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Window mount pellet stove

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by blaster668, Sep 17, 2010.

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  1. Small Fry

    Small Fry New Member

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    Loc:
    So. NH
    The graphite did not change the squeak. Maybe it is time to peek inside the box, anyhow.

    One thing I regret is that the stove is not thermostat-equipped. But hey, my woodstove was not either, so what am I complaining about? ...Well, if I'm away from home, the pellet stove will keep running one of its fans after it dies out, unlike the woodstove.

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  2. ByCo

    ByCo Member

    Joined:
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    Loc:
    Nebraska

    I got mine last year for a little less than $1200 from a local farm and fleet, I think there is someone selling them on ebay for about $1100 plus shipping.
  3. Henchman24

    Henchman24 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2011
    Messages:
    4
    Loc:
    Coventry, RI
    Hello All,

    First post here, and I figured I'd reg and throw my 2 cents in on this heater.

    Some backstory:

    My wife and I rent a small cottage. About 6 years ago the landlord ripped out our FireBoss wood stove when he did a massive renovation. What was installed afterward was...let me call it a propane nightmare. He took shortcuts to save cash, so our heat vents are in the ceilings, not near the floor, also due to the space restraint, there is no real return duct, just a filter mounted to the intake on the furnace(Home Depot special).

    My first year, I was talked into getting a dual tank setup(150lb), this ended up being the worst year for heating costs ever. By the time it was all done, we dropped nearly $3300 in fuel, it was a cold season, but that's insane. Lesson learned, NEVER get dual tanks, EVER! Unless maybe you own the regulator used on them, and know it's not crap. I swapped out providers, and low and behold, the next year was only around 1800 for fuel.

    This was still waayyy too much for a little 670sq/ft cottage. I then started looking at alternatives, and being a renter, man it was tough.

    Along comes the EcoAire 2400, which was pointed out by a Chimney Sweep in our area that we know pretty well. I then started doing research on the unit.
    With no other viable option to me, and a little more than a scant fear of buyers remorse....we went ahead and purchased this heater for around $1400 shipped.(Cheapest I could find online, and no local resellers came even close to the price)

    I have used pellet stoves before, I have friends with them, family, etc. so I wasn't unfamiliar with the issues that could arise.

    Here's where it got interesting.

    I received it, and unpacked it outside, set it up on a concrete well cover, and proceeded to fire her up outside for the first run (THIS is in the manual, it clearly states NOT to fire this up for the first time indoors.....RTFM people!)
    So yeah, stinky smell as the paint bonds, off gases, rope seals bond, etc. but not that bad actually. I can see that this is the type of smell that would stink up furniture though, so I heeded the manual.
    Everything went fine, I let it burn through the small amount I fed it, then prepped for install.

    A NOTE: The unit only weighs 126lbs shipped, about 120 unboxed....if your windows cannot handle this amount of weight, I fear for the safety of your home....period. It's an non-concern as some A/C units weigh more than this.
    The only thing I was concerned about was the cheap vinyl windows. No biggy, I made a quick support for it with a 2x4, some aluminum flashing I had leftover, and aluminum tape. Works awesome and insulates the window frame on the bottom. (I soon realized, this was also a non-concern and I will explain why later.)

    I got my father in law to help load her in, and got into sealing her off. The heater comes with both inside and outside mounting hardware, this is to ensure this unit does not move while in operation for any reason. The way my sills are built, I had to rethink the inner mounts and use a modified setup, but I could see these were designed with big box window makers in mind, that's cool, a little brain power fixed that easily enough. The unit also comes with sliding metal panels that fill the gap on either side of the heater. While not perfect, they do a good job....just beware the crappy double sided tape they use....it's of Chinese make and design, and therefore crap. In fact, I plan to remove and replace every single double-sided tape, gasket, etc. before next season hits.

    With that in mind....this is to clear up the usual marketing BS fed to us by large companies in America.
    US Stove does NOT manufacture this! This stove is made in China by another company, and marketed and sold in the US by US Stove. It's also sold in Canada, and elsewhere under two other names....I know this as they are printed on the manual it ships with....and not ONE mention of US Stove anywhere in this manual. So I would warn those to not believe everything US Stove prints on their website or marketing materials....much like many claims from US companies of late, it's donkey doo.

