Comprehensive Guide on How To Buy The Most Affordable and Best Pellet Stoves
The cost of electric and gas bills never seems to go down. And with that, many people are looking for less expensive ways to heat their home without a boatload of up front expenses. There's another group of people who are looking for ways to heat their homes in a more environmentally friendly way.
A pellet stove can be the answer to both of these problems. So, if you have decided to take a look into this kind of alternative heat, this article will give a good overview on the most affordable and best pellet stoves. Additionally, you'll find useful information on where to find wood and corn pellets in your local neighborhood.
While this article can't cover all aspects of pellet stove information, it will provide you with a good introduction to help you make a more informed decision on whether this kind of heating method is right for you.
Benefits of Pellet Stoves
The reason pellet stoves are popular is because they are efficient and eco-friendly. They don't emit black smoke, so a chimney isn't required, as with wood burning stoves. You can run a pipe from the stove in almost any room in your house.
Pellet stoves burn compressed pellets, which basically means all of the moisture has been squeezed out of them. So, they are very dry and, for that reason, burn extremely hot. Pellet stoves also don't create large amounts of ash and creosote, unlike wood stoves.
Creosote is a substance that many wood stoves emit, which can easily clog chimneys. If creosote is allowed to build up for a long enough time, it can actually lead to chimney fires.
The reason pellet stoves are so environmentally friendly is because they emit so few particle emissions.
Pellet stoves are also very easy to use. Most feature simple thermostats, while more sophisticated models operate much the same as electric heaters.
Pellet Stove Disadvantages
Electricity is needed to power pellet stoves, so this can drive up your electric bill.
Finding wood or corn pellets can also present a problem, depending on where you live. Just like purchasing any other commodity, it's cheaper to buy pellets in bulk. So, you may need a place to store large quantities if pellets are scarce in your area.
Pellets are also generally more expensive than wood, which you sometimes obtain for free.
All of these factors need to be considered before purchasing a pellet stove.
Where To Find Wood Pellets
Finding wood pellets can be a major stumbling block for those considering the purchase of a pellet stove. Check your local farm stores, hardware stores, and major retailers like Lowes and Home Depot for the availability of wood pellets before making your purchase.
You also need to find out roughly how much the pellets are likely to typically cost in order to calculate whether this source of heating will save you money when all of the variables are accounted for.
You should also check how easy it is to buy in bulk and which suppliers offer you this option.
You should also research trends in the supply of wood pellets. Some years they be easy to find and cheap to purchase, while other years they may be scarce and much more expensive. You should calculate an average cost of these pellet stove pellets to make a better long term decision.
Where To Find Corn Pellets
Finding corn pellets will involve checking with local agricultural coops and farm stores.
There are now stoves that have the ability to burn both wood and corn pellets, which are the most common fuels for pellet stoves. Stoves that have the ability to burn both wood and corn pellets are called multi-fuel pellet stoves.
The Dell-Point Europa 75 is one such pellet stove, although there are many of makes and models that do the same thing.
Other Types of Pellet Stove Fuel
Besides corn and wood pellets, pellet stoves can also burn dried cherry pits, hulled wheat, and waste paper pellets.
Not all pellet stove manufactures make stoves to burn these alternative fuels, so you'll need to do a little more homework on this.
Affordable Pellet Stoves
In general, pellet stoves hold their resale value well. Prices for new pellet stoves typically start at $1500, and go up from there. While they can get quite expensive, regardless of what you end up paying at the start, you'll be getting a stove that runs both cleanly and efficiently. This is money well spent
The best places to begin your search for new affordable pellet stoves include Overstock.com, Google Shopping, Ebay.com, and Nextag.com.
Used Pellet Stoves
Ebay.com and Craiglist.com are two excellent sites to begin your search for quality used pellet stoves. Google Shopping is another good option.
If you are in the market for pellet stove parts, you'll also find these sites very helpful.
Pellet Stove Dealers
You can easily find pellet stove dealers in your area by checking online or consulting the Yellow Pages. If you have no experience with pellet stoves, it's probably worth a trip to the store to check out some stoves anyway. While at the store, you can find out how to install and maintain a pellet stove.
The advantage of buying a pellet stove from a dealer is being able to actually see which stove you are buying and learning how to work it before it enters your home. Although buying from a dealer will usually cost more than buying a pellet stove online, this is one of the reasons you are doing so.
When buying from a dealer, you'll also eliminate shipping costs, which can add up very quickly considering the amount of bulk and weight that is being shipped.
Finally, should something go wrong with your pellet stove, you'll be able to go back to the dealer for help in having it repaired.
Your local hardware store, Lowes, and Home Depot are great places to begin your search. There also may be some dealers in your area that exclusively sell pellet stoves. Just get online or check your Yellow Pages to find out.
Pellet Stove Maintenance
Not unlike any other major appliance, pellet stoves require regular maintenance to keep them working most efficiently.
The major components that will require occasional maintenance or cleaning include the ash drawer, ash traps, burn pot, glass, heat exchanger, venting systems (stove pipes), and the hopper and auger.
Depending on how handy you are, some of these jobs can be done yourself by consulting your pellet stove owner's manual. But other jobs will require the skill of a professional.
I don't think you want to take on a job like cleaning the pellet stove pipe unless you really know what you are doing because this can be a messy bear of a job. Professionals have all the right tools to do the job right. I would definitely advise letting them do the annual cleaning of your venting system.