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Old 21.07.2011, 16:58
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Some advice please.... Oil versus wood pellet heating?

Hello,

I have to vote on my building choosing oil or wood pellet as the new heating system. The difference is 7,000 chf but considering it is going to cost a bomb anyway another 7,000 chf does not seem worth worrying about.

So advice please which should I vote for and why?

I do know from a little internet research that the pellets are eco friendly but am I paying 7,000 chf to help the planet or will I get any more benefits.

I also have been told oil prices rise and the pellets will not.

Any thoughts welcome....
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Old 21.07.2011, 17:00
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Re: Some advice please.... Oil versus wood pellet heating?

The greens would vote for wood pellets. The source is renewable.
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Old 21.07.2011, 17:12
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Re: Some advice please.... Oil versus wood pellet heating?

Pellets will be "greener" unless of course the oil is synthesised from renewables, that much is true.

Pragmatically, something to consider is that the energy density of said pellets is really quite low compared to fuel oil, so the sheer physical volumes involved (delivery / storage / feed to furnace/ ash) should be looked at before committing to pellets
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Old 21.07.2011, 21:04
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Re: Some advice please.... Oil versus wood pellet heating?

In December 1999 a hurricane named Lothar destroyed much of the woodlands here, and pellet technology was born, but how long will this pile of old broken wood remain I do not know.

Many people are choosing wood pellets for "Green" reasons, and my feeling is that once the "Lothar" wood has been used the price will certainly rise. The pellets are not particularly clean burning, releasing lots of soot and tar into the local atmosphere, they are considered renewable, but they are certainly not clean.

Are you near a gas main? Would that be an alternative energy source?
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Old 21.07.2011, 21:23
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Prices of wood fuel must be corelated to oil prices on the longer term - higher oil prices will make more houses to convert to pellets and thus increasing demand for pellets.
Wood burning produces just what the wood used up from the soil to grow plus carbon from the air. Unless the forest got under a radioactive cloud there is nothing to worry about.
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Old 21.07.2011, 22:07
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Re: Some advice please.... Oil versus wood pellet heating?

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Prices of wood fuel must be corelated to oil prices on the longer term - higher oil prices will make more houses to convert to pellets and thus increasing demand for pellets.
Thats what I was thinking (but used a few smaller words for our larger audience )

Pellet-prices do go up and down regularly.

There are other "benefits" involved with pellets
  • they smell a lot better - you would care if you spent time in the heating room, and on delivery day
  • the "waste" (ash) can be put in the green compost bin
  • is there a difference in size of the storage unit for oil or pellets?
  • you sometimes have to worry about the "quality" of the pellets (personally i think you have to worry more about the ability of the truck-driver to use the pellet pump- without turning the lot to sawdust, ruining your burner)
  • renewable resources
  • pellets dont explode...
  • it does get dusty in the heating room, but this is easier to clean up than spilt oil.

Nuff said.
If I had to choose again, i would go for pellets again.
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Old 22.07.2011, 15:36
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Re: Some advice please.... Oil versus wood pellet heating?

Many thanks for all your thoughts. My green vote is in.... Pellets.
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Old 22.07.2011, 16:53
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Re: Some advice please.... Oil versus wood pellet heating?

This doesn't answer your oil/pellet question, but if you ware considering a new heating source I suggest you look at heat pumps.
  • carbon neutral,
  • no supplies required to be delivered as it runs on low tariff electricity
  • clean smell free
  • low maintenance - basically no servicing required
  • best of all dirt cheap to run
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