A very interesting article appeared in my city's newspaper about a couple who, after installing a corn furnace in their home, had their heating bills drop from about $600.00 a month for gas heat to about $160.00 a month for burning corn. The type of corn used is shelled corn, the same as what livestock would eat. This type of corn is comparatively inexpensive, and this type of furnace uses the same ductwork as a fossil fuel furnace. Also, leftover corn at the end of the heating season can be fed to the birds and other wildlife, so none goes to waste. Several other benefits of burning corn for fuel are mentioned in this article.
There are some cons of this heating method. The initial expense of installing a corn furnace is several thousand dollars. Also, there is a little bit of maintenance work required to keep this furnace operating all season. In addition, there is the issue of where to store the corn after delivery, which sounds like it is delivered by the ton.
Unfortunately, I live too close to a metropolitan area and have too little land on which to store corn for this type of heating. However, I thought all the Thrifty Fun readers in rural areas (or in the Corn Belt) might be interested in this idea.
You can read this article at:
Also, the above article mentions a national expert on using corn for residential heating at The Pennsylvania State University who has a website devoted to burning corn for heating. His website is:
(do not use a "www" before the word burncorn)
Hope this is helpful to some of my fellow Thrifty Fun readers!
We got one a couple years ago. We like it.
Things to consider:
1. Do you have a local source for your corn? We farm, so we have a souce.
2.You will need your corn chimney to be separate from other chimneys and it must be brick or stainless steel lined.
3. You need a place to store the corn and a place to sift out the chaff (outside) before you take it to the exterior location of the corn furnace and pour it in the downspout that connects to your corn hopper.
4 We kept our old electric heater hooked up and we use it in the fall when the day and eve. temps go from warm to cool at night. The corn furnace is made for colder weather and will go out with the warm temps. So this has been the perfect solution for us.
5. The corn burner works best in winter temps. Plan on a learning curve the first year you use it. Once you get it heating just the way you like it works well.
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