Vermont Castings is probably one of the best known names in the wood stove industry.They are still available and going strong today. They have been around for over 30 years. Vermont Castings has actually adapted to the new laws and regulations arguably better than any other manufacturer out there. A large majority of the wood stove manufacturers closed up shop when the EPA laws started going into effect in the late 1980’s. Vermont Castings was not one of them, they have continued to adapt, continuing to exceed the requirements put forth.
They have many models to choose from and many pros and cons to each. This article is meant to give you a general overview of pros/cons for the Vermont Castings in general and more specific models to come.
Vermont Castings Pros:
- Their wood stoves have a top loading feature, which for the most part works better than any other top loader in the industry.
- The new Encore / Defiant series is capable of burning either as catalytic or non-catalytic within the same unit (I am not seeing a huge benefit in this feature but very unique.)
- Beautiful cast iron designs, I think they are probably the only company that rivals Jotul for their design and detail.
Vermont Castings Cons:
- Their warranty is hard to get taken care of. VERY IMPORTANT that you deal with a very longstanding dealer with a good reputation so they can push issues through if you have any.
- The design of all their stoves has a lot of little parts and pieces. Just look at a door latch for example. As anyone who has owned one for any length of time can tell you it will have two nuts, three pins, and two washers. At times the parts have been hard to source and had really long waits.
- The catalytic models have the maintenance cost that I don’t really think is a great idea. Catalytic converters average $200 – $300 and typically need to be replaced every 2 – 3 years.
If I was buying a Vermont Castings Wood Stove I would stick with the non-catalytic models. Because of the top loading feature, the efficiency, and my wife thinks it’s pretty I would consider owning one of these in my home. The main thing I would say is to buy this from an experienced dealer with a great reputation so you can get the service from them because you most likely won’t get it from Vermont Castings.
Here are a few pictures of the most popular models.