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Villager Chelsea Solo

Overall Rating:

3.5 flames

based on 25 reviews    (View rating breakdown)
Villager Chelsea Solo

The Villager Solo stove is a 5kw output multi fuel Villager model.

The Solo model has 1 plain door.

The Villager Solo is a plain flat top stove suitable for a small setting - there is an optional low or high canopy model available too.

Technical Data
  • Height: 495mm
  • Width: 457mm
  • Depth: 334mm

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Review Ratings Breakdown

Build Quality 3.5 flames
Quality of finish 4 flames
Value for money 4 flames
Ease of use 4 flames
Ease of lighting 4.5 flames
Firebox size 3.5 flames
How well does the airwash work 4 flames
Controllability 3.5 flames
Handle operation 3 flames
How likely are you to buy it again? 3.5 flames
What is your overall satisfaction? 3.5 flames

Most Recent Review

  • Villager chelsea solo 5k

    David Fry 3 years ago

    Great stove plenty heat. Sent door away to Devon dept to have brackets replaced.and glass gasket. but now glass has cracked.don't know why? but stove always in use even though glass is cracked
    . Still able to use it. Still very pleased with stove.

    Stove expert replied: Glass replacement can be undertaken at home if you are competent in DIY, The brackets should unscrew and the gasket is likely to be renewed at the same time due to being disturbed. With a crack in the glass you may find that the stove is less controllable as it can pull air through the crack which under normal circumstances is not possible. Care should be taken not to let the stove overdraw.

    Overall rating:

    5 flames

Most Popular Review

More reviews for Villager Chelsea Solo (page 1 of 3)

  • Reaching the end of it''s life?

    Simon Russell 4 years ago

    We installed this around 6 years ago. Whilst it's been a good fire - we quickly found that the baffle plate bent after two or years, the fire-bricks have been replaced and have recently just cracked again, and the glass system is appalling. It doesn't allow for easy rope replacement at all - also, one of the studs sheared when I was trying to take a nut off to get to the glass. I doubt I'd recommend this fire frankly.

    Stove expert replied: For internal parts to fail quickly is an implication that the flue draw may be too high for this stove (see the manual for the manufacturers guidelines). Cracked fire-bricks can still be used providing they are staying in place to protect the metal of the stove. The stud may be able to be drilled out to enable the glass re-fitting if you can find a local engineer to undertake the work.

    Overall rating:

    3.5 flames

  • Glass comes loose

    Lee Mercer 6 years ago

    Although the stove burns well and was nice and warm, after a few days the front glass slipped down leaving a 1 cm gap at the top on one side, any time soon it will fall out and break if I dont
    fix it. Took the door back to the shop and they looked dumbly at it, gave me to clips and told me to slide it into place. i.e. couldn't care less as they had their money. I suggested he inform the manufacturer more blank stares. I see their are a few reports of the glass failing and in my view a fire whose glass is likely to fail is a somewhat hazardous. Look to an other manufacturer if I were you as I fail to see how this could have passed its safety testing.
    Overall rating:

    2.5 flames

  • poor glass retention system

    Robin Goodwin 6 years ago

    I bought this stove from a friend s/h so it had a few hours under its belt. I serviced it and installed it. It is excellent for efficiency of heating but two months after first use, the glass
    cracked. I couldn't work out why, as I was very careful loading the burner, but then realised that the retaining clips had corroded away putting strain on the glass. I knew that a new glass was going to be expensive because its curved but the cost is about £100....quite sickening. The clips that are used to retain it, which obviously must be springy to prevent cracking look pathetic. Will make my own. My advice....get the Duo model....its exactly the same but with two doors and FLAT cheap glass replacement.
    Overall rating:

