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WOOD VS PELLET which is warmer?

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by drtnshtr, Oct 27, 2008.

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  1. drtnshtr

    drtnshtr New Member

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    Any of you folks ever burn wood? I have 2 pellet stoves in the house and a new wood stove out in the garage. Im thinking about swapping my whitfield out for the englander ACD24 wood stove in my living room but if it will not be much warmer I probably wont do it. I can cut all the free wood I want as I have a total of almost 100 acres thats been select cut and tops were left for firewood. Pellets in this area are 225/ton this yr.

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  2. kinsmanstoves

    kinsmanstoves Minister of Fire

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    Plan yiour time, mix your gas, fire up your chain saw, get your spliter ready, haul the wood, stack the wood, and wait a year or so for it to season. Enough said?



    Eric
  3. Wet1

    Wet1 Minister of Fire

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    As KS said, it's more a matter of how much work you want to do. I can tell you it's FAR easier burning pellets than it is burning wood. I get my wood for free, and I really enjoy harvesting it, but it certainly isn't for everyone. Wood is a lot of work, but I find it very rewarding being self sufficient. If I were home all the time and given the choice, I'd probably choose wood (and/or coal)... But, I'm not home all the time and pellet stoves burn w/o requiring much attention and are easier to maintain.

    Regarding the warmth, it all depends on the size of the stoves in question. Both wood and pellets when used in very large stoves can produce more heat than any sane person might need.
  4. Ductape

    Ductape Member

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    I burn both........ though i'm new to burning pellets this year. Wood makes waaay more heat. I run my stove close to six hundred degrees. Early in the heating season it heats us right out of the house. I actually thought about adding a second woodstove when i bought the pellet stove, but decided against it. I figure trying to keep up with filling two wood stoves would take the fun out of it. Eric is right though....... it sure isn't for everyone. Over the years i've invested quite a bit of money into my firewood making operation (and do not regret it). I actually enjoy being out cutting and splitting. I've been fortunate that i've always been able to get all my firewood for free, and i've got enough inventory now to go beyoned the 09-10 heating season. I sure as heck would never burn wood if i had to buy cordwood at retail prices though. Burning wood is too much work, and makes too much of a mess to put up with to pay $350/cord on top of all that. I suspect someday i may get to an age where i won't enjoy working with wood....... i dunno. I DO know i don't ever forsee me burning oil as primary heat ever again. What concerns me is that i see pellets following the petroleum trends....... not enough supply, price shoots up, etc.
  5. MCPO

    MCPO Minister of Fire

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    It`s difficult to do a fair comparison but if all things were more or less equal , wood fires will burn in most cases considerably hotter but only for shorter periods and is so much more work not to mention very uneven heat and being so messy and outright dirty. Did I mention much more dangerous too?
    I hope I never have to return to burning wood again. With a woodstove you are married to loading that thing 3+ times a day and dealing with messy ashes and rehandling the fuel countless times. Add to that you never have enough wood inside thus compelling never ending trips back and forth to the wood pile. It can be the cheapest but you pay in many other ways.
    The bottom line is your life revolves around the wood stove.
  6. Xena

    Xena Minister of Fire

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    I don't have a wood stove here but we had one
    when we had a place up in NH. I think it depends
    largely on the stove in question, but I like the
    pellet stove much better.

    I can crank the pellet stove to cook me out of the
    house if I want. We weren't able to control the wood
    stove, therefore we'd get cooked out almost
    all the time. My idea of being comfortable isn't having
    the house at 80 degrees all the time which is how
    it was with wood. It's much easier to control your
    temp with pellets.
  7. Wet1

    Wet1 Minister of Fire

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    If we are going to compare wood to pellets, I'm not sure this is the most unbiased place for such a discussion. :)
  8. DiggerJim

    DiggerJim Feeling the Heat

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    The only way to get more heat out of one vs the other (practically speaking) is to burn more of whatever you choose. The BTU/lb rating of pellets or woodstock is the same. If you get more heat out of your woodstove it's because you're putting more fuel in. You may or may not have that option with your pellet stove as they are constrained to a feed cycle determined by the manufacturer (and controlled by their electronics). So, it is possible to get your woodstove cherry red, but not likely you'd ever get your pellet stove that hot. Does it matter? Not for the way most people live, but maybe important to you.

    Wood that you get for free and you don't mind cutting, splitting, feeding is probably a better option for you. Pellets you can load into a hopper once a day has other attractions for other folks despite the cost.
  9. kilarney

    kilarney New Member

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    How does the efficiency compare between a wood stove and a pellet stove? Wood stove heat is radiant, which is another factor.
  10. DiggerJim

    DiggerJim Feeling the Heat

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    Modern wood stoves & pellet stoves are pretty similar in efficiency ratings (and comparable to an oil-fired hot water baseboard system in fact). Radiant heat is even more of a space heater than pellet stoves which have the advantage of active air blowing into the room - that heat can flow easier to other rooms than radiant heat will. Of course, if the power's out and you've no battery or generator backup, you won't get anything out of the pellet stove :)
  11. terryjd98

    terryjd98 Member

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    I think you can get a wood stove hotter then a pellet stove if you really load up the stove, also depending what kind of wood you are burning but you would go through a lot of wood. I grew up on a farm with wood and it was a lot of work but the price was right. If you don't mind the work and if have free wood then it might be a good option for you. Myself I don't live on a farm anymore and would have to buy wood and have the extra work besides so a pellet stove makes more sense to me. If I had lots of free wood I would do the work and burn wood. Like others have said it all depends on your situation and how much work you want to do.
  12. drtnshtr

    drtnshtr New Member

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    lots of good stuff here folks. Thanks very much. I also put this question over on the wood forum just so I could compare. Im glad I have 2 pellet stoves(Whitfield Adv.2T and Vermont Castings Reliance) and lucky to have a new wood stove(Englander-ACD24)....I am going over to pick up another ton of pellets tonight($225/ton) :)
  13. krooser

    krooser Minister of Fire

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    I used to burn wood back in the 70's when I lived in Michigan's UP. A lot of work but I owned enough property to be able to harvest my own.

    Now that I'm A LOT older I certainly couldn't even think about doin that again. I'm due for a shoulder AND knee replacement plus I have a suspiciously sore back (comes from working too hard without regards for my back... I wasn't bulletproof afterall...)

    Wood's too much work for an old man...
  14. djarseneault

    djarseneault Member

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    If you compare similar sized stoves (btu wise) a pellet stove will out heat the wood stove, here's why;
    a wood stove can't produce a perfectly constant level of heat, whereas a pellet stove can. What I mean is a woodstove rated at 61K BTUs will not produce as much heat over the course of a day(if not over fired) as say a Harman P61 pellet stove that can run at full output 24/7. Wood stoves produce peaks and valleys in their heat output, when they are full of wood they can really blast, but that load has to burn down before you can reload.
    Pellet stoves are more efficient in real world use too, because of the consistancy of the fuel and the controlability of the stoves, you never get more heat than you need. That can't be said of a wood stove.
  15. gw2kpro

    gw2kpro New Member

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    Lots of postives and negatives to both.

    For me, a huge factor is that my wife and kids are 1/1000th as likely to burn down my house with a pellet stove as they are with a wood stove when I'm away at work.
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