Its no secret how cold the UK gets in winter and I would say I’m a person who feels the cold. We all dream of free heating! The Little Miss Fire household started December last year with two serious heat related problems.
- A very old fashioned and ineffective back boiler that cost a fortune to run
- A gas fire that sucked up cash while providing a small amount of heat (after three hours)
We survived December 2017 in our new house with just these two ineffective forms of heat. Since we had just bought a new house, purchasing or upgrading our boiler or fire really wasn’t an option. The option of free heating wasn’t even on our radar.
Fast forward one year and we’d survived -3 temperatures. Plus the feeling of a tornado blowing into Littlest Little Miss Fire’s room in our ineffectively heated house. Hot water bottles, electric heaters and multiple layers all helped ease the severe cold.
Mr Fire grew up in a house with no heating when he was younger so he’s well versed to the cold. I wasn’t best pleased to be cold constantly but I did the best I could. Even the Littlest one was a real trooper despite having a barking cough and asthma related chest pains.
The new boiler
After some thought and a considerate amount of research we decided to upgrade our heating situation. Firstly with a new boiler.
Now our boiler regulates the heat in the house and makes sure it never gets too cold. Sounds fantastic! Only worry was the extra cost all this “regulating” would have on our budget. It isn’t free heating by any means.
One lunch time Mr Fire and I had a talk about heating and it would be better to be a company owned and provided by the government (a post for another day I think) We both questioned if it would be possible to heat our house for free.
We’ve always liked the idea of solar panels however we don’t have £6k to spend before April (when the government tariff is set to end) plus it would take at least a decade to recoup this.
The wood burner
Mr Fire mentioned his family had a wood burning stove in their old house. He recalled how they were able to run it using free wood they had obtained.
We both immediately set to work researching and pricing this concept. One month later and we introduce you to our new wood burner:
This costs us nothing to run! Zip, nada, zero. Yep that’s right, free heating! It also bought a fan to go on top of it. This means it heats up the entire house so that the heating seating doesn’t need to come on.
Where do we get free wood from?
Easy, we asked round local farms, mills and laborers. They all had bits and bobs of softwood and hardwood that they let us have – for free! Most of them were actually happy to give it away.
If you had to buy the items for the wood burner it would probably cost a pretty penny as we’d need logs and plenty of them!
How do you heat your house?