The Differences between Distilled Water and Deionized Water

Distilled VS Deionized Water

Tap water may be the most ordinary water in our daily life. Of course, you can drink it directly, if the tap water smells and tastes well. If not, you may need a water filter or water distiller to purify water first. However, for most laboratory tests, calibrating equipment, preparing solutions or cleaning glassware, tap water is not suitable because there are some impurities in the tap water. The most suitable type of water for the lab is purified water. Most common methods that are used to purify water include distillation, deionization and reverse osmosis (RO).

Deionization and distillation are similar to each other. Both of them can remove impurities. However, essentially deionized water and distilled water are different. And they cannot be interchanged for most lab tests or purposes.

In order to understand their differences, first we need to how deionization and distillation work. After that, we can understand which one is the best type of water for your lab purposes or when it is OK to interchange one for the other.

How Distilled Water Works

distillationEssentially, distilled water is one type of demineralized water which is purified by distillation. You can use tap water to make distilled water, and you also can use spring water to make it. The source water is boiled in a container, and the steam arises and will be collected and condensed to get distilled water. The whole distilling process is called distillation. During this process, most minerals and impurities cannot rise with steam, so they are left behind. However, some volatile organics, mercury, as well as other impurities also rises together with steam. Therefore, how pure of your source water can influence the purity of the resulting water. Most home water distillers even use a post-filter to remove these VOCs in the steam. At least, distillation can remove most particulates and salts. To make distilled water, spring water is better than tap water.

How Deionized Water Works

deionizationDeionized water is produced by running spring water, distilled water or tap water through an electrically charged resin. The key part is the mixed ion exchange bed which has both negative and positive charged resins. It is known that salts are made up of cations and anions which are free ions. The H+ and OH- ions in the reins will exchange cations and anions in the water, resulting in H2O (water). During this process, salts are replaced and removed. However, deionized water is very reactive. Once it is exposed to air, its pH will changes from originally 7 to 5.6, because it will dissolve CO2 in the air and finally form carbonic acid solution. However, deionization only remove salts and will not remove molecular specials or uncharged organic particles, because these matters don’t have free irons in the water.

Distilled VS Deionized Water in the Lab

As we mentioned before, the purity of source water will affect the quality of distilled water. Generally, tap water or spring water is considered as the most suitable water to make distilled water. Here, let’s assume the source water was spring water or tap water, so distilled water is pure enough, making it suitable for almost all lab applications, including:

  • analytical blank
  • calibration standard
  • cleaning glassware
  • equipment sterilization
  • making high purity water
  • solvent to prepare solution

Similar to distilled water, the purity of deionized water also is influenced by the source water. And deionized water is used if a soft solvent is required, including:

  • analytical blanks
  • calibration standards
  • cooling applications
  • microbiology autoclaves
  • many chemistry experiments involving ionic compounds
  • washing glassware, especially the final rinse
  • solvent preparation
  • in batteries

In a word, in some situations both deionized water and distilled water are suitable for use. However, because deionized water is more reactive and corrosive, it is not suitable for situations that involve long term contacting with metal.

Substituting Distilled and Deionized Water

Generally, it is not recommended t substitute one for the other one. However, if your deionized water is made from distilled water, it is ok to substitute the deionized water for the distilled water. All in all, you should know the one you use to substitute for the other will not influence the result or outcome. The safest way is not to substitute one for the other.

Drinking Distilled Water or Deionized Water

Some people think their water is very dirty, so they use home water distillers to make distilled water and drink it every day. However, this is not the best choice because distilled water lacks minerals found in tap water or spring water. Therefore, it is recommended not to drink distilled water for a long time.

Of course, drinking distilled water not for a long time is no problem, but deionized water is not suitable for drinking. Deionized water also lacks minerals. What’s worse, it is corrosive, so it can cause damage to our tooth enamel and other soft tissues. And, deionized water may also cause infectious diseases because deionization cannot remove pathogens.

The bottom line

You can drink distilled water and deionized water, but you need to make it exposed to air for a while and the quality of the source water should not be poor.

Is It Safe to Reboil Water?

reboil-waterQuestion:

If you use an electric water kettle or other ways to boil water to drink, you may not drink the boiled water in a short time. When the hot boiled water becomes cool again and you want to drink hot water, can you reboil water again or you just pour away the boiled water and fill new cold water to boil? If you choose to reboil water again, you may have a question “is it safe to reboil water?”.

Answer:

To answer this question, we should need to understand what will happen to water chemistry when reboiling water. After that, you will know whether it is safe to drink reboiled water.

The answer is not so easy to get. And this depends on what types of water you use boil. If you use perfectly pure distilled water or deionized water to reboil, nothing will happen. However, if you use tap water that contains dissolved minerals and gases, the answer is different.

