Gone are the days that you would be using wood logs to light a fire in your backyard. They are not only inefficient but also do not provide much either. That is why wood pellets were invented to solve those issues! They are made of sawdust on different types of wood that are compressed and made into small cylindrical pellets. They are a great way to heat up pellet stoves, and fire pits, and are even used for grilling purposes! But how long does 15kg of wood pellets last?
There are many factors to consider for how long a bag of 15kg or 33 lbs. would last. The heater model, type, and even the air outside will all influence it. So let’s see exactly how it would last and if buying 15kg of wood pellets is worth it or not!
- There are at least 6 factors that determine how long 15kg of wood pellets would last. But all these factors combined is what will actually determine the burning of wood pellet.
- Even though 15kg of wood pellets would last somewhere around 6 to 24 hours, you can follow the tips below to help make them last as long as possible.
- For a 1kg bag of wood pellets, you can expect it to last somewhere around the 1-hour mark.
- People can be under the misconception that wood pellets are inefficient but they are more efficient in heating than other types of heaters!
Burning 15kg of Wood Pellet: 6 Factors for Lasting
There are certain factors that influence how long 15kgs of wood pellet would last. Typically, 15kg of wood pellets can last anywhere from 6 hours all the way up to 24 hours. Now that is a very wide range of time but here are 5 factors that influence such a varied time:
Heater size and output
The larger the size of the heater, the more you can expect it to burn at a faster rate. If you have a large pellet stove that can hold up to 15kg at a time, then you can generally expect that the whole 15kg can be burned all at once. But having the capacity to hold 15kg does not necessarily mean it will burn everything at once. That is why the heater output is important.
Let’s take an example of an INNOSTAGE Smokeless Fire Pit Outdoor that uses wood pellets. It has the capacity of roughly holding 10 lbs. wood pellets which can last around 3 to 4 hours. That would mean that the 33lbs of 15kg wood pellet would last roughly about 12 hours. That is well within the range of the approximate time. Electrical heaters would give you more accurate time estimates since they will be burning at a constant rate but from my personal test with this smokeless fire pit, I would say that is how much time you can expect it to last.
Heater type and model
Not just the size and output, but the type of heater and model will differ as well! A smokeless fire pit is considerably different from a pizza oven that uses wood pellets and they require different types of burning of the wood pellet. Even grills would last a different amount of time as well. It is really hard to say exactly which one would last longer or shorter. Grills and pizza ovens have varying temperature needs, as do pellet stoves or smokeless fire pits. So it is all dependent on that, which is why you get either a long use of a 15kg bag of wood pellet, or a shorter one.
Different heat elements will have different settings as well. For example, an electrical pellet stove can have a low setting or a high setting. You can expect a 15kg bag of pellets to last the whole 24 hours on low settings but on high settings, it might fizzle out by the 6-hour mark! So the make and model of the thing that is using the wood pellet is important to determine how long it will last.
Condition of heater
Next up is the condition of the heater. If the pellet heater is old and the heating element is worn out, then you can expect that it will burn the wood pellets inside very inefficiently. This would mean that you might not even get 12 hours of heating from a 15kg bag! Similarly, if there is a buildup of ash and grease in your grill, then that would not burn the wood pellet efficiently either. This would mean that your wood pellets are being used up without supplying any heat at all!
Necessary heat needed
There are different requirements for heat in different models. Cooking would need anywhere from 150oF to 450oF so an appropriate heat is needed from the wood pellets. However, for warming up you would definitely need even more heat if you are outside because you are working against the natural insulation of the air around the heater. So more heat is needed to be able to keep you warm.
Wind and weather conditions
When mentioning heat, I can’t overlook the weather conditions as well! Windy conditions are probably the worst because they will make your outdoor wood pellet heater use up the pellets faster. This is especially the case for heaters that are exposed like grills. Some pellet stoves can be closed while the smoke is released from another vent but not grills since the heat from the fire is what is cooking the meat. And don’t get me started on rainy weather conditions, they can absolutely ruin your heating element if you are not careful!
Similarly, the outside ambient temperature will matter as well. If it is hot outside, then you can expect the wood pellets to burn nice and evenly meaning it will last a longer time. However, if the outside temperature is cold, it will take a while for the wood pellets and your heater to get to the ambient temperature needed to burn the pellets properly. Even humidity will become a factor as you will see in the next point.
Wood pellet condition and type
Finally, let’s step away from the heaters and talk about the conditions of the wood pellets. Wood pellets are known to absorb some moisture from the outside but this will decrease how long the fire will last for any amount of wood pellet! A sealed bag of 15kg wood pellet that has never been used will last the whole 24 hours but an old bag that was not sealed properly would have absorbed moisture. This might last only about 8 hours at a time so you are getting less use out of it. The type of wood pellet you are using would also matter since you have to deal with softwood or hardwood, and then there is the matter of different types of wood for wood pellets as well!
