First my computer went kaput. Then the pellet stove stopped working (right after we purchased additional pellets...of course). Needless to say I have missed both. Especially the pellet stove. The house is not as comfortable as it has been all winter. And too, the furnace runs a lot more now (even though it is warmer outside now than it was during the winter months). The pellet stove makes more of a difference than even I had given it credit for.
Apparently the kind of pellet stove we installed has had a couple of issues. Fortunately, we have only had trouble with the igniter. We have ordered a new part but with no guarantee of when it will come in. When we placed the order for a replacement igniter the salesman informed us that the manufacturer has discontinued our stove. So we will be ordering additional parts to have on hand.
On the flip side, though, the solar system is working quiet well. In fact, with the bright sunny days we have had of late, the system warmed to maximum capacity (and it's only March)! This morning we discovered the delay setting on our dishwasher, which means we can load it up and set the timer to take advantage of the solar heated water later in the day, even if we are not home. Cool, huh?
The electric bill came in yesterday...and our usage continues to shrink. In March of 2008 we utilized 522 kilowatts. And in March 2009 we utilized 437 kilowatts. I am still anxious to see what June brings. I will keep you posted!