When you see winter coming, you have to do what a bear does. Gather all the needed resources then hibernate in your house where it’s warm and cozy. Speaking of warm, the only way to ensure you have an ample supply of heat is by using a pellet stove. Surprisingly, not many people are familiar with pellet stoves. They may have heard of it, but they don’t know what it entails. This causes a big problem when it’s finally winter, and they need to buy it. Where do they go? How do they know if it’s the right one?
Well, we can certainly help with the choosing part. Here is what you need to consider:
The first and most important part of all shopping is working within your budget. How much are you willing to spend to keep yourself and your family warm? Find a brochure or look up the prices of various pellet stoves then choose a price range that you feel will be appropriate. From there, it will be much easy to narrow down your options.
The Pellet Stove Size
There are two ways to look at the size. The first is all about the space you have in your living room or whichever part of your home you want to install the pellet stove. If it’s too bulky, it will take up too much space making it very uncomfortable to operate. A smaller version is more manageable, and it can be easily moved from one point to another or one room to another depending on where it is needed the most.
The Pellet Hopper
The other way to look at size is in regards to the hopper. A bigger hopper means higher consumption of pellets, while a smaller hopper means a lower consumption. Depending on how easily you can access the pellets, choose a size that you can comfortably manage. If you live alone, then you can probably use the smaller hopper since it will give you a comfortable time maintaining it, not forgetting saving you a lot of money.
The hopper size and heating range are directly correspondent. The bigger the hopper, the wider the heating range, and the smaller the hopper, the lower the range as well. If you have a family and you want to heat the living room for all of them comfortably, you will need a bigger pellet stove so that you can feed in a lot of pellets that will last for several hours. A pellet stove that can hold up to 15kgs of pellets will last you 30 hours on minimum power and about 10 hours on maximum power.
With a smaller pellet stove, the heating range is quite low, and you will have to refill it too frequently.
Type/Availability of Pellets
It will be pointless to invest in a pellet stove, yet you have no idea where and how to get your supply of pellets. Different stoves use different kinds of pellets. Using low-grade pellets with a high-end pellet stove is endangering your living situation. Make sure the pellets and the stove are on the same level. Wood pellets are usually the most common and best pellets to use. Wheat pellets are also available, but they are of low quality. The same goes for garbage pellets. Still, there are pellet stoves in the market that function with them effectively.
Insert Vs. Free-Standing
When shopping for a wood pellet stove, you can either choose the free-standing or the insert. If you already have a fireplace, but you don’t like how it works, and insert stove will serve you right. Just as its name suggests, you insert it into your fireplace, and it utilizes the existing chimney.
The free-standing is the opposite and much more independent, like its name clearly states. It is installed separately as a single unit and functions entirely on its own. It also comes with its exhaust system.
Speaking of the exhaust system, every combustion chamber needs an outlet. The question is, what type of exhaust system do you find suitable for your home? With the insert, you will have an easier time since it uses your default chimney. It’s much more complicated with the free-standing pellet stove. You have to decide whether you want a new exhaust system to be installed or find a way to connect it to your already-existing chimney. Failure to do so will cause the escape of toxic fumes into your home, and the health complications will be dire.
However, since emitting fumes is practically unavoidable, make sure the pellet stove emits it in the safest and most environmentally-friendly way. There have been significant concerns about the climate lately, with reports of massive global warming going up drastically. Your pellet stove should not be a danger to you, your family, and your neighbors. Make sure the one you choose burns efficiently, and little to no waste is left behind. After all, that is the main principle behind these stoves; to give you a reliable source of energy in an eco-friendly way.
Cleaning and Maintenance
A good pellet stove should be easy to clean and maintain. It is the small things like the ash pan and handles that will give you a comfortable time cleaning. Make sure the hopper is easily accessible, and the glass door from where you view the flame is easy to handle and clean. It should also be high quality so that it can withstand the heat for a very long time. The pellet stove should be simple for you to figure out what needs to replaced or repaired quickly.
As expected, some pellet stoves are known to produce a lot of noise when they are on. Even though the production of sound cannot be wholly done away with, it can be significantly reduced. A noisy stove is very irritating. Do your best to ensure that the pellet stove you buy is as quiet as your fridge or even quieter. One way to go about it is by considering the technology used to make it. Advanced technology translates to lower sound emissions.
As much as it is essential to keep warm during cold seasons, it is much more important to do it the right way. It is for your safety and the safety of everyone around you.