Best Pellet Stoves 2018 – Ultimate Buying Guide
Looking for something extra to heat you up during the long, cold winter months? If so, then you might want to consider investing in a pellet stove for your home.
While it is true that the pellet stove is not the same as a chimney, it nevertheless can warm up your living space just as much as the traditional fireplace. By simply feeding wood pellets into the machine, you can create warmth in no time.
In this article, we will break down everything that you need to know about pellet stoves and how to buy the right one for your personal needs. We will also even recommend a few of our top choices in order to help you when it comes to purchasing your own pellet stove.
Top 3 Pellet Stoves 2018
In this section, we will be offering you some of our favorite picks for pellet stoves that you might want to consider whenever you end up deciding to purchase your own. Here are our top contenders:
Comfortbilt Pellet Stove HP22
With a hefty 50,000 Btu heating capacity, the Comfortbilt pellet stove can heat up to 2000 square feet, thereby keeping your home warm and toasty. More surprisingly, it operates quietly, so you do not have to worry about it being noisy throughout the house.
Additionally, this product has a removable ash pan that can be emptied out bi-annually, so that you will not have to worry about constantly having to clean it out every week. You can rest assure that you can relax in the comforts of your home without having to do a lot of cleaning up!
The Comfortbilt pellet stove also is versatile in that it accepts either hardwood or softwood pellets for its feed while still keeping up with the heating quality of the machine overall.
When I first purchased and tried out the Comfortbilt pellet stove, I was surprised to see just how quickly it heated up my room; it went from less than 40 degrees to a temperate 78 degrees in less than half an hour!
I would say that, for smaller homes, you might want to turn down the set temperature in the beginning since it does not take very long for the pellet stove to heat up small places. Granted, bigger-spaced homes will need a bit longer for the entire place to heat up, but it will still feel the effects of the powerful pellet stove in every inch of the household.
The only few downsides to purchasing the Comfortbilt pellet stove are that the instructions manual for this product can be difficult to read since it is in such small print. While I consider my eyesight pretty good, I still had a little trouble reading the fine print on the paper.
Also, the hopper is relatively small, which means you can’t store as much pellets as you might have imagined. The door to the hopper itself is small as well.
I also found that it takes longer than usual for the pellet stove to cool off once it is turned off (at least half an hour), so you will have to wait a while before you can go in and clean out the machine.
- Heats up to 2000 square feet (or more).
- Starts up quickly and heats within half an hour.
- Operates quietly, so you do not have to worry about it disturbing you.
- Has a removable ash pan for easy cleaning.
- Fairly small hopper, so not as easy to feed pellets into the machine.
- Takes a while for the machine to cool down (about half an hour).
Castle 12327 Serenity Wood Pellet Stove
The Serenity wood pellet stove heats up to 1500 square feet of living space. Although it does not heat as much room as other more-powerful pellet stoves out there, it nevertheless is a good investment (also at a good price) for smaller homes in the winter.
This particular wood pellet stove burns through one to two bags of pellets per day, and is easy and straightforward to clean up at the end of the day. It also contains a thermostat already fitted into the machine, so you do not need to get one to stick it in.
In terms of aesthetics, the Serenity wood pellet stove contains an outside glass that allows you to see the fire burning inside, which adds a homey feel to it. In a way, it is as if you are experiencing a traditional fireplace at home!
For me, I was especially pleased to see that this wood pellet stove contained a glass outside of this machine. Not only was it good for aesthetics, but it also helped me make sure that the machine was working in the first place!
Personally, I like to manually adjust my settings, so I actually liked how the Serenity wood pellet stove allowed me to do so. However, there might be people out there who would like automatic settings to be applied to their pellet stoves, so it depends if you want to do the extra work of turning it on and off on your own.
On the other hand, one of the disadvantages of this wood pellet stove is that pellet storage is quite limited for the hopper, at only forty pounds. Especially if you have a large house to heat up, this might be a problem for distributing heat effectively throughout.
Even further, the fan can be quite loud during operation, so it might come as an issue for those who want a quiet and peaceful heating system.
- Easy to clean and maintain.
- Has a glass screen to check to see if the fire is burning.
- Requires daily cleaning, instead of weekly or bi-annually.
- Limited pellet storage inside the hopper.
