There are two parts to this question, pellet stoves compared to regular stoves and pellet stoves combared to a heater. Pellet stoves burn the most efficiently of any stove with little to no waste in smoke because they are burning pellets not wood. Pellet stoves do require electricty though unlike wood stoves that just burn. Stoves definitely save on your bills compared to heaters, but there is the imput of wood or pellets.
Harman Home Heating is a popular supplier of pellet stoves: http://www.harmanstoves.com/
For reviews of different pellet stoves on the market, refer to: http://www.galttech.com/research/household-DIY-tools/best-pellet-stove.php
Pellet stoves mostly burn at over 98% combustion efficiency, and the electrical efficiency is about 99%. Let’s analyse a typical pellet stove efficiency.
Assume, for the sake of argument, that the heat transfer efficiency of a pellet stove is 60%.(the heat exchanger) If you add up 98%, 99% and say 60%, you get 257. Divide that figure by three to get the overall efficiency and it comes out at 85.7%.
78% is the EPA’s, (Environmental Protection Agency), assumed default efficiency for a pellet stove’s overall performance. It’s clear then, that the heat transfer efficiency of pellet stoves is often less than 60%.
Pellet stoves use little electrical energy and can be powered from a 12 volt battery and an inverter. The battery can be charged by wind, solar or water power.
On the other hand, pellet stoves are complex mechanical devices that are fairly expensive to produce and buy, but if there were no overall financial saving I doubt there would be a market for them.
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