With the temperatures plummeting this winter, you may try to find ways to conserve energy and still keep your home warm. If you are willing to pay for a wood pellet stove, you will find that it is more economical than using gas or electric furnaces and heaters. I don’t have a wood pellet stove at my house, but my son-in-law’s parents bought a wood pellet stove last winter. Their cost of buying the stove was fairly high. They did not purchase the wood pellet stove new, but purchased it from an individual who was moving and their new home didn’t have a fireplace. This wood pellet stove is a fireplace insert, and they paid $1500 for it; buying it new would have cost at least twice that.
Wood pellet stoves come in free standing models and fireplace insert models. If you have a fireplace that you aren’t using, the insert model is ideal, because you don’t have to do any cutting to vent the heater to the outside of the house, because you the heater will vent right out your chimney.
In comparison to gas or electric heating the wood pellet stove insert was much more cost effective. I know what our heating bills are; we have both gas and electric heaters in our house. Our heating bills are over $200 a month during the winter. My daughter’s in-law’s don’t pay anywhere near what we pay for heat. I visit the in-law’s quite often and it is always toasty warm in the house, and they are not using their central heating at all. Since I wanted to write an article about the pellet stove insert, I asked the owners some questions about the stove and how it works.
The wood pellet stove insert that Brenda has is rated at 60,000 BTUs. You fill the hopper with wood pellets and the hopper feeds that pellets as needed into the burning basin. The hopper holds enough wood pellets to last 6 to 8 hours depending on how they set it to burn. Since it’s not usually extremely cold the pellets last longer. The temperature inside the house is always comfortable. It’s not too cold, and not too hot. Brenda’s wood pellet stove insert looks like its burning real logs, but that is just for visual effect. There is a basin in the center that holds the fire.
It takes some labor to heat with the wood pellet stove. You have to clean it regularly, and there is a built in cleaner for the heat exchanger tubes. You just need to push a button several times. You’ll need to vacuum out the ashes and use a cleaning tool to loosen any burned carbon that adheres to the burning basin. Lastly, you need to clean the glass door to remove any soot that has collected on the inside.
I asked my son-in-law’s mom, Brenda, about the savings on her heating bill for last winter and this winter so far. She said that the wood pellet stove insert has already nearly paid for itself in savings. She said their gas bills were on average $230 a month during the coldest months. We live in Georgia, where the winters are milder. Brenda said she orders her wood pellets online for $250 a ton, which comes in 50 40lb bags. It takes about a ton and a half to heat her home all winter, which costs about $375 in total pellet usage for the winter. Each bag comes out to $5 each. Brenda can heat her home using one bag per day. Brenda said she saved about $100 per month in heating cost.
Here in Georgia, where we live, we have very mild winters. We have 12 weeks of winter, but most of those weeks are very mild in comparison to the northern states. Brenda said that it cost her about $150 a month to heat her home. I know that we pay a lot more than $150 a month to heat our home. We have paid as much as $260 in a month before to heat our home. The good thing is that our bills are not consistently that high because of our milder winters.
If you spend a lot on heating you might want to consider using a wood pellet stove. The only drawbacks are that the wood pellet stoves require maintenance. You need to clean them about once a week. You also need to have a place to store your wood pellets. You don’t realize just how much space it takes to store a ton or more of wood pellets, but it does take a good deal of space. If you live in the colder states you might burn as much as 2 or 3 bags of pellets per day. This may seem like a lot, but when you are using gas or electricity you might not have any idea how much volume you are using. It’s just with the pellets you can actually see the volume, where you can’t see the volume with gas or electricity.
A good thing about using a wood pellet stove is that you are burning green. Wood pellets come from sawdust. It’s a form of renewable energy, because there will always be sawdust. Buying and burning wood pellets is a great way of saving our natural resources.