Consumer Reports Best Pellet Stoves: Reviews Of Top 8 Rated
In order to stay warm in the cold winter days, you have a wide range of options to choose from, such as buying an electric blanket or installing an infrared heater in the room. If you don’t want to buy an electrical unit because of the power outages, then I’ve got an interesting product for you to cope up with the chilling winters, i.e., pellet stoves.
You can get pellet stoves in order to stay warm and comfortable in your room during harsh winters. While you may be having a heat pump at home, but that heat pump requires electricity. If you live in an area where power outage is a common thing and you don’t want to run a generator as well, then you should get a pellet stove, which is the most economical and reliable way of staying warm. To know the top pellet stoves, go through consumer reports best pellet stoves in the below section.
Best Pellet Stoves Reviews By Consumer Reports
1. Deari Serenity Wood Pellet Stove
Get this wood pellet stove to keep your house or garage warm during winters. Weighing just under 150lbs, this freestanding unit is efficient and durable, painted black on the outside along with louvered sides, which make sure that the heat gets evenly dissipated in the room. The unit incorporates a simple hopper-style pellet feeding system and auto-ignition system, so the time taken between filling the pellets and turning on the unit is lesser than most units.
The inclusion of smart heating controls makes things easier for you in terms of controlling the unit, as you can choose between four heating levels. To prevent the accumulation of smoke in the room, the exhaust pipe attached with the unit will come into use. You just need to free 4 sq. ft., of space to install the unit.
2. Napoleon TPI35 Pellet Stove Insert
Despite having a large footprint, you can place it right up against the wall as it comes with a unique wall guard, which is placed behind the stove. The design of this pellet stove resembles a traditional wood stove, but the viewing window is relatively small. So, if you are not much bothered about the aesthetics of the room, then you can consider this pellet stove.
The heating capacity of the unit is 38,250 BTUs, which is decent especially if the winters are not that harsh. With a hopper capacity of 45lbs, you don’t have to add pellets more than once a day. The inclusion of a thermostat along with digital controls makes it easy for you to adjust the heat output according to the desired temperature. The heat is distributed evenly around the room, thanks to 120 CFM blower kit that comes along with the pellet stove.
3. Comfortbilt Pellet Stove HP22
Considered as one of the best pellet stoves for harsh winters, Comfortbilt Pellet Stove definitely allows you to prepare well for the chilly cold nights with its 50,000 BTUs heating capacity and 2,000 sq. ft., of reach.
A large viewing area along with a bay design turns burning of fire into a spectacular view. The fireplace becomes even more beautiful with the charcoal grey area. The unit comes with auto-ignition, a programmable thermostat and an ash pan, which makes operating, controlling and cleaning the pellet stove easy respectively.
The EPA certified blower of the unit runs on 110V and has 86 percent burn efficiency. When it comes to the hopper capacity of the unit, then that stands at 55lbs, so you don’t have to add pellets repeatedly into the hopper. The only drawback of the unit is the fogging up of the glass caused by the soot, which happens frequently.
4. Castle 12327 Serenity Wood Pellet Stove with Smart Controller
If you are looking for a robust and long-lasting solution to keep your room warm, then invest in Castle 12327 Serenity Pellet Stove. The unit incorporates a unique smart controller, which allows you to change thermostat, heating schedule and many more quite easily.
The inclusion of five burn settings makes it easy for you to adjust the temperature according to the outside weather conditions. The unit is 70 percent energy efficient and covers up to 1500 sq. ft., of area. The hopper capacity is around 40lbs, which can easily accommodate a full bag of pellets. Overall, a decent product with useful features.
5. Pleasant Hearth Small Mobile Home Stove
If you don’t have much space to play with, even then you can get a decent pellet stove in order to keep your house warm and comfortable. Pleasant Hearth Pellet Stove is all you need, as it is ideal for spaces having area around 1200 sq. ft.
Despite being a small-sized pellet stove, it heats up the area quite efficiently, burning up pellets for 6-8 hours in one go. With a heat capacity of 50,000 BTUs, the time taken by this pellet stove to heat up a specific area would be quite less.
With the backing of EPA certification, the unit becomes safe for you as well as the environment. The stove comes with a variable speed blower and push-pull draft control level ash lip, which controls the flow of heat and removes the ash accumulated in the unit respectively.
6. US Stove 4840 Wall Mount Direct Vent Pellet Heater
Another excellent pellet stove for a small space, US Stove 4840 Wall Mount Direct Vent Pellet Heater will provide warmth in the moderate winter season, as it has the heat capacity of 24,000 BTUs, which you may think is a bit less, but then, it is ideal for covering a 1200 sq. ft., room.
The pellet stove constitutes automatic ignition along with five settings. The inclusion of vent kit in the pellet stove is a great plus point, as you don’t have to worry about how to get rid of the smoke produced by the unit. Despite being a compact pellet stove, it is quite expensive.
7. US Stove 5660 Bay Front Pellet Stove
This pellet stove is capable of distributing heat evenly throughout the room. Being an automatic stove, you don’t have to do much in order to keep it running. Moreover, it comes with six heat settings, which allow you to set the heat level as per your needs. The unit sports a 120CFM blower with automatic circulation, which helps spread the heat evenly.
