Can I use wood pellets in my wood burning stove?

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You shouldn’t try to burn wood pellets inside your wood stove on its own.

A wood stove is not prepared to burn pellets, and you can ruin it if you try to do it that way.

To burn wood pellets with no trouble, you need to place a pellet basket inside your wood stove.

It might sound silly to add something else inside wood stove to burn wood – because burning wood is what a wood stove does!

Well, the thing is, you need the basket to properly place the pellets inside the woodstove. Otherwise, the fire won’t last for long – and in little time you can damage the inside of your stove.

Table of Contents

How can I use wood pellets in my wood-burning stove?


The best way to burn wood pellets using a wood stove is to get a pellet basket.

You need to place the pellets inside the basket, then place the basket inside the stove, and, finally, you can start the fire that you need to stay warm.

Now, don’t worry! A pellet basket isn’t hard to find, nor is it an expensive item to buy. You can get it for cheap on Amazon or a local shop near you.

Don’t confuse a pellet basket with a wood basket! The first is made out of steel; the latter is made out of wood. A pellet basket will help you burn wood pellets; a wood basket will burn inside your stove.

Why should I use wood pellets instead of something else?


  • Eco-friendly: Wood pellets burn at a much faster rate but emit less carbon monoxide than other alternatives. By burning this type of wood, you will be doing the environment a favor. Now, you probably think that one wood pellet isn’t going to change the world – but you have to think about it long-term: the many fires you will start throughout your life, not just one.


  • Efficient: The great thing about wood pellets is how efficient they are. You probably have read already that pellets burn faster than wood – and that’s right. So, how can they be efficient? Well, the answer lies in how much of a pellet burns before the flame dies out, and that number is well over 80% (it’s more than any other alternative).


  • Easier to use: Pellets are incredibly easy to use once you get the hang of them. You don’t have to place them in an organized manner, or distribute them equally, or fire a pellet first and then try to create a bigger fire from that. All you have to do is drop them in a basket, place them in a stove or fireplace, and start the fire.


  • Last for a long time: You’ll love wood pellets if you’re the kind of person who buys things in bulk. Wood pellets, when properly stored, hardly ever go bad. You can buy wood pellets for the whole winter if you want to – and, as long as you store them in a dry place, nothing bad will happen to them.


What are the disadvantages of using wood pellets?



  • Availability: You can’t go out to the forest and come back with wood pellets. You always have to buy them. That could prove difficult to do depending on how deep into the winter you currently are. Even though pellets are hardly scarce, you may find yourself having trouble finding the brand you like every once in a while.


  • Costly at first: Whether you decide to go for a pellet basket, fireplace insert, or a pellet stove, it’s going to cost you more than just going with wood logs right away. The cost will even out through time – but that may take a little while, and your wallet will have to take the hit.


  • Not the same as regular wood: Burning wood pellets is not the same as burning wood. It probably has to do with how you can only burn wood pellets in a basket or a stove (and that adds an extra layer of separation). Being in front of a fireplace with burning logs inside is different from what we’re discussing in this article. You may prefer one or the other – or not care about the difference at all.



What is a pellet basket?


A pellet basket is a small or mid-sized steel basket that will allow you to burn wood pellets inside a wood stove.

The basket’s design is simple enough for anyone to use. You simply fill it with wood pellets and put it inside your stove.

Why is a pellet basket important? Because it’ll help you hold the wood pellets in place at first. Once the fire starts, the basket will hold everything in place while ensuring proper airflow.

That way, you can have a great fire inside your stove by burning pellets.

Can I use wood pellets in my wood-burning stove without a pellet basket?


You can try to burn wood pellets with your wood stove on its own – but you will never be warm that way.

Wood pellets alone will burn in a minute (if they burn at all), and you’ll quickly find yourself with a handful of ash inside your stove.

Putting wood pellets inside your wood stove without a pellet basket is a great way to waste wood pellets. And it gets worse!

You can try it yourself if you want to – but be advised: you may ruin the inside of your wood stove by doing that.

That’s right: by burning pellets inside your stove, you will have nothing but a quickfire that will ruin the walls and bottom of your wood stove.

How can wood pellets harm your wood stove? Well, the thing about wood pellets is that they tend to burn a little hotter than your average wood log.

Because of that, burning pellets can sustain a higher temperature than your stove is designed to endure.

When wood pellets get warm enough, your wood stove may suffer damage from the inside. Unless you use a pellet basket, that is.

