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[2024] Back Vented/Rear Vented Wood Stove

Our Store Favorite Back Vented Wood Stove: Drolet Cape Town 1800 (DB04900)

Price: $

Finding a rear vented wood stove can be super tricky since a lot of manufacturers focus on steel stoves, which are better with top venting. The Drolet Cape Town 1800 is a great option though!

  • Where is it Made? Belgium (but it's a special model with pipe sizes for the US)
  • Where does it ship from? Straight from Drolet. That means it'll either come from their warehouse in South Bend, IN or Madison Heights, VA.
  • EPA Certified: you know it!
  • Tax Credit Eligible: ✅ (get 30% of the appliance and installation cost off on your taxes, up to $2,000)
  • Total heat output? The nominal (i.e. theoretical) heat output is 75,000 BTU. The realistic max heat output is 51,616 BTU/h

Bad news first... what do people dislike about the Heat Commander?

  • Made in Belgium and not the United States. If you're looking for American made, this isn't the product. That said, the Belgian quality is strong.
  • Only burns wood. Some stoves can handle coal and or pellets as well. This furnace is only rated to burn wood.
  • Have to rake ash to the ash grate. Some older units automatically cycle the ash to the ash drawer so the only thing you have to do is add wood. With this unit, you have to rake the coals over the grate so the ashes fall through to the ash drawer (most people don't mind too much though).

Here's what people do like:

  • Much cheaper than other cast iron stoves. You can get other good stoves for sure, but generally with cast iron you should expect to pay well over what you can get the Cape Town for.
  • High efficiency. Wayyy more efficient than old wood furnaces, and easier to get a fire started as well.
  • Knowledgeable support. I've talked to Alain, Jonathan, Kenneth and lots of other folks on the team and they're always a huge help. Easy to get ahold of and knowledgeable.

A Few Other Options

We don't carry any of these stoves, but I wanted to mention them in case the Drolet Cape Town doesn't work for you. P.S. I know that it's extremely difficult to tell from pictures of the wood stoves whether or not it vents out the back. It's annoying and makes figuring it out take a ton of time; hopefully this will help.

  • MF Fire Nova (1 or 2)
  • Jotul F600
  • Lopi Leyden
  • Vermont Castings Defiant
  • Pacific Energy Alderlea T5

There are quite a few more out there, but hopefully this will get you started. Best of luck!

How I Chose this Back Vented Wood Stove

Honestly, there are limited rear venting wood stove options. That narrowed things down considerably for me.

Why Should You Trust My Opinion on Wood Stoves?

Great question! Since starting work at Renovation Reserve, I've had to learn more about wood burning products than I ever thought I would. I've been lucky enough to talk directly to manufacturers and have them answer tons of random questions about wood burning products. While I don't know everything, I am studying for my NFI certification and have loved every moment of this wood burning journey.

More articles

You might also like this article on indoor wood furnaces. Take a look!

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