With the flaring economy and cost of energy becoming a rising concern, many homeowners, today, are considering alternative fuel option to heat their home. Amongst the options available, pellet stoves seem to be a sure winner. A pellet stove feeds on compressed wood or biomass pellets to create a source of heat for residential and sometimes industrial spaces. Pellet stoves resemble fireplace inserts, but the similarity just ends there. Pellet stoves use small pellets made from recycled wood shavings, sawdust, or corn, instead of fire logs, to produce heat. On the flipside, pellet stoves are complex since they run on electricity and come wired with gadgets and wires and need heavy maintenance. So, before buying a pellet stove for your living space, pause to consider options like size of the stove, quality, affordability, style and convenience. Here is a detailed list of thing to consider at the time of buying a pellet stove. Read on to get effective tips.
Tips For Buying Pellet Stoves
Size Of Stove
It is best to check out for the heat output range and efficiency of your pellet stoves, before buying one. Normally, most pellet stoves have an output range of a few thousand to 40,000 BTU or more, and an overall efficiency of 75 to 90%, which may however, differ from one model to another. Consider factors like your purpose, the size and layout of your house, heating system of your home and your comfort temperature before making a deal. The best way to make a smart decision is to make a note of all the details of all the possibilities and preferences and discuss them with a knowledgeable and trustworthy dealer.
Type Of Fuel
Pellet stoves run on fuel. So before making your pick, do not forget to consider the many fuel options for your stove. Considering fuel option will go a long way in determining your choice and cost of mantainence of pellet stoves. Also consider the accessibility and affordability of your pellets before making your call, since some pellets may not be found locally. You can choose between wood pellets, corn pellets, multi-fuel pellet or ordinary wood stove.
Operation & Maintenance
Since pellet stoves are all crammed up with motors, electronic gadgets, moving parts, they need more maintenance than the regular stoves. You need to pick a stove that is low on maintenance and high on efficiency. Look out for models that are easy to clean and need yearly servicing. You can hire service contract to meet your maintenance needs. However, it is important to clean the ashes weekly. An easy-to-manage, large-capacity ash drawer will only ease your cleaning efforts.
Top Or Bottom Feed?
Some pellet stoves feed pellets down a chute from the hopper, while others deliver the fuel from behind or to the side of the burn box. Before you buy your stove, it is best to stop and consider the pros and cons of each type. A top-fed stove reduces the risk of fire burning back into the hopper, but is more likely to have its burn area clogged with ash and clinkers. On the other hand, bottom-fed models need just ash and clinkers to go on and on but lack the efficiency as compared to the top-feed models.
Appearance & Style
Not surprisingly, there is a big choice available in external design of pellet stove from sleek modern to ornate to olde-worlde. More significantly, there's a range of functionally different styles, including freestanding units, fireplace inserts, and pellet-fueled furnaces and boilers that can take the place of or supplement conventional forced-air heating systems. If you wish to own a stylish stove, consider buying stoves that have a good flame pattern and a large viewing glass. You can also opt for ceramic log-lookalikes that help spread out the flames and give the fire a more traditional, heartwarming appearance.
You get what you pay and this stands true for pellet stoves too! Quality is indeed a crucial factor to consider, before buying a pellet stove. Look out for pellet stoves that are well-built, with heavy-duty construction and components. Metal sheet covered pellet stoves rust away easily. A quality investment will make sure your pellet stove lasts longer.
Last but not the least; consider the cost expenditure of your pellet stove. You may need to pay for your pellet stove and most of the time, its installation too. When comparing the total cost of installing a pellet stove with that of an ordinary wood stove, bear in mind that pellet stoves need only a vent pipe unlike the costly conventional chimney required by wood stoves. Also remember to count in fuel cost and maintenance cost, before you close the deal.