When economic times are tight, we begin looking at what costs we can control, and a single cost that may escape control, with fluctuating fossil fuel costs, is heating our homes. To cut costs, more people are considering alternative heat sources, and wood pellet fireplaces are just one potential remedy to this high-price issue.
Wood pellet fireplaces are capable of burning a variety of materials — often the byproducts of sawmills — that are formed into small, dense pellets, which burn very effectively.
Are you contemplating heating your house with a wood pellet fireplace? Keep reading to learn about ten things you may want to know prior to making your purchase.
Wood pellet fireplaces are highly common heating apparatus in Europe, and they are growing in popularity at the U.S., too. As of 2011, you’ll find over 80 pellet mills in North America, producing more than 1 million tons of pellets a year [origin: Biomass-Events. com].
One benefit of those fireplaces is that they can burn many different materials. When some models burn only pellets made from sawdust, wood, bark and other wood stuff, other versions allow you to burn a vast array of biofuels, such as corn kernels, soybeans, nutshells, barley, dried cherry pits, beet pulp, wheat, and sunflowers.
This flexibility lets you find the most affordable, highest-quality fuel available from local sources — only one eco-friendly benefit of those heaters.
Some customers are installing wood pellet fireplaces because they simply need to spend less on home heatingsystem. Others may enjoy the cost savings but are even more excited about the eco-friendly character of pellet fuel. Pellets and other biofuels are renewable sources, so they offer you a lot greener way than burning nonrenewable fuels like oil, coal or gas.
Burning biofuels can be carbon-neutral, therefore using wood pellet fireplaces implies you won’t be adding to greenhouse gas impacts as you want fossil fuels. Some experts think that the utilization of wood pellet fireplaces results in the elimination of 75 percent of carbon emissions which would be due to fossil fuel heating.
Therefore, you can’t just save cash with wood pellet fireplaces however do your part for the environment, too.
Type of fuel
You want to research the cost and availability of different kinds of pellet fuel — wood pellets (premium and standard grade), corn pellets, etc in your area since these variables will radically impact your choice of stove and the expense of conducting it. In certain areas, pellets are not cheap. In New York state, as an instance, a standard-size bag of pellets can charge anywhere from $4.50 to $8, depending upon the provider, and be consumed in only 10 hours even at reduced setting. Know where you can get pellets locally and at what cost before you take the plunge with a specific stove. If you think the annual cost might be too great for a wood pellet stove, consider alternatives like a multi-fuel pellet stove or an ordinary wood stove. Heizomat Canada | Fully Automated Woodchip Heating
Operation and maintenance
Pellet stoves are not short of moving parts, motors, and electric and electronic gadgetry, so inevitably they need regular maintenance and servicing. Look for a version that gives easy access to regions that require checking and maintaining. By way of example, on some models, the heat exchanger may be cleaned by simply transferring an outside pole handle back and forth, while other designs require a more elaborate cleaning procedure. Professional servicing at least one time each year is a great idea, so think about taking a service contract. Discover more about pellet stove maintenance.
Remember you have to take out the ashes about once weekly with continuous use. An easy-to-manage, large-capacity ash drawer makes cleanup easier. Hopper capacity, which can vary from approximately 35 pounds to 130 pounds, is yet another significant factor. Just how much capacity you need is dependent upon your heating requirements, but you don’t want to be meeting the hopper more than once each day during normal use. Find out more about how to operate a pellet stove.
Top or bottom feed?
Some pellet stoves feed pellets down a chute in the hopper, but others deliver the fuel from behind or to the side of the burn box. You need to take into account the pros and cons of each type. A top-fed stove cuts the chances of fire burning back into the hopper but is much more likely to have its burn region clogged with ash and clinkers. This is the reason why many manufacturers of top-fed models recommend burning high quality, low-ash pellets. Bottom-fed models don’t have exactly the exact same need for superior fuel because the ash and clinkers are pushed into the ash pan during fuel delivery; on the other hand, they may not be quite as efficient. Check individual version specs before choosing which way to go.
Look and style
Not surprisingly, there is a big option readily available from the outside design of noodle range from slick contemporary to ornate, old-world. More importantly, there is a range of different styles, such as freestanding units, fireplace inserts, and pellet-fueled furnaces and boilers that can take the place of, or nutritional supplement, traditional forced-air heating methods.
Most pellet stoves generate a small, fire that’s concentrated at the center of the unit instead of visually striking. If you’d like a fire that is pretty to look at, you need to only out stoves which have a fantastic flame pattern and a large glass. Some stoves allow using ceramic log-look-a-likes which help spread the fires out and give the fire a more conventional, heart-warming in addition to heart-warming look.
Other characteristics to consider
How simple do desire your pellet stove to be to clean and preserve? Just how much of the cooker’s operation do you want to be automatic? Though some people like a mostly hands-off strategy, others benefit from multiplying their fire.
Stoves with manual controllers may need occasional modification of air inlet dampers since the rate of fuel feed is changed. Models with more complex (and expensive) controls can track burn conditions and make these adjustments automatically. Other attributes may include automated ignition for a simple, reliable startup (a larger advantage in the case of stoves that are very likely to be utilized ( rather than continuously) and an air wash system for keeping the glass clean from directing warm air within it during combustion.