The main problem in determining how long 15kg of wood pellets would likely burn is tricky. All the conditions I have mentioned above cannot be taken into isolation. They will all influence the time your wood pellets would last together so it’s hard to determine which influences more at certain times. In the best conditions, you can expect it to last 24 hours. The worst of conditions and you are left with unburned but unusable wood pellets by the 6-hour mark, or even earlier!
Making Wood Pellets Last Longer: 5 Tips
Just because a certain weight of wood pellet would last a set amount of time, doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to make sure they can last longer! So here are some of my tips for making sure that your wood pellets can last longer:
- Proper storage: this means that you are properly storing the wood pellets in sealed areas so that it does not deteriorate the condition of the wood pellet. The more moisture wood pellets are allowed to absorb, the less likely it will last a long time so make sure that you are storing them properly.
- Maintaining your equipment: whether it be a grill, pizza oven, or pellet stove, if you keep it cleaned and maintained, your pellets are bound to last longer! So make sure to clean and dispose of the ash properly and clean the grills off any grease that remains on it so it can burn the wood pellets easily.
- Keep out of wind: this is important because it can influence the burning of the wood pellet. Strong winds can disrupt the heating so you will want to keep the pellet stove or grill away from the wind.
- Using low setting whenever possible: understanding British Thermal Units (or BTU) is important. A low setting on your pellet stove or grill will give you more time with the pellet than on a high setting. High settings equal more heat being released which equals more BTU output. If you don’t need more output then a lower setting is probably for the best.
- Choosing the right pellets: ultimately, it is your pellet that is burning so you need to pick out the best ones. High-quality ones will last longer because of how they are made. The type will matter as well since softwood pellets produce more BTU at the same amount as hardwood pellets but softwood will burn for longer! So choose the appropriate pellet for your pellet stove.
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How Long Does 1kg of Wood Pellet Last?
Let’s think of a hypothetical situation. Let’s say that your friend invited you over for a BBQ at their place. They called you up on the morning of the BBQ and asked you to grab them some flavored wood pellets and bring them over when you come. You go to the store and find the BBQr’s Delight Wood Smoking Pellets – Super Smoker Variety Value Pack which is just over a pound or around 1kg, about the amount that your friend has asked you to buy. But as you were about to buy them, you thought to yourself, “How long would this 1kg wood pellet last?”. You go over some of the key points such as whether would it be enough for the BBQ or not.
If you have ever come to a situation like this (which might be unlikely but still possible), then you can expect a 1kg wood pellet bag to last about 1 hour time on a medium setting for the grill. It can last around the 2-hour mark if on low setting but on high setting it might burn rather fast and maybe not even last 30 minutes! As I have mentioned above there are a lot of different factors to consider in burning pellets. Maybe your friend has wood pellets and wanted you to grab some flavored ones so that they can mix it with the others and get a cool flavor!
Cost of Burning Wood Pellets Against Other Heaters
Many people think that burning wood pellets is a waste of money when it comes to heating the house or heating your backyard on a chilly evening. But you might actually be surprised at exactly how efficient wood pellets are when you compare them to other forms of heaters! Here is a ranking of different types of heaters, ranked from lowest cost to highest cost:
- Wood Chips: $0.029 per kWh
- Wood Pellets: $0.042 per kWh
- Natural Gas: $0.048 per kWh
- Heating Oil: $0.06 per kWh
- Low-pressure gas (LPG): $0.076 per kWh
- Electricity: $0.0145 per kWh
As you can see, wood chips and wood pellets are the lowest on the list in terms of cost! It might be a hassle to clean and maintain a pellet heater but the costs are way less when you have to think about heating the house for long periods in the winter.
1. Is wood pellet ash useful?
You can repurpose wood pellet ash for your garden as it contains trace elements that are helpful for plant growth.
2. What is biomass fuel?
Biomass fuel is using remains of living things to use as fuel. Wood pellets are a great example of biomass fuel as it uses sawdust to make up the fuel.
3. Is it safe to store wood pellets in your house?
Not only is it safe, it is important that you keep wood pellets in a cool and dry area. You can store the wood pellets in a heat-resistant bag and then place it inside a container with a lid so that no moisture enters the wood pellets.
If you were to buy in bulk, then buying 15kg or 33 pounds of wood pellets might actually be a good thing because they will last about a year or two and you can get about a whole day’s worth of heating from 1 bag. Not all of them will last as long as 24 hours because of the conditions I have mentioned above. But with the right tips and the right pellets, you can ensure that the wood pellets are burning properly and are getting the most out of them!
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I am Donald M. Beyer and I am backyard enthusiasts. I am a homeowner who has been doing DIY projects in and out of my house for many years. From simple backyard lunches to making an old-school pizza oven in my own backyard, I have a lot of experience in turning my backyard into my and my family’s personal playground.