Will this be able to heat my whole house?

In many instances, our customers are able to do the bulk of their heating with a properly sized stove or fireplace.  There are many variables that come in to play when switching to an alternative heat source.  The layout of the home and the location of the heating appliance are big factors.  When you’re heating with a stove or fireplace, make sure that it is as centrally located as possible since the heat is radiating out from a single source, unlike a central heating system.  In many instances, if the layout of the home is conducive to zone heating, our customers are able to do the bulk of their heating with a properly sized stove or fireplace.  Please contact one of our sales associates for help in creating the right home heating solution for you.


How much can I save with alternative heat?

You can save a significant amount with alternative heat in comparison to traditional fuel types.  The specific savings varies by fuel type and for different heating values and pricing.  For example, coal in northeast Pa is very inexpensive and has a high heating value.  Locally, coal is less than a quarter of the cost to heat with- it costs $180 per ton, which equates to $7.20 per one million BTU’s.  In comparison, one million BTU’s of fuel oil at $3.58 per gallon costs $33.25.  To help guide you on the savings of this and other fuel types, please click here to reference our fuel cost comparion chart or contact one of our sales associates.


Does this stove need a chimney?

Generally, wood stoves and coal stoves do need chimneys to vent properly.  Some coal stoves can be direct-vented out through a side wall but it is always preferable to have a chimney to ensure it functions properly.  Wood pellet stoves can be vented through a side wall to outside instead of requiring a chimney, as they do not burn cordwood but wood sawdust compressed into pellet form.  Gas stoves are primarily sold as direct vent today, but they can be adapted to use an existing chimney.  To make the right choice for your home, please contact one of our sales associates.


Do gas burning units need to be vented?

There are vent free fireplaces, freestanding stoves and fireplace inserts that burn either propane or natural gas that aren’t vented and are perfectly safe to use. These units are extremely effective heaters and are easier to install than vented units. These vent free units are not intended to be used as full time heaters however. The main consideration here is the moisture that is produced when burning gas.  When used more than a few hours a day (depending on the size and air exchange of the area of installation),  the moisture that is produced has been known to build up and create problems in some homes. Its generally recommended that if you’re looking to use the appliance on more than a very limited basis it should be vented. Please contact one of our sales associate to help you determine the choice that’s right for you.


Do most units require electricity to operate?

For the most part wood and coal burning stoves do not require electricity to operate and therefore make excellent backup heating sources during power outages. Many do offer blower options but this is for boosting heat circulation and is not required to maintain operation. The only exception would be the automatic stoker stove which is a self-feeding coal stove that operates almost like a furnace.  While this unit requires electricity to stoke the fire, many people choose it because its easier to regulate and maintain than a traditional coal stove.  Pellet stoves also require electricity to operate and so would need a battery backup or generator to operate if the power goes out.  Gas stoves are the perfect backup heater for many of our clients since they work without power and are very easy to operate and maintain.  Our sales associates can help you find the choice that fits your needs.

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