In colder climates, heating accounts for about one-third of a homeowner’s annual utility bill, which is why many are seeking thriftier ways to stay toasty. Freestanding pellet stoves and inserts that fit inside an existing fireplace are an increasingly popular solution. They look like traditional woodstoves but operate more like a modern furnace. All that is required is to fill the stove’s hopper with pellets made from compacted sawdust, set its thermostat, sit back, and get cozy.
A mechanical auger deposits the pellets into a burn pot, where they are incinerated at such a high temperature that they create no vent-clogging creosote and very little ash or emissions, which keeps both indoor and outdoor air cleaner. Depending on your home’s size and layout, a pellet stove could supplement the current heating system or be used as the sole source. Despite their workhorse reputation, pellet stoves come in a variety of designs to complement any interior style.