Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by bigblulbz, Jan 25, 2013.
i know, im just bustin
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I am not an expert but depending on what heat you have now, a forced hot air system or hot water boiler I would be looking at the furnace option, only one place to drag pellets to and one unit to clean. Don't know much about them but that is where I would be looking.
For your situation, a Harman P68 would be my recommendation. A Harman has so many advantages over other stoves, it's nuts. Bottom feed design can handle crummy pellets, corn, etc. It just pushes ash and clinkers over the burnpot lip and into the ash bin, and you don't have to shut it down to clean the burnpot . Huge hopper capacity means you don't have to worry about running out of pellets in the middle of the night. The stove regulates its feed rate based on room temp and it was bulletproof. Best of all, they are built like tanks....there may be more attractive stoves out there, but I wanted reliable heat, not a room decoration. My first pellet stove was a quad classic bay and it stank up the joint, from crappy construction to massive clinkers that required two daily shutdowns to chop out. Oscar, my beloved Harman P61, heated the house day in, day out and never let me down. It had a few minor hiccups, but that was it. How and why I ever sold it and wound up with a Quad 4300 woodburner is a mystery to me........
I forgot, you won't have a list of pellets that you can not burn. Harman can eat most anything. My pc 45 can eat straight corn or other true biofuels, not just ground up premium wood. Love that feature. never know when a grain truck or train will tip over.
My stove does the same, Ain't found nothin it won't burn and I have burned some odd things!
It's a nice feature to consider IMO when choosing a stove. I notice your list is very short
Drolet has a bottom feed design too. Anyone have experience with them? They are alot less money than our Harmans.
Member DV seems happy
Also WNCbear likes his 2
Hardly a scientific sampling.
Like I said, everyone recommends the stove they own as the best. I don't think it's so much the make as it is the installation, maintenance, and service.
Two seasons, zero problems with my Quad. I guess that tells the OP what to buy, then, huh?
The key word here is "for the money" and what one views as "best".
To some heat in the house for the lowest dollar is best and for some heat in the house with minimal cleaning and maintenance is best. For some looks are best. If you want to go dollar per BTU while still being reliable and having a company stand behind their product, Englander is best in my opinion. Not the best looking, not the easiest to maintain but awesome support and an amazing price.
It is all about what is important to you. I personally would never buy a stove not made in the USA or pay a premium for looks. I would however pay a premium for function.
There is also situational "best" I would say financing a stove that is a little better than another that you do not have to finance changes the "best". But if you finance a stove that is ALOT better than one you can afford with cash again this changes what is "best".
For me my 25-PDVC was "best" for my situation. That is why after much research I ended up with it. If one variable changes in my situation I may have a different stove.
I purchased a Lopi Pioneer, simply because it was small, fit the space really well, and excellent local support if needed. I didn't want any problems, didn't need to learn out to repair a stove the first year. Nice to read in the article that Travis Ind. products are so robust, that has proven true, the Pioneer has been completely trouble-free for the better part of two seasons.
That said, if I had it to do again, I'd probably go for a used stove to save some money. I'd probably lean towards Englander since I can fix most anything, and the price is hard to beat. A used used Harman is a no brainer too.
Either a pellet furnace or boiler would be my recommendation. Lot to heat from one or two points.
Where are you getting local service for Lopi in Wakefield?
Just wondering because I also have a pioneer and as the article said, they are a bit** to get parts for. You can only get travis parts from a dealer. Love the stove, but hate the whole dealer exclusive parts network. Another way to jack the price on what should be cheap parts.
Once my quad was installed correctly, I've had 5 seasons with out a problem. But I wouln't recommend it to someone without looking at where it was oing to be put in the house.
I like that. Should we use the popcorn over the fire or use the Jiffy?
Now I know why, good for you. In my area I would have rated differently, but that is a start.
Im going to say the best stove I've had for my money has been the Cumberland 3650. I got it refurbished for $650. Its been an amazing workhorse. Would I pay what they ask for a new one? No. But I wouldn't pay new price for a Harman or a Quad or probably any other new stove for that matter. I think new stove prices are ridiculous. Im a cheap bastard though. If I had to pay new price and could afford it I'd be in the same boat you are in, scratching my head wondering what is the best way to spend $4000. Id have to be pretty well off to be in that situation though. There are just way too many people letting good stoves go for cheap because they dont want to put in the effort that is necessary to make one of these things work right. Good luck with what ever you choose. My advice is cheap, used, refurbished or end of season blowout.
Its in a furnished basement. The plus is that I put in a nice new staircase that has a nice big opening that allows the heat up to the main floor. The total square footage is 1800. Probably about 100-1200 upstairs. Open floor plan too.
As I was reading your post I couldn't help but think that what you are describing could also be said for automobiles.
My Santa Fe heats the entire house, and I paid just over half that, installation included. At current oil prices, it will have paid for itself before the end of its second season.
I've got a ranch,1800sf upstairs. The stove is centrally located in the basement, 900sf of which is finished. I cut my oil bill by about 2/3 last year with the Santa Fe. Not telling you what to get, just saying that you don't need to spend $4000 to heat your house.
My only disclaimer: Somebody is always home at my house, so the heat never gets turned down. Others might not see as much savings as I do. I used to go through a tank of oil every 3-4 weeks, between 800 and 1000 gal a season. I used just about 2.5 tons of pellets last year, and maybe 300 gal of oil. My oil man came about 2-3 weeks ago, and I have only used a quarter tank since then to heat water and one bedroom that the stove doesn't reach. My math may be a little fuzzy here because I've never actually sat down to figure it all out, but I know I'm saving a boatload of money heating about 2500sf with a 34,000 BTU stove.
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