10 Best Wood Stoves – Reviews & Buying Guide

10 Best Wood Stoves – Reviews & Buying Guide

Best Wood Stove

Investing in a wood stove is often cost-effective in the long run and comes with lots of benefits as well. For starters, it makes you independent of the utility companies and additionally turns an ordinary house into a cozy home.

Wood stoves have kept many homes warm since ages and they gradually evolved into many different styles as well. This makes it a little difficult, as you can imagine, for a new homeowner to make a choice.

From beautifully curved and ornamented cast iron stoves to more contemporary steel ones, there are many different models with different technologies available for sale in the markets.

This review aims to make your buying decision easier by providing you with all the information necessary to make an informed decision and get the right stove for your home.

You can also read other product reviews such as fire pit, electric fireplace.

10 Best Wood Stoves - Reviews

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Product Name

Log Length

Efficiency

Weight

Rating

Current Price

Castle 12327 Serenity Smart Wood Pellet Stove

1. Castle 12327 Serenity Smart Wood Pellet Stove

N/A

69.8%

186 lbs

4.2

Drolet HT2000 High-Efficiency Wood Stove

2. Drolet HT2000 High-Efficiency Wood Stove

22 in

78%

555 lbs

4.9

HiFlame HF905U EPA-Approved Wood Stove

3. HiFlame HF905U EPA-Approved Wood Stove

12 in

85%

174 lbs

4.7

US Stove 2000 Wood Burning Stove

4. US Stove 2000 Wood Burning Stove

21 in

N/A

275 lbs

4.0

Pleasant Hearth 1,200 Sq Ft Wood Stov

5. Pleasant Hearth 1,200 Sq Ft Wood Stove

18 in

81%

287 lbs

4.0

HiFlame HF-905 Shetland Black Wood Burning Stove

6. HiFlame HF-905 Shetland Black Wood Burning Stove

12 in

85%

174 lbs

3.9

WoodPro WS-TS-1500 Wood Burning Stove

7. WoodPro WS-TS-1500 Wood Burning Stove

16 in

75%

290 lbs

3.7

Summers Heat 50-SVL17 Wood Stove

8. Summers Heat 50-SVL17 Wood Stove

16 in

N/A

239 lbs

3.5

Pleasant Hearth WS-2417 Wood Burning Stove

9. Pleasant Hearth WS-2417 Wood Burning Stove

18 in

81%

243 lbs

5.0

HiFlame HF517UB Pony Cast Iron Wood Stove

10. HiFlame HF517UB Pony Cast Iron Wood Stove

16 in

73%

282 lbs

4.0

1. Castle 12327 Serenity Smart Wood Pellet Stove

Editor's Rating: 4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)

Castle 12327 Serenity Smart Wood Pellet Stove
  • BTU: 9,575 - 22,226
  • Heating coverage: 1,500 square feet
  • Dimensions: 34.0 x 23.7 x 18.2 inches

This stove enables you to heat your home according to your schedule using the integrated smart controller from Castle. You can choose a manual or a weekly program, or you can use the thermostat for control.

It's designed for affordability and ease of maintenance, while also featuring a modern style that allows easy integration into your modern home. It's the best wood stove for those who simply want the best.

The Castle corporation includes a thermal overload protection, including heat shields and a safety shut off, plus it's easy to install. This stove will serve up to 1,500 square feet of living space and it uses only 77 Watts during operation.

The Serenity is easy to use, it burns pellets which are easy to handle and it's easy to clean. Its programmable controller is also easy to understand and use.

Pros:

  • Comes with a smart controller
  • Delivers up to 22,000 BTU
  • Offers a 1,500 square feet heating capacity
  • Easy to keep up and clean
  • 69.8% thermal efficiency at 77 Watts

Cons:

  • It's a costly stove

2. Drolet HT2000 High-Efficiency Wood Stove

Editor's Rating: 4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)

Drolet HT2000 High-Efficiency Wood Stove
  • BTU: 95,000
  • Heating coverage: 1,000 - 2,4000 sq. ft.
  • Dimensions: 29.3 x 28.1 x 34.3 inches

Measuring 29.3 x 28.1 x 34.3 inches exactly, this Drolet wood stove uses a combination of heating technologies, to offer a highly efficient and high-energy output system.

