Everything You Need to Know About Pellet Stoves, Part 3
In part one of this series you learned that pellet stoves are significantly different than wood burning stoves. You discovered that they produce more heat with convenient operation and a low environmental impact. In part two, you found out why wood pellets are a cleaner, more efficient fuel than firewood. You also learned more about why pellet stoves are an eco-friendly home heating system.
Selecting & Installing a Pellet Stove
Pellet stoves come in a variety of styles and designs. The most important consideration when selecting a pellet stove is the size. Even on a low setting, a pellet stove that is too large for your home may be too hot. It would also use up unnecessary fuel and constant operation on its lowest setting is the least efficient way to operate a pellet stove. Each model lists the square footage that it will heat. Choose a pellet stove that is designed to heat your size home.
After selecting the right model for your home, you need to determine where to place it. Though pellet stoves do not use as much electricity as space heaters or an electric furnace, they do rely on electricity to operate. Your stove has to have a 110 volt AC electrical outlet available. You should choose a stove location where its heat will be able to circulate throughout the rest of your house.
You will also need an appropriate protective floor pad to place under your stove. It is necessary for your pellet stove to sit on a protective floor pad to prevent a potential fire and damage to your flooring from the heat.
All pellet stove manufacturers strongly that a factory trained, or a National Fireplace Institute certified professional install your stove. He/she will teach you about proper maintenance as well as ensure that your stove is vented correctly and placed in an optimal location. Pellet stoves also require complete and thorough cleaning to maintain their efficiency and proper operation. Manufacturers also strongly recommend that once a year, you should have your pellet stove thoroughly cleaned and serviced by a factory trained professional that specializes in pellet stoves.
You should also speak with your home insurance company to confirm that use of the stove will be covered.
Pellet Stove Overview
Let’s review what you’ve learned about pellet stoves.
- They are fueled by wood pellets which are a recycled, renewable resource
- Pellet stoves have an average efficiency of 83% compared to the 65%-85% efficiency of wood stoves
- Pellet stoves require approximately $9 a month of electricity and they are capable of being run with solar power or other alternative energy, making them a low-cost heating option
- A backup battery or generator is recommended if you live in an area of frequent power outages.
- The pellet hopper will need to be refilled every day or two (hoppers can hold from 33 -130 pounds of pellets)
- The stove’s heat is determined by the rate at which pellets are fed into the fire, on some models this can be controlled by setting the thermostat
- Wood pellets are easier to store than firewood and do not come with the risk of attracting termites, spiders, rodents or mold because pellets come in bags
- For proper and efficient operation, ashes must be cleaned out regularly
- Pellet stoves should be professionally installed
- To ensure appliance performance, high efficiency and safety, an annual cleaning and inspection by a factory trained, or National fireplace Institute certified professional is essential
Please, contact one of our specialists if you are interested in learning more about top rated pellet stoves.