A pellet basket ensures proper airflow (allowing your pellets to burn for longer) and protects your stove as well.


Can I use wood pellets in my fireplace?


You can burn wood pellets in your fireplace – but you have to buy something before you do.

Using wood pellets in your fireplace is no different than doing so inside a wood stove. The good news is you have more options than using a pellet basket.

At this point, you already know why wood pellets are not good on their own for anything that’s not a pellet stove. A fireplace is no different – so don’t throw them in there yet!

You can use a pellet basket if you have one. The steps are the same: put the pellets inside the basket, the basket inside the fireplace, and light the fire.

Now, we can totally understand if you don’t want to place a pellet basket inside your fireplace alone.

Fireplaces tend to be a little more expensive than wood stoves – and you may want to add an extra layer of protection because of that.

Well, fortunately for you, there are more options!

How can I use wood pellets in my fireplace?


You can use a fireplace insert if you want to burn wood pellets using your fireplace and keep everything safe from harm.

As you know, wood pellets could potentially harm the inside of a wood stove or a fireplace – so taking extra precautions won’t hurt.

A fireplace insert will add an extra layer of protection between the pellet fire and the fireplace itself. That’s the good news.

The bad news is that you still have to use a pellet basket inside your fireplace insert – because you don’t want to damage the fireplace insert either.

An extra piece of good news is that neither the pellet basket nor the fireplace insert cost too much money, nor are they too hard to find.

More likely than not, you’ll find both of them in the same store – and whoever is selling you these products will help you understand how to install and use them.

What is a fireplace insert?


A fireplace insert is a metal firebox that goes inside your fireplace. It can help you with a lot of things: having better fires, making everything easier to clean, keeping an extra layer of protection, so people are safe, and more.

In this article, we’re discussing wood pellets and how to use them in wood stoves and fireplaces – so you can probably guess a fireplace insert will help you burn wood pellets while using a fireplace.

The great thing about combining wood pellets with a fireplace insert is how efficient everything becomes. Both these things help with making fires bigger and making them last longer in a cleaner way.

Can I use wood pellets in my fireplace without a fireplace insert?


You can try to burn wood pellets without a fireplace insert – the question is, why would you?

You should only do so if you’re planning on damaging your fireplace for some reason. If that doesn’t sound like you, you definitely want to have a fireplace insert for burning wood pellets!

We can understand the question if you have an extra bag full of wood pellets and no fireplace insert – but we wouldn’t consider doing it in that scenario.

You can try to do so with a pellet basket (without an insert), but we don’t know if you’re going to have that much of a fire then.

The thing is, you need the extra efficiency a fireplace insert brings to the table to get the most out of your wood pellets when using a fireplace.


Is it safe to burn wood pellets?


Burning wood pellets is perfectly safe, as long as you do it on a pellet stove, use a pellet basket in a wood stove, or use an insert in your fireplace.

The great thing about pellets is how easy they are to use and how little can go wrong when you use them.

You’ll hardly have a problem with burning wood pellets. The hardest part about burning them is to dispose of them after the fire is over!


What do I do with pellet ash?


You can either throw pellet ash into the trash or try to reuse it in some way. You can use pellet ash as a fertilizer if you want.

You’ll have to wait for a couple of days before you try to use or dispose of pellet ash in any way.

Ready to throw your ash into the trash? Wait for a couple of days so the ashes can cool down, then put everything in a metal container and water it.

Do you prefer a more environmentally friendly alternative? You can use your ashes as fertilizer or put them in your compost pile. Pellet ash has plenty of minerals that can help your plants, flowers, and other greens to grow!

Don’t go crazy with your new fertilizer, though. Pellet ash is alkaline, so keep your soil’s pH levels in mind before you start using it.


Are wood pellets better than any other alternative?


Wood pellets are not inherently better than any other type of wood – but they are not necessarily worse either.

The thing about wood is that you can play with different kinds and see which one suits you best. It may be wood pellets – or it may be something else!

A better question would be, “are wood pellets right for me?” Well, we can answer that question!

Wood pellets are perfect for you if you care about efficiency, convenience, and environmental issues.

This type of wood is not for you if you prefer resource availability and the rustic feel of a wood log burning.

We highly recommend that you try both wood pellets and wood logs (and any other alternative you can find) and see which one suits you best.


Read more:

A Guide on Wood Stoves For Tiny Homes and cabins

A Guide To Pellet Stove In Cabins And Tiny Homes

Pellet Stove Install in Garage – How to

Do I need a water pan in my pellet smoker?

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