With a 78% energy efficiency rating and 95,000 BTU, this stove will easily deliver enough heat for you and your family in a space up to 2,400 sq. ft large.

Unlike the pellet-using Castle stove above, this top-rated wood stove uses logs, and they can get as long as 22 inches. It has a large and firebrick-lined firebox, plus a big ash drawer.

Read More: 10 Best Log Splitters

A cast iron door and its lovely handle additionally give it that classic stove look, ready to provide your home with style and homely warmth.

Pros:

  • Delivers 95,000 BTU of heat energy
  • Features a 78% energy efficiency
  • Includes a large 3.93 cu ft firebox with firebricks
  • Will accept logs up to 22 inches long
  • Additionally, includes a 5/16-inch steel plate on top

Cons:

  • It uses logs, so no smart functions

3. HiFlame HF905U EPA-Approved Wood Stove

Editor's Rating: 4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

HiFlame HF905U EPA-Approved Wood Stove
  • BTU: 21,000
  • Heating coverage: 800 sq. ft.
  • Dimensions: 24.0 x 17.5 x 16.7 inches

If you love small and beautiful things, then you might fall in love with the HiFlame HF905U as well. It's designed for smaller homes and spaces up to 800 sq. ft, but it's designed well.

Featuring a full cast iron body, it has a simple and yet timeless design, as though it would last forever. You get a high-tech firebox for maximum efficiency, with an 85% energy efficiency and an air-washed door window, which guarantees you a lovely fire show every time.

HiFlame backs it with a 5-year warranty and it's EPA certified as well. In the rear, you get a steel heat shield and the ability to either attach your pipe on top or in the rear offers you more flexible installation options.

Pros:

  • Nice and compact design fits in everywhere
  • Made entirely from cast iron
  • Includes a steel rear heat shield
  • Backed by manufacturer's 5-year warranty

Cons:

  • It's not ideal for a large home

4. US Stove 2000 Wood Burning Stove

Editor's Rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

US Stove 2000 Wood Burning Stove
  • BTU: 89,000
  • Heating coverage: 2,000 sq. ft.
  • Dimensions: 24.5 x 27.0 x 30.0 inches

Featuring a firebrick-lined firebox, this US Stove 2000 comes with many features that make it one of the best wood burning stoves in the market.

It will accommodate logs up to 21 inches in length to deliver up to 89,000 BTU of energy. Also interesting is the included 100 CFM air blower, helping it to heat spaces as large as 2,000 sq. ft.

It's EPA certified, although it lacks an emission rating. On the other hand, the combination of steel and cast iron in this construction makes it a lovely and durable stove that looks good and you can depend on.

Pros:

  • Can heat spaces up to 2,000 sq. ft. large
  • Delivers up to 89,000 BTU
  • Comes with a blower and ash drawer included
  • Features a maximum log capacity of 21 inches
  • Features an air wash glass

Cons:

  • It has no emission rating

5. Pleasant Hearth 1,200 Sq Ft Wood Stove

Editor's Rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Pleasant Hearth 1,200 Sq Ft Wood Stov
  • BTU: 50,000
  • Heating coverage: 1,200 sq. ft.
  • Dimensions: 31.5 x 22.5 x 22.5 inches

With this Pleasant Hearth stove, you get a high-quality and EPA-certified indoor wood stove that'll take care of your medium to large-sized home. It'll heat up to 1,200 sq. ft of space and for up to 8 hours with a single loading.

There are 3 sizes available and this one is a small size. You can also get the medium size with up to 10 hours heating on a single load for up to 1,800 sq. ft. and the large size for up to 2,200 sq. ft. with the same 10 hours maximum burn time.

