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Cost of Quadra-Fire Castile vs. Harman XXV Pellet Stoves

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by jsagraves, Jun 11, 2006.

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  1. jsagraves

    jsagraves New Member

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    Can anyone give me a cost comparison of these two models? I'm pretty sure I'm going to purchase one of these two, but didn't know the difference in prices. I'm torn between the two, so if its a significant price difference, that may sway me one way over the other.

    Any other opinions on these two models would be appreciated as well, so let me know your experiences with either of these. Thank you.

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  2. MountainStoveGuy

    MountainStoveGuy Minister of Fire

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    you should check you local dealers for local prices. There both good models.
  3. jsagraves

    jsagraves New Member

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    I'd like to know what kind of ball park on each. I believe the Harman runs around $3,000, but the closest Quadra-Fire dealer is about 50 miles away vs the Harman dealer being about 15 miles away. I'm leaning toward the Harman for this reason, but if the Castile is less expensive...

    Also, are there things to be cautious of with each model? If read complaints of squeeling from the fan and am hoping this has been fixed from Harman on their units. Any insight to either model?
  4. MountainStoveGuy

    MountainStoveGuy Minister of Fire

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    If the closest dealer for quad is 50 miles plus, he might not be to willing to service it. That would be a concern to me, but the castile in black is in the $2000-2200 range. You will always find complaints on all the models because there pelet stoves, and they have all had there own unique problem in the past. This is why its important to buy one that can be serviced.
  5. Shane

    Shane Minister of Fire

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    Just my opinion, but I'd go with the Harman due to the proximity of the dealer. It will probably cost you a little more but if the dealer is worth his salt the little extra will be worth it in the long run.
  6. jsagraves

    jsagraves New Member

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    That's the way I was leaning too. Anyone have a idea of the demand of the Harman XXV right now? Are they on backorder? Is there typically a wait? We'll probably go in the next couple of weeks, but wasn't sure if anyone knew anything currently.
  7. HarryBack

    HarryBack New Member

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    The Harman should definitely be below $3k, we are $2.8k....currently have a few in stock, waiting on a few more. What I sell them for is irrelevant tho, check your local dealer.......just a phone call away. I concur, distance might be important if you need service, but even if the dealer is next door and he's a crappy dealer, it wont do you much good. A close, GOOD dealer would be better, IMO. I also wouldnt wait till fall....thats peak season....prices wont likely go down, and availability might be bad. Buy either stove soon, if you are going to.

    Cant comment in the Castile...dont sell 'em.

    I never had any squeeling XXV's, but Ive heard of them. The ones Ive sold have worked flawlessly, so far.

    Good luck!
  8. jsagraves

    jsagraves New Member

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    [/quote]The Harman should definitely be below $3k, we are $2.8k....currently have a few in stock, waiting on a few more. What I sell them for is irrelevant tho, check your local dealer.......just a phone call away. I concur, distance might be important if you need service, but even if the dealer is next door and he's a crappy dealer, it wont do you much good. A close, GOOD dealer would be better, IMO. I also wouldnt wait till fall....thats peak season....prices wont likely go down, and availability might be bad. Buy either stove soon, if you are going to.[/quote]

    What makes a "GOOD" dealer and how can I go about determining if the closest to us is a good one or not? I know bad dealers aren't always reported to the BBB!
  9. wahsega

    wahsega New Member

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    Check the Better Business Bureau for any complaints. Ask how many techs they have to service the stoves. The company we dealt with was horrible. The tech who finally fixed it was great. They only had 3 guys and 2 got fired so he was working like mad. I also got his cell # to avoid dealing with the idiot in the service dept. who never returned our calls. We have a Mt. Vernon and love it. It wiil have paid for itself in 2 years at current heating oil prices. It is loud on Quad setting though.
  10. Shane

    Shane Minister of Fire

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    Ask them questions about their service procedures. Are they NFI certified? What's teh usual lead time on a service call. Ask other people who have bought from them, this is probably the best way to find out about the quality of a dealer.
  11. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    Taking Shane's suggestions one step futher. Is any in there repair shop wood pellet Industry cerfified?

    Who does their installs, do the subcontract them and to whom? Who is responsible for obtaining a permit?
    What is their payment schedule? Final installation payment after satisfactory final inspection? Ask you local inspector if he has had problems with the installers? Since all permits are public, records you can ask for info to contact other people,that bought and had installations with x or y dealers. Anybody can supply a list of satisfied customers. You want to talk to the ones not on the list, or more random sampling. As noted, there is a lot of mechanical moving parts in a pellet stove. Computer boards, thermo couplers blowers, that can become faulty. It is worth doing your homework, investigating to find a good dealer.

