Wednesday, December 7

Introduction to Bioethanol Stoves

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Combining the look and feel of a traditional wood-burning stove, with the cleanliness and ease of operation of a bioethanol fire, bioethanol stoves are becoming an increasingly popular choice for home heating. If you’re interested in bioethanol stoves, then keep reading and the Direct Stoves teams will tell you everything you need to know…

What is a bioethanol stove? 

Let’s kick things off with a definition – what exactly is a bioethanol stove? 

Forgive the rather obvious answer, but a bioethanol stove is simply a stove which uses bioethanol as a fuel to produce heat.

Bioethanol is a liquid fuel which is manufactured by fermenting sugar and starch elements from sugar cane, straw, maize and other similar types of plants. The liquid produced by these fermentation is then distilled. 

This distillation process helps to purify the liquid and also enhance its alcohol content. Once the distillation process has been completed, the result is bioethanol which is ready to be used in a stove.

How does a bioethanol stove work? 

Bioethanol may be produced using a fairly complex fermentation and distillation process, but bioethanol stoves are incredibly simple devices. 

Bioethanol stoves work by storing bioethanol in a burner tray. The bioethanol is then lit (usually manually), and will burn until either the bioethanol is exhausted or the flame has been manually extinguished by the user. 

Most bioethanol stoves have a sliding mechanism which can be slid across the top of the burner tray. When completely closed this extinguishes the flame. 

Alternatively, the sliding mechanism can be opened or closed by varying amounts in order to control the size of the flame. Many bioethanol stoves are supplied with a ‘closing rod’ which allows you to control the sliding mechanism without burning your hand.

How much do bioethanol stoves cost? 

Bioethanol stoves are simple elegant devices, and can cost anywhere from £290, up to £1,000 or more. 

How much you pay for a bioethanol stove will be largely determined by the quality of its construction, the brand that has designed and manufactured it, and the heat output and other technical features of the stove.

Here at Direct Stoves, we have bioethanol stoves to suit all wallets – explore our range here.

Henley Optimyst Freestanding Bioethanol Stove

Henley Optimyst Freestanding Bioethanol Stove

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How much does bioethanol cost? 

Once you’ve bought your stove, you’re going to want to buy some bioethanol to fuel it. 

Luckily, bioethanol is a relatively inexpensive fuel with a one litre bottle, at the time of writing (July 2022), costing around £9 or less.

It’s also possible to find bulk buy deals on bioethanol, reducing the overall cost of the fuel further. 

How long can a bioethanol stove burn for? 

The amount of time a bioethanol stove can burn depends on a number of factors. 

Firstly, the length of burn will be determined by the capacity of the stove’s burner tray. As you would expect, the more bioethanol you can fill it up with, the longer the fire will burn for. 

The best way to figure this out is to look at the product specifications on our website. We have explained the burning time and fuel capacity of each stove:

Bioethanol Stove Product Specifications

Bioethanol Stove Product Specifications

Another factor that will influence how long your stove burns for, is the degree to which you let the fire burn. For example, if you leave the burner tray wide open, this allows the fire to burn at its fullest. 

If you use the burner tray’s sliding mechanism to modulate the fire, then it won’t burn as fiercely. You’ll get less heat, but the bioethanol will last longer. 

How much heat do bioethanol stoves give off? 

The exact amount of heat you’ll get from a bioethanol stove will vary from model to model. 

The vast majority of bioethanol stoves stocked here at Direct Stoves have a heat output of around 1kW. 

To put this into context a room with a 5m by 5m floor area in a new build house will need around 1.4kW in order to feel warm on a typical winter’s day. 

This means that bioethanol stoves are a great supplementary heat source, being ideal for taking the chill out of a room. However, they shouldn’t be relied upon as the primary source of heat for your home. 

We like to think of bioethanol stoves as being a great way of keeping a room warm during the day in between the central heating turning off in the morning and it turning back on again in the evening. 

Are bioethanol stoves safe? 

Yes, absolutely! All of the bioethanol stoves stocked here at Direct Stoves are completely safe and compliant with all applicable safety standards. 

Like any appliance that has an open flame though, it’s recommended that you exercise caution, particularly if you have children or small animals in the room whilst the stove is in operation. 

It’s also a good idea to ensure that there’s plenty of space between your bioethanol stove and any combustible materials such as curtains, soft furnishings etc. 

Note – many bioethanol stoves have an automatic cut off feature after they’ve been burning for three hours. This further enhances safety.

Henley Madrid Freestanding Bioethanol Stove

Henley Madrid Freestanding Bioethanol Stove

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Do you need planning permission for a bioethanol stove? 

No! As long as you aren’t making major structural changes to your home to accommodate the stove, then you won’t need planning permission. 

What are the benefits of bioethanol stoves? 

Having read this far, you might be wondering why you should choose a bioethanol stove over another type of stove. 

The reason so many people choose this type of stove is due to the myriad benefits associated with them. We’ve detailed the benefits of bioethanol stoves below. 

Ease of installation

Bioethanol stoves are incredibly easy to install. They don’t require a chimney, flue, gas lines or pipes, meaning there’s very little you have to do to start using one in your home. 

If you buy a wall-mounted bioethanol stove, the main job of installing it will be fixing it to the wall, which is a straightforward task and very similar to installing a wall-mounted electric fire.

Should you have purchased a freestanding bioethanol stove, then installation is even easier! Simply remove the stove from its packaging and place it where you’d like it to sit in your home.

Ceiling mounted bioethanol stoves require a little more work, but given that they don’t require power or gas lines, it’s mostly a case of making sure they are properly bolted/mounted to the ceiling. 

The one thing to be aware of is, like other types of stove or fire, bioethanol stoves do require some ventilation. So, be sure to install your bioethanol stove in a room with enough ventilation. 