    Ok, back to topic:
    So I get her in, sealed off on both sides nicely, mostly level( it doesn't have to be perfect, the feed issues with the hopper are a thermoplastic molding issue not level ), I think I was off by 3 degrees leaning in.
    I load her up, and hit the big shiny button. She then sits and cycles for 40 mins and does nothing. I am immediately pissed as I know this thing worked.

    My father in law and I used a hand truck to move it in the house(why kill your back right?), it has inflated tires, not solid so it may have bounced going over a root in my front yard. After hours of troubleshooting on a weekend, I open up the access panel on the outside to see if I can see anything wrong. When I cycled, I got the flashed power light, and pressure switch light. The pressure switch is mounted to the auger tube, and sends a signal to the board to say, 'it's ok, there's fuel and it can breathe'.
    I happen to notice that the wires coming from this switch plug into the upper right portion of the circuit board, and use a computer fan style 4 pin plug mount. Wouldn't you know....this plug was pulled slightly off the pins due to the wires being cut about 1/2 to 1 inch too short to not be strained when plugged on!

    Seriously, how much can you gain in cost cutting per unit by saving that much thin copper? So yeah, when I pushed the wires back on(serious tension on them during this), she fired right up without issue.

    If you jostle, shake, rattle, roll, abuse, or otherwise bounce this unit around, and you have trouble starting it, I would suggest popping the access panel off and double checking all wiring, check the fuses, etc. make sure all is well there, as it will stop the unit from operating.

    Ok, all that aside, I would like to thank the designers of this unit for the innovative construction design. Once you see the parts breakdown, and see the unit in action, you realize a ton of thought went into it's design. I see many of you with comments like "I wouldn't put my hand in that hopper while a fire is going" or "putting a fire in a wall is crazy" or "how can they put it in a window when I can't vent mine through a window?".

    To address this all I can say is, your worries have been addressed

    more in 2nd post
  4. tjnamtiw

    tjnamtiw Minister of Fire

    Joined:
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    3,605
    Loc:
    North Georgia
    great write-up. Looking forward to the second part.
  5. Henchman24

    Henchman24 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2011
    Messages:
    4
    Loc:
    Coventry, RI
    Ok,

    Things I have noticed while running this:

    Do NOT just reset the unit after a bad start cycle without first cleaning the burn pot out!
    I cannot stress this enough - the wife made this mistake, and I got to see this things scary side, and it's wonderful side all at once.
    When you cycle it, it drops the amount it wants to start the burn cycle, each time the unit is reset, it will do this, so you could end up with a very full pot before ignition, and this is bad. Ours ignited this way, and initially was alright, but soon became way too much for the unit. To say we were scared would be an understatement, as we actually had blow-by from built up pressure in the burn box, it came in 3-4 spurts, then the circuit board kicked in, set the unit in error mode, and snuffed the fire out while still maintaining the exhaust fan until the unit was cold.

    There I was, with a can of Cold Fire at the ready, just about to pull the trigger and trash this thing, when it saved itself. I was impressed.
    I checked as soon as the fire went out and the coals were still hot, and even the hopper wasn't hot enough to burn skin, and nowhere near the 360 degrees it takes to melt the Delrin it's made of.
    In fact, I have never felt any more heat on the outside of this unit than I do on my air conditioner. And in some areas, you will burn skin during a hot summer day(don't touch coils on those, you won't like what happens).

    The way this unit flows the air pocket around the burn box insulates it very well, and unless it's faulty...I am no longer concerned with it being in a window.

    Ok, pros and cons list.

