Best Pellet Stoves for 2021

Buying a heater for your home can be a difficult task. You not only have to buy a heater that can warm your home, but a heater also has to function properly without costing too much. In that case you should have a look at a pellet stove.

Pellet stoves are so-called “furnace style fuel burners”, but instead of electricity or oil they are using wooden pellets, which are specially manufactured for units like this.

Best Pellet Stoves


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Introduction

Setting up and maintaining a pellet stove is not that difficult and when it comes to design you have a huge range of different types of pellet stoves to choose from. Make sure to choose a pellet stove that fits to the interior of your home and you will stay warm and cozy for the colder months to come.

A pellet stove is a distinctive heater which requires some special operation, attention, and maintenance as opposed to your traditional oil-filled or electric heater. If you are keen to know more or not familiar with this kind of heater, you should continue reading to understand why so many people are using a pellet stove to heat up their house.

This buying guide will help you to determine if a pellet stove is the right kind of product for you to warm your home.

After the usual “best pellet stoves” in this pellet stove guide, we will give you a more in-depth overview of all the essential things to consider when buying one.

The Best Pellet Stoves

Pellet Stove | Recommended


Last update on 2021-11-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

What are Pellets?

The so-called pellet, used in the “pellet” stove is composed of compressed biomass. It is a fuel type that is typically made from wood, but you have many variations where a pellet is made from crops, lumber, or even food waste. The pellets you buy are usually made from byproducts, or in other words bio fuels that are made from compressed organic material or biomass.

As pellets are mostly small particles that are compressed, you can figure out that there are a lot of possibilities for different kind of fuel types. You can think of industrial waste, food waste, co-products, agricultural residues, virgin lumber, and energy crops. However, wood pellets are the most common type of pellet fuel and are basically compressed sawdust from the milling of lumber, wood products, furniture manufacturers, and construction.

Pellets are small objects and have a similar shape to all of them. This way it is easy to shovel them into a burner/auger. Thanks to the compressed nature of the pellet it is a very dense material, hence it’s usually easy to store and move pellets from one room to another if you’re using the proper storage.

As pellets are fuel pieces that generate the heat in a pellet stove, it is important to know a number of pellets are needed to heat the room. Besides that, you need to know the maximum amount the hopper of the pellet stove can carry. Needless to say, each unit can hold different amounts of pellets at a given time.

Best Pellet Stove

To conclude, pellets are uniform cylinders of composite biomass fuel that are loaded into the stove hopper and “automatically fed” into the stove bum pot, creating a steady, warming fire. Typically produced domestically, their composition varies depending on regional resources.

How does a pellet stove work?

A pellet stove has this common traditional look to it, and you might think the operation of such unit is a straightforward process. However, adjusting the heat at home using a pellet stove can be a complex undertaking. If done wrong, a number of pellets might burn too fast or too slow, giving you an unsatisfied heating experience. The following segments explain the different types of elements used in a pellet stove.

Why should I use a Pellet Stove?

There are a couple of advantages when choosing a pellet heating stove for your home instead of other fuel-burning heaters.

First of all, there is the lower carbon footprint. Heating your house with the pellet fuel produces way fewer emissions as compared to other fuels like oil, gas, and wooden logs.

Second, while up for debate, pellets are able to produce as much heat as oil or gas heaters. Pellets are as much effective as the fossil fuels available. Wood pellets stoves are also becoming more energy efficient. The more modern ones can have a rating up to 95% which means is a better option as compared to the traditional fuel burning stove.

The third is the costs. Besides the fact wooden pellets are affordable, the price fluctuations aren’t as high as the other fuel types. Because of this, it is easier to predict the cost of a pellet stove throughout the year. Pellets are widely available in the US and you can shop around (yes, also online) to find the cheapest or best option.

When you are off the power grid, pellet stove are a suitable alternative to hear your home. However, some pellet stove requires electricity to run the fan in the stove. Make sure to choose a unit having a burner where you can put the pellets, in case electricity is not always readily available.

Although you need to know what to do and you need to properly maintain the unit, a pellet stove is super user friendly. When you’re familiar with heaters, changing to a pellet stove is a piece of cake.

Operation is straightforward and many people have no problem using a pellet stove, yes, even without reading the user manual. Pellet stoves and their heat output are easily adjustable. The heat and fan speed settings makes operation a breeze.

Lowering the heat means the pellets are burning slower, a lesser fan speeds means a more comfortable heat will be spread throughout the room. Like any other heating you can adjust the temperatures according to your preferences.

Best Pellet Stoves

Pellet Stove Buying Guide

When searching for the perfect pellet stove, make sure that the pellet stove fits in your room. Not only that, you should also ensure that the pellet stove will heat the room sufficiently. There is a particular rating which determines the stove’s ability to heat a room.

The so-called heat output value will tell you exactly if the unit is able to heat a room. The average BTU range of pellet stove should be around 40 to 50,000 BTU, making most of the units having an efficiency rating of 75 to 90 percent.

