September 2, 2020

man looking in a pellet stove

In contrast, a pellet stove runs more smoothly than a wood stove. Wood stoves are more airtight and don't give much room for smoke to leave the burn pot. Eventually, continuous burning may lead to toxic substances released in your home.

A good heat solution to save your home from toxic materials is to install a fan with your pellet stove. But then again, the search for effective heat with minimal toxins from the fire led to the discovery of wood pellets. Wood pellet stoves are made up of sawdust and are environmentally friendly.

One of the downsides of using pellet stoves is that the burn pot and the hopper require electricity to operate. In case an electrical outage occurs, a pellet stove can also be kickstarted by using a backup battery system.

To summarise:

Pellet stoves generate heat by using wood pellets. By the use of an electrically powered auger, wood pellets are moved from the hopper to the burn pot. The heat generated by the burning fire needs a heat exchanger tube inside the pellet stove to the room. To fan the heat to the home, you will need to install a convection fan inside the pellet stove. The ash made from the burning fire is collected in the ash drawer below the burn pot. Once it is full, you can clear out your pellet stove.

Fuel

To get the maximum heat efficiency of your pellet stove, make sure you start using the right fuel or wood pellets. Different pellet stoves can be powered by different types of pellets. Unlike fireplaces, pellet stoves cannot use wood logs but the pellets designed and approved for a stove.

To give you an estimate, you will need around 3/8 inch or 1-inch wood chips, agricultural crop waste, sawdust, paper, bark, and other organic materials to compress into pellets for burning. Although a biomass stove is hard to search, for a few pellets, stoves can also burn biomass fuels including:

  • Corn kernels
  • Sunflowers
  • Nutshells
  • Beet pulps
  • Wood chips
  • Soybeans
  • Dried cherry pits

Before using any of the biomass fuels listed above, check the manual that comes with your stove.

Venting

To use your pellet stove efficiently, make sure that the venting and pipes meet the needs of a local building. The safety of a pellet stove is a paramount consideration that most residents fail to address. The safe use of a stove can require proper venting for any or all stoves, including a wood stove.

For added safety, make sure you install your stove as per the terms and conditions mentioned in the manual guide. Following the manufacturer's instructions is a mandatory step in order to keep your stove warranty. In the event of a stove installed in contrast with the provided guide, this will result in your stove warranty being evoked.

The stovepiping seams need to be sealed properly by using cement or being caulk-rated for high temperatures as instructed in the stove manual. For a few pellet stoves, some buildings need a special jurisdiction for the use of unique piping seams.

Make sure your chimney is as long as the ordinances listed by your local building. For optimal pellet functioning, make sure the wood parts and the chimney venting is cleaned annually. To keep the chimney, free of fire - you can clean it with a brush for maximum protection.

Starting/Shutting Down A Pellet Stove

Manufacturers configure stoves differently.

Although they all will be functional in getting your room heated, some might burn wood pellets over biomass pellets to keep your home warm.

The different start-up methods of stoves include:

  • Using an automatic ignition system
  • Using gels
  • Using a manual system
  • Other approved materials

The search for the best pellet stove usually depends on the start-up mechanism. You can also turn on a remote-operated or a digitized stove from the click of a button.

No matter how large the hopper size is or how long the pellet stove burns the wood - you can get reliable pellet stoves in the market that provide you with the autonomy of automatic ignition.

A crucial step in starting pellet stoves is to follow the instructions given by the manufacturer. As pellet stoves come in all shapes and sizes, therefore, starting a wood pellet stove or starting a stove with a bigger hopper size can have different mechanisms.

In order to shut down a battery operated stove, make sure you don't unplug it from the switchboard directly. Instead, use the automatic controls or the remote-operated control to start or shut off the system.

As the pellets need to cool down completely before powering it off, the automatic shut off makes sure that the stove is shut down once the pellets reach room temperature.

Maintenance

Your stove requires a cleaning routine or some weekly maintenance for it to run under optimal conditions. You can get pellets for a season and once the hopper empties every week - cleaning is doable with a bristle brush. Stoves usually come with a removable ashtray that collects the ash from the burning pellets.

In some stoves, pellets can be seen through a transparent window. This helps in keeping an eye on the burn pot. Once you know the pot has gone through a lot, you can wait while the stove cools down before taking it out for cleansing.

If you are not sure about the cleaning regime of your stove, pellet stoves usually come with an instructional manual that can detail you about its maintenance. After clearing the pellets, stove hopper or ash pot can be cleared for further use.

You can also clean the heat exchanger and the blower on your, but in case it is too tacky for you to assemble or disassemble - you can get in touch with a professional for annual maintenance of your stove.

Most manufacturer companies can claim your product warranty void if the stove isn't installed as per the instructional manual - so make sure your stove is cleaned once a year! For optimal functioning, it is also ideal to get it cleaned before every season.

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