WhatStove?

Review of Esse 500 stove

Esse 500

Ben Allen 1 week ago

I have had experience of a lot of stoves, the Esse 500 gives off plenty of heat but I find the riddle grate system with handle a very poor design. The riddle gets constantly blocked and would be much better with drop in cast bars like they used to do on the old model. The rope burns out on the door seal very easily. Ash always falls out with this new design and the ashpan is difficult to remove due to a big lip on the stove front. We have ended up removing the riddle grate which is much better. The fire brick baffle design is poor and would be better made from metal. I have had a fire fox stove which seems a much better design, it is bigger overall, has a better riddle mechanism and is half the price.

Stove expert replied: Did you try alternatives fuels to see if they still blocked the grate system. Different fuels may burn to a finer ash and therefore would not get caught in the grate, they do vary greatly so trying more than one fuel is a good policy to adopt until you find the one that suits your stove best.

Overall rating:

2.5 flames

Build Quality 2 flames (avg 3.5)
Quality of finish 3 flames (avg 4)
Value for money 2 flames (avg 3.6)
Ease of use 2 flames (avg 3.6)
Ease of lighting 4 flames (avg 4.2)
Firebox size 2 flames (avg 3.5)
How well does the airwash work 2 flames (avg 3.1)
Controllability 2 flames (avg 3.1)
Handle operation 2 flames (avg 3.2)
How likely are you to buy it again? 5 flames (avg 3.3)
What is your overall satisfaction? 2 flames (avg 3.5)