What is a wood pellet boiler?

Wood pellet boilers are often also referred to as simply pellet boilers. Why, you might ask? Essentially, these boiler systems use biomass - natural wood chips - to heat your home. That means that they use a source of renewable energy, rather than conventional oil or gas. Wood pellet boilers are efficient and economical choices to heat your home. In fact, it’s possible to reduce your home heating bills by up to 30% if you install a wood pellet boiler - that’s no small saving!

How does a wood pellet boiler work?

While they’re a much cleaner, greener, more energy efficient option that conventional boilers, wood pellet boilers actually work in a very similar way. You’ll feed 100% natural wood residue pellets into your home boiler, which the boiler burns to produce heat.

That heat is then used to warm up the water in your home heating system, whether you have a radiator system or an underfloor heating setup in your home. The heat the wood pellet boiler produces by burning these natural wood chips can also be used to heat up your home’s hot water (for the sinks, showers, and so on), just as a regular gas or oil boiler would.

The wood pellets you’ll feed into your pellet boiler are actually byproducts from the wood industry. Any wood residue is collected up and compressed into pellets, so it can be put to use in wood pellet boilers, rather than simply go to waste. These wood pellets are 100% natural and untreated with any chemicals, so that they can be safely burned in your pellet boiler to heat your home.

Wood pellet boilers are known for being particularly energy efficient, making them a wise choice for protecting the environment and saving on your home heating costs.

Did you know that you can remotely program and control a Netatmo Smart Thermostat to keep your home heating at exactly the level you want it? You can have a certified Netatmo professional complete the installation - it’s also quick and simple enough to set up at home yourself. You can adjust your home heating levels as and when you want, according to your schedule and preferences.

How do I install a wood pellet boiler in my home?

Installing a wood pellet boiler in your home isn’t too complex a process - as long as your home already has an existing central heating system in place. That could be a conventional central heating system that’s powered by oil or gas, but there needs to be one in place already for you to connect up your new wood pellet boiler to that same central heating circuit.

Installing a wood pellet boiler at home is a fairly straightforward process, that won’t take too long. However, we’d recommend that you ask a professional to install your new wood pellet boiler, for a number of different reasons:

  • A professional will be well used to installing wood pellet boilers and familiar with any of the (unlikely) complications that might arise
  • A professional installer will be able to immediately make any adjustments required, to ensure your new wood pellet boiler is heating your home exactly right
  • You can set up the right annual boiler maintenance contract at the same time as having your wood pellet boiler installed in your home
  • Wood pellet boilers are more environmentally friendly than regular oil or gas boilers, so you might be eligible for reduced installation and purchase prices

Storing the wood pellets for your pellet boiler

In order to set up continuous, reliable heating for your home, you’ll need to have a supply of wood pellets on hand. Your bellet boiler will need restocking with wood chip fuel on a regular basis, so it’s always wise to make sure you won’t be caught off guard by running out of pellets!

The wood pellets themselves are fairly small, but you’ll need space to store a significant number of them. You should install a wood pellet storage container in a safe, convenient location close to your wood pellet boiler, so you can easily keep it stocked up.

Often, you’ll need to purchase a suitable wood pellet storage container as well as your new wood pellet boiler. These wood chip fuel storage containers vary in price according to their size and quality, so make sure to research your options to find the best choice for your home boiler.

How do I keep my wood pellet boiler in good condition?

To keep your wood pellet boiler’s safety and energy efficiency levels in top condition, you’ll need to arrange a boiler service once a year. You can organise an annual maintenance contract when you have your wood pellet boiler installed in your home, if you get a professional to complete the installation for you.

Wood pellet boilers are not entirely automatic systems, either, so you will need to carry out some regular manual maintenance to make sure your boiler can keep burning those wood pellets to heat your home safely and reliably.

  • Empty the wood pellet ash pan between 3 and 6 times per year, depending on your wood pellet boiler model
  • Check how many wood pellets you have left in your pellet fuel storage container every few months, to make sure you don’t run out of wood chip fuel
  • If you’re going to be away from your home for a while, empty your wood pellet boiler tank and check the boiler over before you leave

Wood pellet boilers: a smart investment for your home heating

Wood pellet boilers are a fairly expensive outright purchase, compared to conventional oil or gas boilers. However, a wood pellet boiler is an investment in energy efficiency, protecting the environment and ultimately reducing your home heating costs.

Prices do vary within wood pellet boiler models themselves, too. The higher the levels of automation and power that a wood pellet boiler has, the more expensive it’s likely to be.

However, once you’ve made that initial investment in your wood pellet boiler, your home heating costs will reduce significantly. Wood pellet fuel is some of the cheapest out there, so you won’t need to spend much to keep your pellet storage container well-stocked. Maintaining your wood pellet boiler on an annual basis won’t be too costly, either. Overall, the initial investment could become profitable within around 10 years - not too long at all for the energy-smart homeowner!

Most wood pellet boilers have fairly low automation levels. With a Netatmo Smart Thermostat, you can remotely program and control your home heating - why not check it out?