A nifty little guide to help you choose a wood burning stove or a multi-fuel stove that is right for you.
If you’ve replaced your mobile phone recently, you’ll know that even a newer basic model is packed with all kinds of technological wizardry.
Most people, however, are unaware that over the last decade domestic heating technology has come on in leaps and bounds in much the same way, including the magical world of wood burning stoves.
Thankfully the improvements in the stoves themselves, as impressive as they are, have been more than matched by innovations in consumer convenience. The result is that, if you choose correctly, you’ll end up with a stove that is not only incredibly efficient to run but requires minimal effort to use.
Here at Ideal Burners “HQ” we have been devising a plan to help eradicate the daunting feeling that comes when purchasing a stove because – let’s face it, it isn’t something you should have to replace every couple of years (unlike your mobile phone!).
So we put our heads together, rattled our brains and produced this nifty little guide to help you choose a stove that is right for you:
Heat output (kW)
The first step is to decide what sort of heat output you are going to need which is easier than it sounds because generally speaking, the larger the room the higher the heat output that is required. Furthermore, the heat output of a stove is measured in killer watts (kW), just like your boiler. Piece of cake.
So to get started simply use this Stove kW Calculator
You should only consider a larger rated kW stove if any of these 3 factors are true to you:
- You live in a draughty / ineffectually insulated home (typically speaking these are houses that were constructed before 2008 and that have not had any major insulation improvements since)
- Your stove is to be situated in a particularly cold part of the house i.e. a conservatory, or in a position that it is likely your stove will be heating more than one room i.e. a lounge to diner extension
- Your stove is your primary heat source and you have an adequate supply of fuel.
Wood burning and Multi-fuel stoves
Before we get into the finer details here we are going to come clean with you – we believe that Wood burning stoves > Multi-fuel stoves.
That being said there are some fantastic, clean burning and efficient Multi-fuel stoves out there that are not to be sneezed at! In fact, there are many people out there that burn just wood on a multi-fuel stove. Many people, including some of our own team here at Ideal Burners!
But don’t let us sway you one way or the other, take a look at some of the pros and cons of both and decide for yourself!
Wood Burner only: A sustainable and renewable heat source, log burning is considered carbon neutral, larger viewing glass, burns with flames, easy to season your own fuel, potential zero running costs, not required to clean the stove out after each fire, wood ash may be used in the garden amongst many other uses.
Multi-fuel: Better efficiency (coal burns longer than wood), requires significantly less storage space than wood, in some instances coal can be cheaper than hardwood logs
Wood Burner only: Storing logs can consume a lot of space, splitting your own logs is an exhausting and lengthy process.
Multi-fuel: Coal is a non-renewable fossil fuel alas it is carbon intensive, multi-fuel stoves are typically more expensive, viewing is disadvantaged due to multi-fuel burning grate, burns with a glow rather than a flame, still required to keep some logs and kindling for the start of each fire, need to remove the ash after every fire.
Efficiency ratings and emissions
It feels so just to witness the erstwhile polluting fireplaces diminishing from the market in favour for new Eco-design stoves. There are many benefits to choosing a clean burning stove as they are intelligently designed to recycle the flue gases that are emitted during the burning process, therefore achieving higher combustion temperatures with considerably less fuel.
Compare the efficiency of your desired stove with some of your other domestic products like your fridge-freezer or your dishwasher, for example. You might be surprised at how economically competent Eco-design stoves really are!