Our Corn Stove

With a freeze advisory, I decided I’d better get the girls’ beds dressed in flannel. Dh sleeps too hot for flannel. We’ve joked that I should sew a half-n-half sheet: a flannel half for me, cotton for him. I’m just thankful he doesn’t mind my frozen self snugged up tight to him! I don’t know how he radiates heat like he does…

Anyway, the warmth problem will be moot once we give in to winter’s arrival and crank up our new yard ornament.

Our main source of heat is the Woodmaster Corn Stove we invested in last January. Alternative heat is the up and coming trend with gas and electric prices so high. Our stove is 20 feet outside of our house, and a monstrous silver 300 bushel grain bin sits by its side to auger corn into the stove as needed. Sure beats chopping wood and carting it through the house to the wood stove insert we have in our fireplace! I can’t begin to tell you how thankful I am to keep all that mess outside! We’ll still use our fireplace sometimes, but it won’t be the necessity it’s been in the past!

Our house is fifty-six years old, and has adorable resinors under each window–flush with the wall. The original heat was “hot-water heat”…hot water circulated through all the pipes and did a great job heating the house…till our boiler gave out. The corn stove utilizes the same concept…the corn burns (hardly any ash build-up), heats the huge outside boiler and sends the hot water underground into our basement and then up through the pipes in the house. The main pipe from outside just happens to run under our bathroom floor…making it sooo warm and toasty!

Here are some figures for those that want to know…we buy our corn from the nearest farmer–a friend–who sells it to us for $1.50-1.80/bushel. Filling our grain bin this time around cost us $430. If we start using it in November, it should last us till February or March…longer if the temps don’t get too frigid. We only put 200 bushels in last January and had leftovers in April when the weather warmed. Our electric bill one extremely cold month prior to owning the corn stove was $300. About $200 of that for heat. As you can see, big savings.

Anticipating the warmth is making me feel better as I sit here in our 60 degree living room! It would be colder in here if we didn’t have our two kerosene space heaters taking the edge off.

What are you doing to get ready for winter? (and if it’s not fall where you are, go ahead and rub it in why don’t you!?)

11 thoughts on “Our Corn Stove”

  1. I am actually looking forward to winter. I love it! I enjoy snuggling under a warm blanket, drinking hot green tea or cocoa and either readinga book or watching a movie. I love to sit by the window and watch the cardinals flying around.

    I am doing really doing anything to prepare for the winter other than buying my boys winter coats and clothes. I am all set in that arena.

  2. Yes, good books and winter go hand in hand…I’m reading Georgia On Her Mind by Rachel Hauk right now, my second chick lit experience!

    Leticia, I’m hoping last year’s winter stuff will still fit the girls…probably won’t, but I can hope! Why’d you have to remind me…:O)

  3. Sweden ic ending summer now – or this is what they say, and approaching winter quickly.
    We really do not talk about fall or spring here, there is only winter and summer, though I do not agree :)
    I had a look at the site with your stove – impressing! And it looks so……..American :)
    In our house we use another kind of heating – we drilled 165 meters down the bedrock and have a kind of a heat converter using this warmth coming from the rock (sort of inverted refrigerator). It needs electricity, though, but is very comfortable, as we do not need to do anything, and it is fully automatized and keeps the steady temperature inside. To prevent us from freezing in case of some electricity shortages we have also installed sort of a casette into our open fireplace, and it really is hot when we use it.
    Winter, winter… Snow and frost, and minus 25 degrees centigrade (I do not know in Fahrenheit, sorry).
    No, not my favorite season. But boys love it.
    Snowmen, sleighs, skis.

  4. We had freeze advisory last night too. Hubby got all excited and winterized (as he calls it) everything. He put antifreeze in the cars, put plastic around the windows, insulated the back porch for his dogs and turtle, and fixed our electric blanket. We still aren’t turning on the furnace though, we use space heater also. He won’t turn it on until November probably. Your corn stove sounds interesting.

  5. It’s exciting isn’t it? Battening down the hatches? I’m one for change, always have been…when fall merges to winter, I’m ready…same thing for winter to spring and so on. Love the seasons and that’s one reason I love the mid-west US so much! (Plus a hot cup of coffee goes down so much better in the cold weather!)

    Anna, your heating method sounds fascinating! I like the fact that it’s all underground! Ours is pretty “in your face”…outside the bathroom window…such Americana scenery…at least it’s at the back of the house! Here’s a Farenheit to Celsius converter if you ever need it:
    http://www.wbuf.noaa.gov/tempfc.htm
    Your negative 25 is negative 13 for us. Cold is cold!

    Bethanie, you guys have a turtle!? What kind of dog(s) do you raise?

  6. Ann, I have heard of that! I have a relative who has somethg llike that istalled in his Oregon home. (North West USA)

    BTW Mary, I love the new look, especially the flowers in the header.

    Mrs. Meg Logan

  7. Look forward to hearing about your corn stove heating over the winter. I am familiar with the in house models, but I really believe the outdoor models have a lot to be desired. I saw one at a Sustainability festival earlier this year. I also had heard of the ones that burn with wood.
    How long until the hopper has to be filled?

  8. Well, Anton, we don’t have a hopper, per se. Our outdoor stove is attached to a 300 bushel grain bin, and we can set it to auger in at whatever rate my dh determines necessary. It doesn’t use much corn, and the only upkeep we have is to empty the ash-pan every 3 days. It’s got a self-cleaning “clinker” (I think that’s the right term) which we heard is an absolute must for low maintenance.

    Our model can also use pellets, probably wood as well. We used to have an indoor wood stove…so my favorite part about the new corn stove is: I love keeping the mess outside! :O) Feel free to ask more questions, if I can’ answer, I’ll ask my dh.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge