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Review of Pacific Energy --- Pacific Summit Insert -- Fireplace Inserted Stove burning Wood only

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Caluwe Hydronic Wood and Pellet stoves
Review of Pacific Energy --- Pacific Summit Insert -- Fireplace Inserted Stove burning Wood only
Installation Type: Wood/Coal - into existing Fireplace
Date Reviewed: 2006-03-06 15:44:07

Satisfaction Ratings from 5 stars (best) to 1 star (worst)
Satisfaction with unit = ✰✰✰✰✰
Satisfaction with dealer = ✰✰✰✰✰
Satisfaction with manufacturer = ✰✰✰✰✰

Other Information about the Home and Stove
Room Size (Sq ft): 1500 | House Size (Sq feet): 3000
Bought in 2005 , Price Paid: 2100
Location : Alexandria, VA 22301,
Purchased from: Fireplace Retail Store - Total Hearth&Grill, Mt Sterling,

Likes: Very solidly constructed unit. Puts out a lot of heat. Burns cleanly. Glass stays clear. Easy to start; easy to control with one lever. Blower comes on automatic and shuts down automatically; hot air flow can be regulated by hand.

Dislikes: Roof of firebox consists of a baffle which needs to come out for annual cleaning. To do this right, you have to be pretty strong and agile. Also, the little fiberglass gasket that fits between the baffle and the firebox in the back is vulnerable. Manufacturer sent me new ones (free). Now that I have some experience with baffle removal (only once a season), I expect not to break it next time. This is a minor issue, although PE could think about a gasket made of stronger material; it does not take away from the very nice performance of this stove.

Comments: There is/was no PE dealer in Virginia. Manufacturer (in BC-Canada)referred me to their East Coast dealer in Kentucky. Store shipped the stove (which ain't cheap, see above) for free (and no sales tax!). Found an excellent installer in Winchester, VA: Prouty's Chimney Sweep. They worked hard to cut out the old damper before installing a stainless steel liner in my chimney. Installation including material set me back another $1,600.
But I am totally enjoying the woodburning experience. I am retired and don't mind putting in new wood a couple times every 24 hours, and shuffling out ashes. Does it heat my whole house? If definitely heats the downstairs area completely. (The stove is in my rec. room.)
To get the hot air to the second level, where I have my living room, is a bit more problematic. Sometimes, I use the blower of my existing furnace to keep the air circulating in my house; it takes in the woodstove's hot air in my rec room. This helps, but I don't like to have the sound of that blower continuously. If I keep the woodstove going continuously (and I don't use the furnace blower), it does get to about 67-68 degrees upstairs. Downstairs, in my rec room, it gets very cozy. When I sit there, I turn down the built-in automatic blower; otherwise it gets too hot. The stove should save on my gas bill; I will work out how much, once the heating season is over. My primary reasons for getting a woodstove were to get an independent heating source, to save on my heating bill, to burn wood in an environmentally friendly way (it's amazing to see how very little smoke comes out of my chimney when it's burning full blast) and to enjoy the pretty sight of flames all winter. Be happy to answer any questions you might have via email.... HGG

* Dates that reviews were submitted were not recorded prior to Nov. 2004