When you boil ordinary water, the chemistry of the water will change. This is because the heating will drive off dissolved gases and volatile compounds. For example, a water distiller also uses this method to evaporate and uses a filter to remove these VOCs. However, if you boil the water too long or reboil boiled water, the contaminants in the water will become more concentrated as the water evaporates. The concentration of nitrates, fluoride, arsenic as well as other chemicals will become very high, finally resulting in being harmful to our healthy if we drink the reboiled water.

Does Reboiled Water Cause Cancer?

Some people think reboiled water may cause cancer. However, there is no evidence that shows there is a strong relation between cancer and reboiled water.

However, even if the boiled seems fine, reboiled water will cause the increasing concentration of toxic chemicals that may lead to some illness, even including cancer. For example, there is a strong relationship between the excessive intake of nitrates and methemoglobinemia (as well as other certain types of cancer). And Arsenic exposure can cause symptoms of arsenic toxicity and it may also cause certain types of cancer. The increasing concentration of healthy minerals may also have problems. For example, kidney stones, gallstones, hardening of the arteries and arthritis may relate to excessive intake of calcium salt.

Our Recommendation

Don’t boil water for a long time. If you really want to reboil it, just allow it to cook and then reboil it. This can reduce the risk.For example, if your tea kettle has some cool boiled water, you can add some new fresh water and then reboil it. This will be safe. It is not recommended to reboil water more than twice. Therefore, you’d better not reboil it. For pregnant women, reboiled water is dangerous to drink.

Top 7 Different Types of Electric Heaters for Your home

Although there are plenty of heating options for your home, like natural gas, propane gas, oil, or even wood, electric heaters are also very popular and common due to their wide availability in most areas. Even if electric heat is not the most efficient cost-wise way to heat your home, its convenience makes it more popular than other types of heating. Some types of electric heat are pretty easy to install or don’t require any installation.

When it comes to choosing an electric heater, you also need to note the electricity price in your area, because electricity is market-driven and in some areas, electric heat may be expensive and in most areas, electric heat is so cheap. For most people who live in this country, at least, electric heaters can be used as a good supplemental heating source.

When it comes to efficiency, many factors will influence the result. An electric furnace can be more efficient where other heaters are not. And even if you installed 2 completely same appliances in 2 rooms, you may get different efficiency. Factors, like the home’s structure, insulation and format can influence the heaters over efficiency, as well as the distribution of heat.

Since many factors may affect the overall efficiency, consumers should choose Energy-Star or energy efficient heating products at least, because this can enhance the overall efficiency maximally. And then you need to look for ways to enhance the efficiency of your whole room by enhancing your existing heating system. In the following, we will discuss the main types of electric heat for home and some of them can give you some idea to make your home more energy-efficient and some of them can be a good supplemental heat for your home.

1. Whole-Home Electric Heating Systems

On the market, at least two main types of whole home electric heating systems are available to choose from, including radiant and forced-air heating. Forced-air heater will push out the heat from its heat source. With a furnace, heat is distributed to the whole home via a series of dusts. If the heater is smaller, in order to warm a room, forces air will be expelled with the use of a fan.

Radiant heat works differently. It delivers heat that radiates to the whole room. You can build a network of convection, baseboard or other types of radiant heaters to from your home’s main heating system. On the market, there are many electric heaters that are different from sizes or styles, like space heaters, furnace heaters, ceiling or wall-mounted heaters.

Heat pumps and exchangers either as a whole-home heater or combined with air conditioning in a multi-function air/heat exchanger, can help to save your overall costs for the home’s main comfort systems.

When it comes to buying a main home heating system, the one you plan to buy should have the proper size according to the size of your home. If you don’t know how to start, you can ask a heating technician for help and you will know the exact size of the heating system that is ideal for your home.

2. In-Floor Radiant Heaters

in-floor-radiant-heaterIf you are looking for a way to heat your home more energy-efficiently, you probably can consider the in-floor radiant heating that must be installed during the constructing process. You can choose a whole-home system or it also can be used for some smaller projects, like bathroom floors, bedroom floors, etc.

The installation is a little complicated and you’d better hire professionals to do the job. However, considering its efficiency and ease of use, it is worth installing.

3. Baseboard Electric Heaters

fahrenheat-fbe15002-electric-baseboard-1000-wattAlso known as zone heaters, baseboard heaters are the most common type of space heating systems. It requires a 220v installation. Generally, one is only used for one room, but you install one in each room. For example, if you don’t install a whole-home heater when your house was building, you can choose to install several baseboard heaters for each room, to heat your whole home. Although you may need to hire professional to install them, there is no furnace or ducting required. Therefore, it may be perfect for some homes.

