Outdoor Wood Boilers: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly
I like outdoor wood boilers! Now that that's out of the way, let's dig into it. Outdoor wood boilers are complicated and simple, expensive and priceless, they take a little of your time and save a ton of your money. They're good, they're bad, and they're ugly.
I'll try to not make this a sales pitch. Most folks buy an outdoor wood boiler to save money so that should be the first point in the "Good" category. No more monthly payments to huge energy companies, propane, gas, oil, whatever it is for you, it goes away. There's nothing like turning up the thermostat or taking a long shower and knowing it isn't going to show up on your utility bill. Outdoor wood boiler technology has come a long way in the past couple decades. Where outdoor wood furnace used to mean a smoke belching, wood eating, house heating monster, today's outdoor wood boiler is a very different story. Wood gasification technology is now more common than traditional wood burner designs, making wood boilers burn much less wood( up to 50% less wood) and make much less smoke. When they are burning, all you can see coming from the chimney is steam. Outdoor wood stoves are exactly that: outside. The mess, the fire hazard, the smoke, all of it stays outside.
So an outdoor wood boiler can mean a lot of work. Or so it would seem... but for every minute you spend cutting firewood or stoking the boiler, you would probably have to spend many times over working to pay your heating bills. So... not really a bad item.
So there are literally dozens of outdoor wood boiler brands on the market, each has their own dealer network, making it a very competitive market. This can at times lead to bad experiences while you're researching which outdoor wood boiler is best for you. The internet is full of conflicting information and sales points etc. You know the story... Just keep in mind that all of this is only while you're making the purchase and the outdoor boiler will last for years into the future.
Thanks for reading. If you're in the market for a new outdoor wood boiler, (and I calculate that there's a high chance you might be if you're reading this) I highly recommend reading reviews for many brands across the board to get a good idea of which ones are good and which ones to steer away from. Another great way to put your finger on the pulse is to get involved in online discussion forums and facebook groups etc.