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Pellet lesson 101

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by ltlhawk, Jan 3, 2013.

  1. ltlhawk

    ltlhawk Member

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    Messages:
    111
    Loc:
    Pelham, NH
    Hi folks, as most of you know I am relatively new to pellet stove, but am enjoying learning and experimenting with my new stove. I have had it for one month now and when I bought it I also bought 3 tons of North American pellets from HD. I had questions about the amount of hot air coming out of the stove and after much research I realized the stove was performing normal (thanks hearth forum guys).

    This past weekend I picked up 4 bags of Geneva from a local farm and today I thought I would give them a try. WOW.. what a different.. I keep checking the stove settings because the flame is bright and tall compared to what I was used to seeing (on level 3 of 5). The heat coming out of the stove is 40 degrees higher than what I was getting with the North A pellets. This lesson supports what the people here at Hearth.com have been saying all along,

    "All pellets are not created equal".

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  2. imacman

    imacman Guest

    NA's are just rebagged Curran.....not a good pellet at all, IMO. Maybe buy a ton of something better (the Geneva's?) and mix the NA's with them?

    What other pellets are available in your area?
  3. ltlhawk

    ltlhawk Member

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    Loc:
    Pelham, NH
    I saw Inferno, Maine Choice and Green Team at lowes the other day, but I have not tried any of those and not sure yet if I will. The Geneva's are $250 a ton, but now I can see why. They are carried by a local farm and not a box store. I like the idea of mixing them with the NA.. good idea. I am not sure what else is available in southern NH, but maybe some other folks have suggestions. I am open to them all.
  4. Gary Gileau

    Gary Gileau Member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2012
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    160
    Loc:
    Griswold CT
    Indeed! I'm in the same boat as you. Still learning but making progress. So far my personal high temps are using Maine Woods. The Rutland thermometer on the front of my stove can vary 75 degrees or more with different pellets. I'm running out of choices around here, I guess I'll have to travel a little to find something new.
  5. Gary Gileau

    Gary Gileau Member

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    Oct 15, 2012
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    Loc:
    Griswold CT
    Oh, the other thing. Inexpensive pellets are not necesarily cheaper. During these colder nights I am amazed at how empty the hopper is with the lower grade stuff. It has to run on high longer to satisfy the thermostat.
  6. Mr. Spock

    Mr. Spock Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2013
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    514
    Loc:
    SW MA
    Last I looked on the Geneva web site they use trees not saw dust. I find them to be good myself. I got them for 239 a ton at a local mom and pop lumber yard. A little more ash than other pellets I have tried but they burn hot and clean.
  7. ltlhawk

    ltlhawk Member

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    Loc:
    Pelham, NH
    OMG... Wish I could find that price around here..
  8. rmcgr8one

    rmcgr8one New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2012
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    Loc:
    Southern NH
    I have tried all the box store pellets and like the fire sides the most from the list you gave. I use Vermonts for the past 3 days thought. They throw out some massive heat with barely any ash.
  9. Mr. Spock

    Mr. Spock Minister of Fire

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    SW MA
    Me too! That should have been 239. I using my ipad and must have fat fingered that awesome price!
  10. imacman

    imacman Guest

    Stay FAR away from the Infernos. !!!

    I have been burning Greene Team, and for the price you can get them at Lowes, they are a good pellet. IMO, get 3-4 bags of the GT and burn them to see how they stack up against the Geneva's.

    BTW, here's a place to compare reviews:

    http://www.woodpelletreviews.com
  11. Mr. Spock

    Mr. Spock Minister of Fire

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    I will back that up. I have tried the Greene Team from lowes and I liked them. Less ash than the Geneva and seemed about as hot. I was thinking of getting some for next season and try them out longer term. Gotta burn some Geneva to make room first.
  12. kenstogie

    kenstogie Feeling the Heat

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    Loc:
    Albany (ish)
    I bought a ton of the N Amer's at HD yea they suck. I recently got some of the Green Team Platinums at Lowes.... ALOT hotter and they heat alot better. They cost more but the heat is well worth it. I'll be using the N Amer's during March/shoulder months.
  13. MommyOf4

    MommyOf4 Feeling the Heat

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    Oct 4, 2012
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    Loc:
    Southern MD
    I'm pretty new to the pellet world so can you explain to me what a "clean" burn would be?
  14. Mr. Spock

    Mr. Spock Minister of Fire

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    SW MA
    Sure. A clean burning pellet leaves a very fine white powdery ash on the heat exchangers directly above and around the burn pot. You may even see this white powder on the sides of the burn box. The white powder is indicative of a complete burn and the best residue you can see in your pellet stove. I think it looks nice too because it's white "clean". This is in contrast to a brown or black sooty deposits (creosote).

    It also means the burn pot is free of clinkers or other types of unwanted deposits and carbon buildup is not excessive.

    So in summary you need to clean less often and the fire box looks nice.
  15. John C.

    John C. Member

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    Loc:
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    Greene Team Platnium?
  16. Mr. Spock

    Mr. Spock Minister of Fire

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    Yes. Guess I should have clarified that.
  17. kenstogie

    kenstogie Feeling the Heat

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    Albany (ish)
    As I recall the Green Team Platinums were about $5 a bag. Maybe a little less.
  18. Mr. Spock

    Mr. Spock Minister of Fire

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    Ya I paid 5.20 but that was last week. Guessing better deals off season.
  19. Augmister

    Augmister Minister of Fire

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    Loc:
    Socialist Republic of RI
    Welcome, Gary. Price and quality of pellet should not be confused. I can get Stove Chow and Fireside Ultras at HD for $209/ton and both are considered a good pellet choice by many who hang out here. You should first consider some of the reviews here and then try them for yourself in your stove. Then, shop the price!
  20. John C.

    John C. Member

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    Wethersfield Ct.
    $5.58 a bag Newington Ct.
  21. will711

    will711 Minister of Fire

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    Greene Team Platinum = regular Greene Team The word Platinum makes consumer think they must be" better" so they charge more regular GT's were $209/ton here.
  22. imacman

    imacman Guest

    In addition, the flame in the burn pot is not tall, stringy, and dark orange w/blackish tips.....it's shorter, very active, with a light orange/yellow flame and should have a small amount of blue at the base.
  23. Mr. Spock

    Mr. Spock Minister of Fire

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    Truth. You can have the best pellet made but if your airflow is restricted no white stuff.
  24. AbutterRAM

    AbutterRAM New Member

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    Jan 7, 2013
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    I burned a ton of inferno pellets. They tend to have pellets that are over 3 inches long in the bags which never stopped my auger but made it run very loud. After burning a bag the entire pot would be filled with a giant black clinker and would end up clogging up the pot. I switched to Greene Team and haven't had any issues. Stay away from inferno pellets.
  25. battlesphoto

    battlesphoto New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2013
    Messages:
    29
    Hello. New to forum. Just purchased two Greenfire GF 55 stoves in November 2012. Still on the learning curve. We have burnt about a ton thus far. 1/2 of O'Mally and 1/2 of Barefoot. I have been getting clinkers everyday and thus having to clean the stove daily. I called Home and Hearth where the stoves were purchased. Their advise was to occasionally burn at a higher lever (4-5) for a few hours then return to my "normal" level that we burn (1-2). Tried this and no change. Their other advise was to remove the back panels and clean out any ash since it may be restricting air flow. I spent over an hour yesterday cleaning the stove and again this morning, about 18 hours later, clinker in the burn pot. I have been trying the damper at different openings (half way to full open) and this has not changed the results either. Advise please?

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