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Hardwood vs Softwood Pellets

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by MacP, Dec 16, 2011.

  1. jtakeman

    jtakeman Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2008
    Messages:
    13,580
    Loc:
    Northwestern CT.
    Sorry I missed this SmokeEater,

    There is a thread here on 3 of the members burning timithy grass pellets. See the link for more.

    http://www.hearth.com/talk/threads/grass-pellets-on-cl-gasification-video-too.45829/

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  2. dlavigne7324

    dlavigne7324 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2013
    Messages:
    129
    I have a harman p35i and I bought 5 tons of amines choice 100 percent hardwood .. High ash but great heat ..I bought a couple bgs of vermont wood pellets 100 percent soft wood very little ash but about the same heat .. The difference in cost per ton around me is $200 verus $295 (vermont) I don't mind the ash because it doesn't take long for me to clean
  3. SmokeEater

    SmokeEater Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2011
    Messages:
    309
    Loc:
    Northeastern NY
    GEEZ, all I've learned up here in the sticks is that both hardwood and softwood pellets have been compressed to the same density. Density is the weight (mass actually) per unit of volume. Basically, g/cubic cm or in the English units, lbs/cu. ft. So when you buy a bag of softwood pellets they are compressed to the same (about) density as the hardwood pellet. Wood fiber is wood is wood and so its hardness is the same. Boiled down to simplicity, hardwood pellets and softwood pellets have the same density and so the same volume by weight. 40 pounds of soft equal the volume of 40 pounds of hard. Due to the HHV of the softwood because of the additional resins that have a higher heat content, the softwood pellets will usually have a little higher Btu value per pound than the hardwood. You would have to calculate the price difference vs the energy difference to determine which would be more economical in $/(Btu/lb). I have a Harman boiler and it seems to burn any pellet equally well and I guess I don't pay a lot of attention to the ash content (it's low whatever pellet I use) or the burn temperature, because that does not determine the heat output per pound. I know that different stoves will burn different pellets differently and one needs to know which is most efficient in their own.
  4. SmokeEater

    SmokeEater Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2011
    Messages:
    309
    Loc:
    Northeastern NY
    Then, we should watch our prices if we are shopping for Btus and not pay more than the 10 percent or so more for the softwood pellets. Ie. If harwood is $219 per ton and 10 percent of that is $22. Therefore the buyer should steer clear of softwood pellets that cost more than $241 per ton.

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