Pellet Stove Season-End Cleaning and Shutdown Best Practices

How to Care and Clean Your Pellet Stove It’s finally here – time to shut down your pellet stove for the summer. It was a very long,
tough winter this year in the Northeast, and your stove probably worked hard. Considering pellet stove costs range at an average of around 2-3 thousand dollars, with some at double that price, this heating appliance is a real investment that will benefit from a few extra steps taken for season shut-down. Instead of just pulling the plug and walking away, responsible pellet burners should have a quick shut-down checklist to follow.
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4 Benefits of Wood Pellet Heat to Consider

In addition to the long term cost advantage over heating oil and propane, wood pellets have some additional benefits that you may be unaware of. 

CO2 Cycle with Fossil Fuel Burning1. The carbon footprint of wood pellets can be neutral, or close to it. 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. 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.

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Compressed Wood Bricks: Safe for Camp Sites and Great for Bonfires

Summer is the season for camping and bonfires – and it’s nearly upon us. But before you start packing up firewood for your camping trip – think again. Most camp sites do not allow firewood to be brought from outside sources. This is because firewood can transport insects such as wasps, ants and beetles that can hurt trees and spread disease. According to Don’t Move Firewood;

Tree-killing insects and diseases can lurk in firewood. These insects and diseases can’t move far on their own, but when people move firewood they can jump hundreds of miles. New infestations destroy our forests, property values, and cost huge sums of money to control.

So what should you do? Calling the campsite ahead of time to check what the rules are is a great first step. If the site allows local firewood to be brought in – just ask what the requirements are. You might just have to buy firewood that is sold close to where you’re camping. Make sure to ask where it’s from when you’re buying it. If the seller is unsure – you shouldn’t risk it.

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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. 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.

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Are You Considering a Wood Pellet Upgrade?

“I want to try a new brand or type of wood pellets, but I’m concerned about taking the leap.”

Wood Pellet Delivery Buy both! If you have been burning hardwood pellets, you might be curious about upgrading to softwood. (e.g. Cleanfire Hardwood vs. Cleanfire Pacific) Or perhaps you already burn softwood pellets, but you’re wondering if there’s really a difference when upgrading to a higher-level. (e.g. Cleanfire Pacific vs.
Cleanfire Douglas Fir)

In order to really understand the difference between two different types or brands of wood pellets, you should burn at least a ton of each consecutively. This will give you enough time and fuel to let you really tell the difference in heat output and ash buildup between the pellet types.  Depending on your stove, you may need to adjust your pellet feed rate and blower speed, especially if you are trying a hotter pellet than you normally burn.

Before you start burning, make sure your stove is nice and clean.  Keep your settings adjusted to how you normally would. As you work through the first ton, take note of how often you have to clean out your burn pot and how the heat intensity feels. Once the first ton is gone, your pellet stove should be cleaned up before burning the other ton. Repeat the process, adjusting the stove as needed for the difference in heat output from the pellets.
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Special, Lighter (30 Lb.) Wood Pellet Bags Growing in Popularity

30lb Lighter Bags of Wood Pellets

Do you have a long distance from where your pellets are kept to your stove? Did you get driveway delivery instead of 
garage delivery, and you have to manually move bags inside? Or, do you just find the regular 40-pound bags to be heavy?

Wood pellet brands are starting to branch out into making 30 pound bags available – which are 25% lighter than the standard weight bags. This might not sound like much of a difference to some people, but the ten pound difference per bag really adds up when stacking or moving bags inside near your stove.
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Extended Spring Wood Pellet Pickup Hours!

Pick up by the bag or by the ton during extended Spring hours at Demers Garden Center in Manchester, NH! Not sure if picking up or taking delivery makes more sense for you? Check out our Pickup vs. Delivery Cost Comparison.

Wood Pellet Pickup in NH

Demers Garden Center: 656 South Mammoth Road Manchester NH 03109
Extended Spring Hours!  7 Days a Week: 9am to 5pm

New York and New Jersey Walk-in Pickup Locations:

(An interactive Google map of all NY/NJ Pickup Locations can be found here)

Route 23 Patio & Mason Center: 69 Route 23 North Hamburg NJ 07419

Monday – Friday 8am to 3pm
Saturday 8am to 1pm
Closed Sunday

See Available Product(s)

Wood Pellet Pickup in NYAdams FairAcre Farms: 765 Dutchess Turnpike Poughkeepsie NY 12603

Monday – Saturday 8am to 8pm
Sunday 8am to 7pm

See Available Product(s)

