best wood stoves


   How to Pick the Best Wood Stoves


This wood stoves guide will help you pick the best wood stoves that will meet your needs. the best wood stoves on the market depends on your opinion, but in our opinion the best wood stoves on the market are the cleanest burning stoves with the longest burn time, but first..

How hard can it be to pick the best wood burning stove?

Pretty hard if your thought process is to look for the best looking wood burning stove. From what I've seen lately the best looking stoves are not the most efficient stoves on the market.  Any stove with a catalytic devise has a built in technology which burns excess gasses before they leave the stove.

That increases the efficiency of fuel burnt before it enters the chimney pipe and creates creosote build up. You can read more about a wood stove with a catalytic converter at wood stove review.

Keep in mind this review of the best wood stoves will not cover the biomass or corn burning heating or pellet stoves. This is a new concept on the market and it's best to review more about the Magnum 6500 Biomass stove and furnace. They also offer other corn burning stoves. This also applies to the electric fireplaces.  best wood stoves on the market

Here are the top 5 Questions you need answered before you can decide on the best wood stoves for your home.

  • How many square feet do I want to keep warm?
  • Does the wood burning stoves meet federal tax credit specs?
  • What is the efficiency rating of the wood stove?
  • What is the emissions rating of the wood stove?
  • How long will it burn on low settings?

How many square feet do I want to heat?

If you have a two story home or a home that has the wood stove at one end of the house you will find it really hard to heat the entire home. The back end (usually bedrooms) do not receive much of the heat. It might be wise to read about the best location of wood stoves to get some good ideas on where to place your unit.

Depending on your second story you will either get all the heat upstairs or very little heat. Determine the rooms you want to heat and then multiple each room (12 x 12 room = 144 sq. ft) The best wood stoves will come with a blower option to help you push the heat in your home.

Does the wood stove meet federal tax credit specs?

During the 2009-10 year, the federal government will give you a 30% tax credit on select models of wood stoves. These stoves have met their guidelines for air quality and safety. If you purchase a $2000 wood burning stove you will receive a $600 tax credit on your income tax. The government will give you 30% or up to $1500 tax rebate.

NOTE: the tax credit is still in effect for 2011.

What is the efficiency rating?

This boils down to the specs that are offered by the manufacturer. Some wood stoves will burn at 75% efficiency and others will approach the 80% range. Obviously the higher the number the better your stove will operate.

What is the emissions rating of the best wood stoves?

Emission ratings are measured in grams per hour. The lower the number the better your wood stove will burn. The manufacturer will give you their emission ratings on all their stoves. Pay attention to these ratings because if it is to high, that stove will not qualify for the federal tax credit.

How long will it burn on low settings?

This is a number that is critical to wood burning stove users who use wood heat as their primary heat source. We are primary wood burners which means our home will be cool in the morning because our stove does not burn wood for more than 8 hours. The newer stoves will burn from 20 to 40 hours on one load. Take a look at our 40 hour burner we purchased last year after our house burnt down.

Just remember to measure the firebox or get the measurements because a larger firebox will allow you to add more wood and keep the fire burning longer.  To our family anything in the 20+ hour range we consider one of the best wood stoves.

Along those lines remember various fuels will last longer than others in cast iron stoves. Oak is heavy and the denser the wood the longer it burns. Out in our neck of the woods we use a lot of cherry and apple and we love this type of fuel because it will last longer than the fir we can pick up in the forest.

If you do not use your wood stove as a primary heat source then it's not that important to you. You will be able to find the best wood stoves that burn from 6 hours up to 20 hours. This is a primary concern for us, but not for those who enjoy an occasional fire.

And finally......

After you find the wood burning stove that meets this criteria then you can select the best looking stove. However, if your wife gets involved then good luck and that is why we are looking for a new stove this coming year.


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