How Does a Pellet Stove Differ from a Traditional Wood Burning Stove?
To some people comparing the benefits of a pellet stove to those of a wood burning stove does not warrant a debate. Some honor the tradition, comfort and simple lifestyle of a natural burning wood fire while more and more people are choosing the convenience and efficiency of newer pellet stoves, which can help contribute to lower heating bills.
Pellets were not seen as a source of fuel until the late 1970s, as prices for fossil fuels like gas, oil and electricity continued to rise. Pellet stoves became a great alternative that was cost-efficient. Here are some key points about how pellet stoves and traditional wood burning stoves differ so you can make the best choice for you:
A pellet stove is controlled by a thermostat – when you set your pellet stove to a desired temperature it does not fluctuate and will warm the room at a consistent heat. When you heat with wood in an older, traditional fireplace you are constantly adjusting the fire and adding logs to maintain heat, which is often inconsistent. Pellets have a controlled and efficient burn – you simply load the fuel which is then fed into a combustion chamber on the back of the pellet stove.
Pellet stoves are the cleanest solid fuel burning appliance available. They deliver the most complete burn and extract the majority of the heat produced. Pellet stoves do not emit any smoke unlike traditional wood burning stoves. The exhaust from a pellet stove is cooler than a wood burning stove and does not require a full chimney. Pellet stoves have a simple exhaust vent that travels through the wall and outside, making installation a breeze.
The pellet stove is known as a “green” appliance because it has a high heat output with a low level of unwanted emissions that traditional wood burning stoves pour into the air. Another advantage is pellets tend to burn longer than wood, extending your comfort without the need to add wood to the fire.
Installation of pellet stoves and wood burning stoves are about equal in terms of cost, but as you move forward with your research you will see added convenience and efficiency with a pellet burning stove. The pellets can be purchased and stored more effectively than independently chopping wood and finding a place to store and keep it dry throughout the season.
As you begin to analyze the differences between a pellet stove and a wood burning stove you will see that it comes down to your choice of lifestyle. Both will provide your family with warmth during the cold months. While wood burning stoves embody the age-old image of gathering around a warm, crackling fire, pellet stoves bring warmth to a family with additional convenience and energy efficiency benefit that allow people to continue gathering around the fire! Take a look for yourself and see what a pellet stove can bring to your household.