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Anyone Have Experience With Pellet Stoves?


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#1 toomanytoys84 ONLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 11:02 AM

I have a change to get a free pellet stove to heat my "cabin" with.  I am wondering if this would be more efficient than using K1, or Propane?

 

a 40lb bag is 4.50.  I need to run it 10 hours a day.  "cabin" is fully insulated. 

 

 

Anyone ever use one for a small building or cabin?  I don't want to over heat and be 900 degrees.  I prefer my space to be 65 to 68 degrees for sleeping since that is what I will do there.

 

 



#2 Cat385B ONLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 11:15 AM

It will cook you out of that small space.
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#3 JDBrian OFFLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 11:27 AM

What Cat said. And that's coming from someone who likes to curl up on a hot radiator. The heat output from most pellet stoves is enough to overheat most average sized houses. As far as cost goes, around here Propane is the most expensive fuel. Try to find the energy cost/1million BTUs for the different fuels in your location. Wood is usually the cheapest, although wood prices are up dramatically here due to short supply.


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#4 Titus OFFLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 11:35 AM

We use a pellet heater for our shop. We use a harmony. We buy it by the ton, $250 I believe it was per ton, much cheaper to run than the propane at $4.50 locally. 

 

We use about a bag a day, from 9am-4pm. But we set it at 85* and have a shop the size of a 2 car garage.


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#5 toomanytoys84 ONLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 11:45 AM

What I was afraid of Cat.  Maybe if I set the thermostat at 60 I will be in my range is use a little fuel.  Or have to crack a window.

 

I have small propane heater that runs 108 hours on low with a 20lb tank for $20 dollars. 

 

That would be about 40 to 60 dollars a month depending on if it gets cold enough to put it on high.  It's a small heater.

 

My buddy is paying the electric bill, and I don't want to bomb his electric bill with electric heaters.

 

Wood is ok, but I'm not all about paying 300-400 dollars for a nice chimney setup.  I have 7 cords of wood at home, but its over 120 miles away and I don't want to be hauling loads back and forth.



#6 BTS ONLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 11:57 AM

A friend uses 2 in his hardware store (+ he has wood heat for when it gets cold), he loves them and you can turn them down really low if needed. I would give it a try since it is FREE! worse comes to worse you can sell it and make a little $$$.



#7 David Brown OFFLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 12:45 PM

A friend uses 2 in his hardware store (+ he has wood heat for when it gets cold), he loves them and you can turn them down really low if needed. I would give it a try since it is FREE! worse comes to worse you can sell it and make a little $$$.

I agree.  My dad has one and loves it.  It can be set low to just take the chill off or higher to make it good and toasty.  His house is around 1200 sq. ft. and the stove won't heat the upstairs (other than what heat creeps up the stairs).  The room that he has the stove in is under half the first floor plan which makes it, I would guess, around 13 x 26 or a little over 300 SF.  The stove does a good job in that room.  I've been up there where I've been so warm I can't stand it (I mean, the man is 90) and I've been up there where the room is quite comfortable so it has a decent range.  In the long run, you just won't know until you try it.  The chimney is just a pipe that goes straight out through the wall so there's nothing to it.  He runs that stove 24-7 and uses around 2 ton of pellets per winter.  We get them in the off season at around $209 per ton.  You better decide fast.  Looks like winter is here already and plans to stay a while.  Oh, and there's no fumes either but he does vacuum it out a couple of times a winter because he does burn it so much.


Edited by David Brown, November 14, 2014 - 12:46 PM.

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#8 petrj6 ONLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 12:58 PM

   I have a pellestove here and have been using them for around 10 years, I love the idea but have a bad taste in my mouth over them.  they are expensive and seem to break down more than you would expect.  mine is now broken and needs a new circuit board $217 :mad2:.  I do know that some of the pellet stoves can be used with a thermostat wich would shut the stove down when it gets to hot and re-lit it when it needs more heat.  For free I would give it a try, worst it can be is to warm in there.

    Check out wise way pellet stoves, they are really neat!!! if I had the spare cash I would have one. 


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#9 twostacks OFFLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 01:19 PM

I have two Harmon stoves. Both operate on a thermostat and have been trouble free for almost 10 years now. Being free, what can it hurt. Buy a few bags of pellets and see what you think. One thing though, if it doesn't come with pipe, and you don't need a full length chimney, your jaw will drop when you see the cost of buying new pipe.


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#10 tater195 ONLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 01:21 PM

I ran the numbers on those a few years ago. At $220 a ton ($4.40 a bag) 100,000 btu cost about $1.67. Convert that to propane, you would have to be at $1.55 a gallon to break even. The fuel cost looks good until you figure in the cost of the stove (your is free so that is a plus) , time involved in hauling/ storing the pellets, and reliability of a used stove. They will plug up and go out on the lower quality pellets and blower bearings are bad about getting too hot and locking up. Blower motors are in the $200 range , control boards are about the same. We used ours exclusively last year when the propane prices got stupid to heat a 3000sqft house. It wasnt warm upstairs, but stiil warmer than running out of propane. I have mine wired to a thermostat and it goes to the low setting automatically when it hits the preset temp, saving alot on the fuel cost. It will "idle" at less than a bag a day. Off season cleaning can be a PITA. Ashes get in places that you cant get to and need to be taken out side and blown out good with an air hose.  


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#11 toomanytoys84 ONLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 01:48 PM

I'm going to try it for free.  What do I have to lose?  He is even going to bring his skid steer with forks on it so we can sit it right in the door instead of picking it up 4 feet to get it in the door. 

 

Can't beat that!



#12 WNYTractorTinkerer ONLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 01:53 PM

My BIL just got a new wood/corn pellet stove for his house.  Yes, the area where the stove is is warm but overall the whole 1st floor of his home is warm.  It goes through a bag a day and shuts off/ re lights if the temperature gets too high.  As it is new I don't have any longevity info for you.  As you say the cabin is well insulated you need to assess your needs.  How many Sq. feet are you looking to heat?  if it's sizable- go with the pellets..  If not, propane gets the nod..  


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#13 toomanytoys84 ONLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 02:47 PM

if it's sizable- go with the pellets..  If not, propane gets the nod..  

 

250sq feet......



#14 tater195 ONLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 03:04 PM

The pellet stove will be more than enough for that. Even if it is uninsulated and running on the lowest setting, its gonna get pretty warm. Mine has an on/off thermostat setting but I have not tried it. It seems to be hard to light and I dont trust it to relight every time.

As mentioned above, try to get the stove pipe too. The insulated spool piece that goes through the wall will run north of $60 new



#15 WNYTractorTinkerer ONLINE  

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Posted November 14, 2014 - 08:12 PM

So your heater should be about 13K BTU's for your cabin.  There are some low output pellet stoves but they aren't as reliable as the gas ones.  

 

Take a look @ THIS






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