How to Clean Dust From Wood Pellets
Wood pellet stoves have become increasingly popular across North America since the late 1990s, particularly as oil prices have risen and people have begun searching for renewable fuel alternatives. Wood pellets are made of compressed scrap wood material and packaged in large plastic bags. Some pellets may break apart during shipping, and most bags will contain some dust and small pellet chips, which can affect the performance and efficiency of your pellet stove.
Store your pellets in a convenient, dry place where you can stack them flat and leave them alone until you need them. Leaving pellets exposed to the weather or other moisture can weaken them, and frequently moving or jostling the bags can cause pellets to break apart.
When you're opening a bag of pellets, lift the bag upright and shake it gently before opening the top of the bag. If possible, let the bag sit upright for a while before you open it. This will encourage dust and broken pellet pieces to sink to the bottom rather than being distributed throughout the pellets.
Pour most of the pellets into your stove. When you get near the bottom of the bag, you'll see where dust and small pellet chunks have accumulated. Separate the remaining good pellets from this scrap material. Some people do this by hand using a kitchen colander or strainer, while others dump and sift their pellets through wire mesh or other homemade devices.
Jennifer Philion has been a professional writer and editor for more than 13 years, with experience in print and online journalism as well as marketing and public relations. She has written for "The Sporting News," the "Boulder Daily Camera" and the "Ogden Standard-Examiner" as well as magazines and online sites. She holds a B.S. in journalism from the University of Colorado-Boulder.
- pellets image by Rupert Roth from Fotolia.com