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How Do I Choose the Best Wood Stove Fan?

A fan can be used to better distribute heat emitted from a wood stove.
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  • Written By: Marty Paule
  • Edited By: E. E. Hubbard
  • Last Modified Date: 31 March 2014
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A wood stove fan can greatly increase the efficiency of your wood stove by helping to circulate the radiant heat that it generates. In deciding what type will provide the best performance in your situation, consider both electrically-powered fans and blowers, as well as passive devices that operate on the heat generated by the stove. A stovepipe heat reclaimer attaches to the pipe above the stove scavenging and circulating heat that would otherwise go up the chimney. Wood stove fan options should not be confused with chimney fans designed to improve a wood burning stove's draft and efficiency.

There are a wide variety of electric wood stove fans available. They range from inexpensive models intended to simply push the radiant heat away from the stove to more sophisticated designs that offer more control over the temperature, volume of heated air, and, in some cases, the direction in which the heated air is moved. Some models incorporate heat sensors that control fan speed via a rheostat that supplies more power as the fire cools down. Aftermarket devices into which you plug your wood stove fan are also available that control fan speed and noise. If you need to move heat from one room to another, there are specialized fans that mount in doorways or in walls to improve heat circulation.

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Stovepipe heat reclaimers also help to circulate heated air while improving the efficiency of your stove by allowing less-heated air to escape to the outdoors via the flue. Reclaimers contain one or more heat exchangers that extract the heat from flue gases moving up the chimney. A fan that is usually thermostatically controlled then exhausts the heated air out into the room. Various models are available to fit different stove pipe sizes. They typically cost significantly more than simple fans and blowers, usually require some expertise in retrofitting them to your stove, and also require a conveniently located electrical outlet.

A simple passive wood stove fan that is activated by heat rising from the stove's surface may not move as large a volume of heated air as a powered fan, but offers the advantage of silent operation and no need for a nearby electrical outlet. Many of these passive stovetop fans are designed to enhance your decor with attractive designs and materials. More recent non-powered wood stove fan models exploit a phenomenon known as the Peltier effect. As the stove heats up, the fan rotates faster, and then slows down as it cools.

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bagley79
Post 4

I have a three season room that I like to use for all four seasons of the year if possible. It just depends on how cold the days get in the winter.

The only heat source I have in this room is a small wood stove. I bought a fan for the wood stove so I could heat the whole room.

I really have been impressed with the way this has worked. Before this, I made sure all of the chairs were right by the stove to get the most heat.

Now I can have chairs anyplace in this room and know it will be cozy and warm. Another thing I like about it is how quiet it is. The last thing I wanted was to listen to a fan blowing all the time, but I can hardly even hear this when it is moving.

John57
Post 3

If you are looking to buy a wood stove fan, I would do a little bit of research before you head to the store.

A few years ago I bought an Ecofan and thought it would be just the ticket to move some warm air around from my stove in the garage.

What I didn't realize is that it has to be above 400 degrees in order to work right. If you don't get your stove to maintain a temperature above that, it won't do you much good.

Another thing to consider is how fast or slow the blades move. Some of them are better than others. I wanted to find one where the blades moved at a fast pace so the warm air would circulate quicker.

Having said all that, I think wood stove fans do a good job when they are used properly. It is nice to know you are not dependent on electricity to have nice warm air around you.

Mykol
Post 2

We have small cabin on the lake where we like to get away to every chance we get. The only heat source we have in this cabin is a wood stove.

I have always enjoyed the warmth of a wood stove. There is something about it that is different than an electric or gas heat source.

I also bought a Heatwave wood stove fan to use with our wood stove. This really made a difference and helped keep the whole cabin warm, not just the area close to the stove.

I don't have to worry about keeping batteries around or looking for a place to plug it in. It is quiet and circulates warm air over the whole cabin.

Our cabin isn't very big, so it doesn't take a lot to heat, but it is nice knowing I can get the warm air to circulate in to the bathroom and bedroom.

golf07
Post 1

I have a heat powered wood stove fan that I use on my boat. We have an oil stove on our boat, and this fan works great at making sure the heat is distributed evenly over a greater area.

When we are on the boat in the evenings it can get pretty cool on the water. It is nice to be able to relax on the boat and still stay warm and toasty.

This fan is well worth the small investment. I bought it over 6 years ago, and it still works great.

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