15 Easy and Cheap DIY Projects to Make Your Home a Better Place
Do you want to make your home a better place for living? Don’t want to spend much on buying new stuff for your home? Then this article is for you. We bring you creative DIY ideas on how to reuse and upcycle old stuff you already have to make beautiful and useful things for your home. Most of these ideas are easy and cheap to make and can be done as a small weekend project.
Wood is the original renewable fuel and is still used as the only heat source for about 1.5 million homes. Recently, an environmentally friendly alternative to wood has been provided to the consumer under the BioBrick brand.
If you are not familiar with BioBricks, they can be described as a 2 pound, 2 "x 4" x6 "brick made of compressed sawdust - just like wood pellets. The bricks can be stacked, burnt clean with less than 1% ash and cost about $ 300 for one 1,900 pounds pallet .While reading the website for BioBrick's website, I saw an interesting statistic used to qualify the heat content, here are heating requirements quoted from their website:
"A pallet of our BioBricks (TM) brings as much heat to the house as a wood * guide."
* (typically 21% cordwood moisture content)
What got my attention was the 21% degree they offered as the typical moisture content in cordwood. Every homeowner heating with wood knows that firewood is not spiced unless the water content is 15% or less. Perhaps the 6 points that distinguish the two examples do not sound as much, but wood with 21% moisture content is actually 40% wetter than the 15% variety.
I don't think the BioBrick people were deliberately trying to mislead consumers. It just sounds better from a marketplace to say that a pallet with BioBricks delivers the same amount of heat as cordwood with 21% moisture content, instead of a pallet of BioBricks delivering 94% of the heat of really seasoned cordwood.
But what happens when you compare BioBrick's heat output with well-maintained 12% moisture cable wood?
For comparison purposes, I will use the Btu heat set from a table with "Wood Heat and Weight Values" published by the California Energy Commission. The table shows the weight and Btu values for 39 types of wood at 12% moisture content.
However, a cord of wood rarely consists of only one species that makes it difficult to accurately determine the Btu value. To compare things, I compare the calorific value of BioBricks to Ash. Ash is a middle-of-the-road hardwood and is thermally halfway between Live Oak and Western Red Cedar. The heat value of a 12% moisture Ash cord with an average weight of 3000 kg is 25 million Btu. This works at 8 333 Btu per pound.
The manufacturer's heat estimate for a two-pound BioBrick is 17,000 Btu, or 8,500 Btu per pound - almost identical to Ash. (By the way, I chose Ash first and ran the numbers, not the other way around). Although my methods are hardly scientific, I think it would be fair to say that the heat value of BioBricks is almost approximate to that of most woods.