    When is the best time to buy? The time when products are not rushed to fill back orders or Installers backlogged for months.
    Over booked over worked. The best time to buy is when the item you want is in stock. And before demand pushes the prices higher
  12. Shane

    Shane Minister of Fire

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    Elk,

    What do you mean by "wood pellet industry certified" do you mean manufacturer certification? Or is there a certification I don't know about?
  13. HarryBack

    HarryBack New Member

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    I think Don means a person who went to the time and trouble to get certified by the NFI, as a specialist.

    heres a link: http://nficertified.org/index.html

    if you go to the site, you can input your zip code and find folks in your area who have been certified. I could enumerate it here, as to what the certification entails, but you can go to the website, it does a better job than I could. There is no "grandfathering" here, to keep certified, you have to continually attend classes, or take a recertification exam. Currently, you can be certified in 3 areas: Pellet, Gas, Woodburning. Its assumed if you are looking for a pellet stove, youd be looking for a pellet specialist, not a gas specialist, although some folks do hold more than one certification.

    I dont find much use for the BBB.
  14. jsagraves

    jsagraves New Member

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    Thanks guys, this is definitely very useful. I think we're going next weekend to begin our buying process on the Harman, simply because of the closeness of the dealer. I have a buddy that also purchased a Harman from them and feels confident in their service. Wish me luck. I'll keep things updated, as we move forward.

    Happy Father's Day everyone!
  15. seaken

    seaken Minister of Fire

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    Well, its hard. There is no complete answer. But, I would start by getting to know them. Visit their shop two or three times. Don't be afraid to tell them you are shopping and are undecided. If they try to hard-sell you that may give you a clue. Try to figure out if they have good knowledge about the products you are considering. If something they say, or do, leaves you wondering, come back here and check it out.

    I'll tell you, I have had customers who think we are great, the "best" (a "good dealer") and I have other customers who would tell you were were incompetent or downright crooks. Fact is, you can't tell how the relationship is going to go. I sold products to people I wish I hadn't. It's a two-way street. I think you'll have a good chance at a good experience if you can establish some repore and get more positive than negative feedback. And yes, your local building inspector may be a good resource for some feedback.

    And timing is important. Your local dealer may be a good dealertoday while it's relatively calm. But come fall they may not have enough manpower to maintain their level of good service. I know this happens to me. It happened last season. We were so swamped we could not keep up. We're nice people but we just could not give the level of service we wanted. Like I said, it's hard. But for what it's worth, MOST hearth dealers want to take care of their customers. Some are not as good at it as others but given enough encouragement they will usually perform fairly well with good customers. And remember, the majority of online complainers are difficult to please to begin with and the blame for whatever went wrong can usually be shared by both parties. Most of the time we're only getting one side of the story.

    Things like years of reputation, NFI/Hearth certification, and other professional ques can be important. But I know some good people in the business who are not "certified". I also know some who are certified who I question as being very professional. You'll have to mostly use your gut instincts.

    Good luck,
    Sean
  16. HarryBack

    HarryBack New Member

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    well said, Sean!
  17. jsagraves

    jsagraves New Member

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    Well, my wife and I are going to the Harman dealerthis morning. We're not going to buy but try to feel things out with our dealer and see what kind of demand and price we are looking at. I'm hoping to have made a purchase by the end of July.

    We live in a house that we are planning on being in for about 3 more years or so. How feasible is it to take our pellet stove with us when we move if the new buyer is not willing to pay anything additional for it? Personally I think it would be a great selling point for our house, especially knowing the addition it'll be in doesn't heat or cool well without some additional help. Any thoughts on relocating the stove?
  18. moog5

    moog5 Member

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    I have the Harman XXV and love it. We are considering moving to a house with a quieter street for the kids. Though I don't want to leave the stove, I wouldn't consider pulling the stove out because I would have to replace it with something else that cost at least 1500 to 2000. Most the houses in the neighborhood we are looking have the cheesy little builder model built in fireplaces, and no room for a freestanding stove. If we do find a house we are looking for, and it has room for a freestanding fireplace, I will likely buy another xxv.

    I paid $2960 to have it delivered and installed. My home is all electric (heat pump) which I can't afford to run it, nor any room on my lot for a propane tank). My perceived value that this stove adds to my home is more than what I paid for it, and definitely more than the 1000 or 1500 difference in cost to replace it. The stove is somewhat of a showpiece for the main living area, and there is nothing like have a fire burning 24hours a day during the winter to give us that homey feel.

    If you end up buying this stove, you will love it. For 12 years prior to installing this stove, I had a Whitfield Advantage stove. It ran great, but after a while, the tin can look didn't do much for the ambiance of our main living area. Like the brochure states, the xxv has the traditional wood stove look, but with the convenience of a pellet stove.

    Yes I am the same PeteS that had the stove that buzzed. Even after all the bullxxxx that I had to deal with, I still recommend this stove, it's attractive and now as quiet as I would ever anticpate a pellet stove could be.

    With respect to price, you can shop around like I did. But I found that the dealers really wouldn't budge on the price.
  19. jsagraves

    jsagraves New Member

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    After visiting the dealertoday we learned the prices are as follows, which sound a little high. The price of the XXV is $3161, although it is currently on sale for $2996. The venting thimble is $156 and the piping would be somewhere in the ball park of $175-225. The 40x40 mat w/ trim would be another $314. All of these prices are before tax or installation, which we'd probably do ourselves. Compared to what I've read in this forum, these prices seem high. Can anyone verify this one way or the other?

