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Posted: 12/14/2013 7:16:11 AM EDT
Like the title says, I am looking for arfcoms opinion and experience with pellet stoves..I will be buying a stove withen the next week.  I have experienced the dilemas with having only one heatsource and that experience wont be repeated..It was - 35 for a few days and my heat went belly up.  Circuit board fried and it has taken a little over a week and a half to get parts to fix heat source..I have about an 1800 square foot house, with a very open floor plan. with a loft.
I have been looking at the pella stoves, a little pricey but good reviews...What are you guys using?
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 7:25:52 AM EDT
So your solution is to buy something else with a circuit board?
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 7:26:13 AM EDT
Harman advanced 2.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 7:30:27 AM EDT
yah I have heard of a bunch of motors failing and unless you have a gen... no power no heat
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 7:49:48 AM EDT
This is my third season with a Quadrafire, I purchased used on craigslist, I believe this is the stoves fifth season.

It has worked perfectly so far with no issues.

I've had to use it once with the power out, it ran off my eu2000 for ten hours with no issues.

I haven't had to use them but everyone recommends you buy a replacement igniter, fuses, and or movs depending on brand.

Buy pellets in bulk preseason, I paid $150.00 a ton in August.  

Get the fine hepa filters for your shop vac, you will be cleaning it once or twice a week depending on use.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 7:53:57 AM EDT
We have a quadrafire pellet stove for going on 5 years it got moved to the shop once we replaced it with a wood stove for the reasons mentioned above. No power no heat. But it still runs almost daily in the shop and it going strong no complaints. Wish it had a bigger hopper tho for when we rant around to refill it.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 7:55:12 AM EDT
Many folks use them up here in Fairbanks, but you must have an alternate power source for when the power goes out.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 7:55:41 AM EDT
How long does say 50 pounds of pellets last?
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 7:57:40 AM EDT
OP, I would look at some other option for a backup heating solution.

I own 2 pellet stoves-- one free standing and one fireplace insert, and I removed both of them from my home.  I absolutely HATE them.  They are a PITA to keep clean.  Not only do you have to use a shop vac to clean out all the ash, the glass gets covered with creosote and is a mess to clean. Even if you just use them in the evening after work, you will need to do a major cleaning at least once a week. Also, the fireplace insert almost caught our house on fire once as well.  I left it on at night and the ash built up in the pan, then the pellets backed up the pellet chute before it shut down, and these pellets started to burn  By the next morning, the pellets in the bottom of the hopper started to smolder and smoke started to come out from under the lid.  Thank goodness that we were home and I was able to remove all the pellets from the stove.

The insert is currently on consignment sale at our local fireplace shop.  This shop is no longer a dealer for pellet stoves because they are so finicky--more problems than they are worth according to the owner.

I put the free standing stove in my shop, and it promptly stopped feeding pellets.  Probably going to cost more than it is worth to fix.

Sorry I can't comment on specific stoves, but this is my experience with pellet stoves in general.

Good Luck!
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 7:59:55 AM EDT
Harman P68

5 years not a problem. Primary heat for my 2 story 1900' house.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:02:19 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/14/2013 8:04:32 AM EDT by Abearir]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Jerret_S:
How long does say 50 pounds of pellets last?
View Quote


Bags are 40lbs, depending on how hard I run it, 1-1.5 days. If it's really cold, my P68 runs through 2 per day.

This model also does just fine being cleaned about once a TON........50 bags
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:04:08 AM EDT
Just get a wood stove.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:10:20 AM EDT
Get a direct vent gas heater. We put one in our family room.quiet,30,000 btus and no electricity. Works without power.
No pellets,no cleaning. Comes in a propane version or natural gas. That along with our fireplace and we can hunker down during a power outage.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:27:07 AM EDT
I have a Greenfire GF55 that is on it's 6th season and this year I had to replace the exhaust blower. Other than that NO problems. I use 2 tons a year. It is on a thermostat and comes on a 1/2 hour before I get up for work and shuts off when I leave. It repeats that 1/2 hour before I get home in the evening. I clean the burn pot and glass weekly and compleate cleaning once a year in the late summer. Mine has paid for itself in savings ove natural gas in 5 years.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:30:13 AM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By P400:
So your solution is to buy something else with a circuit board?
View Quote



sure whats the odds of both failing at the same time
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:31:16 AM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By CPTCARL:
Many folks use them up here in Fairbanks, but you must have an alternate power source for when the power goes out.
View Quote


