Wood or pellets? Explore the ideal choice for your home
Wood or pellets? Explore the ideal choice for your home aerotermia, calefacción, climatización

Wood or pellets? Explore the ideal choice for your home

Wood or pellet stoves, the ongoing dilemma between the use of wood or pellets in stoves continues to evolve. Are we witnessing the gradual replacement of traditional wood stoves with the convenience of pellets? Not necessarily. Wood remains an economical fuel, but pellet cookers have the advantage of being more reliable and easier to maintain.

Furthermore, it is worth noting that pellets, made from recycled materials and pressed wood waste, offer a more environmentally friendly option compared to the direct burning of wood. Their manufacture implies a reuse of resources and a reduction of waste, thus contributing to environmental sustainability.

Which is cheaper?

Wood and pellet systems produce fairly similar costs. The difference lies in the initial purchase cost: a pellet stove is usually somewhat more expensive than a wood-burning stove. The same is true for pellet boilers compared to wood-fired boilers, although this difference in purchase price is compensated by the advantages of pellets, such as higher calorific value, higher efficiency or the convenience of automatic ignition and fuel supply.

In terms of fuel, although the price per kilogram of wood is lower than that of pellets, pellet stoves are more efficient, consuming less for the same period of operation. This almost makes up for the price difference. For example, for heating a 150 m2 house, the annual difference between using wood and pellets is just €55.

Costs for heating a 90 m2 house (5,300 kWh/year)

•            Firewood: 526

•            Pellets: 559 €

•            Diesel fuel: 932 €

It is crucial to consider that the price stability that once characterised this type of biomass has been largely lost in recent times. Today, pellets are more expensive than in 2012, following a sharp price increase in 2021 and 2022, despite the VAT reduction applied to them.

For example, the average price of a 15 kg bag of pellets has developed as follows since 2012:

•            2023: 7,14 €

•            2022: 6,04 € (18,21%)

•            2021: 4,34 € (64,52%)

•            2020: 4,39 € (62,64%)

•            2012: 4,13 € (72,88%)

Advantages of pellets in comfort

Although wood stoves may be more economical, there are other aspects to consider besides the financial aspect, such as the convenience they provide. The main disparity lies in the comfort of use. Coming home and being greeted by the warmth of a wood pellet stoves, pre-programmed to light automatically, can increase our comfort. These appliances calculate the amount of pellets to be burned according to the chosen temperature or according to the room temperature, eliminating the need to add wood manually. Moreover, there is less risk of overheating with pellets.

However, pellet stoves tend to be more mechanically complex, which can lead to possible failures related to programming elements. In terms of efficiency and pollution, the two systems go hand in hand. If combustion is incomplete, efficiency decreases and the stove emits more carbon monoxide (CO), volatile organic compounds and particulate matter. Currently, the average efficiency is 80% for wood stoves and 90% for pellet stoves. These figures can be further improved by daily cleaning of the stove and annual maintenance and cleaning by your authorised Ecoforest installer.

FeaturesWood stovesPellets stoves
Average Price800 €1.800 €
InstallationDoes not always require professional interventionRequires professional installation, with costs ranging from 250 to 500€ depending on complexity.
MaintenanceCan be done on own accountRequires annual professional maintenance, approx. 140 €.
Autonomy and storageLimited to fuel loaded by the user. Wood must be stored in a dry placeIt depends on the size of the tank and the supply is automatic.
FeaturesSome models include thermostat, multiple air inlets, airtight firebox and outside air inlet. Variety of models available, especially in sheet metal models.Possibility of configuration, thermostat, airtight fireplace, automatic adjustment with programming (on, off), remote control via mobile devices, silent mode and hot air ducting.
Average Fuel Price0,34 €/kg0,47 €/kg
Advantages and disadvantagesAdvantages: aesthetics of the flame, stability in the price of wood, local production. Disadvantages: imprecise temperature control, lack of automatic management. Recommended for prolonged heating.Advantages: automatic ignition, accurate thermostat, automated management, but less visual appeal in the flame. Disadvantages: maintenance costs. Recommended for rapid heating on demand, heating of large surfaces and for those who prefer minimal intervention in the load.

In conclusion, both options offer different advantages and considerations. While wood remains an economical option, pellets emerge as a reliable alternative. The choice between the two options will depend not only on economics, but also on individual preferences and commitment to environmental sustainability.

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