Alternative Heating: Pellet Stoves

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The home heating world is abuzz with the introduction of the pellet stove. Pellet stoves are more efficient and have fewer particle emissions than the wood burning stove alternative. But what exactly are pellet stoves? Pellet stoves are stoves that burn either compressed wood or biomass pellets to create heat for residential spaces. Pellet stoves require very little maintenance, they are fed fuel from a storage hopper at the back of the stove and have a constant flame that requires no adjustments. Although pellet stoves have their drawbacks. Many pellet stoves rely on electricity and pellets can sometimes be difficult to source. Although pellet stoves are very efficient as they produce more heat and the pellets are produced from byproducts of the wood milling process. But what sort of pellet stoves are available and what sort would be best suited to my house? homify has done the research for you. Here are the top considerations.

Consider the Right Stove for You

When considering the idea of purchasing a pellet stove there are many considerations to be made. Choosing a pellet stove can be tricky. One of the biggest considerations to make is the size of the stove. The size of the stove must be made in relation to the size of the room it will be located, although the heat output should also be a consideration. If the heat output is too small for the space, the area will not get warm enough. If the heat output is too high, the area will become uncomfortably warm. Heat output range is measured in BTUs [British Thermal Units]. For a pellet stove the heat output range is between 8,000 and 90,000 per hour. When choosing a stove consider the size of the room that the stove will be required to heat, and any other variables such as the room location, home insulation and any other forms of heating are in the house.

Types of Pellet Stoves

There are many types of pellet stoves available, from the ultra modern sleek look to the traditional heavy iron stoves. They vary widely in their functions and their appearance. Some are freestanding stoves whilst others are inserts that can be built in to existing fireplacese. If appearance is important, consider a stove with a good flame pattern to create a more traditional appearance. Many stoves require electricity to run their motors. These will then need to be located close to an electrical outlet. One of the main differences between stoves is whether they have a bottom or top feed. The top feed has the fuel hopper at the back or side, reducing the possibility of fuel burn back. Bottom feed stoves have a horizontal hopper which moves fuel horizontally into the stove. This system allows ash to fall into the ash pan making it easier to clean. Talk to a pellet stove expert to find the best stove for you. This stove is made by MaisonFire

How will it be Installed

There are several considerations to make when installing a pellet stove into a home. The type of stove chosen will often dictate the process and place of installation. A freestanding stove should be placed in an open area so the heat can move freely around the space. Stove inserts are usually placed into an existing fireplace. They can also be installed into a corner or a blank wall. All pellet stoves use a draft inducing fan to supply air to the fire, for this reason they will require a vent to remove the gasses. The type of vent will depend on the type of house. When installing any pellet stove it is important for it to be installed by a qualified person according to the  manufacturers specifications.

Tricks to Know for a Better Performance

To get the best performance from your pellet stove it is important to use the best quality pellets. Pellet quality can vary greatly and it is important to know what works best in your stove. Some pellets have qualities that make them burn more effectively and for longer. There are two basic standards of pellets; premium and standard. The main difference is the inorganic ash content. This choice can be dependent on the type of stove you have. Pellet stoves designed for pellets with low ash will not operate as effectively if used with pellets with a high ash content. Consult the manufacturer for more information on the best pellets for your stove. You can also check pellet quality by inspecting the bag for dirt and dust, these can damage the stove.For more information on pellet stoves see Castelmonte RSL

The Costs

The cost involved in purchasing a pellet stove can be high, this includes the stove and also the ongoing cost of the pellets. The initial cost of a stove can vary  from $1,700 – $3,000 {$US}. There are a huge variety of stoves available, and as such the costs can vary enormously. Pellet fuels are becoming easier to access. They are sold in 18kg bags which range from $3-4 {$US}. Pellets are usually ordered by the tonne for an entire years supply. Most households use between two and three tonnes of pellets in one year. There may also be the additional cost of installation of the stove.  This will vary from place to place and between different stoves. If a vent is required, this may incur additional charges for installation. It is worth considering these cost when deciding on a pellet stove in your home.


The maintenance of a pellet stove is very important, but is also relatively easy. Be sure to regularly clean your stove. This includes the burn pot, ash drawer, the heater exchange and the glass. This will ensure that your stove will not only appear clean, but will operate effectively. Ensure that you inspect the hopper every time you add new pellets. Check that there is no blockage caused by sawdust or other material. Pellet stoves require regular servicing to maintain proper working order. At least once a year arrange to have your stove serviced by a qualified technician. They will clean the pipes, venting system and ash traps to ensure that the stove is running safely.

A pellet stove is fast becoming one of the most environmentally friendly ways of heating a house. It produces heat more effectively and has fewer particle emissions. A pellet stove can be as attractive as a wood fired stove with the added benefit of being easier to maintain and cheaper to run. There are many types of pellet stoves to choose, from the traditional iron stoves to the ultra modern sleek versions. Consider the size, style and requirements of your house when considering a pellet stove. For more information on pellet stoves see Maisonfire.

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