Home heating sans electricity?

Hello, and thanks again to all the awesome people who make this website possible.  It truly is a wonderful resource.

I am researching various methods/options for heating my home in the case of an extended power outage.  I have a traditional masonary fireplace that I never use because it’s so innefficient, but am considering a fireplace insert or other options.  I’m curious if anyone has gone down this road and has words of wisdom to share.

A fireplace insert would be nice, but they’re also spendy, and outside of an emergency and/or the occasional holiday-time fire, I would likely rarely use it, so I am also eager to find safe alternatives, if there are any.  


  • Comments (8)

    • 6

      Yes, the traditional fireplace isinefficient, but it does the job, and it will burn a variety of fuels.  Dress warmer than usual, close off portions of your dwelling, and huddle around the cheery blaze.  This has worked for meonseveral occasions in the past.

      • 8

        This is where my first reaction went too… don’t overlook the stone fireplace you already have.

        OP do you live in an area with lots of natural fuel around?

      • 7

        Thanks for your reply John.  Unfortunately the bulk of any fuel I’d have access to would come from what I stocked up ahead of time.  

    • 6

      I have a propane fireplace, and I got my tank filled up a few weeks ago. I was told the propane prices are the lowest they’ve been in years. I got a Mr. Heater propane heater a few years ago to keep our bedroom warm when the power is out. It’s safe and works well. It uses little propane tank, though I have an adapter that will connect it to larger tanks.

      • 7

        Thanks Josh!  Do you find any issue with fumes with the Mr Heater?

    • 7

      FYI tomorrow we’re starting research for the main guide on this topic, will include this discussion in the sources for that article. 

      • 8

        Get an insert for fireplace it puts out 4-5 times the heat i use mine everyday all winter 9 months in Wyoming with the harsh winds we get the fireplace was useless 

      • 5

        Thanks Andrew, much of the research I’m doing is pointing in that direction. 

        I look forward to seeing TP’s upcoming guide!