Alternative heat source-pellet stove???
Since oil prices are out of control,I’m considering a pellet stove for my two story home.Any pros and cons would be helpfull.I reside in northeast………..
Check the availability of pellets in your area and cost per bag or per pallet before considering a pellet stove. I had my pellet stove installed last year . There was a pellet shortage in northern california, because pellets were distributed mainly to the east. I only had 10 bags of pellets at the beginning of the winter season. I would buy pellets when I saw them (rare) and was on a waiting list to buy pellets when they arrived, usually 2 weeks. When I didn’t have pellets, I would use horse bedding for fuel called Equine Fresh (wood pellets, just less compressed and more ash content, burns faster).
I emailed Lignetics, a reputable pellet manufacturer, in regard to this years pellet availablity. They said with the housing market the way it is, there is less home building and thus less material (sawdust) available to make pellets. They said that there will be a shortage nationwide. Last weekend was the first time I saw pellets available at our local Tractor Supply Company. I spoke with the manager about their supply and she said that there is a shortage and they received an email from corporate stating to raise the price of pellets from $4.95 per bag to $8.00 per bag within a couple of weeks. I ended up buying 2 pallets worth (100 bags) for $500 this past week.
We live in northern california where most houses are heated by natural gas. Natural gas prices are also escalating. We use our pellet stove as our only household heating source. Some use it as an adjunct to their current system. The temperature during the winter is mild. We have yet to use the stove because the temps have been in the upper 70’s to low 80’s during the day. When it’s colder, the stove turns on and heats to 66 degrees before we wake up in the morning, off before we leave, on before we arrive home, off before we go to bed. With our climate and heating habits, our usage isn’t really that much. 50 bags of pellets would suffice for our winter heating needs. About a bag per 2 days. From what I read about the north east, you’re going to need about 6-8 pallets and a place to store them.
We own a Quadra Fire Mt Vernon mahogony porcelain with bread warmers. It burns pellets or corn. We love it! It is an aesthetically beautiful stove and can crank out heat. We enjoy having the ambience of a fire without worry of tending to it.
Some questions you might want to ask yourself:
Are pellets available? If so for how much?
Is this price going to to be cheaper than oil?
Are you prepared for the start up costs?
Would the stove be centrally located?
Is there a plug nearby?
Can it be exhausted out correctly?
Does the stove put out enough BTU’s?
We purchased our stove last year at the end of July. There was a big sale because it was summer and it was scratch and dent model. They held it, and installed it late october. we wanted it installed earlier in the month, but when the seasons changed, more people were buying stoves and there were few installers.
It might be too late to take advantage of the pellet stove this year. If you do intend to buy one, get it during the summer and stock up on pellets when you find them. Go to a reputable pellet stove dealer where parts and service are available, NOT Home Depot or Lowe’s.
Fire, fuel cheaper(?), fuel available(?), when pellets are bought your heating cost is locked no monthly fluctuations,
pellet storage, heats immediate room well adjacent rooms slowly,
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