Wood Pellet FAQS

Over one million homes in the United States use wood pellets as a heating source. Although pellet popularity is continually rising, there are still many frequent questions and misconceptions about heating with wood pellets. Below, we have compiled a list of the most common inquiries we hear from both new and existing pellet users.

Can I Store Wood Pellets Outside?

Wood Pellets Stored OutsideYes – as long as you take the necessary steps to protect them. You must inspect your pellets’ packaging carefully before preparing them for outside storage. To protect your pellets from water and from any birds or squirrels that may try to puncture the plastic, you’ll definitely need to fasten a tarp over your fuel. If your pellets are outside for a while – you’ll need to keep checking on it to make sure there hasn’t been any damage or extensive wear.

If you are a customer, and you find damage that has reached the actual wood pellets, call 1-800-PELLETS right away to speak with a Quality Assurance representative.  All Woodpellets.com Quality Certified fuels are backed by a Quality Guarantee, valid for 30 days after the delivery date.

See >> How to Keep Wood Pellets Safely Stored Outside 

Can I Use a Wood Pellet Stove as My Home’s Only Source of Heat?

Depending on the location of the stove and the size/efficiency of your home – yes. Some stoves can easily heat up to 2,500 square feet of space. A common practice is to put pellet stoves in parts of the house to create zone heat, but lightly use a central furnace as a back up. It’s especially common to use oil heating as a backup to pellets, for example, when the price of oil rises significantly.

How Much Does a Pellet Stove Cost?

A typical price for buying and professionally installing a pellet stove is around $2,500 to $3,000. Of course, this number will vary depending on where you live and the kind of stove you choose.

Do Pellet Stoves Require Professional Maintenance?

Most owner’s manuals suggest a comprehensive cleaning by a trained technician at least once a year. Some manuals even suggest a checkup after each ton of pellets is burned. Also, the mechanical and electric components that make up your pellet stove can eventually wear out and need repair or replacement – so a cleaning/check-up by a professional could help prevent a surprise part-malfunction.

Read >> Wood Pellet Stove Best Practices 

 How Many Bags of Pellets Should I Buy?

Woodpellets.com Driveway DeliveryThe amount of pellets you can expect to burn through in a heating season depends on the quality of the wood pellets and the efficiency of the stove – among other things. However, one bag of quality pellets will commonly provide a full day of good, steady heat.

The average residential wood pellet customer in the Northeast uses 150-200 bags of wood pellets throughout the entire heating season. There are 50 bags in one ton of pellets, so that’s 3-4 tons.

 Is Heating with Pellets Environmentally Friendly?

The carbon footprint of burning wood pellets can be completely neutral, or close to it. If the forests where the wood pellet raw material has been taken from are sustainably managed, the overall carbon footprint is drastically reduced in comparison with fossil fuel heat. A study by The Alliance for Green Heat and VU University Amsterdam revealed that heating with wood pellets can emit about one tenth the carbon as heating with oil.

Are There Additives in Wood Pellets?

No! Wood pellets are 100% natural. There are absolutely no binders or chemicals added to the wood fiber used to create pellets. Wood naturally contains a substance, lignin, that binds wood pellets in their tightly compacted, mostly uniform shape.

>> See: How Wood Pellets Are Made

Are Softwood Pellets Better than Hardwood Pellets?

Most firewood users prefer to burn hardwood in their wood stove or fireplace, because it provides a longer burn compared to softwood due to wood density differences. However, regardless of the type of wood used to produce wood pellets, the pelletizing process produces pellets with the same density. Softwood pellets are actually most sought after, due to a higher percentage of resin content in softwood, more heat is produced per pound.

For any questions we haven’t answered here – please give us a call at 1-800-PELLETS!

 

Safely Re-Stacking Bags of Wood Pellets Takes Patience and Technique

Whether you store your pellets inside a garage or outside, you might have enough space available to keep the pellet bags on the pallet just as they were delivered. If you only have a smaller space available, or if the placed dimensions are inconvenient to you, re-stacking the wood pellet bags by hand is how you can maximize limited space.

We successfully placed 3 whole tons of wood pellets (150 bags) in a 6 foot wide space using a very simple hand-stacking technique, described below.

Hand Stacking Wood Pellet Bags in a Small Space

Each layer of bags will be reversed in formation, but will have the same layout of 5 bags vertical and 4 bags horizontal. If you plan out your layer configurations ahead of time, it’ll make the whole process easier.

The five vertical bags fit the six foot width, but the 4 horizontal bags will need a bit of adjusting. You can push these bags a little closer together to get them to lay at the same width as the vertical bags.

The next layer is the same formation – but with the five bags in front and the four in back. With each bag placement, make sure to smooth out each bag to make a flatter surface for the next layer.

Seventeen of these 9-bag layers, beside the top layer of 6, will make up the full 3 tons of pellets.

Important Re-Stacking Tip

No matter how you’re formatting the bags within your space, be sure to maneuver the bags in your front row to build up more bulk. This bag molding method makes the front row a little taller, making the stack lean a bit towards the wall as you layer up. This will help prevent an unfortunate (and potentially dangerous) toppling of your bags. See the photos below, provided to us by a customer with his warning of “Don’t shortcut” during your stacking.

Pellet Bag Re-Stacking

Still need to order your wood pellets for this heating season? You can always order online at Woodpellets.com, or call 1-800 PELLETS to speak to an expert!

