Wood Stove Product Comparison: 3kW Size

March 7, 2019

The 3kW size is the perfect size for small to medium size spaces.  For medium sized RVs and shorter buses in moderately cold climates and small tiny homes and cabins, a stove in the 3kW range can provide primary or supplemental heat and ambiance through the Winter without taking up too much space.  A stove that’s just the right size will allow you to burn longer, cleaner, more efficient fires, and can make it possible to burn your stove earlier in the Fall and later in the Spring without overheating your space.

In this article, we provide an apples-to-apples comparison of small stoves in the 3kW range, (approximately 8,530 – 11,942 BTU/hr).  Because the BTU claims of some manufacturers vary wildly relative to their actual performance (why?), we've grouped stoves based on which ones work best for small spaces within this BTU range (according to the Tiny Wood Stove BTU Calculator), regardless of the manufacturer's claimed output.

tiny-space-creations-dwarf-3kw-van

Warning: Most BTU calculators are designed to overestimate your heating needs, which can result in a stove that's so large, you can't burn it without overheating your space.  If you're not sure which size stove you need for your small space, run through the Tiny Wood Stove BTU Calculator, which is specifically designed for sizing wood stoves for small spaces.

  • Price: $795, free shipping on orders over $1,000
  • Dimensions: 17” H x 10.25” W x 8.5” D
  • Flue: Standard 4″, Top or Rear Exit
  • Weight: 75 lbs
  • Construction: Welded steel body, cast door and fire box, refractory firebrick
  • Claimed BTU Output: 3kW 10,236 BTU/hr
  • Air Controls: Separate Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary Controls
  • Glass: 5.75″ W x 6.75″ H
  • Firebox Dimensions: 6″ H x 8.5″ W x 7″ D
  • Available Accessories: Direct Air, Tall Legs, Spring Handle
  • Finish: Painted Flat Black, Optional Enamel Door, Optional DIY Paint Colors
  • UL/CSA: No
  • EPA: No
  • Notes: The Dwarf 3kW is a more full-featured stove than other options in this size.  Three separate, tight air controls allow for better control of burn rates.  An ash pan and mechanical riddling grate are included in this model.  The rear exit option provides a large top cooking surface.  Rectangular profile (wider than deep) provides the largest fire viewing window available in this size.  The 4″ flue size allows for use of a wall exit where needed.
  • Manual: Download here

Cubic Mini Grizzly

Grizzly
  • Price: $649 CAD, plus shipping
  • Dimensions: 15” H x 12” W x 11” D
  • Flue: Non-Standard 3″, Top Only
  • Weight: 34 lbs
  • Construction: Steel, Vermiculite Brick
  • Claimed BTU Output: 8,000 – 18,000 BTU/hr
  • Air Controls: Separate Primary and Secondary Controls
  • Glass: 6″ W x 4″ H
  • Firebox Dimensions: 5″ H x 7″ W
  • Available Accessories: Double-Wall Pipe, Wall Mount, Floor Mount, Fresh Air Intake, Heat Shields, Top Roasting Attachment, Miniature Tool Kit
  • Finish: Painted Flat Black
  • UL/CSA: No
  • EPA: No
  • Notes: Cubic Mini specializes in very small, lightweight, basic stoves for tiny spaces.  The Grizzly is notable for its super compact size and light weight, as well as its available wall mount option.  Cubic Mini’s flue size is slightly smaller than standard, so an adapter may be needed to connect it to standard flue parts.  Needs a relatively straight flue system to function—wall exits are not recommended.  See our guide to Cubic Mini flue systems here.
  • Manual: Operating Instructions available here

Pipsqueak

Pipsqueak stove review
  • Price: $595, plus shipping
  • Dimensions: 18″ H x 8″ W x 7″ D
  • Flue: 3″ Rear Only
  • Weight: 45 lbs
  • Construction: Cast Iron
  • Claimed BTU Output: 3kW 10,236 BTU/hr
  • Air Controls: Primary Air, Flue Damper Required
  • Glass: 7.3″ H x 3.3″ W
  • Firebox Dimensions: 6″ x 11″
  • Available Accessories: None
  • Finish: Painted Black
  • UL/CSA: No
  • EPA: No
  • Notes: The charming design and the cook top makes the Pipsqueak a favorite for tiny space designers.  Unfortunately, we’ve found the Pipsqueak’s air controls can make it a bit hard to control, so we don’t recommend it for serious heating, but it could be a good addition to a small space for ambiance or recreation.  We’re not aware of a distributor who sells the Pipsqueak in North America, so we’ve linked the only online retailer we could find to the left.
  • Manual: Unavailable
  • Price: $1,235 plus shipping
  • Dimensions: 11″ H x 12″ W x 9.5″ D
  • Flue: Oval 4″, Top Only
  • Weight:
  • Construction: Cast Iron
  • Claimed BTU Output: 7,500 – 18,000 BTU (?)
  • Air Controls: Single Sliding Damper, Pipe Damper Required
  • Glass: None
  • Firebox Dimensions: 9″ W x 8″ H x 7″ D
  • Available Accessories: Pipe and Fittings, Alcohol “Drop-In” Burner, Stainless Shielding
  • Finish: Plain Iron or Optional Porcelain Enamel
  • UL/CSA: Yes
  • EPA: Yes, and WA State
  • Notes: One of the few EPA/WA State certified small stoves available.  Because these stoves are made individually by hand, lead times can be long, so plan ahead!
  • Manual: Download here

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