After wood there are a number of alternative fuels that offer a broad range of advantages and some disadvantages over typical wooden logs.
- Pellets are inexpensive to purchase
- Fuel is very clean and easy to use, no bugs to worry about.
- Fuel is easy to store and doesn't take much space compared to wood.
- Fuel is more efficient then wood burning at about 80% efficiency.
- Pellet stoves can be placed closer to walls then similar wood stoves.
- Pellet burning fireplaces offer a flame in most cases but it is not the same ambiance as a crackling fire from a wood fireplace.
- Pellet burning fireplaces need to be refilled often depending on the amount of heat needed and the size of the hopper inside the unit.
- Strong renewable source of heat.
- Environmentaly friendly.
- Corn as a fuel is very expensive.
- Fuel has the potential to attract rodents.
- Handling the fuel can be tricky and takes longer to learn to use then wood or pellets.
Examples-Corn and pellet stoves are very similar in looks and operation
- Much cleaner to manage then wood.
- Great for large rooms or open spaces - Coal gives off A LOT of heat, 1/3 more then wood.
- Anthracite Coal, hard coal (most common type used in coal stoves) is very clean burning and efficient compared to bituminous (soft coal) which is the usual black messy coal.
- Coal sustains a very long burn time.
- Coal can be stored outdoors and exposed to elements and still work without trouble.
- Coal is not as easy to find for purchase as most other fuels.
- Coal is dirtier to handle then pellets or gas.
- Coal is harder to start then pellets or wood.