Mother Earth Living

Winter Heating Options: Wood-Burning Stoves, Wood-Pellet Stoves and Fireplaces

Learn what you need to know about these winter heating options, includes pros and cons on wood-burning stoves, wood-pellet stoves and fireplaces.
By Anastasia White Wolf
November/December 2003
Add to My MSN

These winter heating options give you a number of choices to keep your homestead warm.
Photo By Mother Earth Living staff


Content Tools

Related Content

Every Herb Has A Story: Saw Palmetto

Read on to learn how saw palmetto can help to relieve prostate problems.

New Year Resolution: Health Tips For Winter

Start your health regimen by looking at what you've been doing before.  You have to take charge of y...

Hydroponics in the Office, Post 2

The office hydroponics system has taken off and is producing food quite rapidly, prompting an invest...

Top Green Consumer Trends for 2009

Last year The Fresh Ideas Group predicted the top consumer trends for 2009. Are they psychics or jus...

Choose from these winter heating options to find what best suits your homestead.

Winter Heating Options

Wood-burning stove or fireplace

Pros:

• Provides light and warmth even when the electricity goes out.

• Creates the best ambiance, ­complete with crackling sounds and woody scent.

• Newer, high-efficiency wood-burning stoves can recycle gas and smoke, creating more heat, consuming less wood, and emitting fewer pollutants.

Cons:

• Produces pollution in the form of particulates, greenhouse gases, and other harmful emissions such as carbon monoxide, dioxins, and formaldehyde.

• Many cities enforce wood-burning bans to reduce air pollution.

• Wood for stoves and fireplaces wastes trees and can cost more than fuels such as natural gas.

• Ash and soot requires cleanup.

Wood-pellet stove

Pros:

• Burns clean and creates heat efficiently. The EPA does not regulate wood-pellet stoves because they perform so well.

• Pellets are made from furniture and wood manufacturing byproducts including compacted sawdust, wood chips, bark, agricultural crop waste, and waste paper. This helps save trees.

• A thermostat regulates the stove’s temperature so it burns longer with infrequent refueling (about once a day).

Cons:

• Depends on electricity for running the fan, controls, and pellet feeder, so it’s not dependable during power outages.

• Requires yearly maintenance and possibly expensive repairs.

• Pellets can cost more than a cord of wood. Plus, you pay for the electricity to run the stove’s mechanical parts.

Natural gas fireplace

Pros:

• Gas is clean burning and ­produces few greenhouse gas emissions.

• Costs less than logs or pellets.

• Works during power outages and is convenient because there’s no refueling, carrying wood, or cleaning up ash. Just flip a switch, and you have a flame.

Cons:

• Natural gas prices are rising.

• Natural gas is a non-renewable resource with limited supplies.

• Although it emits no particulates, a natural gas fireplace creates greenhouse gases such as methane through combustion. Drilling for gas disrupts pristine wilderness and wildlife habitat.








Post a comment below.

 

John
4/24/2014 9:22:57 AM
When the cold bite sets in during the winter months, your home is the one place you want to be a toasty heaven of warmth, and installing something like a wood burning stove is a fantastic way of achieving this. Since my boiler broke last year, I installed a wood burner alongside http://www.underfloorheatingsystems.co.uk and have never looked back! The wood burning stove provides the most lovely warmth on the cold winter nights, and really provides a fantastic aesthetic addition to the room too.

James
4/10/2014 12:04:15 PM
I have a wood burning stove in my home and it has been absolutely fantastic throughout the winter just gone, especially with how cold it has been. Having the feeling of lighting a fire without the mess and smoke from an open fire is fantastic. It is an authentic touch in the house providing a great heat source alongside my http://www.underfloorheatingsystems.co.uk, which has been absolutely fantastic in cutting down on my heating bill while providing an easy to use system.

James
4/10/2014 12:03:55 PM
I have a wood burning stove in my home and it has been absolutely fantastic throughout the winter just gone, especially with how cold it has been. Having the feeling of lighting a fire without the mess and smoke from an open fire is fantastic. It is an authentic touch in the house providing a great heat source alongside my http://www.underfloorheatingsystem.co.uk, which has been absolutely fantastic in cutting down on my heating bill while providing an easy to use system.








Subscribe today and save 58%

First Name: *
Last Name: *
Address: *
City: *
State/Province: *
Zip/Postal Code:*
Country:
Email:*
(* indicates a required item)
Canadian subs: 1 year, (includes postage & GST). Foreign subs: 1 year, . U.S. funds.
Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
Non US and Canadian Subscribers - Click Here

Subscribe to Mother Earth Living!

Welcome to Mother Earth Living, the authority on green lifestyle and design. Each issue of Mother Earth Living features advice to create naturally healthy and nontoxic homes for yourself and your loved ones. With Mother Earth Living by your side, you’ll discover all the best and latest information you want on choosing natural remedies and practicing preventive medicine; cooking with a nutritious and whole-food focus; creating a nontoxic home; and gardening for food, wellness and enjoyment. Subscribe to Mother Earth Living today to get inspired on the art of living wisely and living well.

Save Money & a Few Trees!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You’ll save an additional $5 and get six issues of Mother Earth Living for just $14.95! (Offer valid only in the U.S.)

Or, choose Bill Me and pay just $19.95.