Although over one million homes in the United States use wood pellet fuel as a heating source, 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.
How Many Bags of Pellets Should I Buy?
The 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.
Catalyst Healthy Cat is an innovative new product taking over the natural cat litter industry. Developed by the natural wood product experts at Lignetics – Catalyst is the only kitty litter engineered from upcycled soft wood fibers.
Some of the major benefits of switching from clay litter to Catalyst include:
– Superior Odor Absorption
– Effective Clumping
– Very Low Dust
– Lightweight + Convenient
Litter created with clean sawdust sourced from the lumber industry is not just ideal for the environment, but for cats and their owners too!
The bags are a convenient weight at just 10 pounds and are are available for a discount with a free subscription to make ordering automatic. Each bag lasts for one month per cat.
A multi-cat and unscented version has also been recently added to the product line now that the formulas have been perfected!
Click to learn more about Catalyst Heathy Cat’s green mission and cat litter options!
You can always re-use empty pellet bags and wood pallets for DIY projects – but what about the shroud that comes wrapped around your pellet delivery? It can come in really handy this time of year.
Hauling out the Christmas tree after the holidays can be a messy, arduous task. On top of being repeatedly poked with sharp branches, the dried out needles get absolutely everywhere. With a little tweak ahead of time, you can avoid this headache.
Simply position the shroud on the floor where the tree will go, and roll up the sides in order to hide it under the tree skirt. When you’re ready to take the tree out – you’ll have this heavy plastic in place to help. Simply unfurl the shroud up and around the tree to cover and secure it for removal!
Many folks don’t have the space to keep their wood pellet fuel stacked on pallets as delivered. Although storing wood pellets outside is possible and very common, we’ve noticed our customers often have our delivery drivers place the skids near an entrance to the house for re-stacking inside.
How to Keep Wood Pellets Stored Safely Outside
Read >> Customer Tip: How to Easily Move Pellet Bags into the Basement
In order to demonstrate a bag stacking method within a small space, we placed 3 whole tons of wood pellets (150 bags) in a 6 foot wide space using a very simple hand-stacking technique, described below.
There are many different brands and styles of wood pellet stoves – so the best way to start learning about your particular stove is to read the entire manual. If you’re a new pellet stove owner, or have switched to a different model – it could take some trial and error to learn the right process for your home.
You might be surprised to learn that many common issues pellet burners face with their stoves can be solved with making some adjustments. Again – start to troubleshoot and learn by reading your manual! It has the best stove-specific advice on operation, maintenance, recommendations and best practices.
Take a look at our quick cheat sheet below to review the pellet stove problems we hear about the most.
|Poor burn quality
||Clean your stove according to your manufacturer’s recommendations, or schedule a professional stove cleaning and inspection.
||Burning on ‘low’
||Adjust heat setting to medium or medium/high.
||Clean all vents, check and repair/replace all gaskets, adjust damper or airflow setting.
||Adjust air-to-pellet ratio by increasing air flow.
|Lazy or small flame
||Adjust air-to-pellet ratio by increasing air flow and/or decreasing feed rate.
|Low heat output
||Adjust air-to-pellet ratio by increasing air flow and/or increasing feed rate.
|Sparks flying / embers in the ash pot
||Adjust air-to-pellet ratio by decreasing air flow and/or decreasing feed rate.
|Whole, charred pellets left in the burn pot
||Adjust air-to-pellet ratio by decreasing air flow and/or decreasing feed rate.
|Auger jamming / stove shutting down
||Drop bags on the floor – this can break long pellets into a manageable length.
|Excessive ash build up / whole, charred pellets in burn pot
||Reduce feed rate.
As you can see, many burn issues are directly related to your stove’s airflow. If you have reviewed your owner’s manual to make the proper settings adjustments, but you’re still experiencing problems…you might have a leak. Wood pellet stoves operate through a system of air intake and exhaust, and the exhaust fan sucks air out through the burn pot to cause combustion of the pellets. It’s important to inspect your venting setup to see if it’s properly sealed, but it’s more likely the leak is through your door gasket.
It’s simple to test the door seal efficiency with a dollar bill. While holding on to one end of the bill, insert the other side into the door, and shut it. Pull out the dollar while the door is still shut, and note the resistance. You shouldn’t be able to remove the bill without a good amount of resistance. Repeat this method all around your door to check the full effectiveness of your gasket.
If you ordered your wood pellets from Woodpellets.com and you find damage to the actual wood pellets – call 1-800-PELLETS within 30 days of delivery to speak with a Quality Assurance Representative. All Woodpellets.com Quality Certified fuels are backed by a Physical Quality Guarantee, which is valid for 30 days after the delivery date.
Questions? Call 1-800-735-5387 to Speak to the Experts at Woodpellets.com!
We’ve shown you how to use wood pellets in a fire pit, but there’s never been a fire pit created for burning wood pellets until now.
