Biomass boilers are becoming the choice of increasing numbers of home owners, not just in Scotland. This home heating revolution started in countries like Austria and Sweden, when the advent of wood pellet fuel made automated biomass boilers a reality.
Today many people are looking for a way to heat their homes which ‘treads lightly on the earth’. A biomass boiler is fuelled from renewable resources and its emissions are carbon neutral. As 60% of energy used in the home is for heating, switching to biomass goes a huge way to making your home green.
Many homes in Scotland rely on oil or LPG for heating fuel. A switch to wood pellets can cut your heating bills by a third – sometimes more.
A good biomass boiler system is one which delivers the fuel from the fuel store to the burner and then burns it as efficiently as possible, keeping your house cosy without having to lift a finger. Our boilers have been specially chosen for their excellent performance of these tasks while fitting effortlessly into your home...
Ökofen Pellet Boilers
Our Ökofen wood pellet boiler system is one of the most reliable wood pellet heating technologies in the world. Designed and built by an award-winning Austrian family firm, the Ökofen is the result of 18 years of research and development. Ökofen owners enjoy the reassurance that their boiler has been built for super-efficient running, year after year after year.
- Automatic ignition
- Automatic daily heat exchanger cleaning – maintaining full efficiency
- Triple pass recirculation burner system ensures complete combustion of volatile gases – no need for costly lambda sensor
- Stainless steel combustion chamber – giving short response times
- Double sealed flame return protection
- Choice of auger or vacuum fuel feed system
- Outputs available from 8kW right up to 224kW
What makes an Ökofen special?
Behind the sleek exterior of the Ökofen Pellematic lies a package of quality engineering, the result of decades of research and development.
Before any new Ökofen component goes on the market it goes through an extensive testing period to ensure that it lives up to the Ökofen quality. When designing the system, Ökofen aims to find the best engineering solution to carry out the task at hand.
The stainless steel burn chamber with recirculating burner system is an example of this. Many biomass boilers have burner chambers lined with firebrick. Their large mass means that the boiler takes a while to react and over time the bricks will require replacing. They also use a lambda oxygen sensor to control the burn rate – unfortunately these are prone to periodic failure and are costly to replace.
The unique design of the Pellematic burner means that there is no need for a lambda sensor and the stainless steel burn chamber allows the boiler to react quickly.
This quick reaction time is one of the reasons why the Ökofen Pellematic can be installed without the need for a buffer tank – saving both cost and space.
Wood chip: a sustainable biomass fuel
Our recommended option - easily stored and handled.
Generally derived from forest or sawmill residues or from clean, untreated waste timber. They are typically used for larger scale applications such as leisure centres or community heating schemes. For problem-free use in smaller systems they need to achieve high uniformity in size and have low moisture content.
Chip boilers are a Perthshire Biofuels recommended solution, though the feedstock still needs to be monitored to ensure it has the correct moisture content. Most pellet and chip burners use automatic fuel feeders which refill them at regular intervals.
Log boiler systems are more suited to smaller systems, typically up to 60 kW.
Great with the right fuel supply
Logs are obtained directly from trees, with minimum processing involved. Generally, they are just covered to keep them dry and left for one to three years to ‘season’. In this time, the moisture content falls from around 50% to 20%, and they become lighter. The drier the logs, the hotter the fire and the less smoke and tar will be produced.
Log boilers have to be filled with wood manually; most pellet and chip burners use automatic fuel feeders which refill them at regular intervals. Logs require considerably more work, and you will need a significant fuelstock storage and handling area. Logs can be cheaper than pellets if you have a good local supply.
Wood pellets are a particularly high energy fuel; even higher than wood in its natural form.
Our recommended option - convenient and easily handled.
Derived from wood by-products from sawmills and wood manufacturing. Pellets are denser, drier (8 - 10% moisture content) and require around a third of the storage space of logs or chips.
Pellet biomass boilers are Perthshire Biofuels' preferred option, as they are space efficient and offer simpler storage and operation. Pellets are much easier to use and much more controllable than logs; pellet boilers can run automatically in much the same way that gas or oil boilers operate. Most pellet and chip burners use automatic fuel feeders which refill them at regular intervals.
Assuming straw is readily available locally, it is the cheapest energy source
Large fuelstock storage area required.
There is a lot less competition for straw as a fuelstock, as more specialist equipment is required to burn it.
The existing market for straw centres around animal feed and bedding and producers and buyers are usually some distance apart. This means transport costs and delivery logistics limit its value. A Biomass energy project can represent a good opportunity where there is a good local supply of straw and suitable fuelstock storage.