Key Differences and Advantages of Both
It is that time of the year when you may be shifting gears and getting back to the daily grind after an enjoyable summer break. While you count down to the last of the backyard parties, reminisce the best of your cottage country drives and adjust to a newer routine with the kids being back in school, you may already be thinking of the festivities and the holiday season ahead. During this time, are you also considering new heating options to prepare your home for the fast approaching chilly weather? If you are trying to decide between wood stoves or gas ones, it will help to know more about both options. Make the choice that complements your lifestyle and budget.
Top Tips to Choose between Wood Stoves and Gas Stoves
Your heating bills typically account for about 60% of your overall energy bills. While the actual cost may vary due to the size and location of your home, you want to take into account:
- Combustion Efficiency: This is the percentage of fuel that is converted into actual heat vis à vis the wastage in terms of ash, steam or vapor. This impacts the cost of converting fuel to heat.
- Heat Transfer Efficiency: This is the percentage of heat generated that is actually transmitted throughout all the rooms. The cost of radiating heat to all the desired areas within your home is dependent on this factor.
- Other Factors: You may also have to take into account the cost and complexity of:
- Procuring the fuel
- Installation of the stove and related ducting or vents
- Maintenance and repairs.
Keeping in mind all the above aspects, here is a quick overview of wood stoves and gas stoves.
- Wood Stoves: If you are looking to add charm and character to your home, a traditional wood burning stove may be just the right choice for you. Typically, the wood stoves are installed in the center of the room and radiate heat to a small, limited area around that space. With firewood being the main fuel, you can enjoy a high combustion efficiency, but a relatively lower heat transfer efficiency. A fair amount of heat is lost as it goes up the chimney, especially when you put out the fire. If you have access to your own firewood, wood burning hearths minimize your cost of procuring fuel and keep you warm, even when there are power outages. However, your wood stoves require annual cleaning and maintenance, not just within the firebox, but also along the chimney, to avoid excessive creosote buildup and prevent house fires.
- Gas Stoves: A gas stove hooks up to the same gas line that fuels the rest of the appliances in your home. If you prefer the practicality of flicking a switch over collecting, chopping and burning wood, then you should choose a gas stove. While the cost of gas may be relatively higher than procuring firewood, these stoves offer excellent combustion and heat transfer efficiency. You can also make your gas stove an integral part of your home’s heating system. All you need to do is add insulation and a fan heat exchanger that helps to disperse the generated heat throughout your home. With relatively lesser heat loss through the chimney and fewer polluting emissions, these stoves are slightly more eco-friendly, as compared to wood burning hearths. Moreover, since there is no ash or soot to deal with, you will find the gas stoves fairly easy to clean and maintain.
Once you have evaluated the features and advantages of both, choose the stove that will suit the needs of your family, as well as your overall budget. Call on the certified professionals at Elite Fireplace to learn more about our stock of wood stoves and gas stoves, from the best brands in the business. Our trained and licensed crew has decades of experience in the safe installation of a variety of stoves and fireplaces, and will ensure that you have a delightful, hassle-free experience. We also offer maintenance services such as annual inspections and chimney sweeps.
For stove, fireplace and chimney installation and maintenance in and around Philadelphia, call us at (610) 489-4274 today or contact us online. A representative will be in touch soon.