Designed by an innovative team at TIKI® to address what consumers don’t like about a typical outdoor fire session, this fire pit has been engineered to run on wood pellets. Since the main goal of this project was to find the easiest, cleanest way to enjoy an outdoor fire – using wood pellet fuel certainly makes sense.
The inventors claim that due to the airflow technology and wood pellet “pack” – getting the fire started is instant, the burn is clean and the whole experience is hassle-free. Mass production hasn’t begun yet, but you can learn all about this invention on the crowdfunding platform, Kickstarter.
What do you think? Would you want a wood pellet burning fire pit?
Many folks don’t have space in their homes, sheds or garages for bulky pallets of pellet fuel. For years we’ve been reminding our customers that it’s safe to store your wood pellets outside, as long as you secure a sturdy tarp over them.
Read >> How to Store Your Wood Pellets Outdoors
Read >> The Basics of Proper Wood Pellet Storage
But what if the tarp isn’t properly treated to keep the sun from damaging the inner layers of plastic? Or what if the tarp’s shape doesn’t fully cover the pallet of pellets? Will the edges of the tarp fly up and expose your fuel to the elements? Won’t it be difficult to access the pellets if I properly secure the tarp?
We have heard your concerns and we have designed a solution, which will be exclusively available from Woodpellets.com! These sturdy UV-treated tarps are made to fit perfectly over your wood pellets as they’re delivered on pallets. Plus, one side has a very convenient strip of velcro to make opening up the tarp to access your fuel a breeze.
The entire Woodpellets.com team is very excited to announce these special pallet covers will be available soon – in both 1.5 ton and 1 ton sizes!
We always remind our customers to do a full inspection after delivery because punctures/tears can happen during the delivery process. If you find any damage to your wood pellets, call 1-800-PELLETS right away. But don’t worry…all Woodpellets.com Quality Certified fuels are backed by a Quality Guarantee!
Here’s what Barb from New York decided to use her damaged wood pellet bags for:
“In 2016 I had damaged pellets which you took care of for me and gave me permission to compost. I’d like to share with you what happened to some of those pellets.
I had a small wildflower garden at the edge of my walkway which was overrun with some very invasive & nasty weeds. I decided to put a raised bed in place there and try to rescue some summer blooming with Heart-Leafed Asters which were being run out by the weeds.
I thought I only had 6 bedraggled specimens left. Well, I rescued 48 struggling seedlings as I dug the mess up.I put in a 4’x8′ two-level raised bed, lots of landscaper’s cloth and a good layer of those composted pellets. I mixed it all up and transplanted all 48 seedlings into their spots in the raised beds.
All 48 Asters survived, grew to about 3′ high and bloomed profusely! This is their 3rd year of doing the same. Expensive compost to be sure but at least it didn’t go to waste. The flowers put on quite a show.”
Read >> Here’s Why You Shouldn’t Throw Away Wet Wood Pellets
Read >> Wood Pellets Used as Moisture-Holding Mulch
We love reading feedback from our customers, especially when we get some great tips/ideas. Do you have any to share?
We hear this question a lot this time of year because it’s not always possible to store wood pellets inside. Many folks don’t have a garage or available dry space outdoors, but that’s okay. In order to properly store your wood pellets outside, you just have to take a few extra steps.
Read >> See How This Family Sends Their Pellet Bags to the Basement for Storage
First, make sure to fully inspect your delivery as soon as possible. Your fuel is carefully wrapped and protected with a plastic shroud before it’s sent out to you. If you find any rips or holes in the plastic shrouding, be sure to close them with water-proof tape or additional layers of plastic. Is there extensive damage or any wet bags? If so, call 1-800-PELLETS right away to speak with a Quality Manager.
The next step is very important. Securely fasten a sturdy tarp over your skids. This will protect your fuel from water, weather and any birds or small animals that may try to puncture the plastic to make a home. Make sure the tarp is well connected to the pallet to avoid losing it with wind gusts.
Read >> Keep Your Outdoor-Stored Pellets Dry with This Simple Trick
If you’re interested in a much more convenient tarp, check out our brand new custom pallet covers with velcro access! Available in a 50” height for 1-ton skids and a 72” height for a 1.5 ton skid, each protective tarp is 49 inches in length and width, with a white outside and black underside. The 8×8 woven material is rated for 1 year of UV protection to help with protection from the elements.
Helpful Tips for Outdoor Storage:
- Always make sure your pellets are delivered to an area in your yard or driveway that is free from any water pooling or flooding.
- Leave the shrouds the fuel arrived wrapped in on as long as possible.
- Check on your unopened skids through the season to make sure everything is still secure.
- Place a weighted object on top of the skid to keep the tarp in place.
- Use a ball on top but underneath the tarp to prevent pooling.
- Use empty milk jugs filled with sand or water tied to the tarp’s edges to help properly secure it.
- During the winter months, keep a path shoveled around your skids to help prevent any water and/or ice damage.
Make sure you do everything you can to protect your pellets. But in the rare instance they arrive damaged, all of our Quality Certified fuels are backed by guarantee. We are here for you if you have any questions.