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What’s New in Wood Stove Technology?

Thanks to rising heating bills, there is a renewed interest in alternative methods of heating homes and businesses. Wood stoves are one heating method that is increasing in popularity. With various designs and technological advances, modern wood stoves are much more efficient than older models.

Wood stoves are available with the capacity to heat just one room or a whole house. When choosing a furnace, it is essential to consider the stove’s heating capacity in relation to the size of the space to be heated. A 2,000 square foot home can usually be heated comfortably with a wood stove rated at 60,000 BTUs. A professional installer can help choose the ideal stove size for the space to be heated in the residence or business.

Modern wood stoves are equipped with a catalytic combustor. The combustor essentially forces the smoke generated by burning to itself to be burned. This process increases the heat output of the stove and ensures that it causes almost no pollution. Combustors developed as a result of stringent Environmental Protection Agency limits on pollutants generated by burning wood.

The increased output is a remarkable side effect of the EPA’s push to decrease air pollution. A second positive side effect is that less wood must be burned to heat. This saves money on wood purchases. Modern wood stoves are also much safer since the nearly total burning of fuel significantly lessens the flammable residue buildup in the chimney.

A variety of features further enhance the experience of owning a wood stove. Some are equipped with an air wash system that keeps the front glass window clean. A few models are equipped with blowers to circulate warmed air through the room. Many wood stoves are equipped with dual or reversible doors to facilitate loading and increase placement options in the home.

From contemporary steel or cast iron boxlike structures to designs reminiscent of old fashioned pioneer stoves, there is a wood stove to suit any décor. Contemporary designs often feature larger glass viewing windows to emphasize the beauty of the fire itself. Some designs borrow elements from the past, with rounded edges and ornate decorative detailing.

Older wood stoves can be retrofitted with devices to increase their efficiency and reduce emissions. Catalytic damper kits are available but should be installed in conjunction with heat sensors to monitor temperatures.

Since not all older wood stoves can be safely retrofitted, it is best to consult a professional wood stove installer before purchasing or installing the kit. Come check out Granville Hearth’s showroom with many units on display.

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