Castle Pellet Stove Reviews 2020 - HVACify

Castle Pellet Stove Reviews

Adding a pellet stove to your home can bring the warmth and ambiance of a wood stove without the hassle of a traditional fireplace. In the last few decades, lots of manufacturers have brought pellet stoves to the marketplace with a variety of features and price points. With so many pellets stoves out there, however, it can be hard to pick one that fits your needs. In this article, we'll take a close look at one Castle pellet stove—the 12327 Serenity.

For our review, we broke down a number of different features for this Castle pellet stove and also compared it to a few other stoves on the market. We considered the features, BTU, heating area, and pellet hopper capacity for this stove and also provide a few pros and cons for each stove. In the end, we also chose one overall favorite from this list of pellet stoves based on the best combination of price, performance, and features.

About Castle Pellet Stoves

Castle pellet stoves provide an excellent value and solid performance for anyone exploring pellet stove heat. These aren't the highest-end stoves on the market, but they provide some premium features at a surprisingly low price.

Like most pellet stoves, this Castle pellet stove works by burning wood pellets that are loaded into a mechanized hopper on top of the machine. These small wooden pellets are composed of recycled sawdust and particles that are created during the creation of wood products. This fine wood substance is compressed into pellets and packed into 40-pound bags and sold to the general public.

Castle Pellet Stoves 12327 Serenity Wood Pellet Stove with Smart Controller, 18-1/4'W x 34' H x 23-3/4'D, Black

Image from Amazon

Using a Castle pellet stove is simple. After emptying a 40-pound bag of pellets into the hopper, a small quantity of pellets are discharged into a firebox on the front of the stove. These pellets are then covered with a small amount of a flammable gel and then ignited either with an auto ignition switch or manually using a lighter or matches. Once this initial bunch of pellets has gained a robust flame and ample coals, the front chamber of the stove is sealed and the full mechanism is engaged.

pellets

image source: amazon.com

Once the pellet stove is fully engaged, it will automatically drop small quantities of pellets housed in the hopper onto the flame. Fans within the stove keep the flame blazing and also push warm air within the stove out to the surrounding environment. That rate at which pellets drop onto the flame is controlled on a user control panel. A higher rate of pellet feed will create a bigger and hotter flame while a slower pellet feed will produce less heat.

This automated system creates consistent heat for long periods of time with very little work. Since the pellet feed automatically keeps the fire stoked there is no need to open the stove door or directly interact with the flame at all. This is a highly efficient system that pulls more heat from a smaller source than found with traditional woodstoves.

Maintenance is also easy with a Castle pellet stove. Simply remove the accessible ashtray after each use and occasionally clean the minimal amount of residue off of the glass panes on the stove's door. With these few simple steps, this pellet stove will provide consistent heat and ambiance to any room as long as the hopper is full of pellets and the stove has ample electricity.

Product Specs  

Castle Pellet Stoves 12327 Serenity Wood Pellet Stove with Smart Controller, 18-1/4"W x 34" H x 23-3/4"D, Black
  • Reinvent the way you heat your home with Castle's Serenity wood pellet stove and new Smart Controller
  • The Smart Controller allows you to choose manual, thermostat, and weekly operational modes to heat your home on your schedule, Along with calendar and time based heating options, you can also set a local thermostat or manually set it on one of five burn levels

The Castle Serenity stove is a mid-priced pellet stove that is highly programmable and easy to use. It features an internal thermostat that continually monitors temperatures and a digital user interface. It can be programmed to follow different heating schedules for 24-hour periods on seven different days. This can be a huge benefit to those on the go who may not have the time to adjust the heat settings on their pellet stove manually.

This stove puts out around 22,000 BTUs and heats an estimated area of around 1,500 square feet. This is on the lower end of performance compared with some of the pellet stoves in its class, but it is still a lot of heat, especially in a smaller environment. The pellet hopper in the Castle pellet stove can hold a single 40-pound bag of pellets. This is also average for the pellet stove marketplace, but it can potentially run for 24 hours straight on a single bag of pellets with the right pellet feed settings.

The Serenity stove might not be the ideal choice if you are looking to make a pellet stove the primary heating source for their medium and large sized homes. If, however, you need a simple and highly intuitive pellet stove, this could be an ideal choice. With the programmable settings and thermostat, this stove can give you the flexibility to go out all day and return to a nice, predictable, heat.

Pricing  

Pellet stoves, in general, can range widely in prices. The lowest end stoves are cheaper for refurbished models and high-end units can go up to the expensive range. Prices on these stoves tend to fluctuate greatly, though, depending on the time of the year and demand on manufacturers.

How It Compares

We picked a few similar products available on the market to see how they compare.

  • Pleasant Hearth Cabinet Style Pellet Stove
  • Comfortbilt Pellet Stove HP22
  • Pleasant Hearth Medium Pellet Stove

Castle Pellet Stoves 12327 Serenity Wood Pellet Stove with Smart Controller, 18-1/4"W x 34" H x 23-3/4"D, Black
  • Reinvent the way you heat your home with Castle's Serenity wood pellet stove and new Smart Controller
  • The Smart Controller allows you to choose manual, thermostat, and weekly operational modes to heat your home on your schedule, Along with calendar and time based heating options, you can also set a local thermostat or manually set it on one of five burn levels

FEATURES

The thermostat and programmable features on this stove make it super easy to use. 

BTU

At less than 30,000 BTU, this isn't a powerhouse.

HEAT AREA

This stove will heat around 1,500 square feet.

HOPPER CAPACITY

The Castle Serenity's hopper is averagely sized at 40-pound capacity. 