It's approved for use on mobile homes, giving you more options to work with. You get a ceramic glass window, a brick-lined firebox, an air wash system, and a variable speed blower to help spread the heat evenly.

Pros:

  • Heats up to 1,200 sq. ft.
  • Offers an 81% efficiency
  • Will burn up to 8 hours on a single load
  • Available in 3 sizes
  • Backed by a 5-year manufacturer warranty

Cons:

  • N/A

6. HiFlame HF-905 Shetland Black Wood Burning Stove

Editor's Rating: 3.9 out of 5 stars (3.9 / 5)

HiFlame HF-905 Shetland Black Wood Burning Stove
  • BTU: 21,000
  • Heating coverage: 800 sq. ft.
  • Dimensions: 17 x 18 x 24 inches

With an 84.3% efficiency, this little HiFlame stove produces enough heat to keep an 800 sq. ft home warm and comfortable. It weighs just 174 lbs and comprises steel and cast iron parts.

This combination gives it the look of classic wood stoves, giving your home a European look thereby and making this one of the best cast-iron wood stoves around. As one of the smallest wood stoves, it's just 18 inches wide and 24 high, but you can burn logs up to 12 inches long with ease inside it.

The HF-905 includes 2 dampers to better control the burning process and it uses pre-heated secondary air for both air-washing its glass and for a cleaner burning process.

Pros:

  • Gives your home that European look
  • Small stove for up to 800 sq. ft.
  • Contains logs up to 12 inches long
  • Combines cast iron and steel beautifully
  • Burns at 84.3% efficiency

Cons:

  • It's too small for large homes

7. WoodPro WS-TS-1500 Wood Burning Stove

Editor's Rating: 3.7 out of 5 stars (3.7 / 5)

WoodPro WS-TS-1500 Wood Burning Stove
  • BTU: 68,000
  • Heating coverage: 1,000 sq. ft.
  • Dimensions: 23 x 25 x 30 inches

This good wood stove from WoodPro is EPA-certified to produce a clean and strong burning performance. It features a compact design and comes with a large ash drawer and a 100 CFM blower.

If you like a stove with a contemporary design, but which offers a high performance, then this stove has it. It will easily keep up to 1,000 sq. ft of your home warm and cozy, plus it has the style.

With its stylish handle, stove top, and classic door with a large window, you'll have enough to look at and enjoy your warm fire shows. One full load burns up to 8 hours.

Pros:

  • Designed to heat up to 1,000 sq. ft.
  • Includes a 100CFM blower for better circulation
  • Will burn up to 8 hours when fully loaded
  • Comes with a large window for a better fire view

Cons:

  • N/A

8. Summers Heat 50-SVL17 Wood Stove

Editor's Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars (3.5 / 5)

Summers Heat 50-SVL17 Wood Stove
  • BTU: N/A
  • Heating coverage: 800 - 1,200 sq. ft.
  • Dimensions: 21.2 x 31.7 x 15.1 inches

One thing that sets this offer apart from the rest is including a brass and a nickel handle together in the package, so you can select the one you prefer and still keep the other one.

Its modern European-styled design will accent any living room and add a touch of timeless style and cozy warmth to it. The construction comes from steel, but the door is cast iron, while the included blower brings quicker comfort in early warm-up stages.

This stove meets UL and ULC product safety standards. It burns wood up to 16 inches in length, although its firebox is a little small. This makes it ideal for small to medium-sized homes.

Pros:

  • Heats 800-1,200 sq. ft. comfortably
  • Non-catalytic but high-tech firebox
  • Features an outside air hook-up for fresh air
  • Includes a free blower for better circulation

Cons:

  • Top vent only
  • No smart function or automation

9. Pleasant Hearth WS-2417 Wood Burning Stove

Editor's Rating: 5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

Pleasant Hearth WS-2417 Wood Burning Stove
  • BTU: 50,000
  • Heating coverage: 1,200 sq. ft.
  • Dimensions: 21.5 x 22.88 x 28 inches

This Pleasant Hearth stove might not count as one of the nicest looking stoves on this list, but it sure is one of the best wood stoves for the money. It offers an 81% efficiency, 3.9 gr/hr emission, and comes with a 5-year manufacturer warranty.

