Home Heating by Solzaima

Last year being my first full winter in Portugal at the place where I now live, I came to understand that as many will say, Portugal can be very cold in the winter. Well that was true, but the other side of the coin is that the winter is far shorter than in the UK. Not wishing to suffer the teeth chattering of last year, I’ve finally ordered my wood burner. I decided to forgo the expense and buy a good quality unit as made by Solzaima. The model I settled on is the Eros as seen above.

The Solzima Eros is a bit too wide for my fireplace opening, but I’m hoping that I can just knock half the house down so it fits where planned. Only joking really as all I need to do, is widen the current opening about 10cm and maybe, just removing the fire bricks left and right may suffice. The height is another slight or big issue as I’d like to set it into the opening higher than the present opening limit permits. I think it would look far better than at floor level as in the above display. I’ll have a few structural problems with 60cm thick walls of stone and a lintel of some form will be required. No matter, these challenges are set to try our patience and ability.

The flue is another issue and I’m hoping that what’s there now is sufficient for the 20cm as required, if not, maybe a new chimney will be required over two floors. I’m not going to worry as my grey/white hair will only fall out and I’ve given up on getting stressed out with potential problems. I could have purchase something narrower by the same maker, however, the permissible log width would have been 10cm shorter so more work involved in cutting logs to size. Now, there’s a thought. The additional cutting would help keep one warm. That said, the cuttings going to be done during the summer and apart from that, I have perhaps three years supply of logs anyway that are at about 50cm in length. It’s great having that amount as it permits my 300 or so eucalyptus trees to grow further in height and diameter.

It’s taken me ages to make the final decision and as winter is approaching, it really did need to be made sooner than later and especially so as some structural works will be required.

Upon deciding on make and model, I undertook some research on cost. Now that’s something that is not so easy here in Portugal, as few websites exist compared to the UK and also, often when they do, prices are not always displayed, in fact, seldom could be said. This particular unit is advertised for near on and often at eleven to twelve hundred in euros.

I found one supplier who displayed a price tag of euros 1416 with a delivery charge also for a slightly visually, inferior unit. To me anyway. The single door was not ornate as is the case with the double door unit as I’ve chosen. The difference is evident between the two images here. Eventually, I sourced the unit at euros 862. Perhaps that was a good result with delivery included. It’s amazing how the same product can vary so much and that’s often the case in Portugal. The same applies to a Honda lawn mower I’m considering.

So to end, I’m looking forward to a cosy winter now with the benefit of my own wood supply, a huge saving on bottled gas and perhaps, best of all, no condensation problems this winter. Winter, that’s a laught as it’s nothing compared to the UK. The only benefit there, is the piped gas and central heating systems. Still, give me Portugal anyday. Seems I’m fully converted now. Well I hope to be as snug as a bug in a rug this winter. Urh, that’s if I manage to get the thing fitted. Time shall tell.

PS. Here is a link I found very recently that I’ll use as a fitting guide. The Stove Fitters Manual. It is a UK site but I’m sure the same rules will apply and is without doubt, well written and comprehensive.

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