PROS

  • Highly programmable   
  • Internal thermostat
  • Affordable
  • Easy to use

CONS

  • Low BTU rating
  • Small heating area

Pleasant Hearth 50,000 BTU Cabinet Pellet Stove
  • EPA Certified (NSPS Phase 1 & 2 Approved)
  • 120 lb. hopper gets you up to 70 hours of non-stop heat

The Cabinet pellet stove from Pleasant Hearth is the biggest model in the line. This pellet stove has a much larger footprint than the Castle pellet stove, due to its enormous pellet hopper. This stove can house a full 120-pounds of pellets at a time allowing the user to load the hopper far less frequently than other competing models.

It's also a high-powered stove boasting 50,000 BTUs of heat and a 2,200 square foot heating area. The Cabinet model from Pleasant Hearth could be a legitimate primary heat source for an average size home and it burns very efficiently. With an EPA rated 85% efficiency, the pellets in this massive hopper will burn more completely and therefore last much longer than the Castle pellet stove.

The major downside of the Cabinet stove is that it lacks any automated programming. All of the controls for this stove are accessed with a single knob on the side of the unit. There are five simple heat settings and they are achieved by manually turning the dial to initiate higher or lower pellet feed. This could be a fine option for some who needs a highly efficient stove that will burn for days and also has the time to keep an eye on the temperature. For someone on the go, however, those programming features could be missed.

FEATURES

This doesn't give much in the way of user interface. 

BTU

The 50,000 BTU rating should give plenty of heat for an average size home.

HEAT AREA

A full 2,200 square feet will benefit from this stove. 

HOPPER CAPACITY

This has one of the largest hoppers on the market at 120 pounds. 

PROS

  • Massive pellet hopper
  • Highly efficient
  • Excellent heating power

CONS

  • Few controls
  • Very plain aesthetic

Comfortbilt Pellet Stove HP22- 50,000 BTU
  • 50,000 btu - Heats up to 2,800 sq. feet!
  • Large viewing area - Bay Design - Carbon Black!

The Comfortbilt HP22 pellet is in a similar range to the Pleasant Hearth Cabinet but with a few extra bells and whistles. Like the Cabinet, this is a big, powerful machine that throws a lot of heat. It has a 50,000 BTU rating and will heat an impressive 2,800 square feet. It has a slightly smaller pellet hopper at 55-pound, but a similar efficiency rating at 85%.

The big difference with this pellet stove is that it has a full range of programmable features. Similar to the Castle pellet stove, the HP22 houses an internal thermostat that will kick on and off as needed. It also gives the option to set increases and decreases in temperature throughout the day. Another nice touch about this pellet stove is that has enlarged window panes on the door styled after a large bay window.

FEATURES

This stove is highly programmable and easy to use.

BTU

A solid 50,000 BTU will pump out significant heat. 

HEAT AREA

This stove is best in class at 2,800 square feet of heating area. 

HOPPER CAPACITY

A 55-pound pellet hopper is smaller than some high-end models but still ample for most users.

PROS

  • Huge heating area
  • Excellent power
  • Programmable
  • Ample pellet hopper

CONS

  • More expensive than some competitors

Pleasant Hearth 35,000 BTU Medium Pellet Stove
  • Heating an area up to 1750 square feet
  • 35000 BTU, 40-pound hopper, burn time: 12-24 hours

Pleasant Hearth's medium pellet stove shares a lot of the same features as their Cabinet model but it is considerably smaller. This stove is in a comparable range to the Castle pellet stove as it has a 40-pound pellet hopper and 1,750 square foot heating area. This stove claims a slightly higher BTU rating at 35,000 and also considerably better efficiency at an EPA rated 85%.

Similar to the Cabinet, this pellet stove is minimal on controls. It shares the same one-knob design as its larger cousin and offers no programmable settings. It falls right into the same price point as the Castle pellet stove and could be worth a look if you'd prefer just a touch more power but don't mind using manual controls. The increased efficiency on these Pleasant Hearth stoves could be a big money saver though, especially for those looking to burn a pellet stove for many hours over the course of an entire winter.

FEATURES

It's a clean and simple stove but lacks user-friendly options. 

BTU

With 35,000 BTU, this stove has good power for its class. 

HEAT AREA

For a pellet stove of this size, 1,750 square feet of heating area is ample. 

HOPPER CAPACITY

A 40-pound pellet hopper is about average. 

PROS

  • Excellent efficiency
  • Good value
  • Solid warmth to size ration

CONS

  • No programmable settings
  • Very plain look

Conclusion

The Castle pellet stove has slightly less impressive heating statistics to other stoves in its class but the user-friendly features make this stove a winner in our book. This may not be the best choice for someone looking to pull the plug on their natural gas furnace, but as an additional heat source, it's an excellent choice.

Pellet stoves provide a huge amount of heat with a very small amount of energy consumption. This is partly because they can run for so long without stopping. Due to the non-stop nature of a pellet stove, we recommend looking at a smaller unit than you think you may need. Otherwise, you may risk overheating your space and wasting pellets. For this reason, we think the Castle Serenity is the top overall choice from this group of pellet stoves.

Every user will have different needs from a pellet stove, but the ability to create programmed heating calendars will give you tons of flexibility and also save you money. If you need to heat a huge space or would prefer to refill your hopper less frequently, then you may prefer something like the Pleasant Hearth Cabinet. For the average user, however, we think this Castle pellet stove is an ideal choice.

OVERALL RATING

Despite choosing the Castle pellet stove as our top overall choice, we only gave this unit four out of five possible stars. The one star was held back for the unit's EPA efficiency rating, which is around 68%.

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