These heaters generally offer wall-mounted thermostats or on-board adjustable, so the heat control is easy. Due to their installation places, they are called baseboard heaters. They come in many sizes and limited colors. Compared with portable heaters, they are more energy-efficient.

4. Convection Heaters

electric heatersConvection heaters are often also referred as a special type of baseboard heating, but they are different because of different heating technology and different installation. They need 220v installation. The installation is similar to traditional baseboard heaters. They are more energy efficient than traditional baseboard heaters. They consume up to 30% less energy. Some of them feature a low profile design, so it is difficult to distinguish between convection heaters and baseboard heaters.

5. Portable Room Heaters

mr-heater-mh18b-portable-propanePortable room heaters are also very popular because of their ease of use and affordability. You just need to plug one heater into a standard wall outlet, it can offer heat. And you can move it to anywhere you like, as long as there is a standard wall outlet.

Portable room heaters that have oscillation features are the most popular type, because it can quickly heat up a room by evenly distributing heat. You also can choose a ceiling-mounted radiant heater for your garage or home shop.

Most of them are designed for heating a relatively small room, while some of them are also adequate to heat up large spaces. They are not as energy efficient as convection or baseboard heaters, but they are more portable and convenient. They allow you to add a little more heat, so your room will become more comfortable.

Once you have some portable room heater, you can use them as supplemental heaters, so you can turn down your center heating system. This can help to reduce your energy bill overall.

6. Portable Infrared Heaters

They are very new on the market, because they use infrared technology to heat. And they also feature a special design. For example, many electric infrared heaters are designed to be similar to a side table. Therefore, you can always find a right place to fit it in with your room and furnishings.

Although they seem a little heavier and bulkier, they are also portable thanks to their wheels. Therefore, you will find it is so easy to move one from one room to another.

7. Electric Fireplaces

electric-fireplaceElectric fireplaces are becoming more and more popular in recent years, even if they are not the most energy efficient. However, people love their styles. You can add a focal point easily in your room, as long as there is a standard plug-in nearby. They are also convenient to use, because most of them offer a remote. Just press the button on the remote; it will begin to heat your room. Of course, it is able to add atmosphere to your room.

Generally, they come in several styles, including freestanding units, traditional-looking fireplace units and compact portable models. Some of them even come with mantel and storage, making them more practical.

If you decide to buy an electric fireplace for heating, you need to pay attention to its BTUs. Small ones are perfect for transferring, while a physical size can well fit in with your current room’s decor.

How to Heat Your Home – Options for Heating Your Home

If you are just renovating your old home or building a new house, you also need to consider how to heat your home. This is one of your main items that you need to take into account to complete your current project. You will find even your existing heating system is often subject to review. This is because the operating cost tends to fluctuate as the fuels’ prices fluctuate from one year to the next. And it is common to revise your current heating strategy in order to gain efficiency, so that your overall heating cost can be reduced. Sometimes, the revise is complete. This means you may need to replace your existing heating system with a high efficiency one.

The fuels you use to heat your home also vary in efficiency and the efficiency may depend on the area you live. The fuel may be cheap in your area, while it may be very expensive at the other end of the earth. Therefore, if you pursuit energy efficiency, you need to buy heating appliances that are certified as Energy Star and our energy saving tips in the following can also help you take a good use of these appliances, resulting in reducing your overall heating costs.

Sometimes, you also need supplemental heating to work with your current heating system and it can help to reduce the operating costs. When it comes to choosing heating systems for your home, your decisions depend on your budget and which fuel you decide to choose in your area. If the fuel is not available in your area, you will pay the price. First, you need to decide on your main heating system, and then choose supplemental or alternative heating sources which can help to reduce the heating costs.

However, no matter which type of heating systems you finally decide to buy and install, you also need to keep in mind that maintenance is very important for getting the most efficiency. Generally, maintenance includes recommended qualified service, or regular filter changes that can be done by the homeowner.

If you use any type of wood or liquid fuel to service a hot water heater or a cooking range, or just heating your home, a carbon monoxide detector should be installed to ensure the using safety. And you should install it in the RV’s when using propane gas.

The appliance you buy should not only meet local codes but also the safety regulations.

Electric Heating

zone-heatersThere are several types of electric heating, like whole-home furnaces, multi-function units which can also provide heating as well as air conditioning. There are also many supplemental space or zone heating systems, like baseboard heaters, infrared heaters, etc. These heaters can enhance the main heating system and warm up some cold zones.

