Wood stoves are a great way to heat your home. If you’re looking for one, here are 10 tips that will help you choose the right one!
- 1) Before purchasing a wood stove, make sure it has an EPA or CARB sticker on it. This means that it meets the emissions standards set by those agencies.
- 2) Consider how much space you have in your home and what type of stove would be best to suit your needs before making any purchases. There are many different types of stoves available including free-standing models, installed models with blowers, and built-in models among others.
- 3) You should also consider whether or not the unit is certified for use indoors because this may affect the type of stove you’ll need for your home.
Wood stoves are a great way to heat your home. If you’re looking for one, here are ten tips that will help you choose the right one!
Wood burning, Multi-fuel or Pellet Stove
The first decision to make is whether you want a wood-burning stove, multi-fuel, or pellet stove. Pellet stoves only burn pellets and are generally the easiest to start and maintain, but they also produce more ash than other types of appliances did.
Wood-burning stoves are more common in older homes, while pellet stoves tend to be preferred by new homeowners who want the latest technology and convenience features including remote control operation. Multi-fuel is a type of stove that can burn wood, but it also has another fuel source for when you run out of firewood or if prices skyrocket mid-winter. The most common alternative fuel types include propane gas, which only burns cleanly on low heat settings; kerosene oil (jet fuel), which will likely require professional installation; and natural gas or methane (CNG).
Freestanding or Insert?
- Freestanding wood stoves are often smaller, but they’re also less efficient to heat your home with. Inserts are the most common style of the stove because they allow you to use existing hearths or fireplaces in order to provide more warmth and ambiance for a room.
- A freestanding stove can be moved or rotated for optimum heat distribution.
- If you choose an insert, make sure that it has a good backdraft damper to prevent smoke from coming into the room when they’re not in use.
Steel or Cast Iron Body
- *Cast Iron is more expensive but it’s better for heat retention.
- *Steel is cheaper and more common.
*There are different types of wood stoves depending on what you plan to burn in it. You can even use pellets or corn if that’s your preference! It has a bit less heat output than hardwood but still burns hot over long periods of time. The drawback, however, is the price – which turns out to be about three times as much per pound than other fuel sources such as firewood or cordwood.
Some brands offer special features like an ash pan below the grate so ashes drop through into a bucket underneath without making a mess around the stove itself (this one requires constant supervision). On top of this, there may be issues with creosote buildup on the chimney which can cause fires.
*It’s vital to consider your home size before you purchase a wood stove. There are some great small stoves for smaller spaces but they may not be able to heat up large rooms or more than one on their own. Make sure it is appropriate so you don’t have an underpowered unit! Also, remember that most manufacturers offer two sizes – one for homes where there are no nearby trees and another model suited specifically for areas with lots of firewood available (many times these will produce less heat).
If all else fails, the cost might help determine what type of wood stove is right for you in your current situation. A steel-bodied cast iron door stove might be great in terms of heat output but is usually more expensive than the alternative. On top of that, many units with door glass options are also pretty pricey if you don’t need it or want to spend extra on this feature.
Many times, a wood stove is ideal for emergency heating. It can keep you warm through the night no matter what happens outside and provide an auxiliary source of heat in case something goes wrong with your furnace or boiler system. However, it’s not going to be as reliable as one that uses other fuels since you need access to firewood! In most cases though, this will do fine if you’re looking for a cheaper alternative when compared to propane stoves or even electric ones.
Size & heat output
You’ll need to think about how big of a stove you want. If it’s too small, your home will not heal properly and you’ll be wasting energy by using more wood than necessary. But if the stove is too large, expect to spend extra money on fuel costs each month. You’ll also need to consider the heat output of your stove.
If you plan on heating a smaller space, then a small wood stove will work perfectly for you. However, if you want to heat more square footage in less time, it would be best for you to invest in a large or medium-sized model that can produce high levels of BTU (British Thermal Units).
When it comes to buying a wood stove, efficiency is king. The more efficient the heating appliance, the less you’ll have to spend on fuel costs and other related expenses. Efficiency should be your number one priority when choosing which model of wood or pellet furnace will work best for your home.
- Pellet stoves are the most efficient type of heating appliance, have high combustion efficiencies and low emissions. In fact, pellets offer a higher efficiency rate than other types of wood stoves which means you’ll spend less money on fuel costs throughout the year.
- There are also EPA-certified models with ultra-high burn rates that can heat your home more efficiently – even during the harshest conditions – by drawing large amounts of air across its firebox to ensure maximum burning capacity at all times.
One tip for using a pellet stove is to always fill it up with fresh pellets before starting any fires as they will be easier to light if they’re not already dried out from previous use or exposure in storage. You should also keep the hopper full at all times so that your stove is running as efficiently as possible.
