our new heatolator 3000.

Check out what was installed at Castle Frostbite today:

Pellet Stove 001

Pellet Stove 002

Pellet Stove 007

That’s right—a new pellet stove.  Enough BTUs to heat over 2,000 square feet, which will be enough to turn our two living rooms into Arizona in August, even when the snow is two feet deep outside.  We bought it used from friends, and paid the stove company to install it for us.

They delivered three tons of pellets to feed it, dismantled and hauled off the cast iron wood stove that was standing in the same spot just this morning, and installed the new unit.  It’s so much more efficient than the old wood stove that it’s laughable.

With the wood in the shed for the second wood stove in the #2 living room, we now have enough fuel for the winter already, and it’s barely June.  Next week, we’re getting a new roof, and I think Robin wants to buy another ton or two of pellets just to be on the safe side.  We now have three different heating systems, using as many different fuel sources (propane, cord wood, pellets), and one of them can run without electricity.  (Redundancy is a good thing.)

Looks like you can make just about any place perfectly livable if you just sink enough money into it…


30 thoughts on “our new heatolator 3000.

  1. Whitebread says:

    Looks great. How many cubic feet per ton of the pellets for storage, and are there any problems with setting aside several years’ worth, other than cost?

    • Marko says:

      The pallets are 40″x48″, with fifty bags per pallet at forty pounds to a bag. If you can keep ’em dry (and they do come in sealed plastic wrap), storing enough for a few years shouldn’t be difficult, provided you have dry storage space for ten or twenty pallets. One pallet is equivalent to about a cord and a half of wood, according to the stove guy.

  2. Is there a power requirement listed on the box, in the manual, or on a plate somewhere for the pellet stove? I’d love to know how many watts one of those things take.

  3. Kristopher says:

    All you need now is a coal stove … heh.

    • jimbob86 says:

      “All you need now is a coal stove … heh.”

      …. and a coal mine……

      • Kristopher says:

        Grain and Pea sized coal is pretty cheap in the NE and Alaska … it’s considered a byproduct of coal to powerplant production.

        In WY, near Newcastle, it’s even free … the mine will deliver a free truck load once a year to folks living in the area.

  4. Shootin' Buddy says:

    Great choice. I have considered this one myself.

    My brother has a Bixby corn stove and it is working out very well.

  5. David says:

    Very nice. We woke up a few mornings to 25 below this past winter and let me tell you, without something burning in your house, that’ll freeze yer doodads off.

    I’ve got portable kerosene, propane, and a wood-burner in the basement. I’m debating a coal stove as well. If you don’t have options in NH, you’re screwed in the winter.

  6. Make sure you keep those storage pellets DRY. Otherwise, they’ll turn into mulch, fast.

    Also, I noted that there appears to be an abnormal furry growth on Quinn’s back- I do hope you’ll have that looked at…

  7. Homer says:

    Pellet stoves usually have intake and exhaust coaxially located in the same pipe, and are happiest adjacent to an outside wall where the magic pipe can have a short run to and through the wall. Yours appears to be installed using the original wood stove chimney.

    I couldn’t find anything in the way of specifications on pellet stoves on the Heatilator site; does someone make this for Heatilator?

  8. aczarnowski says:

    How does one store tons of wood pellets?

  9. Louise Townsend says:

    oh happy day!
    we are pleased as punch that you like it.
    We certainly enjoyed it………

  10. Stingray says:

    Concerning that plastic wrap on the pallets, I wouldn’t bet the farm on it. It’ll certainly go a long way to keeping things dry, but if it’s like the plastic wrap that came on my last pallet of moisture-sensitive stuff (concrete in my case) a tarp or two, and better yet some sort of roof over it will prevent the top layer from becoming the moisture barrier over the rest.

    Also, a 500w draw? Damn, I knew they needed help breathing to burn those pellets but that’s nuts! My computer doesn’t even draw that much juice until I fire up Warcrack, and then it’s only 560w or so.

    • Marko says:

      That’s peak wattage. Regular use is a lot less.

      Also: 560W power draw? Our rigs are on the same UPS, and they draw 600-ish watts together when we quest in WoW. That’s with a P4 and a C2D, and a 7800GS and a 8800GT, respectively. What kind of monstrosity are you using to sling those poor pixels around?

      • Stingray says:

        That’d be an i7 920 oc’d to 3.8ghz with a Radeon 4870 X2, 5 hard drives (including a WD Velociraptor) and water cooling. The water pump only adds about 20w though.

        I got tired of headache-inducing framerates in Zangarmarsh and minimalist shadows. 1920×1200 means a lot of pixels to be slung.

  11. MarkHB says:

    Wow. What’cha gonna do with all that recovered floorspace?

  12. Ken says:

    I have been thinking on a coal stove for the next house….

  13. Reuben says:

    Marko is correct the rating is Max wattage, usually at starting, most of this is the electric ignitor. Once the stove is light the usage drops off a good bit. For example my stove is rated at 450 max watts, but normally runs about 250 watts.
    Last winter during a power outage I ran my stove on an inverter, from a car battery and and a jump box. When they ran low I charged them from a vehicle.

  14. MarkHB says:

    For the records, I have a 600W PSU in the quad-core with four HDs in it, two of which are 10K RPM jobs. The graphics card has two Molex inputs on it. I still don’t use all the PSU.

    So… wow, Stingers – that’s some draw!

  15. RevolverRob says:

    I’m kind of curious as to the cost of a ton or two of pellets. You said a pallet is roughly equivalent to a cord and a half of wood, I’m not sure how much wood you were going through before hand though. So, in terms of winter usage, I’m thinking you’re looking at 2-3 pallets to get through or am I underestimating?


    • Marko says:

      The cost fluctuates seasonally, just like firewood. We paid $300 per ton.

      We’ll probably order another ton or two before the winter, just to be on the safe side. Better to have more than we need, than having to reorder more pellets in the middle of winter at the higher rate.

      Last winter, we went through six or seven cords of wood, but that was for both wood stoves.

  16. ChrisB says:


    Are the pellets more dense and overall more efficient than wood? Can you burn wood in it without seriously harming the stove?


    • Reuben says:

      You can’t burn wood, the fire pot is feed from an internal hopper thru an auger. The stove will burn other things, one winter I heated with cherry pits. My father heats with about 50% corn thru a pellet stove, the problem there being that there is much more ash.
      As far a efficiency I can’t really say for sure.

  17. Bob says:

    I go through at least 2 tons a winter in S.W. Washington. I’d lay in a couple more tons.

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