More than a wood stove


                                                                                          Photo submitted
Lori and Grant Heithold are pictured with several 
Heatmor outdoor wood furnaces in the background.
By Shari Harris
Co-Publisher

For a quarter of a century, Heatmor outdoor furnaces have been sold in Licking. In 1995, Grant Heithold and Bob Sherrill bought Scott Material and moved their business, Main Street Paint and Hardware, to Hartville Road just outside of Licking. Heithold was interested in Heatmor as a means of heating the large Scott Material building and he began selling the units at that time as well.
Over those 25 years, Heithold has continued to sell the high end outdoor furnaces, but much of the rest of the business has changed. Bob Sherrill stepped out of the business in January of 2000 and the hardware side of Scott Material officially closed in January 2013. Today, Grant and his wife, Lori Heithold, operate Heatmor Midwest out of the Scott Material building. Grant Heithold is the Midwest distributor for Heatmor and MetalERG, selling retail units locally and wholesale units throughout Missouri and the Midwest to dealers. Lori Heithold works in the office and when dates of events overlap, she goes to shows or fairs. There are only five Heatmor distributors in North America including Canada. The multi-state area Heatmor Midwest covers goes from Wisconsin to Texas.
Despite the increased competition in the outdoor furnace market over the years, Heatmor maintains a higher quality than many of its competitors. Their longevity and higher resale value are partly due to their heavy gauge, stainless steel construction. A multi-part flue system came out in 2016 and improves the efficiency of the units. Another efficiency factor is a grate that allows the ash to be removed without the charcoal, which would waste fuel. The temperature of the fire is regulated with sensors and fans are used to increase or decrease the fire, keeping an even heat and extending the burning time of the wood. A water jacket surrounds the fire chamber and the fire is adjusted to keep the water between 160-180 degrees. This heated water travels into a home through water lines where it transfers its heat to be blown into the ductwork and throughout a home. Water heaters can be turned off in the winter as the units will also heat water for a home. These furnaces have come a long way from a potbellied wood stove.
 MetalERG has been in business in Europe for 50 years, but only came to the U.S. a couple of years ago. Their biomass boilers and furnaces offer an alternative to wood heat, an option which is very attractive where wood isn’t readily available. Bales of straw or any biomass can be burned for heat.
Grant and Lori hope to grow the number of MetalERG dealers in the Midwest, as well as continuing to grow the Heatmor dealer network. They share information about their products at the Iowa State Fair, the Missouri State Fair and other shows in their region. Heatmor Midwest also sell units locally. Grant will assess the needs for a home and recommend a unit. Though he does not install the units he sells, Heithold will recommend someone to do the installation.
If you want to know more about Heatmor or MetalERG’s alternatives to heating, you can reach Grant or Lori Heithold at 573-674-2636 or stop by 12405 Hartville Road between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, or Saturday by appointment only.

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