Loving My Pellet Stove, Harman XXV

October 2013, see my most recent post about my Harman XXV pellet stove.

March 2011 : also see my continuation, 2nd post about my Harman XXV pellet stove


September 9, 2010 : Updated info at bottom

June 2, 2010 : Updated info at bottom

I have been bitten by the pellet stove bug for sure. As evidence for this I ordered my Harman XXV cast iron pellet stove, from Bernardston Farmers Supply, 2 months before we moved into our new house. My friend Bruno, who is all knowing when it comes to pellet stoves, showed me his stove and this had me hunting  for my own.

We settled on the Harman XXV stove since it fit all our needs. We where looking at something to heat our entire house, which is approximately 1900sq ft. The stove would be installed on an existing pad in the finished basement which once held a wood stove. Cast Iron was preferred since visually it looked like an old fashion. The hopper had to be big enough to run all day without refueling.

Eventually our choice of pellet stoves narrowed between the Quadra-Fire MT Vernon and the Harman XXV (pictured to right). After getting quotes from several places we went with the Harman XXV. With installation and a free ton of pellets from Harman the price difference between the 2 stoves was well over $1000, so the Harman was the logical choice.

I can honestly say that purchasing a pellet stove is #1 on our list of best purchases for our home.


  • Approximately 3 months in and we have used ZERO oil to heat our house.
  • Our house is toasty warm, always between 68-75 depending on the room.
  • Low maintenance, a quick vacuum of the ash and a wipe of the glass.
  • Very efficient in burning pellets
  • Using locally made pellets, New England Pellets made 15 miles from our house
  • Not using oil shipped half way around the world
  • Does not get burning hot like a wood stove, much safer for my child.
  • Not having to deal with fluctuating Oil prices


  • Fan noise can be heard when the stove is on high (we don’t even notice it anymore).
  • Keeping the hopper full with pellets
  • Emptying out ash tray
  • Uses Electricity

As for if the stove would save us money, it all depends on how you look at it?
I filled my 1/4 full  oil tank and it was the same cost as 2 tons of pellets delivered (our hot water uses oil for NOW). These two tons of pellets have kept my house nice and toasty during the worst of winter for going on 2+ months. I very much doubt I could say the same if using oil.

Did we save money?
I am sure if we kept the house at the temperature we would have if we where heating with oil we would save money. One of the main reasons we got our pellet stove is to not have a freezing house especially with a little one. Having a house in the low 70’s in the dead of winter was great.

June 2, 2010 update.

With the heating season officially over I am sure glad we had our stove. It really came in handy on some of those days in April when Vermont decided to drip back into the 30’s for the day. It was nice to just fill the hopper, and have a toasty house in a short amount of time.

One thing we did notice, when the outside temp towards the end of the season was 40 or so, the Harman XXV kept the house very warm and went through very little in the way of fuel. The maintenance during this time of slow burning through fuel was very minimal which was great given our busy schedule.

Fuel wise, we went through 3 tons of pellets plus maybe 20-30 bags which we bought a few at a time during the end of the heating season. In retrospect, we probably should have had another ton delivered, but buying it by the bag isn’t too bad. Still have plenty of oil in the tank, and hopefully it will be that way this time in 2011.

September 9, 2010 update, more area to heat this winter.

As the heating season quickly approaches we are expanding what we heat with our pellet stove this year. Plans are in the works to run some ducts out to an attached sunroom. Our hope is to install an inline duct fan and draw the heat from near the pellet stove and make the sunroom more usable during the colder months. This may have an additional benefit of circulating some heat in our house more, though our layout is very good for natural air moment.

Judging from last year, I am confident the Harman XXV is up to the task!

On the Oil front, it’s close to being official, we are approaching a year without using oil to heat our house.

On the pellet front,  had a delivery of New England Brand pellets which are made close by in NH, can’t get much more local then that.

Go see JUNO

Go see the movie JUNO.

We had seen the reviews and decided to see it this past Friday when it opened at the latchis. I am gld we did. It has been getting great reviews and in our opinion it has earned very one of them. The movie is amazing, the main character endeering and the cast is deep. Juno has a sharp wit about her which makes it even a better character.  This one will be one of those movies that is on our top list of movies for the year.

the classic bunny suit movie

A classic movie we just saw the other night was Donnie Darko and I have to say it was very good. The movie is hard to describe but was very good. It centers around a young teenager, his sleepwalking, antics and a 6th tall rabbit suited guy. It is a movie you definitly have to watch more than once in order to fully get it. We plan on watching it again real soon.

