Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Light My Fire

I'm pretty sure the "aging University of Miami fan" guess was totally worth leaving you all hanging yesterday. Anyway, we made a purchase. A big one. But first let me give you a little backstory so you don't think we're completely crazy . . . 

When we were house searching our wants/needs list included things such as:
- 3+ bedrooms
- 1+ bathroom
- Oil or natural gas heat
- Basement
- Large, spacious kitchen
- Backyard
- Garage
- Fireplace
- Hardwood Floors

. . . You get the idea. Well, we were able to get a lot of things on our list (4 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, oil heat, basement & hardwood floors) - but a few things were just not a part of the brick beauty that we fell in love with.

So we're going to add something. A wood burning stove!
This is an old Vermont Castings Stove. We saw it on Craigslist and decided to drive out to the boonies to check it out. We fell in love immediately, so we handed over $250 and took this baby home.

Here's where the trouble begins . . . actually installing the stove. Luckily my dad is a mason so he can help us with the whole process, because let me assure you it is daunting. 

A few things we need to do are:
- Work with our township inspector and homeowner's insurance agent to make sure everything is to code
- Install a slate base for the stove to sit on (it will be raised several inches off the ground) - this is because wood floors are combustible surfaces
- Bore a hole through the wall to attach stove pipe and carry it outside
- Decide whether we are going to use temporary pipe and then build a permanent brick chimney or use double-wall insulated pipe and box it in outside.

There's a lot to think about and a lot of decisions to make. We're still not even certain that installing the stove is a possibility. We may end up having to resell it if the installation process is too costly. We need to do some more research and planning. But, we're super excited about the possibility!

If all goes as we'd like, the stove will end up in the corner of our living room with a raised slate base. And yes, I will sit on the couch and lovingly adore it all the days of my life.
Until we figure out exactly what we're doing with this whole wood stove installation nonsense, there will be no loveseat purchasing. That's why among being beautiful and hot (get it?), this bad boy is also a game changer.

We're seriously crossing our fingers that we can get this installed and not spend a small fortune in the process. And we're very excited to see wood chopping and hauling in our future!
I'd love to hear your thoughts - do you think we're crazy? Have you ever installed a wood stove? Any tips or advice?


  1. I've never installed one, but there is an old (and huge) wood stove in renovated basement of my grandparents' house and it is amazing! I love sitting by it in a lazy boy during the holidays! Good luck! I hope you do get to install it!

  2. LOVE IT! My parents have one of those in the basement and I swear it has the potential to keep the entire house (aka the two floors above it) SOO warm and toasty. Great find!!! :)

  3. @ Ashley & Ashley - I'm glad you both know people that have a wood stove! Justin's parents have a wood stove in their living room and we just love laying in front of it! We're also hoping it will help with our heating costs because oil is sooo expensive and wood is free! Thanks :)

  4. Hi Regan,
    My BF is in love with wood stoves. He grew up with a wood boiler and he would love it if our house could have one. I hope it works out for you! Thanks for your comment on my blog!

  5. That was completely unexpected but such a good idea!

    I was in a house in the mountains this past weekend and they had a woodstove. It's so much more environmentally friend and less expensive than conventional heat. Also, super warm. I really hope that you guys are able to install it!

  6. It is going to look really cute in your living room. I have never installed one, but we removed one from our sunroom. It was a complete fire hazard because it was not put in correctly. The people actually tried to hook a gas line into it...it was a mess! I wish we could have fixed ours, but it was beyond repair. Good purchase!! =)

  7. @ Brandi - Yeah we love that environmentally friendly aspect, especially with the rising cost of oil. We're hoping it will heat up a large portion of our home. Fingers crossed!!

  8. @ Kelly - that's a shame the stove wasn't installed correctly. We're trying to keep in close contact with our township inspector so that doesn't happen!

  9. Regan! :) Thanks for stopping by and commenting today on my blog! Just so you know - All of our Willow Tree Nativity was a wedding gift... so I am with you on the money aspect! I am hoping to add to it slowly over time... Maybe one piece every three or so years :)

    I love the wood-burning stove! I think it was a great "splurge" over a love seat because it will add WAY more character to your house than a loveseat will!

  10. @ Skye - what an awesome wedding gift!! I'll have to remember that for the future! :)

  11. That's a gorgeous stove. My mum's house where I grew up had one. It's perfect for warmth and comfort- particularly those days in spring and autumn where it's a tad nippy but not cold enough for full heat.

  12. @ Annabel - Thanks! There's definitely a huge comfort element to having a crackling fire in the background. I really hope we can get this thing working :)

  13. I really hope everything works out and you're able to install the stove! It has so much character and would be so pretty in the room (plus, it would keep you warm which is pretty darn good, too!).

  14. You'll have such cozy Christmases now! How wonderful!

  15. Ok, you completely had me fooled with the hints you gave away. I wouldn't have ever guessed a wood burning stove. I like it though. We have a gas fireplace but it is useless because it doesn't blow heat into the house. I hope it works out for you!

  16. @ Krystle - My parents have a gas fireplace and it doesn't blow a lot of heat out either. Sometimes it is so nice and convenient to just flip the switch and have the fire though. :)

  17. Great purchase! I have two that I'm about to get rid of. Too bad I couldn't have shipped one to you - that might be costly from Canada. We are removing ours because we couldn't get our house insured with the one still hooked up. However, we were able to keep the wood burning fireplace which warms my heart! Great purchase. I hope everything goes well with the installation and you can cuddle up next to the fire in time for Christmas!

  18. @ Diana - That's a bummer you have to get rid of yours. A wood burning fireplace is sooooo nice! Thanks for the wishes! :)

  19. Hi there, just came across your blog. My husband and I just installed a wood fireplace insert. We love the idea of free heat...for the past week, we have not had to use our gas heat! Our dogs love it too, they lay on their bed in front.

    Do your research about insulating the pipe that will go into the wall and then the ceiling. Wood stoves are a great idea. Good luck to you!