    Pros:


    Fairly inexpensive(for me it was at least in comparison)
    Fits nearly any standard window
    UL Listed and Certified
    Heats 750 sq/ft nicely
    Portable(for the most part)
    Easy to use
    Easy to clean
    No holes in walls, roofs, no chimneys needed

    Cons:


    It's small and therefore must be cleaned more often than regular units
    Hoppers internal molding needs to be modified slightly( ribs for strength on roof of hopper insides are sharp at the end you would put your hand to push pellets down)
    Hopper design isn't perfect and pellets hang up when mostly empty.
    30lb hopper(I don't consider this a con, but some do)
    Cheesy button panel, it remains to be seen how long those poly dome buttons will last (BTW, my panel has no A/B buttons, so I think mine is a newer revision model)
    Paint on the spark arrestor(exhaust) is terrible, already peeling off and it's only 3 months old. This can be fixed next season easy enough with good stuff.
    Cleaning schedule, I clean her out every day...that is the burn box/pot area, and the exhaust/ash bin below.
    Sensitive to pellet quality. more on this below

    This unit will definitely show off the quality of pellets, or lack thereof.
    Anyone claiming they can't feel good heat coming from the unit should go demand better pellets. At first I thought this was just the heater....I was using Inferno brand pellets from a local manu. Much like many on the web I've read about recently, I thought they were ok, until I got others from a Nashville, TN company. With the Infernos, the glass had to be scraped daily, there was alot of unburned pellets, massive chunk of junk in the burn pot, and lackluster heat even on setting 3. The newer brand however makes me afraid to go over setting 1!

    Well not really, but the heat difference was staggering. And now I can still see through the glass after a full day/night burn, there's more white ash vs black, less of it too. I've now begun mixing the two so I can even things out, and boost the crap pellets with the good. This has been working well, but yet another lesson learned, BUY GOOD PELLETS!

    All that in mind, cleaning takes less time than other stoves, far less. So it's a chore, but not a bad one really. I certainly don't mind trading a daily chore for saving 1000 bucks in one season.(maybe more, but so far I haven't used the propane system at all) I know I have saved already but it's too early to tell how much on average.

    Also, I get to come in again from the cold and warm my hands in front of a fire!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There is something about this you miss dearly when your wood stove is taken from you!

    All in all, I love this thing, and so does the wife now that she's read the manual twice and fully understands how it works. Would I leave the house for days and leave it going? Nope. I doubt it would feed for more than a day if that. Will it replace at least 70% of the system I had? Yup, sure will, I'm hoping more too, as I hate the other system with a passion usually reserved for pedophiles. The propane system is loud, clunky, wastes electricity, wastes fuel like crazy even if propane burns at 90% efficiency.

    I also had the most fun phone call this morning I've had in awhile. The propane company called to ask if anything was wrong...as their guy could only put 1.5ga. of fuel in our tank! I laughed and said "Yeah, it's good, we bought a pellet stove" Her tone was decidedly cooler after that. haha

    If you folks have a garage, Large RV, 3 season room, small cottage with no chimney/way to vent, trailer....then I would recommend this heater, just know what you bought, treat it well, and it will reward you with cheap, safe heat.

    I will answer any questions I can for you folks...I know I missed questions/ideas people had about this heater, but this book is big enough for the first two posts here ever!

    Thanks for being here...I read this site often, along with many others during my research phase, and I wanted to thank you by contributing.
  6. joecool85

    joecool85 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Messages:
    851
    Loc:
    Central Maine
    I'm still thinking it might be an interesting little unit for heating in the overnight hours when my 17-VL runs out of wood.
  7. ByCo

    ByCo Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2011
    Messages:
    92
    Loc:
    Nebraska
    Welcome, I'm into my second season with mine and I love it. I see they have made some improvements to the unit and the manual since I bought mine.

    I too have noticed that the stove is not at all tolerant of lesser quality pellets.

    I assume that the firebox design is the same, does it still have the small holes in the top of the firebox to draw the exhaust (and ash) through? I see the manual still doesn't mention that that area above and to the sides of those holes needs to be cleaned out. It will plug up in about a half a ton, I know from experience. It would be nice if all stove manufacturers would include a diagram of the air/exhaust flow path in their manuals.
  8. ARGlock

    ARGlock Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2010
    Messages:
    255
    Loc:
    Arkansas
    Are there photos or a video of this contraption operating?

