How does a biomass boiler work?
A biomass boiler works by burning wood fuel such as wood pellets, wood chip or logs to create heat.
On a biomass boiler there is a storage area (hopper) where the wood fuel is kept and then the actual boiler where the fuel is ignited. The wood fuel is automatically fed into the boiler from the hopper and then ignited by an auto start. The temperature is controlled via an electronic thermostat.
See the image below of a wood chip boiler. The wood chip fuel is being fed from the hopper to the boiler where it will then be ignited.
How biomass can heat your home?
There are two main ways of using biomass to heat a domestic property:
A Wood Burning Stove – Wood burning stoves are suitable for heating any room that has a chimney or a flue. They can be fueled by logs or pellets and are generally 5-11 kW in output. Some models can be fitted with a back boiler to provide water heating.
A Biomass Boiler – Biomass boilers generally take up more space than a regular gas or oil boiler and are more suitable for people not connected to mains gas who have space for storage. They are suitable for wood pellets, logs or wood chips, and are generally larger than 15 kW.
For larger biomass boilers, the fuel storage area needs to be accessible for a delivery lorry. Wood pellets can be delivered loose and blown into a hopper, or in bags on a pallet.
How much do they cost?
Automated wood pellet stoves range from £2,000 – £5,000 (including installation) and can come with a back boiler to provide hot water and central heating.
Domestic biomass boilers can range from anywhere between £5,000 to £25,000 depending on the make, size and level of automation of the boiler.
We have created this flowchart to help you decide which boiler/stove is best for you-> Bioenergy biomass boiler flowchart
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