Sunday, July 13, 2014

How Well Does Whole Shelled Corn Burn in the Enviro M55 Multi Fuel Pellet Stove?

There has been a gigantic and frustrating outage of wood pellets on Long Island. From what I hear, New York is not the only place that has suffered an outage.

The issue lies in the fact that more people than ever before have decided to save on fuel costs by installing a pellet stove in their homes. A demand that manufacturers of wood pellets had not seen coming. Sadly, for those like me, we were left to hunt for weeks and weeks on end, with the same result. No pellets. Try again next week!

I then began to think about the stove I purchased. I spent $4,000 on an Envrio M55, and aside from it burning just wood pellets, I knew it could burn other sources as well.


However, I needed to really research it before I took the plunge. As much as outsiders believe this is a farm county, coming across low priced whole corn kernels was not a simple task. In fact most feed stores were quoting me at $13-$17 a 50 pound bag, which is hideous in price when the fact is that I could normally buy a 40 pound bag of wood pellets at Home Depot for $4.18.

With no other option though, I was left with calling every feed stand on the island in search of a decent priced 50 pound sack of corn.

I picked up some 50 pound sacks for $10 a bag. Still this is high, and I wish more places carried corn kernels used strictly for pellet stoves, at prices that won't break the bank.

However, after burning my first bag of corn, I have to say that it burns so much longer, so much hotter, and my house heated up so much faster.

Now here is what you can expect when burning corn in your M55.
A hotter home, on a much lower setting.

A dirtier ash pan and interior. Make sure you clean out your M55 almost everyday when burning corn. There is less ash from what I can tell, but a greater buildup due to the oils in corn. Clean it daily or every other day.

A much hotter surface of your stove. Keep kids away from it, because it will feel a lot hotter to the touch, and yes it can give you a minor burn. This was odd to me because the stove is supposed to have some sort of cool touch technology. This is true when burning pellets, not corn.

A higher price per bag depending on where you live.

Also do not fear the tiny pop sounds going on inside. It's not making popcorn, but once in a while a kernel will pop. No need to concern yourself over this.

A scent. When burning corn, I found that it lets out a sweeter smell inside of my home, where wood pellets gave off no scent. The scent is not bad at all, in fact it's a nice scent. The outside pipe also lets off a different scent in the air. It actually smells pretty good.

All in all burning corn on Long Island is not the cheapest method of fuel for your pellet stove, however when there is no other choice, having a multi-fuel pellet stove gives you a choice where having a non multi-fuel pellet stove does not.

When the outage of wood pellets hits the hometown, and there is no other option in supply, count yourself lucky that you have the option to burn other forms of fuel.

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