    Stay Warm,

    AR
  9. Jaugust124

    Jaugust124 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2010
    Messages:
    371
    Loc:
    Mid-Hudson Valley, NY
    Henchman24,
    Great read. I often avoid posts of such length, but I was intrigued to see how this unit was working out for you. Keep posting as the winter comes into full force. It'll be interesting to hear more.
  10. ByCo

    ByCo Member

    Joined:
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    Loc:
    Nebraska
    Here's mine burning.

    Attached Files:

  11. Henchman24

    Henchman24 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2011
    Messages:
    4
    Loc:
    Coventry, RI
    Yeah,

    ByCo: I believe mine is constructed in much the same way, I'm thinking the board and panel is different, I noticed someone had a different door latch for the firebox too, but very similar. But yeah, the lower areas really should be cleaned everyday if not every other. I use a small stainless brush along with the vac to tidy up the vents you speak of. I'm researching brushes of differing sizes/materials as the standard brushes offered for pellet stoves aren't very useful for this stove.
    I agree, having this breakdown makes understanding the unit and subsequent troubleshooting far easier.

    I will try to grab some cell phone video of her in operation, I hope it works, the damn sdhc card in mine had to be reformatted yet again this week, so I'm not promising anything til I get a new one. No matter what, I will come back to report as (hopefully) the weather gets colder, so far she hasn't had to work so hard. I realize now how odd that sounds.

    Mine also has the issue of the groaning/creaking of the auger in operation....but I fear this is the case for all single ended support auger systems, the unattached end rides on something no matter what, when it's full of fuel...I don't hear it so much, so it's almost an audible indicator that I need to get up and check the hopper.

    Joecool85: It would make a terrific backup stove yes. You could have it loaded and ready to go for when you notice the other runs out, hit the button, and forget it.

    I just picked up the Hearth Country #400 ash vac....what do you folks think of this unit? The wife wouldn't let me get a larger one due to size constraints, so this seemed a good buy for the cash.
  12. Henchman24

    Henchman24 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2011
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    Loc:
    Coventry, RI
    UPDATE:
    I grabbed some photos before my card died again, and I will supplement with video of the startup cycle, I have a friend with one of those cheap HD camcorders, and he's bringing it by Saturday, so I should have something by Monday for you.

    BTW, I tried the trick mentioned here and other forums, I grabbed a rare earth magnet and jammed it into freshly opened bags of pellets, nothing stuck to it from the "Hardwood Heatâ„¢" pellets, but there was a clump of them stuck to it from the "Infernoâ„¢" brand!

    I am now convinced this local company operates much like everything around here, cheesy, underhanded, and without integrity. Be warned! Stay away from Infernoâ„¢ pellets! Tell your local suppliers not to buy them, the savings isn't worth it, maybe if this company has to sit on a few hundred tons of these, they may look into better quality, instead of ground up industrial pallets.
  13. subsailor

    subsailor Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2011
    Messages:
    1,439
    Loc:
    Winthrop, Maine
    These were being sold in Maine last year. Great idea for small house or trailer. Don't know how well they work.
  14. triviasteve

    triviasteve New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2012
    Messages:
    10
    Loc:
    Central PA
    I am very pleased with mine. I bought it in October, and it's been working great for me. The house is heated normally with fuel oil, which cost me a little over $1800 last year, so I knew I couldn't afford to keep that up for too long. So a friend had one, and he was able to keep his office heated with it, so I thought I'd give it a whirl.

    So far, I've run about 1/2 ton of pellets through it (American Wood Fibers).

    I'm getting about 12 hours of burn time through mine before you either have to add pellets or help push them down into the auger, which isn't really all that bad, considering I don't have to mess around with firewood, and I'd be adding firewood to a stove much more frequently if I used that. I have a bucket in the living room with pellets and a scoop, so it's really not all that inconvenient. I'm getting anywhere from 26-30 hours of burn time out of a bag of pellets.

    Using the lowest setting, I can keep the living room anywhere between 64-78 degrees, depending on outside temperature. I should add, the house I'm in is poorly insulated, and the living room is above a drive under garage, with no insulation in the floor. So far, the coldest night we've had has been 13 degrees. The stove ran all day, and was able to keep the house at 64 on the second setting, which was comfortable for me.

