Does a Coal or Wood Stove Heat a Large Area Better?


Quick Answer

Coal stoves heat large areas more effectively than wood stoves. Coal burns at a higher temperature than wood because it has a higher energy content.

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Full Answer

The types of coal used in stoves include anthracite, bituminous and cannel. Anthracite burns the hottest and produces fewer particulates than bituminous and cannel coal. However, anthracite is also more difficult to light and keep burning. Stoves that burn anthracite coal must maintain upward airflow from below the coal bed to the chimney. Anthracite also requires ignition with kindling or hot charcoal.

Bituminous coal is a popular choice for coal stoves because it ignites easily and burns with robust heat. A significant drawback of bituminous coal is that it generates large amounts of soot.

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