Review of Breckwell --- Classic Vermont -- Freestanding Stove burning Wood Pellets
Installation Type: Pellet/Corn - into existing Chimney/Fireplace
Satisfaction Ratings from 5 stars (best) to 1 star (worst)
Satisfaction with unit = ✰✰✰✰
Satisfaction with dealer = ✰✰
Satisfaction with manufacturer = ✰✰✰
Other Information about the Home and Stove
Room Size (Sq ft): | House Size (Sq feet):
Bought in 2008 , Price Paid:
Location : West Springfield, MA 1089, USA
Purchased from: Fireplace Retail Store - Turnpike Acres
We live in a smaller two story home, on frigid days the unit heats the entire home adequately, comfortably. Very small learning curve, requires much less attention throughout the day than a wood stove.
The stove comes with fake brick panels. The hole in back panel for the pellet chute is too low; the chute therefore prevents the panel from sitting flush against the back of the stove. What happens then is pellets bounce of the lower edge of the panel and miss the pot. So many pellets missed the pot that we had a large fire in the ash tray. We shut off the stove and let it burn itself out. There was a smell of smoke and burnt paint in the house for a little while after that. On its lowest setting there is a subtle but distinct high pitched hum. We contacted both the dealer and manufacturer neither have responded to either issue.
We also ordered the \"log kit\" which looks different than the one we saw in the store and really does not look like logs. It does little more than catch the ash that would normally just fall into the ash tray - unless you have your heart set on it save your money. The cast legs are not true - the stove does not sit flush on the floor, it can be rocked slightly also the lid for the hopper does not close completely, which is disappointing consider how much you pay for the unit.
Overall the stove is a nice addition to our home. We like the way it heats the house better than the gas fired central air; in fact the upper floor of the house has never been as warm.
Cleaning is pretty easy; you can spend a whole lot of money on a vac system (At first I did try using a shop vac but the super fine ash quickly clogged the filter) a 2 1/2 inch paint brush works very well for directing the ash into the tray. There is a built in scrapper to clean the heat exchange pipes but I do not think that it really does a good job. every week when I clean the unit I just take some course steel wool and work it lightly over and between the the pipes as far as I can reach.
Cleaning the glass was a hassle at first, but an installer of many years experience shared his secret: ultra fine steel wool (numbered 0000 - that is four zeroes) it works so well that I do not even need to use any spray cleaners on the glass.
As kind and courteous as the folks at the dealership were I am very disappointed with their communication; frankly they have NEVER returned a call, at one point I had to drive down to the store to find out when the stove, already months late was going to be installed. Alas the dealership has disappointed me as well. We contacted them twice about the fire and they have yet, a month later, to contacted us.
* Dates that reviews were submitted were not recorded prior to Nov. 2004