Natural Gas Heating

mr-heater-corporation-natural-mhvfb30ngtIn some areas, thanks to the lower price, natural gas heating becomes more cost effective than oil, electricity or propane gas. You can choose a whole-home furnaces or a fireplace. Natural gas is clean and safe to use. When you use natural gas to heat your home, you also can reap more economies because you also can use it to fuel a cooking range or drier, heat hot water, even fuel an outdoor barbecue. However, you need to hire a qualified technician to complete the natural gas connection.

Propane Gas Heating

mr-heater-mh18b-portable-propanePropane gas is widely used as a camping fuel for cooking, refrigeration and heating, but it is also good for indoor heating or outdoor patio heating. Although the operating cost of propane gas appliances is more expensive than natural gas appliances, in some areas, people only can choose propane gas as their heating fuel because other fuels may be not available. Professional installation and servicing are required and propane gas heating appliances are different from space heaters or fireplaces that don’t only supple clean heat but also enhance our indoor decor. If you decide to buy a propane heater, you should know where you need to use it, indoors or outdoors.

Oil Heating Systems

delonghi-hmp1500-mica-panel-heaterOil heating has a very long history. It used to be very popular as the only choice for home heating. Even today, in some areas, it remains the only choice available for home heating. The operating costs fluctuate as the oil prices fluctuate. Therefore, if oil prices are high, oil heating may be more expensive. On the market, there are many different oil burning heating appliances which are different from sizes and shapes. You can choose a large furnace, fireplace or room space heater. And just remember the installation also needs to be completed by a professional.

Hot Water (Baseboard) Heating

fahrenheat-fbe15002-electric-baseboard-1000-wattHot water radiator r baseboard heating uses a boiler system and can have a network of hot water radiators in your house. Hot water heater is more cost effective and such a heating system is often installed when the house is being constructed. They have been improved in recent years both for efficiency and installation process. Of course, the initial cost may be a little high, but it is also great for some homes.

There is another type of hot water heating systems. This system has a wood-burning boiler furnace outdoors and the boiler is connected to pipes in the home. Water is heated in the boiler and transferred to your home via piping. Of course, this system is simple and needs plenty of wood as the fuel and you need to have enough outdoor space. And make sure the local codes permit you to do that. This type of hot water heating system is perfect for heating in rural areas, because other fuels are not easy to obtain or expensive.

Geothermal Heating Systems

geothermal-heating-systemsGeothermal heating is regarded as one of the cleanest heating sources. It uses a special technology to harness terrestrial heat below our earth.

Multifunction Cooling/Heaing Systems

multifunction-cooling-heaing-systemsFor people who live in a hot climate, multi-function systems that combine cooling with heater would be the perfect choices, because this can help reap the cost saves maximally. They come in whole home central systems and portable multi-function systems.

Outdoor Portable Gas Heaters

Brookstone-Deluxe-Propane-Patio-HeaterSometimes, besides your existing heating system, you may need some supplemental heaters because of their super portability. Portable gas heaters may use gas, propane, kerosene or oil and they are designed for outdoor use. Therefore, they are perfect for construction sites or camping. Of course, there are many outdoor propane heaters which are very popular as a heating source to heat decks, pools or patios.

 

 

Heating With Wood

wood-heating-systemIf fossil fuels or electricity are not easy to access, wood becomes the best choice. Wood heater is a cost-efficient way to heat your room or home. No matter it is a fireplace, furnace, or a pellet stove, wood heater is practical. However, the supply of wood is very important. Other factors like stove maintenance, safety guidelines also need to be considered. And it can be used as a supplemental heating source, resulting in reduce the overall cost of heating your home.

Top 3 Types Of Space Heaters

space heaterIf you only need to warm up a single room but don’t want to heat up your whole house, you can choose a space heater. And this can save energy for you, because if you turn up the thermostat of your center heating system, it is a waste of money. Once you have a space heater, you will find its portability is one of its obvious advantages.

They are small and portable, so you can place them almost anywhere in your house. However, don’t place them near flammable materials. Of course, they cannot replace center heating systems. However, as supplemental heat sources, they are helpful to reduce your energy bill. Of course, they need energy but they can help to reduce energy consumed by your center heat systems, because you can let them work together but turn down the thermostat of your center heat system. In a word, they can result in a decrease in your energy bill.

On the market, there are 3 main types of space heaters, including radiant, convection and combination heaters. The prices vary from $25 to $200 or more. If you need to buy your room a space heater, something must be taken into account. You need to consider which type is suitable and where you use it.

Generally, radiant is perfect for those who only need to warm up an area or zone very quickly. However, if you need to warm up a whole room of your house, you can consider a convection heater which will perform better. However, if you need a heater that can stand up to abuse and everyday use, obviously a combination heater is the best choice.

