Pellet Articles


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How do I properly vent my pellet stove?

You have a few options for venting a pellet stove. Pellet stoves require type “L” vent pipe.  Most will have a 4” vent pipe requirement.  L-vent uses an air space between a stainless steel inner pipe and a galvanized outer pipe.  Since the exhaust on pellet equipment is pressurized, all joints between pipe components must…
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How do I vent my pellet insert?

Pellet inserts must be vented vertically through the existing fireplace chimney. The existing chimney is used as a conduit for a 4” stainless steel liner.  This liner is connected to the top of the insert, installed up the chimney and terminated with a special adapter and termination cap on top. Note that many pellet inserts…
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How do I know how much space my pellet stove will heat?

It’s all about the BTU’s! The more BTU’s, the more heat you’ll enjoy.  And, this is easily controlled by how fast the pellets are burned.  The faster the burn rate, the more BTU’s are produced.  The more fuel you’re using, the more heat you’re getting.  Your pellet stove or insert will have a range of…
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Pellet stoves vs. wood burning stoves . . . . which is better?

This answer depends on several factors, such as: 1) your lifestyle, 2) quick and easy access to a wood supply, 3) the amount of time you can devote to cutting, splitting, hauling and stacking wood, 4) installation details, 5) cost, and other considerations. Let’s talk about cost first.  A pellet stove vs. a wood stove…
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What happens to my stove or insert if I lose power?

If power is interrupted, by Mother Nature or a little one unplugging the appliance, your pellet equipment will not function. When power is off, there will be no additional fuel delivered to the burn pot, so any fire that’s burning will continue until it simply burns itself out.  If there is some rise to the…
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How much electricity will I use for my pellet insert or stove?

That depends on your electric rate and your specific model. Most pellet stoves and inserts will use between 200 watts and 500 watts per hour.  Generally speaking, if you’re paying between 8ȼ - 10ȼ/kwh, expect to pay about 2 ½ȼ - 3ȼ/per hour to operate the electric motor, fan and circuit board.  That would translate…
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How dangerous are pellet stoves?

Common sense goes a long way when it comes to heating devices. It doesn’t matter if it’s a forced air furnace, a wood burning fireplace or stove, a boiler system or for that matter the toaster in your kitchen!  Properly installed, operated and regularly maintained equipment will avoid potentially dangerous scenarios.  Do not install equipment…
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Will a pellet stove run without electricity?

Pellet stoves and inserts need to be plugged into a 120-volt outlet.  The “brains” of the stove (the circuit board) as well as the fans on the equipment and the auger (or pellet feed mechanism) are reliant on electricity to operate.  However, there are manufacturers that have battery back-up systems available for specific models.  If…
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How long will a 40 lb. bag of pellets last?

This has everything to do with the “burn rate” of your stove or insert.  One pound of wood pellets will produce approximately 8000 BTU’s of heat.  So, if you are burning pellets on the “low” setting, say 1 ½ lbs./hour (or 12,000 BTU), a bag will last about 26 hours.  If you need a lot…
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How much does a good quality new pellet appliance cost?

It’s only natural to want a good deal when buying your pellet appliance. However, it’s important to bear in mind that the price you pay normally reflects the quality of performance and longevity of your appliance. Therefore, it’s better to look for a quality product that you can trust in terms of its performance level…
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How do I remove the ashes from my pellet stove?

Your pellet appliance comes equipped with an ash drawer or an ash tray.  Simply pull it forward, remove it and empty the ashes.  Be careful and remember that the ash is “powdery” fine and can be easily blown around the room.  It’s always a good idea to empty the ashes into an ash bucket with…
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How much maintenance will my pellet stove or insert require?

This is a great question and should be one of the first things you discuss with your dealer.  If you’re a person who does not like to get your hands dirty or procrastinates on regular maintenance items, do not buy a pellet stove!  A gas model would be your best bet.  But, if that description…
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What’s the heating capacity for a pellet appliance?

This depends on the amount of BTUs your pellet appliance produces. The great the level of BTUs/hour, the more heat will be generated and the more space it will heat.  On full power, some pellet stoves can produce between 40,000 to 45,000 BTUs per hour. You can adjust the BTU output and turn it down…
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How does my pellet stove light?

Most models have an automatic ignition system designed into a circuit board. Simply turn your control to the “on” or “start” position.  Keep in mind the moisture content in pellets is very low, so pellets are quite easy to ignite.  Depending on your model, an ignitor rod, a hot surface ignitor or glow plug are…
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Are pellets messy or convenient to use?

If we’re going to compare pellets to cordwood on the “Messy Scale”, pellets win, hands down!  Pellets are packaged in easy to handle, 40 lb. bags, much like water softener salt.  There are no bugs, no dirt and no bark to constantly be cleaning up.  Bags easily stack on top of each other.  Both cordwood…
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What benefits will I get from using pellets as a fuel source?

Pellet stoves are environmentally friendly and easy to use, which means they’re very popular today! The pellets they burn are made from recycled materials. They’re also very efficient when it comes to generating heat and this will help to keep your bills lower. Also, you can install them in areas where it wouldn’t be possible…
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What’s the best way to store the wood pellets?

First and foremost:  Keep ‘em dry!  And, preferably inside the garage, shed, basement or utility room if you can.  Pellets can be purchased in bulk, but most customers buy pellets in convenient 40 lb. bags.  Dealers will sell individual bags, but as a homeowner your best value is to purchase pellets by the ton.  That…
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How reliable are pellet stoves?

Manufacturers of pellet equipment will provide a warranty.  These warranties will vary a bit from each manufacturer, but most covers several years for specific components, or a limited lifetime.  Details will be spelled out in the owner’s manual.  Always ask about the warranty before a purchase is made.  Warranties are precisely why you should buy…
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How do pellet stoves work?

Pellet stoves look like a gas or a wood burning stove. But they operate much differently.  There is a hopper that’s located on the back side of the stove that serves as a storage bin for the pellets.  Lift the lid on this hopper and pour in the pellets.  The size of this hopper will…
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What should I look for when I shop for pellets?

Manufacturers of pellets produce a standard or premium grade of fuel. There is an accredited program that is designed to help homeowners identify consistently reliable pellets from producers.  A quality mark has been established by the Pellet Fuel Institute (PFI) Standards Program.  Pellet manufacturers that choose to participate in this program are subject to regular,…
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How are pellets made?

Wood pellets are made by recycling wood waste. It’s a fantastic way to keep tons of waste out of landfills and create an efficient fuel!  According to the Pellet Fuel Institute, there are over 1,000,000 homes in the USA and Canada that use pellets to stay comfortable in the winter. Most pellets are made from…
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How efficient are pellet stove and inserts?

The literature for most pellet stoves and inserts today list efficiencies in the range of the low 70% to the low 80% range.  Because of the fine ash when burning pellets, it is very important to clean the stove on a regular basis.  This ash collects on the heat exchange tubes and other surfaces in…
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