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My current house does not have any alternative heating options. It's all electric baseboard which for the size isn't too painful in the winters. But when the power goes out so does the heat. I have a small generator that will keep my appliances going but I need something for heating. I was wondering if something like this for propane along with a carbon monoxide alarm.

https://www.amazon.com/Sunrite-Mr-H...ner+for+indoor+heating&qid=1600058230&sr=8-47

Or would a kerosene heaters be the way to go? Something like this.

https://www.amazon.com/Dura-Heat-DH...ds=kerosene+heater&qid=1600058601&sr=8-1&th=1

Need a stop gap option until I can figure out a way to get a wood burner or something setup.

Thanks.

-Ash
 

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reluctant sinner
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Either of those will work. I like propane, kerosene stinks IMHO. A carbon monoxide detector is a must. Never go to sleep with an un-vented oxygen consumer running. Crack a window for some fresh air during operation. Both will put lots of moisture in the air (gallon of fuel is a gallon of water in the air) - could lead to mold growth on walls due condensation. Rechargeable desiccant containers could be useful.

1 Small pellet stove with a battery back up. 2 Wall mount propane heater Blue Flame, I have one. 3 Fold-able sheepherder tent stove (wood/propane) vented out a window. Deploy bricks on floor and against the wall. Have sheet metal piece cut to fit an open window. Have stove pipe with proper fittings to vent the stove threw the sheet metal window. Except for the bricks it would fit more or less in a suitcase space.
 

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Super Gassy Moderator
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Kerosene gives you a lot more heat for the same amount of fuel. Downsides are smell and cost. At least in my area it's pricey, and hard to find. If you have it at the pumps, it may work out cheaper per BTU than propane. It's still my preference because I can store more of it. If you add an ounce or two of methanol (Heet from the automotive section) or kerosene clean burn additive per 10 gallons, it burns cleaner and with a lot less smell.
 

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If you own diesel powered vehicles, ebay is full of diesel heaters meant for vans or RVs but will work for small homes or sheds. 12V needed to run but they are easy on the battery.

On the plus side, you can install it in your truck afterwards.
 

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A lantern with mantles,propane or "white gas",can throw out a small amount of heat if you run across one or two,dual purpose..not the best,but it can help.
 

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Wall mount propane heater Blue Flame, .
This^^ is an excellent choice. Tank outside, wall mount so it is out of the way and cannot be tipped over, available vented or non-vented, no smell, available with or without a thermostat, does not require any electric. Very easy to install on any outside wall. Tank size of your choice.
 

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I used a kerosene heater for a number of years. There was almost no smell if you started and filled it outside. After a min. while the ring heated up there was no smell. I got a bad batch of kerosene and it gummed up the wick and I ended up throwing it away when we moved. Mine was a kerosun from japan. Wish I still had it!
 

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For a small home I'd install non-electric through-the-wall propane heaters that both draw air from & exhaust air to the outside in selected rooms...convenient but not the cheapest solution.

Cheapest here would be simply buying one or two kerosene heaters since many local gas stations also have a kerosene pump.
 

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Super Gassy Moderator
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A lantern with mantles,propane or "white gas",can throw out a small amount of heat if you run across one or two,dual purpose..not the best,but it can help.
I have mantle white gas lanterns and a couple Aladdin kerosene mantle lamps. They do put out quite a bit of heat, but they're just so damned bright that I never use them.
 

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Super Gassy Moderator
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I used a kerosene heater for a number of years. There was almost no smell if you started and filled it outside. After a min. while the ring heated up there was no smell. I got a bad batch of kerosene and it gummed up the wick and I ended up throwing it away when we moved. Mine was a kerosun from japan. Wish I still had it!
I have a kerosun. Same thing, start it and shut it down outside and you won't have much if any smell inside. They do put out an amazing amount of heat.
 

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Had the same issue with our 1500sqft home when we bought it. When a cloud passed over we used to lose power. After the 2nd winter we installed a zero clearance wood stove. With almost 5 acres we have plenty of wood to feed it. We fire up the electric unit now and then just to take the chill off and move some air around for a short time.
 

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dont forget clothing and exercise both can keep your body temp up during the day... during night having good sleeping bags for cold weather..

imo I like wood if it is available in supply. so wood stove... fireplace etc.. these can heat pretty good.

although even a candle will put out a little bit of heat for a small place. The big thing about anything chemical combustion based is that you are going to generate fumes so a professional install will likely cost a bit.

It depends what is available in your local area.. some places will have natural gas available as your cheapest option. Size of the unit depends on how much space you want heated.

IMO do wood and if you need something for a quick heating or insuring that if your fire goes out you have natural gas.

Local laws will determine what you can do for indoor heating.

It is difficult doing electric heat offgrid unless you have massive bank and generation.
However if your space is well insulated. However I find that a gaming laptop generates about as much heat as a baseboard unit.
 

