Fire risk of wood stove vs pellet stove?

  • 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.

kevinkevin

New Member
Nov 5, 2023
9
Phelan, 92371
Hello,

We purchased an old manufactured house for rental unit, and there is an old wood stove: Arrow Woodstove - Model 1800A, MH 11315 UL 1482-SC Report Date 9-29-82.
Now, we're thinking if it is good idea to keep the old wood stove or change to Pellet Stove.

I have few questions.

1. The main reason that we want to change to Pellet stove is for fire risk of wood stove.
I heard that fire can happens if chimney is not cleaned yearly, or if too many wood is loaded, etc.
I can hire a person to clean chimney yearly. However there is no control how tenant use the wood stove.
Is it reasonable to worry? Is it true that fire can happen if too many wood is loaded? Please let me know possible ways that fire can happens.
How about a pellet stove? I heard it is much safer than wood stove. However I would like to know how safe it is, and what can cause fire by using a pellet stove.

2. In the aluminum label on back of the oven, I can see that report date is 9-29-82. Does it mean that it was manufactured in the date, or does it means that UL report date?
if it was manufactured in the date, then it is more than 40 years old. When I googled, I found that wood stove can last up to 20 years..
However the condition of the wood stove still looks quite good. It has a damaged handle which I think I can fix easily. Please let me know if it is okay or good idea to keep the old stove.

For me, I don't understand why the lifespan of wood stove is only 20 years. It is made of steal, and I wonder if steal can be degraded by using it.

3. Diameter of metal pipe from wood stove to roof is around 12" . If I remove a wood stove and install a pellet stove, can I connect a pellet stove to 12" diameter metal pipe by using reducer?
or do I have to install new pipe from a pellet stove to roof?

4. My house is about 1600sq ft. Is it better to buy a pellet stove which cover 1600 sq ft or is it better to buy 2000+ sq ft?

5.can you recommend a good pellet stove under or around $2,000? I know there is many aspect choosing good stove.
I just would like to get some idea what is overall good rated pellet stove under $2,000.
I found one in Amazon, and one in Tractor supply. please let me know if they are good stove.
Amazon product ASIN B07J1Z81RF

6. Please let me know if there is essential function or key factors that I have to consider when I buy a pellet stove?

7. Is it good idea to buy used pellet stove? I saw that the life span of pellet stove is up to 12 years.

8. Do I have to hire a professional to clean and check a pellet stove, or can I do it myself?

Thank you for reading my long questions.

IMG_0082.JPG
IMG_0088.JPG
 
Wood stoves and renters are a bad idea. I feel it’s the same for pellet stoves. They both require maintenance and can cause fires if they aren’t operated properly.

We have friends who use a pellet stove in their cabin. It was running on high and they were not paying attention to the ash and ember build up. Pellet stoves feed automatically. The stove continued to feed and burn while the pellets were no longer dropping down to the burn pot. The fire backed up into the hopper. We were sitting around the stove when it happened, and 2 of us dug 40lbs of pellets out of the hopper, stopped the burn, and then cleaned the stove. No long term damage, and this would have been entirely preventable with a little maintenance.

I would remove the wood stove and not put a pellet stove in.
 
Myself, I would remove or make it inoperable, I would not want the to just expect the tenants to properly use and maintain either wood or pellet stove.
 
Wood stoves and renters are a bad idea. I feel it’s the same for pellet stoves. They both require maintenance and can cause fires if they aren’t operated properly.

We have friends who use a pellet stove in their cabin. It was running on high and they were not paying attention to the ash and ember build up. Pellet stoves feed automatically. The stove continued to feed and burn while the pellets were no longer dropping down to the burn pot. The fire backed up into the hopper. We were sitting around the stove when it happened, and 2 of us dug 40lbs of pellets out of the hopper, stopped the burn, and then cleaned the stove. No long term damage, and this would have been entirely preventable with a little maintenance.

I would remove the wood stove and not put a pellet stove in.
Thank you for your reply. I expected replies that pellet stove is way to go. SoI'm
Wood stoves and renters are a bad idea. I feel it’s the same for pellet stoves. They both require maintenance and can cause fires if they aren’t operated properly.

