Saturday, December 14, 2013

Heat Your Room for Almost Free!

Know what this is? No, it is not a flowerpot. Well, technically I suppose it is a flowerpot, but for the sake of this post, it is a heater. A candle powered room heater specifically. Want to make one? Here's how. This is what you will need. 

Two flowerpots, a bolt, a couple of nuts and a candle or three.  You may also need a couple of washers, although they are not shown in this photo. And that is it.   Do not use  glazed  flowerpots,  just plain clay ones.

The construction of this heater is a long and difficult process,  consisting of the following:

1.  Take your bolt, put a washer on it , and insert it from the bottom  of the larger flowerpot .

2. Put a washer on the inside of the bolt,  place a nut on it,  and tighten it finger tight.

3. Place the smaller flowerpot onto the bolt, place another washer on the bolt, place a nut on the bolt and tighten it finger tight.

 Presto! You are done.  You have just constructed your very own , high-tech room heater. It should look something like this -


To go along with your superduper hi tech room heater, here are some high-tech instructions for using it-

Take your superduper high tech room heater- flowerpot thingy and place it upside down on a couple of supports,  kind of  like this-

Then you can also take your candle and light it as shown in the photo. And there you have it, your  heater  is now working. In the picture above you may notice that we have used boards to raise the  flowerpot up off the ground in order to make room for the candle and to allow it to get some air. This is not ideal,  and you should use  something nonflammable. to hold the flowerpot up.

It may take 30 minutes or so  before your flowerpot gets hot and begins putting off heat. And you also may want to put more candles underneath it  in order to make it work faster.  We did some scientific testing  to determine how much heat it was putting off.

 See this picture here,  with the plastic thermometer  sitting directly on top of the flowerpot?  Do not do this!  The bolt gets hotter than anything else, and this thermometer was leaning against it. After a few minutes it melted the back of the thermometer, requiring a different scientific testing procedure.  So what we did was to take a couple of small pieces  of wood and put them on top of the flowerpot, then we lay the thermometer down on top of these pieces of wood.  The thermometer was elevated probably an inch above the flowerpot and after an hour or so  it registered about 115°.  Even after two or three hours,  it never got hotter than that.

So,  does it work?

 Well yes, It does put off heat, but not a great deal of it. It works off the radiant heating principle, and it does take a little while. If you have a small room in your house that is not heated or if you have a room that is not heated well enough,  this may do the job. Or if you scattered two or three of them around the room,  it should work even better.  Candles are cheap , and so are flowerpots. This entire experiment cost maybe five dollars.

Warning! Using open flame like this is not for idiots.  If you do not feel qualified  to do something like this  without running the risk of burning down your house,  don't even think about it.  If you do not have enough common sense and are too stupid  to carry out something like this safely, then don't blame me  if you burn something  that didn't need burned.

 Here is a Short video that shows how to make one of these-

 The guy in the video got  a lot better results than I did,  but I kind of suspect that he was reading  the temperature off of the bolt. It gets hotter than anything else.  But then again, maybe I should have made a bigger one to start with.

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