Another thing you need to take into account is the amount of heat you need it to put out. Generally, most space heaters have a power between 600 and 1,500 watts. The greater the power is, the more heat the heater can produce, and your space can be warmed up faster.

However, you also need to calculate how much you need to pay for your energy bill. You also need to know how long you need your heater to run every day. For example, if you need your heater to run for 6 hours per day, this means every day you need to pay for about $0.6. It will cost you about $16 per month. Therefore, the result is not bad, because you can save more electricity or gas that is used to heat your whole house.

Before making a buying decision, you need to know the specific size of your room you need to heat and how long you need to run. On the market, there are 3 main types to add your desired heat to your room. Which type to choose depends on your requirements and conditions. Let’s discuss them one by one in the following:

Convection Heaters

econo-heat-0603-e-heater-whiteThey tend to feature a unique design and they can warm the air but not people. As the hot air warmed by the heater rises to the ceiling, the cold or cool air falls to the floor and then the cool air will be warmed. This circulation will finally make the whole room warm and comfortable. Convection heaters also come in many types, like baseboard heaters, water-filled heaters, or oil-filled heaters. The oil- or water-filled convection heaters are considered as the most efficient convection heaters so far.

Radiant Heaters

zone-heatersSometimes, we don’t need to heat a whole room but objects and people, so radiant heaters can really help. They don’t heat the air in the room, so there is no convection. These radiant heaters only warm people or something sitting in front of it. If you need to heat much faster, they can do the job. However, you also need to pay attention to potential dangers. If pets or people get too close to the heater, it can burn people and pets. And if the combustible or flammable materials are too close to a radiant heater, it may cause a fire threat. Therefore, when using them, just be more careful.

Combination Heaters

Combination heaters use a fan to distribute heat, but they are not efficient as convection heaters. However, they combine the advantages of radiant and Convection Theater, so they offer the best of those 2 types of heaters. You can use it anywhere in your home.

Electric space heaters are very energy-efficient. Generally, they use every unit of electricity and can produce 1 unit of heat. Therefore, the are almost 100% energy efficient.

What are Zone Heaters? – Definition and Uses

zone-heatersWhat are zone heaters? Actually, they are certain heaters that are designed to heater certain rooms and spaces which are referred to as “zones”. On the market, they come in different designs and technologies, including small and portable infrared or radiant heaters, and ductless split wall-mounted heaters.

They are different from center heating systems and only concentrate heater to a certain small spaces, usually where the family gathers together. You can buy your family several zone heaters. That is OK. Why? This is because the running center heating system is very high and zone heaters can help reduce your heating expense. Home center heating systems can heat up a whole house or room. However, this is a waste of energy. Sometimes, we only need to heat in a small area. Therefore, a zone heater is enough to make us warm and comfortable.

Dislike ductless split systems that must hire professional to install, the portability of a zone heater is also obvious. You can locate your zone heaters where you like or need.

When it comes to energy efficiency, this depends on the efficiency of the zone heater, the technology the heater uses, how long it runs, how it was installed and climate conditions. However, some energy savings should be realized when one room or area is kept warm and comfortable and the main heating systems should be turned down.

On the market, there are a variety of zone heaters. The prices vary from $20 to $200 or more. For the best performance and energy efficiency, the capacity depends on the main room that needs to be heated. If you are looking for the best zone heater, you can read our heater reviews:

You also can read this article to learn more about electric heaters:

Different Types of Electric Heaters for Home

How Do Home Electric Heaters Work

The answer is resistance. Actually, electric heaters take the use of resistance to work through. Under applied voltages, electrical current is driven to flow through the heater’s heating element. And then electrical resistance happens at the heating element that heats up finally. Of course, electric heaters require an electrical circuit of 120v or 240v and this depends on the size of the heater you have and the size of the room you need to heat.

Infrared Heaters

Optimus-H-5511-Infrared-Quartz-RadiantElectrical heaters work by radiant or convection heat. By using the natural law, convection heat can make hot air rise and it relies on natural convection to move the hot air around the room to warm the room. However, radiant or infrared heaters works differently. It doesn’t heat the air but heats objects directly. You may know that infrared has an obvious diffraction effect, so it can bypass the air and directly work on large objects.

This is very important, because this determines where your electric heater can be located. If you have a convection heater, the ideal location is near the floor level. This is because it will heat the cold air near the floor. However, a radiant heater can be located at the ceiling or floor level, because it directly heats objects like the floor, tub or room occupants, etc.

On the market, there are several types of electric heaters, including:

  • Wall heaters
  • Baseboard heaters
  • Toe-kick heaters
  • Cove or panel heaters

And we will discuss them one by one in the following.