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Business Owner
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I have 2 Little Buddy heaters and 1 Big Buddy heaters. I have the hoses to run them off of a 20lb "Grill" propane tank, and the adapter to refill the 1lb tanks (I have 25 of them).

They put out a tremendous amount of heat. but as mentioned earlier, you need a fresh air source and vent. They make a lot of water vapor and eat a lot of oxygen.

They are great for emergency or portable heat.
 

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Capability, not scenarios
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The other thing to think about is this: reduce the area you need to heat as much as you reasonably can.

If you're in a cold area (not that familiar with WVa's climate) to the point where pipes can freeze, then you need to account for that, either by draining or setting up heat where there are exposed pipes.

I have a few supplemental heat sources (I live in the upper Midwest, can get below zero here). My plan is to reduce the space i need to heat as much as possible. My house is two story, so I'll drain down the upstairs piping (there's a bathroom up there), and try to keep the heat in the kitchen and downstairs laundry room and bathrooms.

If it's a long outage (I heat with nat gas, but if the electric is out there may be supply interruptions), I'll drain everything down and retreat to my bedroom. I have insulation above, and even in the interior wall that separates the bedroom from the living room. That wall insulation was to provide a sound barrier, which it does, but it also allows us to retreat to a single room and bathroom if necessary.

I have a basement so that's an option too, but only after draining down the pipes. And BTW, if you do drain them, capture the water if you can. I have a low faucet in the basement so the water can drain through that and I can probably save 2-3 gallons of water.

I have a small propane heater and a lot of propane to support it. My house is insulated better than 98 percent so a smaller heat source will work. Further, body heat helps heat a space provided you don't have a huge space to heat or a poorly-sealed space.

And if I run out of that, I have the bricks to build a rocket stove outside with which I can boil water and then bring that inside to shed its heat. I even have a lot of lead ingots which can be used for the same purpose, i.e., melt them, then bring them inside. When molten lead solidifies it gives up heat (phase change), plus even when solid there's a ton of heat left in them. You have to be careful doing that, but it's not a bad way to transfer heat from a fire outside to the inside.

But the real key to all this is reducing the space you need to heat. Heck, if I need to I can even create a little furniture/blanket tent in the house, reducing the space even further. Think about how Aleuts can build a dwelling out of snow--an Igloo--and even then be able to be comfortable.

So, supplying heat is one side of the equation--lots of good ideas above in the posts. But also look at the other side of the coin, the space you need to heat.
 
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We normally heat with non-electric propane anyway so the loss of power has no effect on our heating, though the wife often uses an electric wall heater in the bathroom.
 

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But the real key to all this is reducing the space you need to heat. Heck, if I need to I can even create a little furniture/blanket tent in the house, reducing the space even further. Think about how Aleuts can build a dwelling out of snow--an Igloo--and even then be able to be comfortable.

If your goal is just to 'survive' huddled in some part of your house while the rest freezes up, sure.

Personally, I will have a lot of stuff to do in SHTF and am going to need every room I have.

There is simply keeping breathing until someone fixes the problem for you...and there is carrying on with life through it. It's up to everyone to decide what they want and what they area capable of, but I submit that people should at least consider prepping deep enough to fully heat and enjoy their house when the power goes out.
 

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I use the same kero heater in my garage and when the power goes out, and it pumps out a lot of heat. During extended outages, I've cooked on it, stuff like bacon, eggs, and canned stew. The wire rack is great for toasting bread. It's a good multipurpose heating unit. Kerosene is readily available where I live. I've got a single element propane heater and two big bottles as a fallback option Every Fall I change the battery in my CO alarm.
 

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If your goal is just to 'survive' huddled in some part of your house while the rest freezes up, sure.

Personally, I will have a lot of stuff to do in SHTF and am going to need every room I have.

There is simply keeping breathing until someone fixes the problem for you...and there is carrying on with life through it. It's up to everyone to decide what they want and what they area capable of, but I submit that people should at least consider prepping deep enough to fully heat and enjoy their house when the power goes out.

Agreed.. but

It all depends on what you are prepping for. Less than a year, then it might be feasible to heat the whole home with a fuel such as propane.

In a long-term scenario, many will have to shift to a renewable source of fuel they can obtain which puts many of us back to wood.

So I agree with your point full heartedly but I also agree with having back up plans for wood and minimizing the space to make your fuel supplies last if needed.

All depends on what you are prepping for I suppose, but I’m with you.. I’d like to shoot for my whole home remaining warm!


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I’ve read some about rock stoves and mass thermal heaters to retain a majority of the heat the fuel puts off.

Also it helps reduce smoke and excessive heat being released in the exhaust for those needing to minimize those around them knowing they have a fire going.


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