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  1. newkid

    newkid New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2008
    Messages:
    4
    Loc:
    Maine
    Hello all... Thanks to skyrocketing oil, I am venturing in to the wonderful world of pellet stoves... I am a little overwhelmed. Trying to make decisions. I haven't heard much discussion about maintenance. I know there are basic "chores" such as emptying ashes out and cleaning the glass door. I am wondering about yearly maintenance items. I am looking at doing a direct vent. I have a ranch with daylight basement. I have read cons about installing in the basement, but think that is how we are going to go since I don't have a good location for it on the first floor. I am not expecting this to replace the oil, but I'm hoping this will lower the usage. Last year, we burned 800 gallons (which includes hot water).

    I am looking at Quadrafire Mt. Vernon AE . How is that from a maintenance perspective? I am open to opinions about other stoves as well. Thank you --

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  2. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
    Messages:
    48,149
    Loc:
    South Puget Sound, WA
    Welcome newkid, nice choice. Quads are reasonably low maintenance stoves. Download the manual from Quadrafire's website to get a sense of the process. It's pretty easy.

    Try to burn premium fuel, softwood pellets if possible. The cleaner the fuel, the less ash and clinkers. This will also reduce weekly maintenance.
  3. newkid

    newkid New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2008
    Messages:
    4
    Loc:
    Maine
    Thanks so much for the response. It is a lot of money to spend, so I'm trying to get my research done. (But I just saw the lock in price for oil here in Southern Maine. The number I saw was $4.89. CRAZY!!)

    FYI... I have read a lot of posts (especially those comparing Harman and Quadra Fire) and have found this site to be extremely helpful. Thank you all!
  4. pete324rocket

    pete324rocket Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2007
    Messages:
    453
    Loc:
    albert county, new brunswick
    hey newkid. If your house is reasonably well insulated and you can get through the first year of pellet burning without any problems,I think you will be satisfied.You will have replaced the oil that you used to burn with a renewable resource and though the cost outlay will be a lot in the beginning, you will be doing your part.Here at home,our electric heat power bills fell sharply but I'm sure there is oil tied in there somehow.How can you not feel good about that!
  5. mlwschultz

    mlwschultz New Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2008
    Messages:
    104
    Loc:
    Southern Maine
    We have a Harman XXV on order (being installed in a couple of weeks), that we are getting from D&J;(Home & Hearth North) in Sanford. You don't say where you are in Southern Maine, but it's worth checking them out. We've been looking at stoves there for a few years & finally took the plunge. Every time we've spoken with them they've been knowledgeable & helpful, with consistent info. Prices there are very reasonable compared to some other Harman dealers I've spoken with.
  6. sinnian

    sinnian Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    May 28, 2008
    Messages:
    896
    Loc:
    Limerick, Maine
    Depending where in Southern Maine you are, you might want to look into Woodman's Forge and Fire in East Wakefield, NH. I just bought my Harmon PB 105 boiler from them. D&J;are by far the 'cheapest' for stove prices, but Woodman's will match D&J;'s taxed prices.
  7. newkid

    newkid New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2008
    Messages:
    4
    Loc:
    Maine
    I am in the Portland area. I saw the Quadra Fire in Yarmouth, and was impressed by it. I also went to a place in Windham that sells Harmans. Those are also really nice. I think I just like the looks of the Quadra. I may call D&J;but am afraid to venture too far in case I have issues in the future and need to get the dealer involved. It seems like there are a lot of fellow-Mainers on this site!
  8. sinnian

    sinnian Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    May 28, 2008
    Messages:
    896
    Loc:
    Limerick, Maine
    There was a $950 difference between Sanford ($5800) and Windham ($6750). When I asked the Windham owner how firm they were on the price he said, and I quote, "I do not want my kids to have to eat boxed macaroni and cheese". I said there was about a $1,000 difference, and he said that he was comfortable with that ~ totally unhelpful!

    So if their technical service is anything like the customer service of the owner, I would stay clear of the Windham/Gorham merchant.

    Luckily for me I live in Limerick which is equal distance for all three as far as Harmon service goes, but I will get my service done through Woodman's since that is where I bought it.
  9. newkid

    newkid New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2008
    Messages:
    4
    Loc:
    Maine
    Wow, Sinnian.... thanks for that info. I think the dealers should try to understand that we aren't buying some gadget that we can live without if it isn't as promised. People need heat here in northern New England -- not a luxury item. Anyway, I am taking your info to heart. I will make some phone calls.
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