Adams FairAcre Farms: 1560 Ulster Avenue Lake Katrine NY 12449

Monday – Saturday 8am to 8pm
Sunday 8am to 7pm

See Available Product(s)

Adams FairAcre Farms: 
1240 Route 300 Newburgh NY 12550

Monday – Saturday 8am to 8pm
Sunday 8am to 7pm

See Available Product(s)

Adams FairAcre Farms: 160 Old Post Road Wappinger NY 12590

Monday – Saturday 8am to 8pm
Sunday 8am to 7pm

See Available Product(s)

Questions? Talk to an Expert: 1-800-735-5387

The Annual Spring Stock-Up Sale is Here!

Buy Wood Pellets Online

Save $15 per ton on all softwood, and $5 per ton on all hardwood pellets during the Annual Spring Buy!  (Wood bricks are also discounted by $5/ton!). Many of our customers wait for this Spring sale to make their yearly purchase – and the time has come again.

So if you have the room to store your wood pellet fuel this summer, you can avoid long waits during peak season, and save money by ordering now. Hurry: the sale is on now through April 30th!

Order Wood Pellets Online

Or call 1-800-735-5387 to speak to an expert!

Order must be placed by 11:59pm on 4/30/15. Customer must accept delivery between order date and 5/22/15. Offers cannot be combined.

How to Make DIY Goody Bags Using Empty Wood Pellet Bags
As we are nearing the end of another long heating season – you probably have a pile of empty wood pellet bags stacked high. Are you wondering what to do with them? We have heard that question a lot lately. Depending on your location, your town may accept the bags to recycle.

>> See our blog, 20 Ways to Re-use Empty Wood Pellet Bags 

We have a new idea to make some use of all those bags, just in time for springtime and Easter parties: DIY Party Goody BagsMake personalized candy bags ahead of time for guests, or make blank bags to let kids design their own!

This is an easy craft and a way to make some use of those empty pellet bags. Please be sure this activity is done under adult supervision at all times.

 Empty Wood Pellet BagsWhat you’ll need:

  • Empty, clean wood pellet bags
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Decorating Items (ribbon, gems, fancy tape, markers, glitter, colored card stock etc.)
  • Goodies!


Depending on the ages of your crafters, it’s probably the safest for you to do the bag construction ahead of time. This way you can leave more time for the fun decorating part, and less time worrying about sharp scissors in small hands. Remember…safety first!

If you want to cut out shapes ahead of time, click here for a free printable sheet of shape templates.

1. The kind of empty wood pellet bag you have doesn’t matter. As long as either the top end or the bottom end hasn’t been cut or damaged, any bag will do! You just need one end to be still intact. Cut the bag in half vertically, making two long pieces.

2. Cut horizontally across both pieces to make the same size baggies. It’s up to you how deep you want them to be – so cut where you want. If you have them – use scalloped or zig zag scissors for some extra fun!

3. Flip the bag inside out, and clean off any leftover pellet residue. It’s not harmful – but you don’t want it getting all over the place. Luckily, we had a Cleanfire Douglas Fir bag to work with…so the pellet dust was minimal!

4. Choose the side you want as the back. In our example, the back of our bag is white, which is perfect for a blank canvas. Flip the side you chose to be the back up to face you. Fold the long open side (where you cut vertically) inward as if you were gift wrapping a box. Make sure to pull in the folds in enough to make the baggie narrow enough. No baggy masks or hats!

5. Instead of plain tape, we used decorative washi tape to add in some extra color, and trimmed the top of the bag. This gives the edge a nice finish. Repeat these steps for the other bag, and start over with each empty pellet bag. 


Within minutes, you have a sturdy bag ready for personalization! Set out all the (safe) decorating materials with your blank goody bags and get ready for some creativity!


Please share your empty bag ideas with us!


How Wood Bricks Burn with Firewood (Video)

Wood bricks can be used alone or as a supplement to firewood in a wood stove. This video is comprised of a series of clips filmed over 75 minutes. A smoldering piece of mostly burned-through firewood is in the back, with three Cleanfire Wood Bricks stacked in front. There is no kindling or assistance needed, due to the already hot firewood ash bed.

It’s important to remember that whether used alone or with firewood – wood stoves should not be packed tight with wood bricks. Don’t be fooled by their size. Wood bricks pack a super hot punch – which can damage a stove if used incorrectly. We recommend testing brick and/or brick+firewood burning variations to find the best fit for your stove.

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