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What about a Pellet Stoves vs. a wood stove?

An alternative to a regular wood stove is wood pellet stoves. Bags of pellets come in 40 or 50 pound bags. Pellet Stoves can use from one to three tons in a winter to heat a residence. Wood pellets have been in use commercially for a long time and are available from a variety of stores in the Vancouver area. Nowadays this is worth consideration as firewood becomes more expensive and less commonly available.

Pros & Cons of Pellet Stoves (From someone familiar with both, me!)

The 2 best things about a pellet stove are they are clean and very convenient to use. Nice clean bags of pellets poured into the hopper could last for a considerable period of time without the need to seemingly constantly be poking and adding firewood to a wood stove. This is not to mention the bark, moss and bugs that inevitably get hauled into the house along with the firewood.
The 2 big cons of a pellet stove is they do not work when the power goes out and the heat they put out is just not the same as that form a wood stove. The first, no power, no heat is pretty easy to explain. Electricity is required to drive the fans and motors used to feed the pellets into the burn pot. This second one, regarding the heat is a bit more difficult to explain, but trust me it's true! If you've ever been around a wood burning stove, you'll understand that the heat generated will warm you deep into your bones. It's a radiant heat that warms the hearth, the walls, the floor and everything in the area, including you. A deep penetrating heat that feels really good when you come in from the cold and wet. Pellet stoves just don't do that for you. They are more like a free standing heater, using pellets rather than electricity to heat coils. Then they blow the warm air around the room. Putting a kettle of water on top to add some moisture back into the air, like many of us do, doesn't do anything for you as they just don't get that warm. Don't get me wrong, they do work very well for heating, but don't expect "That warm feeling" you get with a wood stove. Oh and one more word of caution:

If you buy a pellet stove; Be certain to buy from a manufacturer that has been around a long time. My own first hand experience was a $1500 pellet stove which broke down & replacement parts were not available. The manufacturer had gone out of business and I had to pay to have someone haul it away...


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