    It won't heat the whole house, but I don't really need it to. With the strategic use of fans, I can get a little heat into the kitchen, which is adjacent to the living room. Not comfy warm in the kitchen, but not unbearable cold, either.

    The fuel oil delivery guy filled my tank with a little over 16 gallons of fuel oil from mid-November to mid-December, which cost me about $60. The furnace was on for a week (set at 58) when I was on vacation. During the 3 weeks I was home, I exclusively used pellets, and used 8 bags, for a cost of only $32 (the stove was not running 24 hours/day). My electric bill for the same time was only $50. Last year this time, I used fuel oil and supplemented with an oil filled electric heater. My oil cost was just over $300, and my electric was $75. So $11/week to heat my house is very reasonable. I have a ceramic space heater in my bathroom, which I turn on before I need to shower, and it runs for about 15 minutes per day. That little thing is an electric hog, so I use it sparingly. So while my house may not be the warmest in all the rooms all the time, the rooms I spend the most time in I'm able to heat at a reasonable price.

    I'm now on every other month fuel oil delivery, as the truck driver told me that it was hardly worth unrolling the hose for only 16 gallons. I'll get my last fuel delivery in March for the season, and I'll add stabilizer to the fuel oil at that time.

    I bought 2 tons of pellets at the beginning of the season for just shy of $400 (got a fantastic deal from a group of guys that buy a truckload every year, and these were extra from last year). So my pellet stove will pay for itself this season (plus a tax credit!) and I'll go in with the guys and buy my share of the truckload next year.

    Now, for maintenance, I have to clean it out at least after every bag of pellets, otherwise the burn pot gets too full and doesn't want to burn efficiently. I'll generally clean it out once per day. It hasn't been too cold here, all things considered, so I'll burn it for about 20 hours per day. I can let it cool down so that I don't have an issue with the hot ashes, and I also have a floor protector in front of it, just in case.

    The unit is cool to the touch on all sides, so it's very well insulated. I also have a digital CO detector in the room, and so far that hasn't even registered. I've had more than a few nights sleeping on the sofa bed and haven't had any issues whatsoever. Flannel sheets on the bed in the bedroom make it so I don't really need much extra heat in there.

    I love mine - it works for me and my lifestyle, and I'm not going to be too upset if fuel oil gets more expensive next year. Even if I have to pay $235/ton of pellets, I'm still saving a lot of money. Perhaps I'll get a little more insulation in the house soon, and see if that helps even more. Depending on the price of these next year, I may consider a second unit for the basement.

    My complaints with it: I wish the louvers were aimed downward as well. I may look into rigging something up to help direct the air flow a little better to try and even out the room heat. It would also be nice if it had a thermostat, that could turn itself off when the temperature got to the desired level. Not a big deal when I'm home, but when I'm at work, sometimes I'll come home and will have to shut it off for a few hours because it gets too warm in the house for me. It's a little noisy, so I just have to turn the tv up a little when I'm watching it. These negatives are far outweighed by the pros of the unit.

    It's a 2 man job to install, but installation took us less than 15 minutes, and I formed my own side panels and sealed those as well.

    It also smokes pretty good when you first start it up, but once it's burning, there is hardly any smoke at all. Mine also does the cycling with the fan - on and off and on and off... not noticeable from the inside, but it is from the outside, and it's really no big deal.

    These probably aren't for everyone, but if you're able to live in only a few rooms of your house, have a smaller home and space to store pellets, I think this is an excellent unit to consider.
  15. joecool85

    joecool85 Minister of Fire

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    851
    Loc:
    Central Maine
    Nice review, trivia_steve, I appreciate it. Sounds like a nice little unit.
  16. helismash

    helismash Member

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2011
    Messages:
    114
    Loc:
    Upstate NY
    Nice review. I can see a couple of uses for this thing. Hmm, now if someone would come up with a way to keep the toilet seat warm! LOL
  17. joecool85

    joecool85 Minister of Fire

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    851
    Loc:
    Central Maine
    Already been done: http://toastietush.com/
  18. helismash

    helismash Member

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2011
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    Loc:
    Upstate NY
    Nice, but we need one that heats with pellets!
  19. superchips

    superchips New Member

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    Loc:
    NH seacoast
    So, where do you hook up the leaf blower?
  20. hoverfly

    hoverfly Minister of Fire

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    Southern NH
    With somting that small you may be able to use a good shop vac.
  21. Jaugust124