Electric Wall Heaters

electric-wall-heatersWall heaters can be used as supplemental heat in smaller rooms. For example, a bath room really needs a wall heater in cold seasons. Most of them are a convection heater and they are installed in the wall cavity, becoming one part of your wall. Therefore, they will not stick out, saving much space for you. Some of them can be radiant heaters that use electric coils to heat up and back panel to reflect heat to the room. Most of them are self-contained and include built-in thermostats.

Of course, it is not allowed to install them in exterior walls, because they are not compatible with exterior insulation and you will also encounter the condensation problems because the hot metal in a cold exterior wall tends to condense easily.

Electric Baseboard Heaters

fahrenheat-fbe15002-electric-baseboard-1000-wattElectric baseboard heaters are similar to hydroponic baseboard heaters, but the difference is that they use electric heating coils for convection heating. And they don’t use any motorized method to convect heat. Because they don’t have room for motorized cooling, they only take the use of mother nature to move hot air. Because of convection, hot air rise and cold air is drawn to the bottom to be warmed by its heating elements. Cool or cold air is drawn into its bottom slots and the warm air is released from its top slots. Generally, they are placed beneath windows, because this can counter heat loss through the window glass. Most models offer an integrated thermostat control, while others may come with a remote line voltage thermostat to control the heater. To make it perform better, the unit should be kept clear of drapes and there is no furniture in front of them.

Electric Toe-kick Heaters

qts1500t-instant-cabinet-kickspace-thermostatElectric toe-kick heaters are designed for limited space applications because of their low profile. Because of their 3.5″ bodies, they can fit in a 4″ toe space under vanities and cabinets. And they can use a fan to distribute warm air thanks to their proportions. You can use them as a supplemental heat source for best performance. A built-in thermostat or a remote line voltage thermostat may be included. Therefore, you can choose your desired type of thermostats.

Electric Cove Heaters

electric-cove-heatersIf you prefer to the maximum comfort an electric heater can offer, you can choose an electric cover heater which uses direct radiant (infrared) heat. Because infrared (radiant) heat only warm objects, tub, your tile work and you rather than the air, you will receive maximum comfort. You can place a cover heater anywhere you like, like below the ceiling or on the wall, making it convenient to use.

What is a Chimenea?

chimeneaChimenea is also spelled as chiminea, pronounced che-meh-NEH-yah. In Spanish, it means chimney. You may see Mexican chimeneas at marketplaces for sale and you also can see them at tourist sites in Arizona, California and other western states. Generally, Mexican chimeneas are hand-decorated terracotta outdoor fireplaces that are very charming. A chimenea can be used as a functional fire feature in your outdoor space, while some use them as garden art or accent pieces on their patio for that Southwestern or rustic look. Chimeneas have a long history, not only used as a decorative fashion statement in recent years.

Chimenea History

Its origins can at least go back to the 16th or 17th century. In some small Mexican villages, chefs tended to use chimeneas to cook vessels, while families gather near chimeneas for warmth. Therefore, they were useful for both cooking and warmth, not only as a fireplace. Generally, a traditional chimenea was made of clay and has a wide bottom vase form, a narrow chimney in the vertical direction. The wide mouth is perfect for the fire pit, while the vertical chimney can direct smoke. The vase form design of chimeneas make they can be used even in the rain, because the water cannot extinguish the flame in the bottom.

Basically, a chimenea is similar to an old-fashioned, wood-burning potbelly stove that is made of cast-iron. In some Eastern European countries, people would like to use a similar type of stove, called a kotao to cook many delicious dishes. Of course, such stove is also wood-burning stove. People place large cooking pans on the kotao to cook foods. A chiminea is not so wide and is contained, compared with an open fire pit. When it comes to choosing the wood-burning materials, you can choose some aromatic woods, like pinewood, mesquite, hickory, or cedar. When the smoke is blew up and out, you will smell the fragrance. After igniting wood-burning materials, chimeneas can give off a lot of heat in 15 minutes. Similar to other outdoor fireplace or wood-burning outdoor fire pits, the fire also can be controlled.

Buying Guides

On the market, there are many chimenea. Before making a buying decision, forget those fancy features, like lovely flowers, or Spanish motifs. And the following tips can really help you make a wise decision.

  • Overall design and shape: Is its chimney or funnel too thin or thick? It is crooked?
  • What are they made of: The traditional chimeneas are made of terracotta or clay. However, modern chimeneas are made of other materials, like cast aluminum, steel, cast iron, or copper.
  • Enough space to fit standard pieces of wood. If the inner space is smaller, you cannot put in these standard-size pieces of wood but need to chop or just buying chunks, chips or smaller pieces of wood.
  • Where do you live in? Some zones may ban indoor or outdoor wood-burning fireplaces. If this is true, you can buy a chimenea that runs propane or gas.

