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Catalytic Versus Non-Catalytic Heating Stoves

Joseph Coupal - Wednesday, May 05, 2010
Catalytic Versus Non-Catalytic Heating

When choosing appliances for your new home, you’ll ultimately ponder this question:  “Should we go with a Catalytic or Non-Catalytic stove”?   The answer of course is, “It depends”.  Let’s first give a high-level definition of both then discuss the advantages and disadvantages.

Catalytic Combustion In Stoves – Heat produced primarily from smoky exhaust gases that are passed through a catalyst-coated ceramic honeycomb buried deep inside the stove where they ignite and burn

Non-Catalytic Combustion In Stoves – Heat is not produced primarily by a catalyst, rather heat is produced in the main fire box.
The debate over which is better continues.  Catalysts produce comparatively long steady heat output.  They require a bit more attention during ignition (catalyst damper management), and are generally considered to be more expensive to maintain as the catalytic element degrades over time.  

The non-catalytic combustion does not use a catalyst, but instead creates a good environment for combustion right in the firebox.  “Non-cats” produce a more attractive look, however, the heat curve peaks and retards faster than that of a “Cat”.  
So which one is right for you?  The market currently favors non-cats, however, some of the most popular high-end stoves continue to use catalytic combustion.  Without doubt buy a catalytic combustion stove if your consumer decision buying decision is based 100% on head production and you have little to no interest in decorative effect.  Like most consumers, if you desire both, then a “Cat” is likely a better option.  

Regardless of your decision, celebrate and be comforted by the fact that both technologies burn up to 90 percent cleaner than older conventional stoves. 

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