It also comes with an instructional DVD to help you make the most of it. Its firebox is brick-lined and the front door includes a ceramic glass so you can enjoy the fire's dances.

One disadvantage of this stove is that you'll have to buy the blower in addition, but that's if you need it. The stove is EPA certified and will accept logs up to 18 inches in length.

Pros:

  • Heats up to 1,200 sq. ft. with ease
  • Features a simple push/pull draft control
  • Burns up to 8 hours at a full load
  • Includes a brick-lined firebox and rear heat shield

Cons:

  • It's not a nice-looking stove
  • You'll have to buy the blower separately

10. HiFlame HF517UB Pony Cast Iron Wood Stove

Editor's Rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

HiFlame HF517UB Pony Cast Iron Wood Stove
  • BTU: 37,000
  • Heating coverage: 1,200 sq. ft.
  • Dimensions: 25.5 x 22.7 x 20.0 inches

HiFlame might not make the most efficient wood stoves but it's the best wood stove brand when it comes to authentic and classic cast iron stoves.

This HiFlame HF517UB offers a top or rear flue outlet, plus a ceramic glass window with air washing, and a steel rear heat shield to improve both safety and air convention.

What makes it unique though, is HiFlame's cast iron expertise in creating functional but equally amazing-looking stoves in furniture quality.

You can get this stove in either its traditional matte black finish or with a high gloss enamel finish. It comes with a 5-year warranty.

Pros:

  • Classic non-catalytic wood stove in Nordic design
  • Delivers up to 37,000 BTU with well-seasoned wood
  • Designed to heat up to 1,200 sq. ft.
  • Full load burns for up to 8 hours
  • Backed by HiFlame's 5-year warranty

Cons:

  • N/A

How To Buy the Best Wood Stoves

How To Buy the Best Wood Stove

Being able to buy the right stove means knowing the features of a stove to watch out for and to compare with one another before choosing. Following are these features.

#1. Durability

Wood stoves are mostly made from either steel or cast iron. Cast iron was originally preferred because it was more stable, while steel tended to warp with time. On the other hand, low-quality cast iron does crack anyway.

Over the years, steel quality has improved, making steel stoves as good as cast iron ones, plus their other many benefits.

So, you are free to either choose a cast iron wood stove or a steel one because their durability depends on their material quality. You should, therefore, choose a stove with a higher quality material if you want it to last.

#2. Your Climate

Another major consideration is the climate where you live and this refers exactly to how mild or severe the winters can get. If you don't get serious snow issues, then skip this one.

In an area with moderate snow and winter, a normal sized stove will do. But when things are more severe, you should consider getting a bigger wood stove, to better offset the deeper temperatures.

#3. Cast Iron vs. Steel Body

The material is important when it comes to wood stoves because the construction material determines how the stove looks and behaves. This includes how long it takes to heat up a room and how long it can keep up the heat after the fire goes out.

Cast iron stoves are usually more ornate in design, having been molded specially for making a stove. Steel stoves look more contemporary and streamlined, making them ideal for modern homes, while cast iron stoves are more fitting to traditional homes.

Steel stoves are cheaper to make and they can heat up a room faster once the stove has been lit. Given their thicker metal bodies, cast iron takes longer to heat up a room, but it'll also hold its heat for much longer after the fire is out.

#4. Catalytic vs. Non-Catalytic

Here's another major decision you'll have to take. Catalytic stoves use a catalyst, which is a honeycombed structure, to both cut down on their emissions and to improve the thermal efficiency of the stove.

