How To Choose A Mass Stove: Use, Tips, Models And Prices

A mass stove is a wood heating system that is both economical and environmentally friendly. It works by providing fewer logs than other types of wood burning and emits few polluting components.

How to choose a mass stove: use, tips, models and prices

How does a mass stove work?

A mass stove, also known as a slow-heat stove, is a heating system that works with many varieties of dry wood and allows one or two outbreaks per day to heat a home for a minimum of 24 hours in a row.. The mass stove does not require any other energy, like electricity, to work.

A mass stove is composed of internal channels in which the combustion fumes circulate, whose function is to heat the "mass" of the stove. The latter restores the heat produced thereafter. Its size is quite large, comparable to that of a boiler: about one square meter on the ground for a height of up to two meters. The floor of the room where it is installed must be able to support a weight of between 650 kg and 4 tonnes. A mass stove requires a duct outlet above the ridge of the house to evacuate fumes.

The wood flames in a firebox at very high temperature. The heat it produces is then diffused into the room, depending on the model, the glass or hot air grids of the stove mass. The heat from the flue gases is collected in the internal circuit of the stove and is used to heat the accumulator materials. The latter, composed of earthenware, bricks, mud, soapstone, steatite (a volcanic rock) or refractory concrete have the function of storing this heat and restoring it gradually by radiation. The maximum energy is thus conserved and dedicated entirely to the production of heat.

On the other hand, a mass stove rejects few polluting compounds.

The mass stove: for what uses?

Thanks to its combustion capacity, the efficiency of a mass stove (ratio between the energy that is produced and the energy that is consumed) is high, around 90%, at the same level as a pellet stove.. This means that the loss between the energy used and the heat produced is minimal.

On the other hand, the power of a mass stove, restored to heat a house, is rather weak. This is why this type of heating is reserved for very well insulated dwellings. Its characteristic is also to restore heat by a slow rise in temperature. It is said that the mass stove is not very "reactive", unlike other heating systems such as electric heaters, log stoves or pellet stoves. The house must be able to withstand fluctuations in outdoor temperatures with this type of heating.

The operation of the mass stove is relatively autonomous since it does not require recharging the fireplace several times in a day. It is therefore ideal for people who are not available during a day to maintain the heating of their home.

Provided that the mass stove is installed centrally in a room and with open spaces, it is of great thermal comfort. The heat it diffuses is ideal for rooms with a high ceiling, which have a mezzanine for example. It avoids the sensations of cold air at ground level and hot air in height.

Some models of mass stove are equipped with an oven to cook food with wood.

To know: a mass stove can be made to measure to adapt as well as possible to the heating constraints of a house.

How much to choose a mass stove?

To be as efficient as possible, a mass stove must be equipped with a combustion chamber capable of burning a large quantity of wood at high temperature.

In addition to being stamped with a European standard (CE), the mass stove must also at least benefit from the EN 15250 standard for slow heat release devices. The latter guarantees construction, performance and safety requirements.

The different models of mass stove

There are two main categories of mass stove:

  • The mass ready stove

More commonly known as a fireplace stove, the mass-ready stove is equipped with a dual combustion fireplace with a counter-current flue system. This model is rather intended to heat small houses, up to 120 m².

  • The artisanal mass stove

This type of mass stove is masonry directly in the room of a house. It is often large in size and can be decorated with a bench, a reserve of wood or a bread oven. The artisanal mass stove fits well to large houses. Specialized retailers also offer this type of mass stove in the form of kits that are easy to make in self-construction.

How much does a mass stove cost?

The price of a mass stove is generally between 5000 and 12000 euros, excluding installation. Count between 8000 and 15000 euros for those made to measure.

The installation of a mass stove makes it possible to benefit from financial aids such as the energy transition tax credit (ISCED) or the zero-rate eco-loan (eco-PTZ).

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