Understand, however, that the BTU and efficiency ratings of the unit do not necessarily correlate with the actual output of the pellet stove. The described stats of a unit on the packaging are based on the ideal conditions of a pellet stove. You shouldn’t only focus on these ratings, instead, we compiled some other important factors when buying a pellet stove.

When purchasing a pellet stove, keep in mind:

How are you going to use the stove? Is it for room heating purposes or do you want the stove to cover the entire (small) home?

Choose a good location. When buying a pellet stove, make sure that you position the unit in the best possible location in your room. If the room is shaped in an unusual way, you likely get less favorable heating results. Make sure no obstacles are in the way of the pellet stove in order for the heat to circulate through your room/home.

When it comes to “heating preferences” everyone has a different idea of what feels comfortable. If you want to feel the warmth right away, a pellet stove that heats the room quickly is the best choice. If you want the heat to spread over a longer period of time or you just want to control the output, a variable temperature control pellet stove is the right fit for you.

10 Best Pellet Stoves

Pellet Stove Types

When purchasing a pellet stove, ensure that you buy the pellets to fuel the stove. Make sure to get to correct pellets in order for you to get the best hearing experience. As mentioned before, pellets are widely available in stores and online.

When it’s about pellets you can choose between many types of pellets. The most common type is wood, which are available in premium and standard options. The premium are more expensive than the standard pellets, but they offer several advantages such as a better quality of wood and a longer burning time. There are also other pellet types available, such as pellets made out of coconut shells or corn.

Of course, everything depends on the availability of these kind of pellets, but it can be beneficial to try out these different kinds of pellets if your stove gives you this possibility. It can greatly reduce the heating costs or burning time by choosing the right pellet for the stove you use.

The hopper inside your pellet stove will have a certain capacity. Make sure the size of the pellet bag fits into the hopper, in order for the pellets not to get knocked over.

Pellet Stove Maintenance

As with most products, pellet stoves need maintenance as well. These units have a lot of moving parts and if done incorrectly using a pellet stove can cause serious problems.

In order for you to enjoy the advantages of a pellet stove, you have to maintain the unit now and then. For example, you need to know how to clean the stove. Make sure to always read the manual if you’re unsure how to clean your pellet stove.

Many modern units come with a handy ash pan that you can easily take out and vacuum. Cleaning the ash pan makes sure that the stove won’t get clogged with ash. Self-cleaning glass for the stove is also available, as glass that is exposed to carbon can be difficult to clean. Having self-cleaning glass will reduce the time you have to spend cleaning the pellet stove.

Make sure parts of the pellet stove are widely available once you bought the unit. In most cases, parts are available online, have a look on Amazon (use search below) for more information.

When a part is broken, or the stove is not working properly and you can’t find any replacement parts, you end up replacing the entire pellet stove, which can be very expensive.

To maintain the unit you need to get the pellet stove services regularly by an expert. In some cases, a subscription-based service to maintain and repair your stove is a worth taking deal.

Best Pellet Stove to Buy

What Kind of Hopper Should I Choose?

You need a hopper to add the pellets to the feeding chute and the burner. The hopper is a container that needs to be filled with pellets before you start preparing the pellet stove. When it comes to the hopper you can either put it on top or on the bottom of the stove. When you put the hopper on the top of the pellet stove less fire will go into the burning area towards the hopper.

For a top-hopper, you need premium pellets in order for the chute to not become stuck with ash. Having the hopper on the top is safer when you have kids as it is harder to open the hopper.

With a bottom located hopper, you are able to add the pellets much easier. You can also use “cheaper” less-quality pellets as the ash will be pushed directly into the ash pan and your chute won’t get clogged. Efficiency is another aspect to consider when buying a pellet stove, and most people find that a bag of pellets in a hopper on the bottom won’t last that long.

Best Pellet Stove Reviews & Buying Guide

Look and feel of a Pellet Stove

When it comes to the design of a pellet stove you can choose between a lot of models. The style, finish, and type really depends on your own preferences. You likely find the perfect pellet stove for the requirements you set. If you prefer to see the flame in the pellet stove we recommend a unit with a large window, as the standard pellet stove doesn’t have the pellet stove you might like.

The most important factor when buying a pellet stove is to make sure the unit is made out of premium materials. You don’t want your pellet stove to break down after a couple of years, but it has to last for many years to come.

Difference between a wood stove and a pellet stove

When you want to buy a traditional wood stove it will cost you around $3,500. This price is set for a lower-end wood stove plus the installation. The higher-end wood stove models reach to $6,000 or more. When it comes to the installation, having a chimney will greatly reduce the price. If not, ventilation is an important aspect of having a wood stove so in order for that to work some extra work needs to be done.

A pellet stove will cost you around $1,000 to $2,500 and after installation around $500 to $1000 more as pellet stove is more expensive to operate, depending on your location of course (as some people have an unlimited supply of wood).