How to Maximize Your Garage Storage Space

Make room for wood pellets! Declutter your Storage space with these handy tips from Houzz.com

It’s getting to be that time again. You need to start making room for your pallets of wood pellets that you’ll be using soon. We’ve shown you how to stack a few tons in a small space, but what if you need more room?  Here are some handy organization tips from the experts at Houzz:

It’s easy to become overwhelmed on projects like this when you jump in with no plan. It’s best to start with some rough guidelines and goals.

Read more

Wood Pellet Storage: The Basics

Woodpellets.comUnfortunately, there isn’t always a bunch of extra space available to keep your wood pellets stored safely, and out of the way. Of course, it’d be best for your wood pellets to be stored inside, but there isn’t always room for that! Unwrapping the shroud and re-stacking all the bags is a great solution to only having small spaces available. Take a look at how some of our customers stack their pellets indoors, here. Read how we stacked 50 pellet bags in a very tight space, here. Your pellets can also be stored outside successfully, if you take a couple of extra steps.

If you’re having wood pellets delivered to your home for the first time, or are storing them in a new location, it’s a good idea to measure out the space first in order to know what you can fit. First, let’s start with dimensions, so you’ll be able to plan your spaces effectively.

Read more

How to Make a Pallet Tarp Out of Wood Pellet Bags

Have you read our post about how to repurpose empty wood pellet bags? What about our tutorials on how to make a water blob, or a kite, or DIY treat bags from empty bags? Here’s a new one for you – a pallet tarp! We’ve created a step by step guide on how to use your leftover bags to make an extra layer of protection for your pellets, that fits over a skid of 50 bags nicely.

What You’ll Need: 

  • Iron
  • Ironing Board/Surface
  • Parchment Paper
  • Scissors
  • 25 Empty Pellet Bags (at least)
  • Open Window or Fan

Read more

How to Safely Hand-Stack Wood Pellet Bags in a Limited Space

Safely Store Wood Pellet Bags in Small Spaces

(click to enlarge)

Dimensions of Wood Pellet Bags and Pallets

A skid, a pallet of stacked wood pellet bags, is 48 by 40 inches. A 1-ton skid of fifty 40-pound bags is about four feet tall, and a 1.5-ton skid of 75 bags is about six feet tall.

You might have enough space available to keep the pellet bags on the pallet just as they were delivered. If you only have a smaller space available, or the 48×40 inch dimensions are inconvenient to you – re-stacking the wood pellet bags by hand is your best bet to maximize limited space.

The approximate length, width and height of a standard 40 pound bag of pellets placed horizontally on the floor is 27 x 18 x 5 inches. These measurements can adjust a bit with some maneuvering of the pellets within the bag.

Read >> How to Prepare Your Storage Space

Read more

How to Keep Your Wood Pellets Safe Outside (with an Easy New Trick!)

Wood Pellets Stored InsideIn a perfect world, you would have big open space indoors to store your wood pellets. Of course, that extra space isn’t always available – especially if you have several pallets of fuel to store.

If you don’t have room to store your wood pellets in the garage or basement, the next best thing is a shed or shelter in a raised, dry place.

If you have to store your wood pellets outside, you’ll need to fully
inspect the outer plastic that has been wrapped around your fuel, when it arrives. Check for any rips or holes where moisture can seep in. Make sure to repair any damage with water proof tape or additional layers of plastic. Read more

Free Wood Pellet Storage for the Summer (It’s Back!)

Order by 7/17 for Free Summer Storage!

In May, Woodpellets.com offered a free summer storage promotion that was wildly popular among our customers. The buy now – take delivery later option was perfect for those who wanted to take care of ordering their fuel early, but didn’t want to give up precious space over the summer for storage.

We received so many requests in June to bring this offer back – we decided to do it! For a limited time only, you can order your wood pellets or wood bricks now, and not have to worry about taking delivery until between August 15th and September 15th!

Why is this offer so popular?

  • Buying now means you’ll be all set for the upcoming heating season. You’re way ahead of the rush that will come later in the season.
  • The current pricing locks-in for you. If prices rise later – it won’t affect you at all.
  • You can enjoy the rest of your summer knowing your pellets are ordered, but you don’t have to even see them yet!

Don’t wait too long – you have to order your wood pellets online or by phone before Friday, July 17th to get free storage!

 

Order Pellets Online

 

Call 1-800-PELLETS (800-735-5387) to speak to an expert!

Best Practices for Storing Wood Pellets Inside or Outside

Storing Wood Pellets Outside

Pellets Stored OutsideIt’s not always possible to store your wood pellets inside. If you don’t have room to store your pellets in the garage or basement, the next best thing is a shed or shelter in a raised, dry place. If you can only store pellets outside – you can do that too. You just have a few extra steps to take, starting with inspecting your fuel when it arrives.

Your fuel is carefully wrapped and protected with a plastic shroud before it’s sent out for delivery. Upon inspection, repair any rips or holes in the plastic shrouding with water-proof tape or additional layers of plastic.

Next, add a a securely fastened tarp over your fuel, to protect it from water and from any birds or small animals that may try to puncture the plastic to make a home. Empty milk jugs filled with sand or water tied to the edge of the tarp is a great way to prevent it from flying up!

There are 50 bags on each one ton pallet, which stands about four feet tall.  If you bought 1.5-ton pallets, there are 75 bags stacked about six feet tall. The wooden pallets the fuel is stacked and wrapped on top of are 40 by 48 inches. Make sure your tarp is large enough to cover your pallets entirely.

>> Make your own tarp out of empty wood pellet bags! Follow the directions on our 
DIY pellet bag water blob article, and just make it into a square or rectangle instead of a pouch.

Read more

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