Those considering a wood or multi-fuel burner for the first time will be presented with a huge range of stoves on the market with little insight into why prices vary so much.
This article helps cut through the dense detail and provide you with the salient points. The easiest way to sum up the variations in price and quality in the market is to do a specific comparison on similar sized stoves that vary enormously in price.
TheStoveHub have created a comparison table to compare a £400, £800 and £1,200 5kW DEFRA exempt multi-fuel stove. Not all of the specifications will apply to every stove in that price range, but most will and more importantly you can ask the right questions about the stoves and manufacturers that have caught your eye.
|£400 stove||£800 stove||£1200 stove|
|Life expectancy||2-5 years||10-15 years||20 years +|
|Origin||China||Part UK part China manufactured||UK or Scandinavian manufactured|
|Top and bottom thickness||6mm||8mm||10mm|
|Construction||Welded steel or very thin cast iron||Part rolled, part welded steel body. Medium weight cast iron||Rolled steel body/cast door very heavy cast iron|
|Grate||Solid fuel grate that also has to burn wood||Solid fuel grate that also has to burn wood||Robust, full width multi-grate that can be switched from wood to coal in situ|
|Glass||Flat glass||Flat glass||Curved German rolled glass|
|Airwash||Manual primary and secondary air inlets, rarely keeps the glass clean.||Manual primary and secondary air inlets. Airwash keeps glass clean but may use cold air to do so, lowering efficiencies||Single knob control that optimizes primary and secondary air, Airwash keeps glass clean and uses pre-warmed air to do this.|
|Hearth||Needs a constructional hearth||May need a constructional hearth||Only requires a non-combustible hearth|
|Replacement parts readily available?||No||Yes||Yes- guaranteed to stay in production for 7 years after the stove is discontinued.|