    4 flames

  • Good little burner

    Steve Downing 7 years ago

    Believe reviews should only be done after living with a stove for a while so here goes. I had the "Chelsea solo" installed in September 2013 and it is now April 2014 so it has a had a good
    winters burning. This is a nice looking stove with a decent air-wash function at a good price. I have found it easy to light using a firelighter on a small bed of solid fuel with a few sticks. If you leave the ash pan door open when lighting it encourages air to come in underneath the grate which means it gets up to operating temperature in about 10 minutes. For a steady burn, a small bed of solid fuel with (for me) mostly scrap wood, or a few good well seasoned logs it will keep in for quite a long time. I tried various smokeless fuels, Anthracite and house coal, but found house coal kept in the best produced the least smoke and the least ash for the solid fuels. Keeping in overnight was tricky as I was unable to shut down the air enough to slow the burn rate to keep in for 12 hours, best I managed was around 8 hours. The best way to adjust the air flow when fully lit was to close both air "sliders" and control the burn by loosening and tightening the "knobs" on the sliders. External riddle works well and the flat top was very handy when power was lost to the house for 48hrs as I was able to heat hot water and also do some limited cooking on the stove top. When the stove goes out, the glass tends to soot up a bit, but this is easily cleaned when re-lighting and turning the air up a bit. I have often been asked how often I clean the glass and the answer is never... Would I buy it again? Not sure, if I needed a 5kw stove of low height due to a wood surround then yes, if height was not an issue then probably not, I am however looking at a different Villager/Arado model for my next place. This is my 3rd stove having had a Clearview and a Stovax in previous properties so are speaking from experience

    Stove expert replied: Household coal should not be used on a closed appliance, smokeless fuel or wood if the stove is a multifuel model only. Household coal is not a clean fuel and burns with a longer flame causing overheating of the internal components,

    Overall rating:

    4 flames

  • villager stove

    Steve Edwards 7 years ago

    Great stove...quickly warms up the room. However, the little brackets that hold the glass in place have all broken off and I am left with a door with no glass . Anyone know where I can get the
    door repaired?

    Stove expert replied: Spares can be ordered on line and should be easily fitted, it may pay to check the rope seal at the same time depending on the age of the appliance. If this is a new appliance and the gasket that holds the glass in place has failed you should perhaps get the installation checked as it may be an over-drawing flue that has caused the failure.

    Overall rating:

    3.5 flames

  • Little Scorcher

    Rodger Caldwell 7 years ago

    This is the only stove we have ever had. Bought it new almost two years ago based on output, style, and a few reviews. Turns out to have been a great buy. Have never had any problems lighting, and always heats the room up really quickly. I have noticed like an earlier reviewer that it doesn't "shut down" very well when closing the vents. Have noticed that the rope seal needs replaced, but also noted the comment below that a chimney with good draught (which ours has) can also be a cause of this. Effectively though, we couldn't shut it down and leave it burning, it would be stone cold in the morning. Cleaning it a few weeks ago, I noticed that the baffle plate has warped with the heat, and a fire brick has broken. As the stove is not our primary heat source, we are very happy with it. We primarily burn seasoned hard wood, but have also burned peat which gives fantastic heat. Not tried coal yet. I would judge it to be good value for money and would probably buy another Villager stove depending on the situation.

    Stove expert replied: If you notice that you can't shut it down getting a flue damper or stabilizer will help to get control of the stove and also to prevent damage by excessive heating of the components, well worth the extra expense and will save on replacement parts.

    Overall rating:

    4 flames

  • Love this stove!!

    Dave Maurice 8 years ago

    I am a coal merchant, and had been hanging my nose over this stove for a long time. Had it fitted last October, in time for the appalling winter! Once I had got used to lighting it, how often to refuel, etc, I could practically make it talk!! I burn mostly smokeless solid fuel briquettes that lasted anywhere between 3 and 12 hours, depending on how we used the primary air and airwash controls, how much of an ash bed was already in place, etc. Had no problem at all keeping it in overnight or whilst my wife and I were both at work during the day. The airwash does work very well on this stove, but I tend to keep it closed anyway just after lighting, to make the fuel go further. Any smoke on glass is usually burnt off when fire is up to max temperature. Handle gets very hot, and you have to use the glove provided, but there aren't many stoves I know of where the handle stays cool to the touch. Riddling grate works well, and grate bars are very easy to remove, as are the bricks, grate frame and throat plate. I have had to replace the rope seal on the door, and decided to replace the clips on the door glass. Was very easy and cheap to do, and considering the hammering the stove took last winter it was the least I could do to maintain ready for the upcoming winter. I really can't find any negatives on this stove, it's been worth every penny and has made our lounge even cosier. My wife always complains of being cold, especially in winter, but she said that last winter was the first time she's actually been warm, (in fact sometimes too warm!!) Highly recommend this brilliant stove!
    Overall rating:

    4.5 flames

  • good fire

    Antony Waters 8 years ago

    Great fire with good heat. Only let down is how quick some parts wear out. Also the brackets that hold the glass in place become loose and the glass slides down wearing the flat rope out, but
    still a good stove.
    Overall rating:

    not yet rated

  • Top Quality Product

    Martin Whitfield 8 years ago

    Very good value for money. Plenty of heat very good build quality. The center piece of the home
    Overall rating:

    5 flames

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