Heating with biomass pellet stoves.

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A pellet stove is a type of stove that burns wooden or biomass pellets as its heating source and functions very much like any other wooden or gas stove. Fuel must be slowly fed through the storage container or hopper into the burn pot area that creates a constant flame which usually needs very little adjustment. Oil drums, braziers and barreled stoves were popularly used during the times of the Great Depression and sawdust wooden stoves have also played a vital role in this century. It was in 1930 that the presto log (artificial fuel for wood burning which was used to recycle sawdust from sawmills) was introduced and from it evolved the pellet stove. The pellet stove first emerged in the Washington state in the early 1980′s.

Since then the pellet stove has advanced to a great extent and today they are automated and much efficient in their functioning than wooden stoves. A typical pellet stove today can hold up to 60 lbs and the pellets get automatically fed into the combustion chamber whenever desired. The other advantage is the fact that most pellet stoves can be easily installed through a wall and offer more installation options because they contain smaller venting pipes. Also, since pellet stoves use the principle of convection in their heating, a room heated by a pellet stove will be much more comfortable rather than an over-heating wooden stove. Also, the burning cycle of a pellet stove takes longer and hence, re-insertion of pellets needn’t be done often.

There are so many other benefits of using pellet stoves. The main advantage is that pellet stoves are highly versatile. Pellet stoves are self-ignitable and cycle automatically in relation to their thermostats. Today, the most modern pellet stoves have computer chips installed within them so that any internal fault can be easily detected and also, can be remote controlled. The percentage of ash a pellet stove releases is almost negligible for pellets burn cleanly. Even though pellet stoves are meant to burn pelletized wood, they also burn corn, grain and wood chips efficiently. Amazingly, even waste paper can be used in pellet stoves.

One way we can all help the environment is through expanding the use of renewable energy. Sites like Solar Energy and Wind Power provide resources and comparisons of plans, and there are many sites that sell kits and complete systems. Decide today to embrace renewable energy of some kind.

Pellet stoves necessarily require two walled venting, normally three or four inches in diameter, preferably with a stainless steel interior and galvanized iron exterior. Precautions must be taken because pellet stoves release quite an amount of pressure and this pressure can cause smoke to leak through the system. Pellet stoves are much more advantageous in comparison to many other heating sources, but, getting an expert’s support in installing a pellet stove will always keep you on the safer side.

Dan T Brown.
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Heating with biomass pellet stoves.

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This article was published on 2010/10/18