Pellet stoves?


Friend has been extolling the virtues of a pellet stove owned and
operated by his relative.
He says that it uses about one bag of pellets per-day; which cost
about $5-$6 per bag. $150 to $180 per month? There are occasionally
shortage of fuel pellets. Disposing of the small amount of ash is very
easy and not messy. The stove requires a small amount of electrcity to
operate (drive the auger). Not sure if it also has any warm air
circulating fan?
It is not the sole source of heat in the house and there are the usual
lights and appliances using electricity (which then becomes heat)
within the house.
Obtaining the fuel, a pallet load at a time requires either delivery
by truck or the use of one own pickup etc. Not the sort of thing you
can pick up at the s.market and sling eight or ten bags in trunk of a
car, on a regular basis! Although that's what one would do if
necessary during a shortage.
As far as we know the pellets are not made (yet anyway) in this area
and have to be trucked in; also the pellet stove cannot as far as we
know burn anything else. e.g. scrap wood?
Interested in any other comments or expereience with these pellet
stoves. Thanks.
Reply to
terry
No gas here except delivered propane; considered expensive. Not investigated wood; although I do burn some scrap wood in my basement workshop. Using an old Jotul stove it is only for occasional use, not an ongoing method of heating. Thanks for comment.
Reply to
terry
Hello,
I use coal and wood (large, black, coal stove in basement; pretty, little, red, wood stove first floor). Also propane cooking stove in kitchen and a little amount of baseboard heaters (hotwired). I heat the entire house from basement to attic.
No matter how you do it, it will cost you about $1,000.00 dollars a year to heat your entire house . . . anything can be delivered . . .
I once had an old drafty farm house; turned the hot water, baseboard heat furnace to circulate constantly, and the temp. down to just warm enough to keep the pipes from freezing, and heated one, large room with kerosene. Thatis the only way to get your fuel bill down. It keeps the chill out of the house, and was fun; sort of like going camping. No one ever got cold. I kept a large pot of hot soup on top of one of the pretty, kerosene Moonlighters. We also used electric blankets. Sometimes i would put a canning pot of water on the electric, cooking stove (Flair), during the day hours, for humidity warmth.
Truly
Truth will set you free: John 8:32
Reply to
harry
When I first bought my house, not know what things really cost, I thought 280 dollars for natural gas during the coldest month was expensive. This is in the northeast and that is usually the bill in februrary, which includes gas for stove, furance, water heater for a 2000Sq ft house. I don't have to load any pellets and I don't have to clean ash.
Reply to
mdauria
A friend of mine sells pellet stoves. Here (central Illinois) they use either pellets or corn depending on price. Popular with many farmers, of course. If shelled corn is available in your area, price might be OK at $3 a bushel. Check it out.
Joe
Reply to
Joe
When I was really young, we heated with coal, which meant I learned early to shovel more coal in and to bank the fire at night so it wouldn't go out. But everytime we missed a feeding, it went out and had to be restarted.
Then we got a coal burner with an automatic feeder; what a labor saver.
I think the pellet stove offers the same advantage over a traditional wood burner, as the ones I have seen are self feeding. So how much money is it worth to be freed from constantly feeding the furnace?
Pellet burners aren't as pretty as a nice woodburner, but I think they are the most efficient way to heat with wood. Of course, around here we aren't permitted to heat with wood, so we all use gas.
Reply to
Not
Newfoundland? I'm in a new, very well insulated 1800 sq. ft house in Manitoba. I'll trade your winter for mine anytime. I only use hydro. No gas, wood or any other energy source. I pay my electric bill monthly as I use power not spread out over the year. My monthly electric bills in the winter will run into the $250 range in Dec. Jan. and Feb. Summer, perhaps $50 unless I run my A/C a lot. That also includes heating my garage/workshop with an 4800W electric heater most days. By the way, my total electric bill is lower than what I used to pay just for the gas heat in my old 900 sq. ft 1950's bungalow.
Pellet stove's were a big thing around here a few years ago. Of course as more people started using them the cost of the pellets increased.
Whether you like it of not they've got good grip on both of them and they're not going to let go. If you loosen their grip on one side but they'll just squeeze harder on the other.
You'll probably be better off adding insulation, sealing air leaks, installing better windows etc. These improvements pay for themselves over the years and put money back in your pocket, not theirs. Makes your house a lot more comfortable.
If you need proof then how's this. My wife is in her mid fifties. I leave the thermostat in her controll compleatly. I have not touched it in over a year. :)
LdB
Reply to
LdB
e quoted text -
Find out the BTU of a bag of pellets and compare to Propane BTU per lb and cost per lb or gallon or however its sold, When I fill up a bbq tank I pay by the lb. You might be suprsised after all the shipping etc etc that the cleaner burning Propane could be cheaper.
Reply to
ransley
Few people hereabouts use pellet stoves because they need stove heat during power outages (and a pellet stove requires electricity for its fan system). Outages are nowadays rare but the pellet fuel supplier down the road went bust years ago.
My stove burns 5 or 6 face cords every winter cost-free except for chainsaw maintenance (less than $100 in the last three or four years.) Surprisingly, two acres (including some mature trees that need thinning out) produces more than I can burn, including the low-grade poplar (OK if from 40-year-old trees and split and stacked for 2 years.)
Reply to
Don Phillipson
I've heated with pellets for 20 years now, 18 years with my current stove. Our electric rate is one of the highest in the nation at nearly 18c per KWH. Natural gas isn't an option in the immediate area because there is no delivery infrastructure. This house was built with baseboard electric, so there is no distribution system for Hot water or air. We moved here 28 years ago, and our first cold-weather electric bill ran to nearly $800. I immediately installed a big wood burner in the basement and bought a few cords of seasoned wood, and then spent most of the winter culling trees for the next season.
