for all of the devices needing make-up air, inculding the oxygen consuming occupants? All homes need an air change of fresh air every 5-6 hours at a minimum when occupied. In green grass climates, I promote the whole house ventilating dehumidifier to provide make-up air and maintain <50%RH during the times of high outdoor moisture when the a/c is not operating enough.

    Regards TB
    Bear Rules: Keep our home <50% RH summer, controls mites/mold and very comfortable.
    Provide 60-100 cfm of fresh air when occupied to purge indoor pollutants and keep window dry during cold weather. T-stat setup/setback +8 hrs. saves energy
    Use +Merv 10 air filter. -Don't forget the "Golden Rule"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    LA
    Posts
    198

    Smokey Mountains

    JTP - don't know if your close to the "SMOKEY" mountains, but if not careful you could get a "Smokey" home.

    I'm inclined to agree with TeddyBear with the necessity of plenty of "Fresh Air" for all reasons given and even more so because of the TIGHT House your building. With a Ice Chest type insulation your going to have an almost non-existant infiltration rate (tight house).

    Heck, I might even look into getting a " whole house ventilating dehumidifier " myself, probably fix the smokey agrivation with my fireplace...you see I to have one of those "Ice Chest" houses. When my unit is running and bringing in filtered outside air, its not a problem, but let it shut off, different story. The fireplace fresh air don't cut it!


    Mike...

  5. #5
    Frosted and Teddybear,

    If I go with a geothermal heat pump, what would I have to add to the system to be sure I have te frsh air needed? Just a barometric damper in the fireplace?

    Thnx

    Foodeefish

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Madison, WI/Cape Coral, FL
    Posts
    6,646
    Quote Originally Posted by Foodeefish View Post
    Frosted and Teddybear,

    If I go with a geothermal heat pump, what would I have to add to the system to be sure I have te frsh air needed? Just a barometric damper in the fireplace?

    Thnx

    Foodeefish
    I you are serious about providing make-up air and maintaining low humidity, get a minimum of a 65-70 pint per day whole house ventilating dehumidifier added to the your heatpump or a/c heating system.
    An barometric damper on your cold air return only functions when your blower is operating on high speed. This should be unacceptable. You need specific amount of fresh air when the home is occupied.
    The Ultra-Aire/Honeywell/Rheem units are capable of this.
    Keep us posted.
    Regards, TB
    Bear Rules: Keep our home <50% RH summer, controls mites/mold and very comfortable.
    Provide 60-100 cfm of fresh air when occupied to purge indoor pollutants and keep window dry during cold weather. T-stat setup/setback +8 hrs. saves energy
    Use +Merv 10 air filter. -Don't forget the "Golden Rule"

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    S.E. Pa
    Posts
    6,305

    Cool terminology

    Foodee, you need to clarify what kind of fireplace you are contemplating. It could be a traditional masonry fireplace, a factory built fireplace, a fireplace/ heater or an appliance such as a woodstove. You do not put barometric dampers on fireplaces because, a) you don't need them with all the excess air lost up the stack and b, where would you put it? You cannot cut into the chimney on a factory built fireplace anymore than you can cut a damper into the flue of a masonry fireplace.

    Now, if you are talking about a freestanding woodstove then yes, you could install a barometric damper. Yes, a baro. would be of some benefit in stabilizing the draft for a more even burn and it might minimize a little bit of creosote formation but don't get your hopes up too high. Also, some mfrs. flat out tell you not to use them on their stoves. Their use voids the efficiency numbers btw.

    FYI, an "insert" is a device that is 'inserted' into an existing fireplace.

    Not sure what you're looking for when you say you are trying to get the most out of it. If you're talking about heat, forget the open hearth fireplace and buy an EPA fireplace/ heater or a woodstove. Fireplaces cool houses--they don't really heat them.
    Hearthman

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