Pleasant Hearth Cabinet Style Pellet Stove
With a whopping 120-pound hopper, Pleasant Hearth’s pellet stove can store and heat up to 2200 square feet of living space, thereby making it warm and comfy at home. It is also EPA-approved and manufactured in the United States.
In addition, it has an auto ignition system built in so that you do not have to worry about manually turning it on and off. It is relatively quick to heat up your house to the desired temperature, in about twenty minutes or less.
Even more so, this pellet stove goes through less pellets in a day (around half a bag in over two days), thereby making it more cost-effective than other similar brands out there. It also runs quietly, so you do not need to worry about it getting noisy.
Upon receiving Pleasant Hearth’s pellet stove, I found the installation process to be simple and straightforward. In no time, I was already heating up my home! Although I prefer to manually operate the temperature, I learned to enjoy the automatic ignition system doing the work for me. As a result, I had more time to do the things that I enjoyed!
The large pellet storage hopper was a plus, too, since I did not have to worry about constantly having to feed pellets in every single day. Even further, it burns through the pellets slowly while still keeping the house nice and warm.
My only issue with Pleasant Hearth’s pellet stove is that it requires frequent cleaning, at least once a day after it finishes warming up the house. While it is a little bit inconvenient, I still find this pellet stove to be top-notch for warmth.
- Consists of a large, 120-pound hopper for tons of storage space.
- Has an auto ignition system to turn on and off on its own.
- Consumes less energy, as it slowly goes through the pellet reservoir.
- Tends to get easily dirty and backed up, so it needs constant cleaning.
Benefits of using a pellet stove
Especially if you tend to use a wood pellet stove, there are a variety of advantages to using it:
- It tends to be small in size, which makes it not only easy to store, but also easier to clean up afterwards.
- It is not difficult to operate: simply load the pellets, ignite the flame, and you are set!
- It creates less smoke since the heat box compartment contains it. You will not have to worry about your home smelling smoky.
- It is also heat safe, as it does not produce heat outside of the compartment. Therefore, it is less likely to catch fire than ordinary chimneys.
- It emits fewer pollutants as a result, thereby contributing to fewer carbon footprints in the environment.
- Also, the wood pellets themselves are good for the burning process, for they contain low moisture which makes them easier to burn and maintain for a longer period of time. They are also made from recycled material, so it is less hazardous to the environment.
Things to look for in a good pellet stove
With so many factors that go into choosing the right pellet stove, here are some key elements you should consider while doing so:
- Decide whether you want freestanding or insert. It is up to you to choose whether you want a pellet stove that stands on its own or one that serves as an insert for your fireplace. Essentially, it is a matter of space and convenience when it comes to picking either of the two.
- Check if it’s top-fed or bottom-fed. In other words, you will need to decide if you would prefer to feed the stove from the top or the bottom since models can vary in design:
- For top-fed pellet stoves, it is less likely for fire to burn back into the hopper system. Downside to this, however, is that ash tends to accumulate inside.
- For bottom-fed pellet stoves, you do not have to worry about using high-quality fuel for the system. On the other hand, you’ll need to constantly clean out the ash inside the machine more frequently.
- Check out its storing capacity. From 30 pounds to 130 pounds, the size of the pellet stove determines just how much you can store for a day’s worth of usage. While it’s true that storing more means less refilling, you should also consider how often you use it and if it’s worth the size.
- Determine its heating capacity. Also known as “heat output range,” the amount of energy needed to heat the surroundings depends on how much the pellet stove itself can exert. Measured in British Thermal Units (Btu), these stoves can range from 8000 to 90000 Btu. Rule of thumb is that the higher the units are, the more space it can heat up.
- Know the cost. Especially if you are on a budget, you’ll have to look carefully into prices for pellet stoves. Typically, they are not very cheap, ranging from $1700 to $3000 (installation fees not included). However, if it is of good quality, then it can last you a long time.
Take away message
All in all, there are a lot of factors that go into considering and investing in a solid pellet stove as means of warming up your home. From knowing the functions of the product to the costs, it can be a very daunting experience.
However, by doing your research and finding out the needs for your home, you can be sure to purchase the right pellet stove that will last you a long time.
To recap how to go about getting the best pellet stove for your home, here are the steps to take:
- Determine the storing capacity, whether it can store as little as 30 pounds or as much as 130 pounds of pellets.
- Find out its heating capacity (measured in Bti) to see how much space it can heat up in your home.
- Check the cost and budget wisely.