Pellet stove vs. Wood stove
House is a split level approximately 2400 sqft. We have a classic bay Quadrafire 1200, but it really sucks. It will randomly go out durring the day or night. The auger will stop working intermittently. It also requires constant cleaning, and covers the first floor in a fine layer of dust. That said, when its running good it keeps the whole house 70+ degrees unless its bitter cold outside. So we are looking for replacement options.
Are newer pellet stoves better? Ours is about 11 years old I believe. If a new pellet stove would work better and require less maintenance I'd have an easier time justifying the insanely high costs.
A friend of mine has a newer wood stove and that thing rips! He puts wood in it 2x a day and it keeps his house as warm as mine. Theres also no worry of it randomly going out or now working. My only concern would be not having a hot air blower getting the heat pushed throughout the house.
We also have a fire place we don't use, and would consider putting in an insert, but I've got no clue how well the heat. It would be convenient though already having the chimney for it, but if they dont heat worth a damn I wouldn't bother.