My Observations......Pellet stoves, Thermostats, Pellet Co-op

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Bill Pitman

Mar 17, 2018
Milford, Pa.
Sorry, had to move, was in wrong location!

New member here, Bill Pitman.... Milford, Pa.

After burning wood for over 35 years, the decision to convert to a pellet stove was made.
Reasons for this..... My age, dirt & dust, getting up to "feed the fire", and to try something new.
I spend a month or so, doing research, figuring costs- stove, larger hearth stone, piping/caps,
Infared thermometer, pellet costs.... Pretty much stayed on budget for this project.
Now I know, going from getting mostly free firewood to a pellet stove, costs WILL be going up. That's
OK, I've gotten older & wiser..... I'll deal with: pellet prices, cleaning/maintenance, higher electric costs.

So, did the install myself, with help from my son James.... The hearth stone was the worst, followed by
the stove. All weight related.
Inside piping I used ICC & Ventis, as I like their silicone seals. Also because
I didn't like the "twist & lock" features of other brands. I used a Ventis 2 piece-disconnect piece at the stove flange, so it will be very easy to disconnect & slide apart the 3 pieces that make up my inside piping. I do not
want to have to move the stove.

The stove I installed on February 23rd is a Harman P-43. Good size for our modest- sized home.
I will say stove manufacturers do tend to have pricing pretty much locked up..... Your definitely not buying a car & getting 20% off. That's sort of OK, I'll deal/dealt with it.

The stove works well. I've been using it in "room temp mode", igniter disabled, so a maintenance fire is on when the call for heat is gone. OK with me, stove stays warm, ignitor not cycling, no cold stove to heat output when needed.
I don't/ didn't like adjusting the temp knob.... Adjust for "at home" temperature, then at night, adjusting to a 5 degree lower overnite temp. Please note, the +/- accuracy of the toom sensor is excellent, better than that of
the newly installed thermostat. More to follow...
Started researching on, ran across a post from a member, "ibcynya"(sp?), who had installed a thermostat to control room temperature. See the sticky post on, to learn more.

So this Thursday I installed the wireless SkyTech model 3301P thermostat system. Not cheap, but did not want to be running wires. FYI- the receiver gets wired, in series, with the stove room sensor. It acts as a simple switch breaking the continuity of the room sensor. There is NO VOLTAGE introduced into the circuit,
(I had contacted SkyTech to confirm this, basically a relay coil is energized/ deenergized by set temperature of transmitter. The output "dry contacts" of the relay act as a switch, to open the room temp circuit.)
I set up the receiver & transmitter, wired it up, programmed the transmitter ( 4 periods per day, 7 days), and it
works like a charm!
I have an Acurite weather station, and a temperature/ rh module that I can move around and see, in 5 minute increments, what temps are doing, in graph form. That is why I said earlier, the room sensor is more accurate. However, I just found out my module accuracy is only +/- 2 degrees....

Almost forgot.... Why hasn't anyone tried to start a co-op- like operation to purchase pellets.
My thought is - I would find pellet stove people within 10 miles or so of where I live. Those people would agree to purchase X tons of pellets. Those skids of pellets could be picked up maybe 2 times within the year.
I did the research....Trailer load = 24 tons,Pellets can be purchased for : premium $180/ton, premium premium $200/ton, shipping
Is high & changing, typically adds $30 to cost.... So, ton cost is $210 or $230, add in $10/skid for the person
who is storing & then loading the skids. Cost now is $220 or $240...... What do you think, not worth it?!
The one little kink, the person storing the pellets would need to have the room to do it (I do), and a forklift to
load the skids (I don't). thoughts?! Cheapest I've paid $249, most $269

Thanks for listening, sorry for the long post, but I hope it helps others out!
I will update the post with the other member's link, to information about hooking up this particular thermostat. EDIT UPDATE: Skytech 3301P Install - Go here:
Any questions or comments, just do a post!

Bill Pitman
One of the fuel co-ops in NH tried that a couple of years ago but then quit. Don't know why since I wasn't a part of it (found it when it was the middle of heating season so they were closed to new members until the next spring).