The catalyst gets installed between the stove's firebox and the chimney, and what it does is to re-ignite the smoke from the fire and thereby cut emissions down to 3-5 gm/hr, which is within the limits set by environmental agencies.

A catalyst stove also burns slower, reaching up to 40 hours, which is an impossible feat with a non-catalyst stove. On their plus side, non-catalyst stoves are easier to use and there's nothing to change over time.

A properly used catalyst can last for up to 6 seasons before it needs changing, but a badly used one can break down in as little as 2 years. You should only choose a catalytic stove if you love such tech stuff.

#5. Single Room vs. Central Heating

Will you be heating just a room with the stove or will it heat your entire home? Deciding on the stove's primary function will help you to focus on exactly what you need.

A central heating stove can help keep ash away from your living room, for example, while a slightly large single room heater can also warm other rooms in the home as well.

#6. Heat Output

The stove's job is to produce heat and you can measure that heat using BTU (British Thermal Unit). All stoves get rated in BTU according to their output, so it's necessary that you understand how BTU connects with your home.

This connection depends on your insulation and how good or bad it is. If your home has energy leakage issues, then you'll need about 35K BTU for every 1,000 square feet in the home.

With a regular insulation, you'll need about 30K BTU per 1,000 square feet, while an energy-efficient home will need just about 24K BTU per 1,000 square feet.

This means you'll need to check and measure your home first, so you can know the stove size that'll best suit it.

#7. The Firebox & Heating Capacity

In addition to body materials and heat output, the size of a stove's firebox is equally important because it determines how long a fully loaded stove can burn.

This firebox is the interior part of the stove where wood gets loaded. It can be of any size but the standard firebox is 16 inches wide. This size determines the maximum length of wood you can load, as well as how much wood in total.

If you are heating just a small room, then you can always stick with 16-inch or smaller interior, but for larger rooms, you should consider an 18 or 20-inch firebox.

#8. Clean & Smart Stoves

You should also consider that electronics are making many appliances smart and that includes wood stoves. There are models that allow remote control or monitoring, as well as including many safety features.

Also remember that the environmental protection agency, EPA, has mandated the reduction of wood stove emissions to 2.0 gr/hour by 2020, and this means that most stoves for sale today will be illegal by then.

How To Install a Wood Stove

How To Install a Wood Stove

It's always advisable to engage a professional to install your wood stove for you, but if you're the type that loves to get things done by yourself, then the following is a step by step guide to help you.

#1. Make Inquiries

Your local authorities may need that you get their permission first before installing your new stove. So, it doesn't hurt to ask, just to be on the safe side. Also consider getting someone to inspect your work, once you finish the installation.

#2. Mark Out the Location

Marking out the site requires some thought. You need a spot which is well insulated so you don't lose much energy. You also need to remember the chimney and plan for a spot where the chimney either goes straight up without problems or sideways out.

#3. Secure the Floor

You need to secure the floor using a non-combustible floor pad since wood stove can get really hot and you don't want to set your home on fire. In the U.S. and Canada, the stove's floor pad must stretch 18 inches or longer in front and 8 inches or wider at the sides.

#4. Secure the Surrounding Walls

Depending on the material used to build your home and on how close to the wall you're planning to install the stove, you may also need to secure the walls surrounding the stove using a heat shield. These are usually made from sheet metal.

#5. Mount the Stove

You should try and get some help with this one because wood stoves are often heavy. Mount the stove in place and make the necessary adjustments you need to make.

#6. Install the Chimney

There are no rules for installing a chimney, except that you want it as straight up as possible. The more turns and twists your chimney gets, the less efficient it'll be in removing smoke from your home. So you need to plan this one well.

Conclusion

Coming to the end of this best wood stove review, one or two of the different offers out there should have caught your interest by now.

Whether you're after the best wood stove for heating your home or whether you just want something more decorative or even high-tech, there's something on this list above for you.

Just take your time and go through the specs and you're sure to pick the best stove for your home.

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