The inclusion of an LED display makes operating the pellet stove a breeze. You can easily adjust any setting with a single touch of a button. The large bay window style door along with air wash glass provides an excellent view of the embers of the fire.
8. Pleasant Hearth 50,000 BTU Cabinet Pellet Stove
One of the best pellet stoves for use in the house, Pleasant Hearth Cabinet Pellet Stove covers an area of around 2,200 sq. ft., which in most cases is the total area of a house. With a heat capacity of 50,000 BTUs, you can expect this pellet stove to quickly heat the desired area. To ensure uninterrupted heating, the unit incorporates a large hopper with a capacity of 120 lbs, which gives 24-70 hours of burn time.
Other features of the unit include 5 heat settings, auto-ignition, washer kit, option to set desired temperatures and a convection blower to spread cleaner air. Moreover, the pellet stove has 85 percent efficiency rating and it is also EPA certified, so you can totally rely on this incredible pellet stove for heating your home.
Working Of Pellet Stoves
The design of pellet stoves may give you the feel as if they are simplified machines, but when it comes to operation, pellet stoves are anything but simple. Let’s delve into details as to how pellet stoves work.
- It all begins with filling up of hopper with pellets, which are then slowly taken from the hopper in order to be burned.
- An auger is connected to the hopper, which moves pellets from hopper to the combustion chamber. If the stove consists of a thermostat, then the rate at which the pellets are fed will determine the intensity of the fire. Slow auger speeds deliver pellets slowly whereas fast auger speeds deliver pellets at a faster pace, resulting in a more intense fire.
- A fire pot is incorporated into the combustion chamber, which receives the pellets delivered by the auger. In some combustion chambers, you’ll find a burner ring instead of a fire pot. Air is blown at regular intervals into the combustion chamber to maintain the flame. Some pellet stoves have a self-igniting flame, while others have a manual ignition.
- The combustion chamber is connected to a heat exchanger, which is responsible for keeping the room warm. This happens when the room air is blown over the heat exchanger and the convection current pushes hot air through the heat exchanger. The air gets back into the room but in the form of hot air.
Advantages Of Pellet Stoves
Pellet stoves are widely used in the world because they have many advantages over other stoves running on other types of fuels than pellets.
- Pellets have a lower carbon footprint when compared to fuels such as gas, logs or oil.
- Pellet produces high-intensity heat, which is equivalent to the heat produced by burning fossil fuel.
- Wood pellets are not expensive, plus the price of wood pellets doesn’t fluctuate as you would see in the case of oil and gas. Moreover, wood pellets are readily available in all parts of the world.
- When it comes to efficiency, wood pellet stoves are more energy efficient, with some having an efficiency rate of up to 95 percent.
- Pellet stoves offer a great source of energy for those who live off the national grid.
- Using a pellet stove is quite easy, as you don’t need any instruction manual to operate the unit.
- Controlling a pellet stove is also easier compared to other stoves, courtesy of the heat and fan speed settings.
Buying The Best Pellet Stove: Factors To Consider
Efficiency And Power Output: You need to check whether the pellet stove is able to heat up your house properly or not. The ability of a pellet stove to heat your room can be determined from the heat output value of the stove. Usually, a pellet stove has 40,000 to 50,000 BTU of heat output rating, but this can vary as well.
Pellet Type: Before you finalize the decision to buy a pellet stove, you need to make sure that you can get hold of the fuel through which you’d power up the stove. Though you shouldn’t be having any issue keeping pellets, it is important that you check if you have got the best kind of pellets.
Wood pellets are divided into two types; premium and standard grade in which, premium pellets are expensive and offer more benefits than standard ones such as, fewer carbon emissions and longer burning time. The bag of pellets should be bought in accordance to the capacity of the hopper because if you buy a large bag of pellets, but couldn’t add all the pellets into the hopper, then the pellets may become damp or get knocked over.
Maintenance: As a pellet stove comes with many moving parts, therefore, you will have to take extra care while cleaning the stove. You can clean the ash pan with a vacuum cleaner or any other suitable way. You should buy pellet stoves that come with self-cleaning glass or else, you will have to clean the glass yourself, which is anything but easy.
Top Or Bottom Hopper: A hopper is an area where all the pellets are moved into the burning chamber. Many pellet stoves have hopper placed at the top whereas, in some, you’d find the hopper at the bottom. So, which one is good? Well, the hopper placed at the top has a less chance of fire from the burn area going into the hopper, but you’ll require premium grade pellets to avoid clogging of the ash in the chute.
A hopper placed at the bottom makes it easier for you to load pellets. Moreover, you can use standard grade pellets as well. Top positioned hoppers are more efficient than bottom positioned hoppers.
Appearance & Style: You will find a wide range of designs from fireplace inserts to freestanding pellet stoves, so you need to buy the stove that meets your requirements the best. Prefer stoves with extra-large viewing windows if you wish to have a lively flame in the home. The stove should be made of high-quality materials so as to get maximum efficiency.
Now that you have gone through the reviews of eight top pellet stoves, it’s up to you to decide as to which pellet stove would go perfectly with your home settings. If it gets extremely cold in your area during winters, then invest in a pellet stove that has high BTU rating and large coverage area.
If it doesn’t get that cold, then a pellet stove with a medium BTU rating would do the job in the best way. Pick the best product from the consumer reports for the best pellet stoves and stay warm and protected in winters.