I have a backup power source
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:31:38 AM EDT
I heard some stoves can burn corn also. Does burning corn require more cleaning or anything different than pellets?
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:32:41 AM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By BHO_GFY:
Just get a wood stove.
View Quote


I would do wood if there was a source other than a trucking company delivering the wood..I am on the hi line and there isnt a tree withen 150 miles of me
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:33:24 AM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Harv24:
Get a direct vent gas heater. We put one in our family room.quiet,30,000 btus and no electricity. Works without power.
No pellets,no cleaning. Comes in a propane version or natural gas. That along with our fireplace and we can hunker down during a power outage.
View Quote

Do you have a model and make to recommend..I will entertain that idea for sure
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:33:40 AM EDT
Are you set on pellets? Do you have access to anthracite coal? Do want to run it continuously?
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:37:51 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/14/2013 8:38:58 AM EDT by propguy]
Pleasant Hearth 1st season  holds 120lbs of pellets it's ok but glad I have the WS's also
But I also have 3 wood stoves /1 is also a coal burner Range oven Peninsular
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:39:26 AM EDT
I have this http://www.harmanstoves.com/Products/Advance-Pellet-Stove.aspx

Mine is about 10 years old. It was in the house when a bought it. Had to replace two ignitors and the egt probe. I have ran it on a Honda Generator before. Downfall, i can only find parts through a Harmon dealer, which is a PITA.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:42:44 AM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By JCatt:
Are you set on pellets? Do you have access to anthracite coal? Do want to run it continuously?
View Quote


I work with a guy who heats with coal and all I here him do is complain about the 300 miles round trip to get coal.  Coal is probably a bad idea
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:48:36 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/14/2013 8:49:33 AM EDT by xd341]
Just installed a Harmon pb105 boiler. So far I'm pretty happy. Primary source with propane as backup. Seems like a well designed unit. 120k btu. On track to burn about a ton/month if it stays cold. So far so good.
 
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 8:52:32 AM EDT
We use 1 bag-40 pounds per day when it is cold.  I just had to replace the feed auger motor..200 bucks for a 20 dollar motor.  Keeps the upstairs 1500 sq ft at 60-70* when it is the teens and single digits. Quadrafire castile.  I clean it out daily.  Shut it down dump ashes into bottom pan, vacuum ash, and wipe down the window.  Takes 10 minutes or less.

I plan to put a wood burner in the basement, have fireplace there now.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 3:43:36 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/14/2013 3:46:04 PM EDT by Harv24]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By hunter101:

Do you have a model and make to recommend..I will entertain that idea for sure
View Quote View All Quotes
View All Quotes
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By hunter101:
Originally Posted By Harv24:
Get a direct vent gas heater. We put one in our family room.quiet,30,000 btus and no electricity. Works without power.
No pellets,no cleaning. Comes in a propane version or natural gas. That along with our fireplace and we can hunker down during a power outage.

Do you have a model and make to recommend..I will entertain that idea for sure


Empire MVP-145

Empire
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 3:52:01 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/14/2013 3:56:06 PM EDT by theskuh]
I have a shitty cheap Englander for about 7-8 years now.   http://www.englanderstoves.com/25-pdvc.html
It has been awesome, a bit loud but awesome. I have replaced one auger motor and the auto lighter works off and on. But it just keeps going and going. When I was looking there wasn't a real correlation between buying an expensive stove and them actually being more reliable. It seemed like when the more expensive ones went down the parts were expensive and possibly not easy to come by. Englander parts are relatively cheap and they have great support.
Its not pretty, its not quiet but it works and spare auger motors are like $50 or less on amazon.
I used to burn a corn mix in mine. But when corn blew up in price it wasn't nearly as attractive. It is easier just to crank it and burn more wood. Wood burns a lot cleaner but the corn puts out a metric shiton of heat in comparison. I will keep a bag or two of corn around to mix in when it gets really cold that way I can keep the stove running on a really slow feed rate but it still puts out the heat of the stove when it is set on a much faster feed.
It has saved me countless thousands in heating oil here in VT. I have a small house and the pellet stove is all I use most winters. It keeps up until it gets below zero for extended periods. Other than deep freezes it can keep my house at 70 or so if needed.




 
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 4:06:22 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/14/2013 4:06:33 PM EDT by mongo001]
Englander 25-PDV here.  It's in the basement and keeps the family room there very warm.  Propane delivery guy noticed something and mentioned how little propane I use vs the neighbors around me, so it must be inputting heat throughout the house also.

