What Is A Pellet Fire?


Why A Pellet Fire?  -  Why Wood Pellets?

Wood pellets are a clean, sustainable & high energy fuel. With a fully automated pellet fire there is generally less than 0.5% ash content. Wood Pellets are becoming an increasingly popular choice as homeowners and organisations choose to replace other fuels.  Wood pellet fuel reduces dependency on imported and mined fuels.

Easy to Use

Most pellet fires are automated. The pellet fire will automatically start and feed the fire to your desired heat setting. With Firetime® & Onfire® Wood Pellet Fuels, your can have minimal ash build up (much less than 1%) and have a superior heat than other wood pellet fuels on the market.


Wood Pellets burn so efficiently they are virtually smokeless, so less emissions & healthier lungs.Come in easy to handle 20kg Bags, No messy wood piles to worry about.


Just set the temperature & make sure the hopper has pellets in it, No more stocking, tending, blowing, or sweeping up the trail of wood you have left behind on the carpet! Wood Pellets take less space to store, four times more energy can be stored in the space given to standard firewood.
Clean - No dust, dirt or insects comes into the home with Wood Pellets.

Cost Effective & Efficient

Pellet Fires can deliver you comfort and warmth at a lower cost than gas or electricity for the equivalent heat output.  Wood pellets have a 5-8 % moisture content in comparison to 30-70% for firewood & woodchips. This means pellets are a more efficient fuel.


No need to open the door while the fire is burning, as all the wood pellets are fed through the hopper at the back of the fire, so no danger of embers igniting on your carpet or You! There are multi safety mechanisms within most pellet fires such as an auto cut off to stop over-heating and an auto stop if the fire runs out of pellets.

Environmentally Friendly

Wood Pellets have been proven to provide the cleanest burn of any solid fuel. Wood Pellets are made from waste wood and burn so efficiently they're virtually smokeless, meaning less emissions and near zero carbon footprint. We recommend Firetime Wood Pellets, made right here in New Zealand.
Pellet Burners are allowed in some areas where new wood burners are not allowed in houses that haven't currently had a wood burner before. For more info check with your local council.

The Pellet Fire

With everyone becoming more aware of the environmental issues that are facing our planet, we are trying to hold on to the things we love while still embracing a newer clean green alternative.

I don't know about you, but for me standing in front of a heat pump trying to get warm really doesn't cut the mustard. I like the fact that you are not spending weeks cutting firewood, then stacking and drying, or trying to save enough money to buy wood from a merchant. Still, there is nothing quite like the warmth of a fire to make you feel snug and cosy.

Here is where the Pellet Fire comes into its own. Resembling a fireplace or wood stove, a Pellet Fire or Wood Pellet Stove is a low cost heating option that is efficient and environmentally friendly. Fuelled by the wood pellet, a cheap and relatively easy product to manufacture that is made from recycled sawdust, a waste product from sawmills. It is considered to be a great eco alternative to wood.

You still need electricity to run a wood pellet fire, so are not entirely off the grid but your overall costs are a fraction of other alternatives.

How Does a Pellet Fire Work?

Pellets are firstly loaded into the hopper, this can be at the top or bottom depending on the type of stove you have. Secondly a motor that is much like a screw (the auger) delivers the pellets to the burn pot that is in a combustion chamber. The heat produced is determined by how fast you deliver the pellets via the speed of the auger. The heavily compressed pellets have very little moisture and create a hotter flame than standard wood. In the burn pot the air and fuel (pellets) mix with the help of a blower, creating combustion, which is how the burning process works. Finally, the remains of the pellets (ash) end up in the ash pot which periodically needs to be cleaned out.
Pettet Fire Diagram
What I like about this process is the pellets come from a waste product and when you have finished burning them you can recycle the ash into your garden. They also burn hotter so are releasing considerably less emission into our atmosphere. It's got to be good, warmth and being an eco-warrior!

The Benefits of Pellet Fuel

Pellet manufacturers take by-products (wood waste) and refine them into pencil sized pellets that are uniform in size, shape, moisture, density and energy content.

Why not simply burn raw biomass? First, the moisture content of pellets is substantially lower (5% to 8% water, compared to 30% to 60% for raw biomass). Less moisture means higher energy values and easier handling.

Second, the density of pellet fuel is substantially higher than raw biomass. More fuel can be transported in a given truck space, and more energy can be stored at your site.

Third, pellets are more easily and predictably handled. Their uniform shape and size allows for a smaller and simpler feed system that reduces costs. Pellets pose little of the explosion risks or environmental pollution from spills as nonrenewable fossil fuels do.

The remarkable consistency and burn efficiency of pellet fuel produces a fraction of the particulate emissions of raw biomass. Most Pellet burners feature the lowest particulate matter emissions of all solid fuel burners.

When you heat with biomass, carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere. Trees absorb this carbon dioxide in equal amounts as they grow, so burning pellets does not increase the amount of this greenhouse gas in the atmosphere.

Arsenic, carbon monoxide, sulphur and the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide are just a few of the air and water pollutants resulting from the use of all nonrenewable fossil fuels as a heat and an energy source. Even if the supply of nonrenewable fossil fuel was unlimited, the economic and associated environmental costs of transporting and burning ever-increasing amounts of nonrenewable fossil fuels are simply unsustainable. In fact, since pellets can burn more efficiently (system efficiency averages at 80%) than other fuels, emissions from pellet burners meet even the most stringent Local Council requirements.

Any remaining ash in the burn chamber, when removed, is of little consequence. Once the ash is emptied periodically, it can actually double as a fertilizer. Finally, pellet storage poses no soil or water contamination risks. A spill can be cleaned with a shovel... not a hazardous waste crew.
"The great old fashioned warmth of  a wood fire, but no more chopping & stacking of wood!"

Contact us

Phone 0800 AZWOOD (299663)
03 547 4836
Fax 03 547 3258
Email care@azwood.co.nz
Address PO Box 2180
Nelson 7041
New Zealand



About us

Azwood are working to help New Zealand transition to a lower carbon future by supplying cost-comparative carbon neutral wood fuel as an alternative to fossil fuels.

Azwood have been in the energy sector for 38 years. Our main products are biomass hog fuel, wood energy chip and wood pellet fuel (industry and retail).
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