Castle Serenity vs. Enviro Mini

  • Active since 1995, Hearth.com is THE place on the internet for free information and advice about wood stoves, pellet stoves and other energy saving equipment.

    We strive to provide opinions, articles, discussions and history related to Hearth Products and in a more general sense, energy issues.

    We promote the EFFICIENT, RESPONSIBLE, CLEAN and SAFE use of all fuels, whether renewable or fossil.

VTSally

New Member
Jun 15, 2018
3
Vermont
Hello, I'm a new member but have been reading reviews and old threads for a few weeks with gratitude for all of the great information here. I could use some advice on choosing a pellet stove for a 600sq ft condo in central Vermont that I purchased this April, and which is my primary residence.

The heat source is currently an anemic electric wall unit (that's my profile pic) with a baseboard in the bedroom.

The condo board doesn't allow propane tanks, so my options are to upgrade the electric heat or install a pellet stove, and I think pellet heat is the sensible long-term solution. The condo has one bedroom but is otherwise a high-ceilinged open living room-kitchen area with a small loft. I can vent through the exterior wall.

But.

I don't have a lot of money and I don't know anything about heating with wood/pellet-burning stoves.

I'm pretty handy, though, and I'm game to learn. I understand that any stove will need regular cleaning and attention and eventually maintenance, and that's absolutely fine.

So here's where I can use some advice. I can buy a Castle Serenity for 1k at a big-box store and then hire an installer. That would be the economical way to go, and I've read some quite positive reviews of the stove. I worry, though, that I would regret getting a low-end stove in the long run.

My local hearth store will sell me a new Enviro Mini for $2700 , plus installation, which will put me up near $3,500.

They also have a Piazzetta Monia for about the same price. I'm not sure how much more an Enviro P3 would be. And I've read that they can have issues, too. (Honestly, from reading this forum it sounds like the only stoves that don't really have issues are Harmans, but that's out of my price range).

I can do that $3500, but it would be a big hit to my savings at a time when I'm underemployed and transitioning from one career to another, so things are economically uncertain at the moment.

Oh, and one more question: I have an idea that I might get a Mr. Heater Buddy and keep it in the attic in case the power goes out. Good idea or terrible idea?

Thank you so much for all of your help!

VTSally
 
That’s a pretty small space so a smaller stove would definitely meet you’re needs. But I would look on Craigslist for either a used Harman p38 that has auto feature or the p43. Both solid stoves
 
  • Like
Reactions: VTSally
Buy what you like Enviro , Harman or any of the other
stoves . I disagree with you on the repair issues . I have an enviro
and have used it for 16 years without a major breakdown
All stoves have good and bad ones but to say Harmans are the best
well I do not think so . I have worked on more broken Harmans than Enviros
and I know more Enviro owners than Harman . NO OFFENCE TO HARMAN PEOPLE
just my 2 cents worth
 
Buy what you like Enviro , Harman or any of the other
stoves . I disagree with you on the repair issues . I have an enviro
and have used it for 16 years without a major breakdown
All stoves have good and bad ones but to say Harmans are the best
well I do not think so . I have worked on more broken Harmans than Enviros
and I know more Enviro owners than Harman . NO OFFENCE TO HARMAN PEOPLE
just my 2 cents worth

Thanks, Johneh! I guess I've only read a small sliver of posts and reviews, so I was getting a skewed sample size. I'm just worried because it's a big investment for me and I'm nervous about making a good choice.
 
Thanks, Johneh! I guess I've only read a small sliver of posts and reviews, so I was getting a skewed sample size. I'm just worried because it's a big investment for me and I'm nervous about making a good choice.
I know it would be at the top of your budget but a brand new harman p43 with all the warranty bells and whistles is $3,100. if you could install yourself you most likely could stay at $3,500. Provided you wanted a harman.
 

Attachments

  • image.png
    image.png
    1 MB · Views: 407
I guess what I'm wondering is what exactly would I be sacrificing in getting the Serenity?

And thank you, everyone, I really appreciate all of the help! I know you must answer newbie questions a lot; I appreciate your time.
 
I guess what I'm wondering is what exactly would I be sacrificing in getting the Serenity?

And thank you, everyone, I really appreciate all of the help! I know you must answer newbie questions a lot; I appreciate your time.
Hello
I have sold and Installed the Serenity Pellet Stove. The remote control is nice. It is a good stove for the money but you do sacrifice in not having a heavy duty shell and heavy duty parts for the price. The stove is safe and has all the bells and whistles, the replacement parts are inexpensive and readily available.
 
Who will be servicing what ever stove you buy, If you can do it yourself the serenity is hard to beat for the price. If you won't be able to do your own servicing then I would go with one of the dealer backed stoves.
 
Another vote for the Enviro, that 1899 deal for a new one is a nice price....