Firewood involves a lot of work, but I always enjoyed the work. My wife, however, didn't like the dust that drifted upstairs, nor the bits of bark and dirt that got tracked up. I first saw a pellet stove in 1990 and bought it on the spot, along with a ton of pellets. It was a pretty basic model, and I just piped it into the chimney in the basement where the wood stove used to vent. A couple of years later I got a nice-looking insert and put it in the kitchen fireplace, pretty much in the center of the house. It keeps us warm with about a bag of pellets a day (more when it drops below 10F outside or on 20F days when the wind is howling. Keeping the downstairs at 70 leaves upstairs at 65, which is perfect for sleeping.
Pellets here are going for about $250-300 per ton and I usually go through 2.5 tons - probably more this year because it has gotten pretty cold. There was a shortage of pellets one year, but my guy had them when nobody else did, so I didn't feel the effect.
Most newer stoves have electric start, so they can go out completely when there is no call for heat. Mine stays lit between cleanings, so probably burns more fuel than it has to. Still, my annual heating bill is about the same as our first winter monthly bill, so I'm saving big time.
Keith
--- news://freenews.netfront.net/ - complaints: snipped-for-privacy@netfront.net ---
Reply to
K
Hello,
You didnot have a coal stove with a hopper. The new coal stoves with hoppers can last two days without any attention.
Truly
Truth will set you free: John 8:32
Reply to
harry
I was looking at some a few months ago and now they have ones that will take pellets, corn, cherry pits, barley, beet pulp, sunflowers, and soybeans. Not sure of all of those choices but cherry pits have more btu's/pound than corn and even more than pellets. General rule is the softer the fuel, the more ash and rutine cleaning needed.
Reply to
Tony
Another timely topic. Turns out my cousin is part owner of a compressed log company. I had never really thought about this stuff, but we had a "catch up" conversation a month ago (it had been several years since we really had hung out or anything)
The Northern Idaho Energy Log company apparently ships throughout the US and Canada. Each 8 pound log contains about 64,000 BTU and is NOT laced with paraffin, and therefore it is MUCH better for the environment (less soot up the chimney, hardly any ash residue in the stove)
I got a sample log to try and it was a little hard to start, but burned for 4 1/2 hours, and there really wasn't any ash left to speak of.
I have never tried pellets, but I have heard that you need to clean your ash a couple times a week. Now ash is good for a garden, but a winter's worth would be hard to find a home for. These logs could let you go several weeks in between cleanings.
I am not an employee or anything, but my cousin is a stand-up guy, so I am just passing this on.
formatting link
Best of luck!
Reply to
xparatrooper
I know the bio-bricks are popular around here, and they sound much like your compressed logs. Bio-brick is just one brand name, there are several. You can burn them in a fireplace, and they are legal in a non-certified wood stove. That says something about the cleanliness of them. They're much like giant pellets anyhow.
I have to take issue with some of the comments about pellet stoves. I clean mine out twice during the winter, and empty the ash about once every other week. If you're doing it more often than that, you have either a mis-adjusted stove or crummy pellets. I usually try to burn softwood pellets from the northwest because they're the hottest. This past weekend when it was bitterly cold and there were gale-force winds outside I burned a couple of bags of hardwood pellets from Pennsylvania and they were phenomenal. It actually hurt to get close to the stove. So much for northwest softwood, eh?
In my case I don't have a lot of choices, and pellets have kept us comfy for many years. A lot of newer model stoves will burn different fuels, such as corn, peanut shells, etc. There is no ready supply of those things in this area, and I haven't been able to determine the btu value except for corn, which is far less than pellets.
Good quality pellets will burn at between 8-9000 btus per pound. Corn gives off about 7,000, and lots more ash due to the higher moisture content, so I stick with the pellets.
I don't suppose most people have my predicament, but around here pellets rule.
Keith
--- news://freenews.netfront.net/ - complaints: snipped-for-privacy@netfront.net ---
Reply to
K
I have a Napoleaon pellet stove that works quite well. I only use it in spring and fall because of its easy starting and continious running all night and variable temp control. But I has to be cleaned every month if I use it all the time. I prefer my wood boiler from December to March. With gravity hot water circulation it works with or without power I have to clean it's stove pipe and boiler tubes monthly but I don't mine that. Pellets around here are $230 to $250 a ton. Hauling a ton of pellets and stacking it in the basement is easier than stacking 4 cords of wood. The name of the game is 'Renewable Energy" and Wood and pellets are just that. Propane, coal, gas, oil are dirtier and C02 contributors. Pellets and wood are carbon neutral. If the all cost about the same I prefer renewables even if they are a little work, something none of us get enough of. So stay healthy and work a little.
Reply to
Van Chocstraw
Around here I think by the bag pellet btu's/$ are about the same as propane. But if you buy pellets by the pallet, there is a large savings.
Reply to
Tony
On Feb 2, 10:10=A0am, Van Chocstraw wrote:
natural gas is dirtier than wood? I never would have guessed that, you walk around outside here sometimes and the wood smoke will choke you.
Reply to
mdauria
How big of a house? I pay that to heat my 2000 sq. ft. house with high priced oil these days. I have a wood burning stove and it was nice when I was able to get wood for free and I was 30 years younger when I put it in so the labor was no big deal. I like the idea of an alternate heat source in case of a storm, but a pellet stove still need electricity.
I'd do a careful evaluation of the potential BTU cost before spending a lot of money on a stove.
Reply to
Ed Pawlowski

Site Timeline Threads

HomeOwnersHub website is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.