Many people who are looking to alternatives to gas and electricity for their heat sources are thinking about either wooden pellets or corn stoves. The problem is trying to decide which one to buy because they both have their advantages and disadvantages.
First off you need to contact suppliers or pellets and corn in your area. If for instance, corn isn't easily available but wood pellets are then you should buy a furnace that uses wood pellets. However if you live somewhere that both wood pellets and corn is very easily available then the choice is really yours. There are actually stoves on the market that allow you to burn both types of fuel so have a look at buying one of those.
Then there is the issue of storage. With wood you won't have a problem with rodents however mice of course really love corn so you need to make sure you keep it stored correctly. If you spill any of the corn then it's imperative that you clear it up because you don't want to end up with a rodent problem!
Both types of stoves also require electricity to power the fans and also the feeding system. If you find yourself with a power cut your stove won't work. Unless of course you have some sort of back-up power supply.
You'll also need to clean out the stoves every week because ash will build up. Also, every year it's advisable to have the stove inspected and also cleaned.
With both types of stove you have a hopper that does all the work for you in terms of adding the quantity of pellets and corn into the stove. This is a real luxury if you are used to burning wooden logs where you need to keep checking the stove all the time to make sure you aren't running low. Also, with a corn or pellet stove you can hae it running all night too which is great if there is a really cold winter and you are worried about water pipes freezing.
In many parts of the world corn is actually stock piled due to government grants and such like. So using corn is a great way to use that up and also corn grows very fast unlike trees. When buying corn make sure you buy a good quality grade because this will burn cleanly and hot. Corn that is sold as animal feed is excellent.