Cleaning a pellet furnace regularly will also improve its efficiency and help ensure it doesn’t break down before you’re ready to replace it. Keep an eye on elements, ducts, and other parts of the appliance for any signs of wear or damage which could affect how well your heating system operates.
EPA Certified or DEFRA Approved
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has set up guidelines for wood stoves in order to keep air quality clean. If you look on the back of your stove, it should say either “EPA Certified” or “DEFRA Approved”.
DEFRA is the United Kingdom version of EPA and means that this model meets specific emission standards in both countries. Models with these badges are usually more expensive but they do give peace of mind when choosing a new appliance.
Catalytic & Non-catalytic
There are two types of wood stoves: catalytic and non-catalytic. A non-catalytic stove is what you think it is, a normal wood-burning fire pit. It emits noxious fumes from the incompletely burned gases released by burning logs; these can cause health problems like cancer, heart disease, and asthma in those near the source (like your neighbors).
- Catalytic stoves work differently than their traditional counterparts – they actually burn gas efficiently to heat water or air for space heating before combusting them into the warmth that we perceive as flame and smoke. They’re different because they have internal chambers where ‘smoke’ passes through ceramic plates coated with precious metals such as platinum or palladium which act as catalysts to the process of gasification, thereby reducing emissions.
- Because they are more efficient than traditional wood-burning fireplaces or stoves, you will save money on fuel costs. They’re also safer because less heat is wasted into your chimney which reduces the risk of a house fire due to creosote buildup in unsupported masonry chimneys – especially since most non-catalytic stove manufacturers recommend that their products not be used with an existing fireplace insert (chimney). Additionally, these types of stoves pose no threat to air quality by emitting high levels of dangerous gases like carbon monoxide; however, it’s important to note that this does depend on how well the unit has been installed and maintained over time as any wood-burning appliance can pose a carbon monoxide risk if neglected.
- Non-catalytic wood stoves are generally less expensive than their catalytic counterparts which makes them more attractive to most homeowners; however, the initial savings disappear in fuel costs over time so you’ll want to consider this when making your purchase decision. You should also note that non-catalytic units require regular cleanings of the inside airways with metal rods because they build up creosote quickly and must be discharged regularly as a safety precaution – for obvious reasons… it wouldn’t do much good to have your house burn down simply due to negligence!
A wood stove’s air wash is an important part of the combustion process. The firebox draws in outside air to feed it, but this has potential problems if there are any contaminants present that could damage your stove or create a hazardous environment for you or your family. An airflow monitor ensures that all incoming fresh air passes through the internal glass panel where heat and smoke can be separated before being released back into your home safely.
It also allows you to keep track of how much time is left on any burn cycle with ease, making it easy t0 follow safety rules and regulations – which vary depending on country – without having to constantly watch over your wood-burning appliance!
Ease of Use
Wood stoves are relatively simple to install, but there is some basic knowledge that you need in order to get the most out of your stove.
- Wood stoves must be vented properly or they will not burn efficiently and can cause poor indoor air quality problems. If you’re unsure about venting options for your home, consult with a professional before buying any wood-burning appliance.
- People who love the ambiance of fireplaces sometimes buy their first wood stove thinking it’s another form of fireplace insert; however, this isn’t always true! Not all models have room for logs inside them like an actual fireplace does ( -Choosing a highly efficient model can save hundreds on your energy bills each year as well as help reduce harmful greenhouse gases. Look for models with high AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) ratings.
- Some stoves come equipped with a thermostat that automatically adjusts the heat according to your preference and the weather outside, but others will require you to manually adjust it as needed throughout your home.
- Consider how much ash is produced when buying a wood stove; some produce more than others. If you have an attached garage this may not be as big of a concern, but if you don’t then find one that produces less ash could save on clean-up time!
Secondary combustion chambers are another popular feature in wood stoves that enable you to burn smokeless fuels. The secondary chamber can be mounted on the front or back of your stove, depending on which best suits your needs.
A good way to determine if a fireplace is properly vented is by placing an incense stick or match inside of it when there’s no fire burning and being able to smell the scent from outside of the room where the fireplace is located. If this happens, then it probably means that air moving through the chimney isn’t fast enough for proper combustion of ventilation within the hearth area itself.
The ash bin is an important feature to consider when purchasing a wood stove. A good rule of thumb for homeowners who heat with wood is that they should have about one cubic foot of space left open in the ash pan after each heating session. The ease at which you are able to clean your ashes can be another determining factor as well.
It should be easy to remove and clean out, so you can get back to burning wood.
There are two types of blowers used in wood stoves: forced air and natural draft. Most models work with gas, oil, or propane; some can also use electricity to power the fan. Forced air is a good option if you don’t have access to outside ventilation systems because it directs cooled smoke out through ducts found on most modern stoves. A natural draft system works by drawing fresh air for combustion from outside vents located near floor level so they require less clearance room below the unit.