Types of pellets | How to choose the right one for us?

September 29, 2023

Given the variety of wood pellet heating options and individual consumer preferences, there really is no “best type of wood pellet” or “best brand of wood pellet”. However, there are the best types of pellets for you. How to choose from SchneiderPellets? Ask yourself the following questions:


Which types of pellets are higher quality – softwood or hardwood?

Pellets for heating consist of two types of wood – soft and hard.

Soft wood

Softwood generates less toxic emissions of particulate matter and carbon dioxide into the air, making it better for the environment.

It contains resins and juices that have a higher heat value leading to ignition. The lower ash percentage compared to hardwood pellets means less cleanup.

The best softwood pellets burn cleaner and hotter while producing more consistent heat. No bark is used in the creation of softwood. It is 100% white wood, boasts 10-15% higher BTU and is the cheapest option.

If your budget is lower, softwood is a good choice.

Hard wood

Hardwood burns more slowly due to the higher density and weight of the wood. It provides about 5-10 hours longer burning time.

The best hardwood pellets naturally have lower ash and moisture content. Using softwood leads to a significant increase in the efficiency of your pellet stove. They are guaranteed to keep your home extra warm and cozy during the cold months. 

However, it costs more than its softwood counterpart.

If you’re wondering whether hard or soft pellets are better, the answer is that it all depends on the features you’re looking for and the stove you own.

The best pellets are dry with lower moisture content as they produce more heat. You’ll want them to contain less than 10% moisture and never more than 13%.

In addition, they should have a low organic ash content. As long as you have a high-quality pellet stove with high-quality airflow, the type of wood won’t matter much.

The important things to know and remember are the caliber of wood used to make the pellets, whether the pellets contain synthetics, bark or cardboard, and making sure your stove settings are appropriate for the type of pellets you are using.

What is the difference between the different types of pellets | Premium and regular class

Although some wood pellet manufacturers produce “regular” and “premium” grades, there is no established standard for these labels. It is best to check the difference using the characteristics of both types of pellets. For example, some pellets can be produced from:

  • A kind of wood
  • Mixed wood species
  • Pure softwood or all softwood
  • Wood residues
  • Fillings such as paper, cardboard and bark
  • Ecologically harvested wood


British thermal unit (BTUS) for the different type of pellets

BTU (British Thermal Unit) is a unit of energy measurement. Pellet fireplace heating capabilities range from 8,000 to 90,000 BTUs per hour.

The heat output measurement depends on the BTUs in your pellet stove. Higher BTUs mean higher temperatures. Pellets can range from 8,000 to 8,900 BTUs per pound. But how do you know what the ideal BTUs are for your home? When determining your desired BTUs, consider the following:

The insulation in consideration of different types of pellets

You won’t need much heat if your home is a well-insulated, compact space. Most likely 10,000 and 15,000 BTUs will be enough to get you the temperature you want.

On the other hand, if you live in an older home with less effective insulation, you are more likely to have reduced energy efficiency, which will result in more BTUs being needed and higher space heating costs.

Which room do you want to make warm and cozy with the help of your pellet fireplace?

Will you be using the pellet stove as your primary heat source, as an addition to part of your existing home, or for zone heating?

Are you using the pellet stove to heat a traditional house or are you interested in using it for a mobile home?

How many meters squared is your home? 

A furnace rated at 60,000 BTU can heat a 2,000 square foot home. A 42,000 BTU furnace is ideal for a 1,300 square foot home.

In general, it is best to count 2 BTUs for each square meter of heating area. However, this number can vary depending on factors such as the floor plan and insulation of the home.

If none of these examples fit your situation, you can use the Pellet BTU Savings Calculator for a more accurate estimate.


In what climate do you live and what types of pellets you will need? 

Are you a polar bear at heart and live in a place where temperatures drop to sub-zero, or is your definition of winter 7-8 degrees Celsius, a thick sweater, a sensible jacket and possibly a hat?

Of course, the colder the air outside, the more BTUs you need to achieve the desired room temperature.

Видове пелети

Ash content

Ash content is the residue left after burning wood pellets in your pellet stove. It consists of calcium oxide, known as quicklime.

When wood burns in a pellet stove, oxygen causes it to burn to ash. The ash left over from your pellets measures the output during the burning process based on weight percentage. Measuring less than 1% of the total pellet weight is ideal.

The ash content also determines how often you will clean your pellet stove. The low ash content means you’ll clean less often, which many pellet stove owners rate highly.

After the pellets are reduced to ash, they are collected at the bottom of the combustion chamber in the ashtray. The ashtray is simply removed and disposed of in a non-combustible container, such as a metal dustbin, or used as fertilizer in the garden.

We hope this article has served you! If you need premium pellets, check out our products!

Видове пелети


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