    There is another Harman dealerthat I can go to and compare prices with, but I have a friend that purchased from the first dealer we visited today and he has been very happy with them. I feel like I'm buying a car and I really hate the whole car buying experience! The last thing I want to do is go back and see that stove on sale for $200-300 less than what I paid for it, but I've got to assume that prices are just going to get higher as fall and winter approaches.
  20. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    I doubt you are going to see 200/300 sale price.If anything any sneeze in the energy situation or disaster and you can bet
    competition for these stove will approach last years levels. Should that happen you could wait till Jan or Feb to get your stove. IT happened last year Also buy your pellets now they are not going to get cheaper Remember all those who waited last year all wished they bought early when there is supply and inventory./

    As for the installation I have not checked the pad requirements but one can build one cheaper. I also think The venting can be bought cheaper this is a direct vent unit right? Are you capable of installing the stove and venting? As an inspector please do yourself and you family a favor and get a permit and have it inspected. You do have a carbon monoxide detector?

    have you ruled out the Quads?
  21. HarryBack

    HarryBack New Member

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    gimme a day or two, our price escapes me at the moment, and Id rather be sure and accurate than unsure and way off.....gut if the matt is a tile matt, $314 isnt bad....and no, i dont think they'll be goi9ng down either, I agree with Don there. Price SEEMS a bit high, but Im not sure. If your friend likes the dealer, its a big plus tho. You CAN install yourself...nothing wrong with that either, just make sure you get it inspected after you are done...quite important to do....and its cheap...well worth the money. Just follow the owners manual for reccommendations, and you should be ok. Ill get back to you here on our price, for comparisons sake.....just worked all Saturday, and even tho we are open Sunday, this Sunday will be my last day off for 14 days, so i really dont wanna go in tomorrow! :)
  22. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Each to his own but by my calculations with just the numbers you posted plus a ton of pellets a month would put you over $300 a month to heat with that thing. That is figuring a conservative usage of five years and no maintenace on the stove. Toss in chimney cleaning, maintenance and the surity of increasing pellet prices and heating is getting pretty expensive with that puppy.
  23. HarryBack

    HarryBack New Member

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    Sound logic, Bart....except for one thing......how much are they paying right NOW per month for heat? Is it possible that $300, by your calcs, could be less than they are paying now? quite possibly....lets say they heat with electric.......heh...any idea what their monthly bill is gonna be this winter? As for maintenance, the Harman has a 3 yr warrantee on electrical, and a 6 year warrantee on the stove body, so thats covered. Pellets....Ill address that after Gideon......I would suggest tho, simply, if you heat with electric, i think youd be HAPPY to pay only $300......gas around here is bottled and trucked in, so thats expensive as well......
  24. HarryBack

    HarryBack New Member

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    Electric, gas, oil, propane......no work involved.....zactly! Kinda the point Ive been trying to put forth for a long time now. Theres no way fuel you pay for can be cheaper than the fuel that so many here scrounge in their spare time. Inadvertently tho, Gideon, you hit the nail on the head here....the amount of work involved has some value, and that differs per the individual. Even though in many cases wood CAN be free, I think you'd be hard-pressed to find a way to heat that is more labor-intensive than heating with wood. Fact is, while some people are willing to put forth some effort, few are willing to put forth as much effort as you wood scroungers here....very few....and thats a good thing for you folks....because if alot of people decided they were gonna burn wood, there would be little free wood at all.....


    As for the pellet season.....I dont agree much with gideon here... many of those folks who do remember last years crunch will STILL procrastinate and wait.....the rush is ALREADY on for pellets......we are 400 tons behind now in deliveries...should get that knocked out in a few weeks tho, and pellet supply is actually up a fair amount over last year, mostly due to the fact that many wholesalers had Canadian pellets shipped over earlier this year, and have sold or are stockpiling for this late summer/fall, when they will be available....I got 700 tons of these as well....some pelelt companies also have increased output, or plan to have output increased by fall.

    But I do agree with Gideon when he says theres no way the price is going down before September....heck, i dont think it'll go down at all in '06. I also agree that if you have the money, buy then NOW, take delivery or pick them up in entirety, dont rely on the dealerto "bank" them.....bad things will happen if/when a mill goes down. Im hoping with more competition in New NEgland, prices may go down, but it wont happen this year. I look at what all these folks around the country pay, and its considerably less than we in New England pay, so Im hoping distribution can solve that one...maybe I am naive.

    Hey, check this out, by the way..... http://www.energycabin.com/
    I know, I know, you scroungers will hate it because it burns pellets and not scrounged wood........
  25. jsagraves

    jsagraves New Member

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    This particular dealer will be closed July 1-11, so that will give me some time to price shop a bit. I'm sure we'll be there to purchase on the 15th and we'll get pellets and everything at one time! I'm pretty confident we can install this ourselves but would want to have it inspected too.

    The only reason I've ruled out the Quadra-Fire is solely on the location of the dealers in the event we needed future service. The Harman dealer is only about 10 miles away and the closest QF dealer is over 50 miles away. Its my opinion that you're going to have some issue no matter the model you purchase.
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