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Solid fuels central heating?

Hi, I'm spending my Christmas planning our first self fit NB (thank you for all the helpful tips and advice already here)
The problem I'm tackling at the moment is heating. I feel that for most live aboard situations central heating would not really be necessary as in cold weather the wood stove would be on most of the time and with such a small space to heat and with good insulation I get the impression that the biggest problem is keeping cool!
However, with an eye on resale value, and how radiators seem to be a selling point. I was wondering if it is possible to use a back boiler to feed radiators and to supply hot water?
Most of the information I have found on such things say either that you will need an expansion tank (not possible as far as I'm aware on a boat) or that they require a pressurised system, but that most if not all boat stove suppliers say that this system is not safe to use with there fires.
Is there a solution or is it simply not possible or not advisable?
Thank you for your time

Asked by: Carole  | 10.44pm, Thursday 20 December

WW says:

A stove can form the heart of a boat during winter providing a cosy glow, although sometimes it can get too hot!
It is certainly possible to run radiators from a multi-fuel stove with a back boiler, but the best system requires careful planning. Pressurised heating systems are only possible with carefully controlled boilers, and are not advisable with solid fuel appliances. The traditional vented system is quite safe and has been successfully used on many boats, and can be arranged to work without a pump using the action of gravity since hot water is less dense than cold and rises. The key facts to design a successful system is to use large pipes, 28mm works best; to give the hot water an upwardly rising route to the end of the system, and to have a good separation between the hot and return pipes. A pump can be fitted to aid circulation, but it can mean draw too much heat out of the fire making it go out or sooting up the boiler. A gravity system will self regulate, distributing the heat that is available.
You are correct in that an expansion/header tank is needed, this must be the highest point of the system, and is usually filled with a jug but could be connected to the water system. If a twin coil calorifier is fitted, the stove can be connected to the second coil to heat the water when the stove is lit, otherwise using the engine heat.

Rupert Smedley  | 9.50AM, Friday 21 December

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