Monday, November 7, 2016

DIY: Stove fan

Our living room is equipped with an old wood stove.
The stove is placed in a corner and the room is very long.

Sitting in the middle of the room, i cannot feel the warm. This because the heat goes straight up to ceiling, and only a fraction of heat (radiant) directly arrives to the body.
After a couple of hours the room is quite warm but remains a gradient in the room based on the distance, so too hot near the stove, too cold far away from it.

Another problem is that i have to leave a cup of water on the stove to keep the air humidified.

On the web you can find quite a lot of heat powered stove fan, based on thermoelectric effect (peltier) or based on simple heat engine (stirling).
The price is between 50 and 150 bucks, and none of these provides humidity correction.

My solution is reasonably priced (zero, using items found in garage), and guarantees horizontal air movement and air humidification at the same time. The only drawback is that is powered by a small phone charger and is not heat powered.


Items to build it
  • A metal milk container from Alps pastures (a similar item will work: has to contain liquid, be sealed and withstand high temperatures);
  • A small DC motor;
  • A wood blade for rc airplane;
  • A phone charger;
  • A piece of black rubber tube;
  • A bracket for the motor;
Pay attention to isolate motor from the bracket using rubber, and also isolate the electrical connection with silicone tube.

Humidification
The milk container is filled with water. After half an hour the water starts to boil and a small tube (the only orifice) direct steam to the wood blades.

Energy usage
Considering a price of 0.30 euro/kWh and a consumption of 3.6W (6V, 600mA), a mid price for the stove of 100 bucks, i need to switch on the fan for 92000 hours (380 years considering the occasional stove usage) to match the initial cost of the stove (ok, i'm not considering inflation, but this makes the idea).

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