Review of Stratford EB 20 HE
Good stove but could be even better?
We bought this stove to both heat our kitchen and also - when needed - run our central heating system by burning only wood. It seems well built and of a good quality finish. It lights easily and burns well - and is capable of warming our 10 radiators. The fire can work as stand alone form of heating or be run in tandem with our gas boiler. The fire box is excellent being large enough to take larger bits of wood - saving a lot of effort in wood splitting. Our only - minor - gripes would be that:- the instructions are all aimed at telling you how to set the fire up to burn solid fuel - we wanted a more sustainable approach to heating and only use wood. This meant using trial and error to work out how to set the fire up; - the ash pan is quite small given the size of the firebox meaning it has to be emptied quite regularly; - the handle of the fire gets very hot which seems a bit of a design fault; - the glass gets deposits on it even with the air wash permanently open - and requires cleaning between each burn; - the fire does warm up the radiators but is not able to gave them truly hot in the same way that our gas boiler can - but this is as much to do with the fuel we burn as the design of the fire. But all in all we are pleased with the fire - it has certainly made a difference to our gas bills and the warmth of the house.
Stove expert replied: The grate should be set in the - position for wood burning which will direct air over the fuel which is required for this fuel. This is the same control as you use for riddling the stove to remove ash.