We have friends who use a pellet stove in their cabin. It was running on high and they were not paying attention to the ash and ember build up. Pellet stoves feed automatically. The stove continued to feed and burn while the pellets were no longer dropping down to the burn pot. The fire backed up into the hopper. We were sitting around the stove when it happened, and 2 of us dug 40lbs of pellets out of the hopper, stopped the burn, and then cleaned the stove. No long term damage, and this would have been entirely preventable with a little maintenance.

I would remove the wood stove and not put a pellet stove in.
Thank you for your reply. I expected replies that pellet stove is way to go. By the way, I think there might be pellets stoves which has more safety functions. Do you think all pellets stoves even with safety functions can have fire risk if it is not maintained? I can hire a professional to clean chimney every year.
 
There are propane gas heater installed, and I can buy an electric heater too. My area is not very super cold. However it is still cold enough. it goes down to 20F. so I think the running cost for gas or electric heater can be very high.
 
There are propane gas heater installed, and I can buy an electric heater too. My area is not very super cold. However it is still cold enough. it goes down to 20F. so I think the running cost for gas or electric heater can be very high.
Gas costs will be pretty similar to pellet costs with far less risk as long as they are vented units
 
  • Like
Reactions: kevinkevin
Thank you for your reply. I expected replies that pellet stove is way to go. SoI'm

Thank you for your reply. I expected replies that pellet stove is way to go. By the way, I think there might be pellets stoves which has more safety functions. Do you think all pellets stoves even with safety functions can have fire risk if it is not maintained? I can hire a professional to clean chimney every year.
Yes there will always be a risk with pellet stoves. Less than woostoves for sure but I wouldn't allow renters to use either
 
Myself, I would remove or make it inocd
Myself, I would remove or make it inoperable, I would not want the to just expect the tenants to properly use and maintain either wood or pellet stove.perable, I would not want the to just expect the tenants to properly use and maintain either wood or pellet stove.Can

Myself, I would remove or make it inoperable, I would not want the to just expect the tenants to properly use and maintain either wood or pellet stove.
Can you let me know how can I make a wood stove inoperable?
 
First thing I would do is check to see if your insurance company has an issue with either type of stove. that would give yo ua better vasis for your next action.

Second thing I would do, regardless of the insurance company's response, is remove the wood stove, close off that exhaust and not put anything in its place. You can't control what renters do. Some do stupid stuff inadvertently. Some do stupid stuff intentionally. Some normally responsible and otherwise intelligent people do stupid stuff when they've had a few.

Additionally, you can't make them do the maintenance that either stove requires (like remove ashes). There is too much risk involved.
 
Pellet Stoves require more daily or weekly cleaning depending on the design and quality of pellet purchased. Wood stove require yearly cleaning, possibly more often if the tenant is trying to burn green wood. The wood supply issue is pretty important, dry wood is not easy to find and most new folks really cannot tell the difference between dry wood and wood that has not been dried long enough. The temptation is buy whatever is cheap and try to burn it along with trash and possibly toxic stuff like pressure treated. Pellets on the other hand come in a bag and are ready to burn. Unless you want to supply the firewood and make sure its seasoned, firewood with a tenant is bad idea. Unless the tenant is willing to to do the daily, weekly and yearly maintenance on the pellet stove, it will stop working fairly quickly and someone will need to diagnose and repair it. Used pellet stoves are readily available that usually only need major cleaning.

In either case as a landlord its not a risk to take. I would suggest that you get agreement in writing and as a condition of renting that wood/pellet burning appliances are not to be used or installed along with removing the stove and capping the chimney. Tenants are known on occasion to do their own usually very unsafe installs.
 
  • Like
Reactions: kevinkevin
All of the above. Too much risk to your property and, if something goes wrong, you will be the one who gets sued.
 
I agree. If I had to deal with renters, I would not let them use any solid fuels that require daily maintenance. Just a recipe for disaster.

Is this the only source of heat for this home?
 
  • Like
Reactions: kevinkevin