Jotul F500 Oslo Review
The Oslo is offered in two door designs. The clean window or the more ornate window that has the cast webbing. They also offer the stove in three colors. Painted black cast iron, Blue Black Enamel, and Brown Majolica Enamel. The enamel colors are an additional cost. It is comparable in size to the Vermont Castings Encore or HearthStone Shelburn. The Vermont Castings Defiant and the Hearthstone Manchester are both a little larger than the Jotul F500.
- Heats up to 2000 sq ft
- Up to 8 hour burn time
- Up to 24in log length
- EPA 3.2 Grams per hour
- 6″ Flue Collar
- Weight: 375 lbs
Jotul F500 Oslo “The Bad” –
- I hear a lot of complaints about this stove is hard to get started. While it is possible that can be attributed to people using poor quality wood. In my experience this stove requires quite a tall chimney to work well. Page 5 of the manual states that a minimum 15′ vertical chimney is required to prevent “inadequate draft”. A 15′ chimney does not just happen in most installations. A lot of manufactured homes with shallow pitched roofs only end up with 10′ from the stove collar to the cap. Some stoves are more sensitive to the height of the chimney than others, but this Jotul F500 is pretty sensitive. Some manufacturers don’t put a required minimum, and if they do 12′ is pretty typical. 15′ may not be a problem in your application but it is something to be aware of.
- Gaskets – Most customers that have this stove complain about the burn times they get. Now these burn times are very subjective based on wood, temperature, how far they shut the stove down. Also what means it is still burning just barely enough coals so you don’t have to light a match or still putting out good heat and the house be warm. I don’t have personal experience with the burn times so I am not going to comment on that. But I do recommend to my customers to replace the side door, front door and ash drawer gaskets every single year. And I always hear of improved performance and burn times. Gaskets are relatively inexpensive.
- Cost – This stove is the most expensive of the three that I would consider comparable. The Hearthstone Shelburn and the Vermont Castings Encore.
Jotul F500 Oslo “The Good” –
- Most people that purchase this stove do so for the side loading feature. Which I would agree is a great feature. When you are putting the wood in from the side it is a lot less messy. And that last piece of wood does not keep trying to roll out as you are trying to close the door. The side door is definitely a plus in my opinion.
- The style of this stove is pretty cool. It is made in Norway and definitely has that Norwegian flare. If you like the look it is pretty unique in the cast iron stove world.
- Ash drawer is a plus. Some customers complain that it is not really big enough which I understand, but it sure does help get a fire going quick if you leave it cracked. Just don’t leave it cracked for too long or it will warp the bottom ash grate.
Overall, I think the Jotul F500 Oslo is a good stove. But I think most people put too much value on the side door and end up paying a premium for it. The Hearthstone Manchester has a nice side door and you are getting a little larger stove and firebox for less money. Or you could even get a Soapstone Hearthstone Heritage for the same or less money with side door. If you like the look and the price is worth it to you then go for it Just make sure that your chimney is at least 15′ tall otherwise you will probably have issues.
Link to the manufacturer’s site is here.
The Stove Guy
Disclaimer: All of the reviews on this site are just my personal opinion from my personal experience. Take them for what they are. If you want to know more about my experience read here. By posting these reviews I am not saying that I have the only correct opinion, only that I am sharing the facts of the item as I see it. I receive no compensation, product or benefit from any manufacturer for writing these reviews. I do get paid when visitors click on advertisements that I have on the site. Thanks for your time.