    Jaugust124 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2010
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    371
    Loc:
    Mid-Hudson Valley, NY
    Alright already, this thread is really going down the drain ;-P
  22. chrisasst

    chrisasst Minister of Fire

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    cortland ny
    Or out the window..
  23. Bank

    Bank Feeling the Heat

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    Loc:
    S. Maine
    Or up in flames.
  24. Dan_Maine

    Dan_Maine New Member

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    7
    Well i have had the stove for over a year
    Glass cracked (happens to almost all of them)
    replaced gasket
    replaced controller
    replaced auger motor and shear pin
    auger is dead again and there is a hole melted in the "plastic pellet bin"
    will attempt to take it back today
    nice design, to bad they made it in china as the quality of what i see on the inside is really crap , cheap board cheap wires and poor implementation of a basically innovative design
  25. triviasteve

    triviasteve New Member

    Joined:
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    Messages:
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    Loc:
    Central PA
    sorry you had that problem with yours, Dan.

    I still love mine, despite a few issues. Igniter went out. No big deal, I can start it manually. Using propane torch and some hand sanitizer.

    About two weeks ago, all of the sudden I went from burning a bag of pellets in 30 hours to a bag of pellets in 40 hours, and the heat output, to say the least, was not there. I looked at the schematics on this and decided to do some trouble shooting.

    Because I had the unit installed and sealed up, I decided to wait until the weather got a little nicer to do this. So today, I took the side off, disconnected the silicon hose (part 20) going to the exhaust hose and blew air through it, thinking that it might be clogged. I removed the vent from the back and vacuumed that out, just in case it was clogged. I removed the spark arrester, cleaned it out and vacuumed the exhaust port out as well (I had been doing this about once per month.) Then, I figured that perhaps the auger was clogged, so I scooped out as many pellets as I could and ran the auger several times and was astounded at the amount of sawdust that was coming out of there. So with each burn pot fill, I vacuumed out the auger and burn pot, and tried to vacuum as much sawdust out of the hopper as possible.

    I put the unit back together and turned it on. The flame is good, the heat output is excellent (a toasty 76 degrees in the house right now) and the pressure light hasn't come on at all.

    I guess all it needed was a good, thorough cleaning. This spring, when the heating season is done, I'm going to pretty much take it apart again, and get the air compressor to it to really blow out the dust. I've run about two tons of pellets through it thus far, and it's still treating me very well. I'm on my second season with it.

    It was the sole source of heat for the fall/winter 2012 heating season (with the exception of 5 days) since October. I've been using the furnace for the last two weeks in the house (after I noticed the problem, and waiting on good weather to get in there and root around). So all things considered, I've used my furnace for less than 3 weeks, and the pellet stove for 3 months. I hated that I was burning oil for the last two weeks (although since we had temps in the 20's and 30's for most of that time, it did feel kind of good to have heat in the whole house and not just the rooms the stove can heat...)

    I'm still running mine on the lowest setting and it's been doing a good job of keeping the room it's in to a comfortable 67-73 degrees.

    I keep saying with these things... clean, clean, clean.

    I vacuum mine out every day, empty the burn pot daily, clean the spark arrester once per month, and now I'm really going to try to do my best in filtering the pellets before I put them in so that I reduce the amount of sawdust I'm putting in the hopper.

    I am disappointed that the igniter went out, although lighting it manually produces much less exhaust smoke when it starts up. So there's that. Igniter costs about $75 plus shipping, so I think I'm going to be stingy and just wait a bit before I replace it. As long as I'm able to light it manually, and everything else works, I'm good.

    And Dan, if you have a hole melted in the plastic pellet bin, sounds like you had some back burn issue. perhaps your auger was clogged with sawdust as well. Just a guess on my part. I don't know for certain.

    Mine's already saved me more than what it cost me to buy. So everything else from here on out is gravy.
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