Popular Science Monthly
��Coal Is Dear. Learn How to Burn It in the Furnace
THE many little leaks in the boilers and furnaces of our homes are going to cause a waste of a hundred million tons of
���Sectional view of a small steam heater showing necessary dampers and doors for proper regulation
coal in a year unless we do something about it. The remedies for these leaks are simple and it behooves all of us to give attention to them this winter.
The problem has been studied by the Engineering Experiment Stations of the
���The first stages of the coking method of firing in which fresh coal is spread over only the front of the fire pot
University of Illinois, and some results of that study are summarized here.
The most important single part of any heater is the grate. It should be large enough to allow sufficient air to feed through
the coals to form a highly combustible mixture. The setting of the furnace should be airtight to prevent too great a draft when the fire is burning low. This applies equally to the doors of the furnace, and even the slides. Then, too, the cleaning doors should be used often to remove the soot from the interior of the heater, since the soot in- sulates the water from the heat of the fuel. If just |i5 these three points are >^f needed,
you can save as much as twenty per cent, of your expenses.
Next in importance is the consideration of the draft. This must be capa- ble of being accurately in- creased and decreased at all times. This means that first of all your chim- ney must be airtight and minus obstructions of any kind. The top of the chimney should be at least two feet above the sur- rounding objects so that the wind can create a strong enough draft.
Another point so often neglected by house owners is the matter of firing. Fresh coal should be shoveled only at the very front of the fire bed at* first. This assures the burning of the gases that escape when the coal becomes heated. The gases must pass over the coals on their way to the chimney. After a few minutes, you can spread the fresh coal over the entire grate area.
Only two other points re- main. The first is that all distrib- uting pipes should be c o vered with asbes- tos sheet- ing to prevent radiation. The second con- cerns weather strips which should be at- tached to all doors and windows.
���Draft is checked by a defective or broken joint in the chimney
��� ��Showing what may happen in an offset chimney