A Pellet stove vs gas fireplace is great heating equipment to have if you live in a chilly climate. It’s possible to save money on heating costs and have a backup heat source in the event of a power loss with either of these choices. Even if you don’t use them for much more than aesthetics, gas fireplaces and pellet stoves may be wonderful additions to any home.
Yet, picking between a gas fireplace and a pellet stove is a crucial decision that needs to be made. When compared to one another, both have benefits and drawbacks. Gas fireplaces, for instance, are more expensive to run but require considerably less upkeep than pellet fires. You may have to use a pellet stove or anything else if natural gas isn’t easily accessible where you live.
So, let’s compare and contrast gas fireplaces and pellet stoves in terms of their advantages and disadvantages, fuel sources, power sources, costs, efficiencies, safety features, and upkeep. That way, you’ll be able to make a well-informed decision about what’s best for your family and your house.
The Pellet Stove: What Is It?
Home heating with a pellet burner is safer, cleaner, more affordable, and more efficient than using other methods. They can be installed on a wall or used as a standalone stove to warm a whole room. To the untrained eye, pellet stoves are virtually indistinguishable from conventional wood stoves, yet they are significantly more fuel-efficient.
Pellet stoves are an alternative to traditional wood stoves, and they function by combusting pellets derived from organic resources like wood or food waste. Pellets are much less likely to create ash than wood, and they are typically tiny, compact, and cylindrical. Wood pellet stoves are the most environmentally friendly method of heating a home using solid fuel, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.
Because of their simplistic construction, pellet stoves are easy to use. The auger in the stove will pull pellets from the hopper and deposit them into the firebox below. When a few pellets are dropped into the burn pot, they are pushed into the combustion chamber and set ablaze.
Pellet Stoves: Their Benefits
- Better regulation of the temperature. Thermostats in pellet stoves help you fine-tune the heat to your specifications.
- Simple in use. There’s no need for kindling or constant attention to the fire when using pellets because they light with the push of a button.
- Sustainable substitute. In contrast to other fuels, wood pellets produce very little smoke and ash when burned.
- Super simple to disinfect. No creosote is ever formed in a pellet stove since they produce so little ash. Ashes can be easily disposed of in the ash pan located at the stove’s base.
- Installations that can be adjusted to fit your needs. They’re suitable for mounting on any outside wall.
Pellet Stoves: Their Downsides
- Extremely high cost of upkeep. Require more attention than a fireplace, with weekly maintenance and frequent ash cleanup.
- Need an extra area for storage because pellets are delivered in bulky, hefty bags.
- Requires a secondary power source in case the primary one fails.
How Does A Gas Stove Differ From A Gas Fireplace?
To put it simply, a gas stove is a standalone unit, while a gas fireplace is part of the wall it is installed in. Since gas stoves emit warmth in all directions, they may be preferable to gas fireplaces. However, due to their design, gas fireplaces only emit heat to the room in front of them.
In any case, gas fireplaces and gas stoves provide instant heat, atmosphere, and style. Not needing a chimney, being simple to keep up, and producing incredible efficiency, are frequently viewed as excellent choices. Furthermore, gas fireplaces, stoves, and inserts can be found in a wide range of designs, from classic to cutting-edge.
Benefits Of Gas Heaters, Stoves, And Inserts
- Effective utilization of energy resources. Gas is more efficient than wood because it ignites instantly and burns entirely. Most eco-friendly and accessible gasoline option.
- Easily managed. Features a remote control that allows you to adjust the flame height, fan blower speed, and lighting of the ceramic logs. There is no need for matches or lighter fluid.
- You won’t have to clean up any ash. Minimal cleanup is required because everything is locked away in a glass-walled burn chamber.
- Better adaptability in the setting up. Since gas burns cleanly, gas fireplaces have significantly more venting choices than wood-burning ones.
- Not depending on the power to function. Even if the power goes out, your gas fireplace will keep burning.
Difficulties With Gas Heaters, Stoves, And Inserts
- Getting your hands on natural gas could be difficult. Natural gas service may be unavailable where you are. Installing a propane tank outside is necessary if you still choose to heat it with gas.
- There is no “crackling” sound and no woody aroma. Modern gas fireplaces are extremely lifelike, but they aren’t the real deal.
Pellet Stove Vs Gas Fireplace: Which Is Better?
Let’s compare gas fireplaces versus pellet stoves now that you know how they work and some of their benefits and drawbacks.
Pipelines transport fossil fuel-derived natural gas to consumers. Therefore, it is more accessible from urban utility providers. However, pellet stoves use pellets created from recyclable materials such as wood chips, sawdust, other timber leftovers, and sometimes even corn and apple pits. Pellets can be purchased in 40-pound sacks from most pellet stove retailers or at hardware stores.
Source Of Power
A fan needs to be powered by electricity in both a gas fireplace and a pellet stove. However, gas fireplaces can still function as heat sources without any external power source. Your gas fireplace can keep your home warm even if the power goes out in the dead of winter. Pellet stoves require a power source other than what they’re burning.
In comparison to gas fireplaces, pellet stoves are typically less expensive. On the other hand, when you factor in the expense of setup, they’re about even. Prefabricated gas fireplaces can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $8,000, while a new pellet stove with installation can cost between $1,500 and $3,500.
Compared to natural gas, the cost of heating your home with a pellet stove is lower in the long run. In most cases, the price of pellets is less than the price of natural gas for home heating, even though natural gas is more efficient.
Setting Up & Airflow
Pellet stoves can be vented to the outside air via an exhaust pipe or direct vent system, eliminating the need for a chimney. The same type of direct vent system used for venting smoke from wood stoves is used for venting gas fireplaces to the exterior. The best area to install a gas fireplace or pellet stove is somewhere that has good airflow.
- located near an exterior wall for optimal ventilation; and
- The most effective way to heat a sizable area of the house.
As they only use the energy they need, pellet stoves score well for efficiency. A pellet stove with an hourly output of 35,000 to 50,000 BTUs, for instance, may adequately warm a home with a floor area of 1,500 to 2,500 square feet. Since the bulk of the heat generated by burning gas in a fireplace is sent into the house, gas fireplaces are also very efficient and have comparable BTU values.
However, a gas fireplace’s efficiency might vary from model to model. The most effective type of gas fireplace is a direct-vent model since it keeps around 70% of the heat it produces inside the house. More so, they are less expensive and less complicated to set up than gas masonry units.
Although carbon monoxide from the natural gas being burned in a gas fireplace is not dispersed into the air, it is still a risk. The gas fireplace’s vent to the outdoors solves this problem. Aside from this, though, both gas fireplaces and pellet stoves are safe for the most part. It’s important to remember that the glass surfaces of both of these appliances will get very hot when in use.
Chimney and vent cleaning and pipeline inspections are regular maintenance needs for gas fireplaces. However, pellet stoves need more attention. When using a pellet stove, you must constantly replenish the pellet supply. You may need to refill it more than once daily. The ashes must be disposed of after each use.
It takes little effort to turn on or off a gas fireplace. There is no need to add fuel or remove ash from the firebox with these devices.
Pellet stoves have many advantages over gas fireplaces. They’re less expensive to operate, easier to set up and maintain and offer a higher level of safety. However, gas fireplaces have the advantage of being able to function even if the power goes out. In the end, it’s a matter of personal preference.
Do you have a pellet stove or gas fireplace in your home? Which do you prefer and why?