To power the wood stove you don’t need anything else to fuel the stove other than wood. The wood will be sufficient enough to generate enough heat inside your home. It’s a different story with a pellet stove, where some models require electricity to power the auger and the blower. Without a power socket, these type of pellet stove won’t hear your home in the cold winter months.

When it comes to the modern wood stove, regulations are a big concern. Regulations are not only in place for the environment, but also for your own safety. Ventilation of the harmful fumes is necessary to not live in a hazardous home. On the other hand, pellet stoves emit basically no smoke when compared to the wood stove. Meaning the environment and to some extent, your safety is much better off using this type of heater.

A wood stove typically has a large flame right in the center of your living room, coming with sparks potentially hitting your carpet or rugs. Situations like this can start fires at home. When it comes to the pellet stove, potential fires are less likely to happen. There is a flame, but the so-called “viewing screen” prevent the sparks getting to your carpet, making the pellet stove a much safer option than wood stoves.

Choosing The Best Pellet Stove

Does a pellet stove need electricity?

You may get think a pellet stove solely runs on wooden pellets. You’re mistaken. A pellet stove does require electricity to operate. The place where you put the pellets, which is called the “hopper”, needs electricity. The hopper provides the place where the pellets will be burned and this hopper needs to be directed to the combustion chamber.

The combustion chamber is an enclosed space inside the pellet stove in which combustion takes place. You have to power the spiral delivery should in order to move the hopper to this chamber.

In order for the pellet stove to distribute the heat throughout your home, it needs a fan. This integrated fan comes with several speed settings in order for you to adjust the heat output. Together with the hopper, this pellet stove fan needs electrical power as well.

Electric heaters can be expensive to run, and noticing a pellet stove heater also needs electricity to function can be off-putting at first. But the pellet doesn’t require electricity to power the heater, as the heat comes from burning the pellets. Only the moving parts described earlier need the power to function properly, which requires up to 3 watts.

Top Best Pellet Stove Reviews

Pellet Stove Safety Measurements

First of all, kids and pets shouldn’t be left alone near a functioning pellet stove. Besides the flame, the “viewing window” glass can become very hot. Make sure you keep an eye on your kids and pets, letting them enjoy the warmth, but not getting too close.

Consider getting a carbon monoxide detector in case the carbon levels inside your home become too dangerous. Always make sure ventilation is in place, not doing so can cause serious danger to you and your loved ones.

Make sure the ashes are stored in a safe container, ideally a metal container which doesn’t catch fire. Keep the ashes separate from any other household trash and keep it outside of the house. Also, make sure the pellet stove is serviced annually. Not only for maintaining and functioning purposes, but also when it comes to safety. As said, ventilation is important in and outside the pellet stove. Inside the pellet stove, it is a good idea to check if there aren’t any buildups of Ash so the stove gets clogged.

Read the manual guide of the pellet stove you bought. Your pellet stove might work in a different fashion as described here or a regular pellet stove. Always follow the instructions of the manufacturer.

Make sure to only use the type of pellets recommended by the manufacturer. The user guide of your pellet stove will clearly state which pellets to use and which type of pellet not. Using the wrong or not recommended pellets will result in additional smoke and lower efficiency of your stove.

How to choose the best pellet stove

Final Words

Finding the best pellet stove for your home can be tricky. Not only are there several options to choose from, but safety, regulations, and maintenance are important factors to think about. Choosing the right appliance will let you enjoy warmth for years to come.

Biomass can make a ton of difference. Pellet stoves already saving 4.5 million tons of carbon emissions. Each installation of a pellet or wood appliance in a single-family home in a cool climate can displace about 9 tons of carbon emissions annually. That is about three times the impact of buying a hybrid car, for roughly half the cost.

The rational left brain loves saving money. And when it sees all the money saved by making the switch, your pellet stove will have a huge new fan. What will you do with the money you’ll save on heating bills, you extremely intelligent, eco-conscious citizen, you?

Heat your home. Take care of your home planet Using a pellet stove can do both. Biomass fuels are constantly replenished and reforested and absorb nearly as much carbon growing as they give off when burned. The result is a virtually invisible carbon footprint and a warm, cozy home.

Make both sides of your brain happy. Switching to a pellet burning stove or insert is just as sound ecologically as it is economically. So instead of calling the idea a no brainer, perhaps it should be called an “all brainer”. Anyway you look at it – it’s just plain smart.

Best Pellet Stove

Pellet Stove | Recommended


Last update on 2021-11-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


This website is supported by readers. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.


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About the author

Hi I’m Alexander, founder of HouseholdMe.com and I’d like to say thank you for dropping by. Like most of you, the first thing I look at before buying something online is reviews or buying guides. By reading what other people say will help me gauge whether or not a product is good or not.  I am trying to help people find answers, solve problems, and get inspired.

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