Lars and the Real Girl

The premise is one you have to ask twice if you heard right. A lonely man orders a blow-up doll and treats her in his delusions as real person. Does take a bit to think about when you first start to see Lars and the real girl. The move was great! We both thought it rates right up there with ONCE, a hidden gem. The move really touches on the human spirit and the the actor who plays Lars is amazing. The movie is a real emotion jerker and the director really does bring out all the emotions that take place in a lonely desolate small town.

the so very “Golden” Compass

We went to see the golden compass this past weekend before the usual snowstorm hit. The move was very good and did not seem to drag at all. Being a fan of anything that blends sci-fi/technology/medieval is always good in my book. The movie was really good, the main character a little girl is very believable andthe acting is surprisingly good. The only bad thing is since you know it is a multi-part movie you know it is going to end at some point just like the lord of the rings and have to wait till the next one comes out.

A Movie to see more than Once

We went to see the movie Once which we had seen a preview for when we where in Florida. Let me just say this movie gets a total of 5 out of 5 broomsticks. It is for sure going to be placed on our list of movies we will be seeing again every so many months.

As for the movie, it is about an Irish street musician who ends up meeting a czech immigrant flower seller. It is filmed in the style of Italian for Beginners which lends itself to a much more realistic look. The two main characters play their role wonderfully to the point one does wonder if it about them. Music plays a central role in the film but feels like it belongs as suppose to an after thought. I can’t say too much since it would give it away but the entire movie is moving, which is rare nowadays.

Go see it soon !!!!


Chris and I just got back from seeing an amazing documentary film called “10 mph”. It’s about a group of guys who decided to do a cross-country tour from Atlanta to Boston on a Segway. They were in Brattleboro for a one-night viewing of their film and a post-show talk.

I’m so happy to hear that Netflix picked this baby up, because it is a must-see. It’s not only about reverting to a simpler way of traveling, but it’s about meeting people along the way who’ve pursued their passions in life, and about finding beauty in unexpected places, and figuring out where you want to go in life with what’s given to you. It’s funny and touching, and I’d easily give it 4 stars for a documentary.

It sucks that this individual mentioned in the movie, “Pat”, promised to give them 20k to support them in the making of their film, then renegged when they were already halfway across the country. I’m hoping that, with enough publicity, they’ll gain that money back and more. (Pat,man, wherever you are…. you’re a douchebag.)

They’ll be having a drawing after their documentary viewing tour in which one lucky person will win a Segway. How cool would that be?

check their site out : http://10mph.com/the-film

Yahoo Music, how I love thee

Kathy has been using yahoo music for over a year and has really enjoyed being able to listen to library of a couple million tracks for a couple bucks a month. Only problem has been we have to have one of the computers up and running in order to use it.

So we have been looking into getting an MP3 player and upgrading to yahoo unlimited (lets you take the tracks with you) and when we I read reviews about the sansa express, well we just just had to try it out. Ahhh it is so nice now to be able to take the music with us on the player and listen to it in anywhere. We are both completely addicted to our players and it is SOO sweet to access all these songs and then take them with you. Renting music is a little odd I must admit but is yahoo music can be installed on multiple computers so we both can use it for the price of a latte a month.

Ok enough for my little pseudo review, we are just very excited to be able to access so much music, it is like having a great pie of key lime pie in the summer.

Harry Potter

Finally got around to seeing the new harry potter film. What made it even more fun to see was the anticipation of the final book coming out on the same day.

The Order of the Phoenix had a different feel from previous films. It seems with each film they continue to evolve very much like the books. It was at some times the feel of a graphic novel and much darker. Overall I thought that was a good choice. The movie was much shorter than I would have liked it but given how much detail was in the book I can see why they just had to give up at some point an just make the movie. I would highly recommend seeing the movie when you get the chance.

Tranformers Rule !!!

Being someone who grew up with the Transformers I was a little worried when I first saw that they where making a movie about the Transformers. I was hoping they would not dumb it down and make a PG movie aimed at 8 year olds. Luckily I was surprised when I saw the movie and they did a damn good job with it. Besides a couple of corny parts it really was a good movie and for anyone that grew up with them a very satifying viewing. I knew even more it must have been a good movie since my wife liked it too, even to the point of now knowing the names of several of the transformers (how cool is that). Definitly go see it in the theater, since I think a lot would be lost on the small screen.