About Masonry Heaters
Masonry Heaters do not require EPA certification due to their inherent clean burning and efficient heating. Even though the technology has been in existence for hundreds of years, they are the future technology of wood burning heaters and a reliable primary or secondary source of heat in the modern home.
The history of the Tiled Masonry Heater, a traditional tiled stove, dates back several centuries and is closely intertwined with the evolution of heating technologies and architectural practices. The Kachelofen, also known as a ceramic stove or tile stove, originated in Northern Europe, particularly in Germany, Austria, and the surrounding regions. Its design and construction have undergone significant changes over time, contributing to its remarkable efficiency and enduring popularity.
Early Origins: The concept of using tiles to construct stoves can be traced back to ancient civilizations, such as the Romans, who used clay and ceramic materials in their hypocaust systems to distribute heat in buildings. However, the true development of the Kachelofen as we know it today began to take shape during the late Middle Ages and the Renaissance period.
15th to 18th Century: During this period, European craftsmen started constructing stoves using tiles, clay, and other refractory materials. The key innovation was the use of interconnected flue passages within the stove’s body. This design allowed for more efficient combustion and heat distribution. The exterior of the stove was often adorned with intricate tile artwork and designs, reflecting the artistic styles of the time.
19th Century: The 19th century saw significant advancements in stove technology, driven by the need for more efficient and practical heating solutions. The Kachelofen underwent various design improvements, including the integration of combustion air controls and dampers to regulate heat output. The stoves became a staple of European households, providing both warmth and a central gathering point for families.
Efficiency Features: The efficiency of the Kachelofen can be attributed to several key design elements:
Massive Thermal Storage: The Kachelofen’s ceramic construction provides substantial thermal mass. When the stove is burning, it absorbs and stores heat. As the stove cools, it slowly releases the stored heat, maintaining a consistent and comfortable temperature in the surrounding area.
Longer Heat Retention: The slow release of stored heat allows the Kachelofen to continue warming the space even after the fire has gone out, reducing the need for constant refueling.
Advanced Flue System: The internal flue passages and chambers guide the flow of hot gases through a maze-like structure, maximizing heat transfer to the stove’s surfaces before they exit the chimney. This arrangement improves combustion efficiency.
Controlled Combustion: Modern Kachelofen designs often incorporate air intake controls and dampers that enable users to regulate the combustion process. This control over airflow helps optimize burning efficiency and heat output.
Radiant Heat: The ceramic tiles and surfaces of the stove emit radiant heat, creating a comfortable and evenly distributed warmth in the room.