Pellet Stove Vs. Wood Stove For Home Heating

A pellet stove works on the same principle of a wood burning stove. It burns fuel to give off heat through a blower to heat a room or full home. Instead of logs or kindling, a pellet stove burns small manufactured 'pellets' made of sawdust and wood particles.

Pellet stoves are rapidly gaining popularity, edging out wood-burning stoves in most areas of the country. What is it that makes a pellet stove so attractive?

Freedom of Location

Pellet stoves come in a variety of different styles, including free-standing stoves, fireplace inserts and even large furnace-type pellet stoves. You don't need any special chimneys or heat shields, and they can be placed anywhere in the home.

A large house may have a pellet stove downstairs and second unit on the upper level. This configuration will warm the entire home.

Less Smoke

When burning wood in a standard stove, you must continually check the chimney to monitor the rising smoke as it carries harmful chemicals and residues. One of those is creosote-a black, tar-like substance that lines most chimneys. Too much creosote build-up can lead to a chimney fire or a back up of smoke into your home.

A wood pellet stove can be vented directly outside through metal stove pipe. There is no need for a chimney as the stove does not give off smoke.

More Efficient

Manufacturers estimate that because of the airtight nature of the pellet stove, the device burns with 75 to 90 percent efficiency. The actual rating depends mostly on the type of pellet you are burning. Hardwood pellets, for example, give off the most heat and use up most of it, causing less ash.

Easy to Use

A pellet stove is run by a thermostat that is set much like an oil-fired furnace. In most models, the thermostat is located on the stove itself. However, you can connect it to the house thermostat.

With a wood-burning stove you need to constantly keep the fire going to make sure the heat doesn't go out, and you can not regulate is with a thermostat.

It is also easy to add fuel to a pellet stove. Just fill the hopper whenever necessary-most can hold up to 40 lbs. A wood-burning stove, on the other hand, requires your constant attention as you stack wood and clean out ashes.