Where to Place?

If you want to find a place to locate your chimenea, the location you choose should be safe and you can see the flames easily in your house. Therefore, the ideal places can be a courtyard, deck, patio, etc. If you want to make your chimenea work more effectively, make sure its back faces a wind. This may be a little difficult, sometimes. Of course, to make it work properly, its chimney should be set up vertical and straight.

The surface you put your chimenea should also be solid. Brick, concrete or stone patios are perfect choices.

How to care for your chimenea?

Because chimeneas are made of clay, they are heavy and prone to cracking. Therefore, you need to care for your chimenea on a regular basis. Once you buy a new chimenea, before using, you need to apply a sealer or acrylic finish. And during seasons of use, you need to do this job every 6 to 8 weeks. The acrylic finish can protect your chimenea from moisture and water, because it can soften the clay. Therefore, the acrylic finish can prevent your chimenea from cracking or falling apart. In rainy seasons, it is highly recommended to store your chimenea as well as other patio furnishings in a garage, shed or basement.

Where to Buy

On the market, there are so many different chimeneas and sometimes it is really difficult to choose, especially if you are the first time to buy a chimenea. Fortunately, we have made a list of top 5 best chimeneas for you to choose from. And our chimenea reviews can help you find your right model.

How to Warm Up Your Patio (Backyard heating)

fire-featureChoosing a Fire Feature for Your Yard

If you want to extend the time you spend outdoors, especially in cold seasons, from hours to months, you need to add a fire feature to your deck, patio or backyard. You will get a focal point, as well as a comfortable place around which to relax, entertain, gather and enjoy your time outdoors. I think this is so great. Family members or friends will have a good place to spend leisure time.

You can choose a fire pit or other ways to warm up your backyard, but different ways vary in price. Or course, if you want a pit or hearth that is custom-designed with elaborate materials and features, you will pay much more than directly buying a simple chimenea or fire pit which only costs about $100 or less.

If you choose fuels to warm up your outdoor space, you also need to pay attention to your local wood-burning codes and laws. Therefore, you need to check with your country or city for details. You also can choose gas or butane, because it is more eco-friendly to our environment. However, you need to hire a professional to hook it up.

If you want to spend more time outdoors, the following ideas can help you find the right way to warm up your outdoor space, ensuring you have a warm space to enjoy your leisure time.

Fire Pit

fire-pitThanks to their ease of use, low cost and portability, fire pits are one of the most popular ways to add fire feature to your outdoor space. Traditional fire pits are designed to be low to the ground. You can built one or just buy one, because there are many fire pits available on the market, which are different from sizes, shapes and materials. The most popular fire pit is the wood-burning fire pit. However, if you need an environmental choice, you can choose fire pits which are fueled by gas or propane. They are a much greener choice. Of course, you also need to pay attention to the local laws or codes, because some regions ban.

Outdoor Fireplaces

outdoor-fireplace1An Outdoor fireplace is really a focal point for your garden or backyard. What’s more, it also means a sense of permanence. Near an outdoor fireplace, you and a low table and some outdoor seating, and you will get a perfect outdoor room. Such a fireplace can be a DIY project or you can purchase a prefab unit directly. Spend time and so some research and you will get the best results. There are many types of materials, like concrete, metal, stone, or brick and fuel can be wood or gas.

The location is also very important. You can think about shrubs, low-hanging trees, and near structures. The last thing you need to pay attention is that the wind should not blow smoke in your neighbor’s garden or yard.

Chimineas

chimineasIf you don’t want to pay much for a fire feature, you can consider buying a chiminea which is an affordable fire feature. Generally, they are made of metal or clay. The one you choose should be sturdy and comes with a spark screen. If you need to vent the smoke, chimney extensions should be included. For example, if you play a chiminea on a porch or patio, you need to vent the smoke.

Hot Tubs and Spas

hot-tubs-and-spasGenerally, hot tubs can offer you a temperature of 104 degrees F. Imagine just outside on the deck or patio, the bubbling tub is waiting for you. This is cool in cold winters. Even if it is snowing outside, a hot tub or spa can warm you up quickly and make you feel relaxed after a whole day’s work. You sore muscles can be relaxed. Well, when you want to exit, make sure you have a towel, slippers and a warm robe nearby. Or you will easily get cold.

Heated Floors

outdoor-patio-flooring-woodIf you want to extend the season of your patio or deck, radiant heating is a perfect choice. With it, your patio or deck will be heated. Even if it is cold, the heated floor can warm you up. And your children can have a good place to play.

Similar to an indoor application, radiant heating becomes more and more popular. The heating system is able to warm up your decks and patios. And you even can use it to melt snow. However, you need to hire a professional to install the system.

