How do Pellet Stoves Compare to Wood Stoves?
Today’s wood stoves are excellent sources of heat for cold winter days, and pellet stoves are highly efficient options, as well. If you’re ready to install a supplemental heat source in your home, it helps to know the benefits of the different options. The following will fill you in on how to compare pellet stoves to wood stoves.
Modern Wood Stoves
Since the 1980s, the Environmental Protection Agency has imposed manufacturing regulations on wood stoves, and those standards have continued to tighten through the years. As a result, wood stoves are far more efficient and eco-friendly than the pot-bellied wood-burners of old.
What is a Pellet Stove?
Although the efficient appliances have been around since the 1930s, many people still need to ask, “What is a pellet stove?” Wood-burning pellet stoves are innovative appliances that provide a completely different option for enjoying warm wood fires in your home. Pellets are burned instead of logs, and the fuel is fed into the flames automatically via a hopper.
Wood Stove Advantages
The following are the areas in which wood stoves are considered to have an advantage over pellet stoves.
Firewood for wood stoves can be the least expensive type of fuel for home heating, though it can depend on convenience of access. Anyone with plenty of trees on their own property can harvest firewood at the cost of the sweat required to chop, haul, split, and stack the logs.
Pellets are about the size of bits of rabbit food. They are made out of wood waste, such as sawdust. The pellets are highly compressed and they burn incredibly clean, creating minimal ash. Pellets are purchased in 40-pound bags and can be neatly stacked in a dry area. Pellets are the most expensive type of fuel for a solid fuel burning appliance; exact cost depends on where you live and how far the fuel source must travel in shipment to you.
No electricity is needed to operate a wood stove. If the electricity goes out, you have a convenient source of heat, light, and cooking capabilities.
Pellet stoves require a small amount of electricity. To be ready for a potential blackout during a winter storm, you can have a back-up power source ready specifically for the purpose of keeping the fires burning in your pellet stove.
Wood stoves are almost like fireplaces, which are favorite amenities among homeowners everywhere. Although there is a door on a wood stove, you can get one with a glass door so that the pleasant flames can be observed as you warm by the stove.
Pellet stove flames are very intense. They don’t provide the same cozy ambiance as more natural-looking flames. The unique burning system involves keeping air on the flames and maintaining a concentrated fire.
Pellet Stove Advantages
The following are the areas in which pellet stoves are considered to have an advantage over wood stoves.
If you want to be as environmentally friendly as possible, a pellet stove is the best way to go. These remarkable appliances are virtually smokeless. In fact, EPA doesn’t monitor pellet stoves because they leave such a small footprint on the environment.
Wood stoves release between 2 and 7.5 grams of smoke into the atmosphere every hour, making the appliances much safer than in former times but unable to compete with pellet stoves.
Pellet stoves that are in proper operating condition don’t pose risks for your home because the flames are completely contained. There is no need to tend the fire because the heat is produced steadily and automatically as long as pellets are in the hopper.
The fires in wood stoves need to be tended. When the door is opened and logs are being added or prodded, sparks can fly. Additional risks are that wood logs can possibly be vehicles in which pests or molds enter the home.
Pellet stoves have efficiency ratings of about 83%, and wood stoves have efficiency levels of approximately 70%. More heat from your pellet stove means a better performance.
Pellet stoves are simple to maintain. All that is typically needed is to clean out the ashes, as needed, and ensure that motors and fans are working.
For wood stoves, annual chimney inspections are highly recommended. Creosote and soot deposits need to be cleaned from the chimney, and ashes need to be removed on a regular basis. Stoves that have catalytic combustors need to be inspected up to three times in one winter.
Still not sure whether to choose a pellet stove or a wood stove? We invite you to visit our showroom located at 857 Highway 36 (Milwaukee Avenue) in Burlington, WI. Our expert technicians will install your new appliance, ensuring that you enjoy the full benefits of your new wood-burning stove or pellet stove.