I use about 5 bags every seven days.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 4:10:23 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By P400:
So your solution is to buy something else with a circuit board?
View Quote

This. I sold fireplaces for a few years. God with a wood stove. Pellets cost twice as much as gas in some areas and is also twice as expensive as wood. The only good thing is you can order a pallet of pellets and not have to stack it. But above poster is correct. We had more service calls with pellet stoves than any other kind. I sold Heat-n-glo, quadra fire, and heatilator (same company). Quadra fire makes a great stove and so does lopi. I heat my 1200 sq.ft. home on 2 cords of wood a year in Michigan. Best investment ever.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 4:18:27 PM EDT
Lopi.  We burn 5 tons a year.  Cleaning is not a big issue.  Stove has held up very well.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 4:26:27 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Britt-dog:
This is my third season with a Quadrafire, I purchased used on craigslist, I believe this is the stoves fifth season.

It has worked perfectly so far with no issues.

I've had to use it once with the power out, it ran off my eu2000 for ten hours with no issues.

I haven't had to use them but everyone recommends you buy a replacement igniter, fuses, and or movs depending on brand.

Buy pellets in bulk preseason, I paid $150.00 a ton in August.  

Get the fine hepa filters for your shop vac, you will be cleaning it once or twice a week depending on use.
View Quote

I've had a Quadrafire going on 11 years not one problem
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 4:29:37 PM EDT

Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By mongo001:


Englander 25-PDV here.  It's in the basement and keeps the family room there very warm.  Propane delivery guy noticed something and mentioned how little propane I use vs the neighbors around me, so it must be inputting heat throughout the house also.



I use about 5 bags every seven days.
View Quote


I was hoping for something more atomic.



 
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 4:29:46 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/14/2013 4:31:02 PM EDT by azcactusbrew]
Like all good arfcommers with the 2 is 1 and 1 is none concept, shouldn't you have had an extra circuit board at all times just in case your first one goes out?  

Seriously though, I would just load up the gooseneck on the truck, drive the 150 miles to the forest, cut a couple cord of wood, and just burn wood.  You can buy firewood permits from the forest service for 10 bucks a cord or something.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 4:31:44 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Powerstroke99:
OP, I would look at some other option for a backup heating solution.

I own 2 pellet stoves-- one free standing and one fireplace insert, and I removed both of them from my home.  I absolutely HATE them.  They are a PITA to keep clean.  Not only do you have to use a shop vac to clean out all the ash, the glass gets covered with creosote and is a mess to clean. Even if you just use them in the evening after work, you will need to do a major cleaning at least once a week. Also, the fireplace insert almost caught our house on fire once as well.  I left it on at night and the ash built up in the pan, then the pellets backed up the pellet chute before it shut down, and these pellets started to burn  By the next morning, the pellets in the bottom of the hopper started to smolder and smoke started to come out from under the lid.  Thank goodness that we were home and I was able to remove all the pellets from the stove.

The insert is currently on consignment sale at our local fireplace shop.  This shop is no longer a dealer for pellet stoves because they are so finicky--more problems than they are worth according to the owner.

I put the free standing stove in my shop, and it promptly stopped feeding pellets.  Probably going to cost more than it is worth to fix.

Sorry I can't comment on specific stoves, but this is my experience with pellet stoves in general.

Good Luck!
View Quote



Maybe just a little complicated for ya
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 4:39:14 PM EDT
I have a Summers Heat "Englander" that I got from Lowes about 5 years ago. Not the best stove out there but it works. Cleaning is a non issues.  Shop vac does all the work. I clean the glass every time I use it. Widow cleaner and a towel.  Don't have any problems with build up on the glass.

Remember pellets are tax free when you buy them. 40lb bag will last about 10 hours on my stove. I am very happy with this type of heat. Plus the Regency wood fireplace insert that I have works great too.
Link Posted: 12/14/2013 5:06:21 PM EDT
Originally Posted By hunter101:
Like the title says, I am looking for arfcoms opinion and experience with pellet stoves..I will be buying a stove withen the next week.  I have experienced the dilemas with having only one heatsource and that experience wont be repeated..It was - 35 for a few days and my heat went belly up.  Circuit board fried and it has taken a little over a week and a half to get parts to fix heat source..I have about an 1800 square foot house, with a very open floor plan. with a loft.
I have been looking at the pella stoves, a little pricey but good reviews...What are you guys using?
View Quote



By the best and original...Whitfield.

My parents have one with an 80 lb hopper and it is the tits.
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