Outdoor Kitchen

outdoor-kitchenIf you have an outdoor kitchen, you can make your outdoor kitchen you want to be even on a chilly day. You can use your brick pizza oven, a grill other outdoor cooking appliances that can heat up things quickly. And your guests will be attracted by the delicious aromas of food cooking. Neighbors will be attracted to hang out on the patio.

Patio Heaters

Aura-Patio-Plus-Weatherproof-Radian-Electric-Patio-Heater-300x199Another way you use to heat your patio is to use a portable patio heater which doesn’t take up much space and is usually fueled by gas or propane. Generally, such a patio heater can heat up an area of less than 25 square feet. They are easy to see on the patio of restaurants. Of course, they are also suitable for your patio.

Outdoor Rugs and Blankets

outdoor-rugsWhile a rug is not a heating source, it doesn’t offer the same amount of heat as a patio heater or a fire pit. However, such a rug and blanket can make your deck or patio cozier. Add a rug or blanket, or throw and snuggle with your partner, you will forget the cold.

A Warm Friend and Hot Beverages

coffee-teaIf it is very cold outside, you also can grab your favorite animal (like a dog or cat) or person, and then cuddle one the patio or porch. If there is no other heating resource, you should dress warmly. Having a rug or blanket is also a good choice. And then you need a delicious, hot cup of coffee, tea or other hot beverages.

How to Manage Kitchen Waste

kitchen-wasteEvery day, we produce a lot of waste in the kitchen or in the house. Well, how to reduce the overall amount of trash which goes to the landfill site? There are several ways to achieve this goal. The most budget-minded and practical way is to recycle these waste. You can compost vegetable, as well as other matters, and then the rich compound can be used to boost your plant, flower or just garden plot soil. This means you even don’t need to buy fertilizer for your plants. Just a simple recycling effort can result in a better garden harvest. All the fertilizer you make is green.

Another common way may take some time. This method is to recycle anything that can be donated, re-worked and re-used. This method also means we will get large environmental benefits if we stick to these green initiatives. Of course, if you do this, your overall curb trash can be drastically reduced.

Although these methods are worthwhile and should stick to, with the help of some garbage reducing appliances, the effect of reducing the amount of trash can be enhanced. This can maximize the trash reducing effects. These garbage reducing appliances can help you eliminate the use of garbage bags that you may need to use several a month. Maybe you are tired of taking out many trash bags. And this doesn’t only mean you can save on bag fees but also save you time. In a word, these appliances can make your life much easier and more efficient.

Garbage Food Disposal

Garbage food disposal units are installed under the sink and are also called as food waste disposers. Actually, it is a small grinding system and works unnoticed. It can crush vegetable matter, meat bones and other food matters which go down the drain.

A connection between your garbage disposal and the kitchen drain is necessary and an electric hook-up is also needed. If you need to buy, such a kitchen appliance may cost you from $100 up. The most popular models will cost you more than $200. However, the installation is a little complicated, so other factors also need to be considered before making a buying decision.

Trash Compactor

On the market, trash compactors are also known as garbage compactors and they come in 2 types. You can choose a freestanding unit, but most of them are designed to install under the counter in your kitchen, close to your sink area. Freestanding models are easy to set up, while a certain amount of installation is required for units installed under the counter. Of course, an electrical outlet should be near it.

Compared with food disposers, they are a little expensive. However, they can effectively reduce the overall amount of trash, because of their high compact ratio. Most of them feature a compact ratio from 4:1 to 6:1. For example, if you choose a unit with a ratio of 6:1, this means it is a large unit and is able to compact six bags of trash into one bag that goes to your curb. However, this also means it is 6 times heavier as a normal garbage bag. This also needs to be considered, if the lift is a burden for you.

Garbage Disposer VS Trash Compactor

Both of them can help you effectively reduce the overall household trash. A compactor is the more efficient and it can dramatically reduce the use of garbage bags, saving some money for you. However, they are more expensive than garbage disposers. Therefore, when it is time to choose between them, the first consideration is your budget. Of course, installation constraints are also needed to be taken into account. And the last factor is that how much you want to reduce the amount of trash.

Of course, you can choose to install them together and combine their use, so that your household waste can be managed better. For example, you can install a garbage disposer in your kitchen, while have a freestanding trash compactor in your garage. The disposer is used to grind vegetable matter, bones and other food matters, while the compactor is used to crush glasses, cans and other waste. Both of them can really help you manage your waste much better, reducing overall landfill garbage. If you use any of them, you will make a great contribution to the environment protection.

If you are interested in this subject, we also find many related posts for you.

Page 6 of 36« First...45678...2030...Last »