Although bioethanol stoves only give off trace amounts of CO², we recommend installing a carbon dioxide monitor by your stove.

Note – it’s not recommended to use bioethanol stoves in rooms measuring less than 10m².

Environmentally friendly

Because they run on bioethanol, these types of stoves are environmentally friendly. 

This is because bioethanol is a 100% renewable fuel. It’s produced using plants such as sugar cane, straw and maize, which can be harvested year after year.

Clean operation

Another benefit of bioethanol stoves is their incredibly clean operation. As bioethanol is an alcohol it burns incredibly well and doesn’t give off soot, ash or any other type of material typically associated with combustibles. 

The only things that bioethanol does release is water vapour and a trace amount of CO².

What’s more, bioethanol stoves require practically no maintenance. This is because they have very few parts and burn so cleanly.

Henley Paris Freestanding Bioethanol Stove

Henley Paris Freestanding Bioethanol Stove

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Ease of operation

Bioethanol stoves represent the easiest way of experiencing real flames. You simply fill up the burner tray with bioethanol and light it. Job done!

When it comes to turning off your stove, you can either let it exhaust the supply of bioethanol and burn itself out, or you can use the sliding mechanism to extinguish the flame. Easy!

If you’re keen to experience a real fire in your home, but are wary of getting a log burner or open fireplace, then choose a bioethanol stove instead.

Real flames

Unlike electric alternatives, bioethanol stoves produce a real flame. Bioethanol stoves allow you to enjoy the beauty and warmth of real flames in your home, without the hassle of maintaining a chimney and cleaning out fireboxes etc. 

Fuel efficient

Bioethanol is an incredibly efficient fuel, burning with a 98% efficiency rate – meaning only 2% of the fuel is wasted – the other 98% is directly converted into heat for your home. 

This makes bioethanol stoves perfect for heating your home when you want to avoid using expensive gas or electric central heating. 

Stylish

There’s no getting away from the fact that a high-quality stove is a sought after feature in many homes. 

As you can see from our range of bioethanol stoves, they are very stylish appliances and really can create a focal point in your living room. 

Whether you choose a wall-mounted, ceiling mounted or freestanding bioethanol stove, it’s easy to enhance the look and feel of your home with one of these stoves.

The best bioethanol stoves UK

If, having read this guide, you’re keen to buy a bioethanol stove, check out our selection below. 

These are some of the best bioethanol stoves on the market, covering everything from basic, wallet-friendly models, through to high-end luxury models. 

Henley 600 Bioethanol Grate Burner

Henley 600 Bioethanol Grate Burner

Henley 600 Bioethanol Grate Burner

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If you want a sleek, elegant bioethanol fire for your home then check out the 600 from Henley. 

Its versatile design means it can be easily incorporated into a variety of home decor features such as alcoves and on top of platforms etc. 

Thanks to its stainless steel design, the Henley 600 is also suitable for installation in a wide variety of outdoor locations, helping to create startling outdoor features.

Henley Oslo Wall Mounted Bioethanol Stove

Henley Oslo Wall Mounted Bioethanol Stove

Henley Oslo Wall Mounted Bioethanol Stove

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Should you want a wall-mounted bioethanol stove, then check out the Oslo from Henley. 

This is a simple, contemporary styled stove with either a white or black frame, meaning it’s super easy to select the version that’ll complement your decor. 

With two 1.5 litre burner trays, the Oslo will be able to provide a sustained flame for around 4.5 hours, creating a warm, cosy ambience in your living room.

Henley Dalewood Landscape Bioethanol Stove

Henley Dalewood Landscape Bioethanol Stove

Henley Dalewood Landscape Bioethanol Stove

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Should you want a bioethanol stove with a more rustic, traditional feel, then consider the Dalewood Landscape from Henley. 

Ideal for creating a traditional looking stove fireplace – without any of the hassle – the Dalewood Landscape features a very large viewing window. This not only provides an uninterrupted view of the flames, but also allows gentle ambient light to cascade out into your living space. 

With a 1kW heat output and a 5 hour burn time, the Dalewood Landscape is ideal for taking the chill out of a room on those cold winter days.

Henley Hazelwood Double Side Bioethanol Stove

Henley Hazelwood Double Side Bioethanol Stove

Henley Hazelwood Double Side Bioethanol Stove

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To create the very best ambience and cosy feel, why not choose a double sided stove? 

The Henley Hazlewood stove features large viewing windows on both sides of the stove, creating a fantastic visual spectacle and allowing the gentle light from the dancing flames to filter throughout the room. 

With an enormous 3 litre burner tray capacity, the Henley Hazelwood has an impressive burn time of 9.5 hours, meaning it can provide all-day heat.

Henley Budapest Ceiling Mounted Bioethanol Stove

Henley Budapest Ceiling Mounted Bioethanol Stove

Henley Budapest Ceiling Mounted Bioethanol Stove

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If you want to achieve a retro-modern look in your home, then the Henley Budapest is an inspired choice.

Taking design cues from the 1960s and combining them with 21st century heating technology, the Henley Budapest makes a bold visual impression. 

Ideal for creating a centrepiece, the Henley Budapest is designed to be easily bolted to the ceiling and as it’s available in white or silver, it’ll complement many different home decors and colour schemes.

Direct Stoves: the first and last stop for bioethanol stoves

Have you got your heart set on a bioethanol stove? Then buy one from Direct Stoves today. 

Not only do we offer a video surveying service, where our experts can provide you with advice on what size and type of stove will be best for your home, but we also offer FREE mainland UK delivery, 14 day no hassle returns, and a range of finance options to help you spread the cost of your purchase. 

Shop bioethanol stoves at Direct Stoves now

For more stove buying advice, information and news, explore the Direct Stoves blog

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