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Gardus SootEater Pellet Stove Cleaning Kit: An Honest Review

February 21st, 2024 | 4 min. read

By Louis Greubel

A drawing of a SootEater Pellet Stove Cleaning Kit being used to clean a wood pellet stove's chimney flue.

Regular maintenance and cleaning are integral to keeping a pellet stove performing at its best. It can be hard to find the right pellet stove cleaning kit, though. In an e-commerce world, there are lots of choices out there, and even with customer reviews, finding the right one can be overwhelming.

At HY-C, we manufacture the SootEater pellet stove cleaning kit under our Gardus brand name. And in this guide, we’re going to take an in-depth look at SootEater for pellet stoves.

We’ll cover what’s included in the kit, as well as some pros and cons to keep in mind before you buy. By the time you’re finished here, you’ll have all the information you need to decide whether or not a SootEater pellet stove cleaning kit is a good choice for your heating appliance.

What Is the SootEater Pellet Stove Cleaning Kit?

Similar to our SootEater for masonry chimneys, the pellet stove iteration of SootEater is a rotary cleaning tool. It attaches to a cordless drill and utilizes its spinning force to remove soot and ash from the interior of your stove pipe, keeping your stove safe and efficient.

SootEater for pellet stoves comes with 8 mm nylon extension rods that screw together to reach up through the length of your stove pipe. After attaching one of the brush heads, just power up your drill, and the spinning force will knock soot down into your firebox.

What’s Included in the SootEater Pellet Stove Cleaning Kit?

The contents of the SootEater pellet stove cleaning kit against a white background

SootEater for pellet stoves comes with a few tools to make stove cleaning easy, including:

  • 3 flexible three-foot extension rods
  • A brush head with a 3-inch diameter
  • A brush head with a 4-inch diameter
  • A long-handle stove cleaning brush
  • A rod separator tool

Be sure to note that the kit does not include a drill. If your stove pipe is longer than nine feet, additional extension rods are sold separately. Replacement brush heads are also available.

Three Pros of the SootEater Pellet Stove Cleaning Kit

1. It Helps Save Money

Maintenance is expensive. Car maintenance, HVAC maintenance, plumbing, electrical work — it can all add up pretty quickly. Chimney cleaning is just another cost that’s ready to burn a hole in your wallet season after season.

With SootEater, though, you won’t have to worry about hiring a chimney sweep. A SootEater pellet stove cleaning kit costs around just $40 at retail, and you can use it indefinitely. You’ll have to buy replacement brush heads every once in a while, but they’re only about $9 — much less than paying hundreds for a chimney sweep.

2. It Includes Two Brush Head Sizes

Two replacement heads for a SootEater Pellet Stove Cleaning Kit displayed against a white background.

Not all pellet stove pipes are created equally. And while their sizes do tend to be less varied than chimney flue sizes, there are still a few different pipe diameters out there. As a result, it can be tough to find the right tool to clean your stove pipe.

Luckily, SootEater for pellet stoves comes with two different brush head sizes: one with a 3-inch diameter, and one with a 4-inch diameter. Most pellet stove pipes are either three or four inches wide, so the SootEater pellet stove cleaning kit is nearly universally applicable to all pellet stove pipe installations.

3. It Includes a Pellet Stove Cleaning Brush

The black scrub brush included in the SootEater Pellet Stove Cleaning Kit displayed against a white background.

Your stove pipe isn’t the only thing that gets dirty when you burn pellet fuel. Ash and soot tend to get everywhere, and the door to your stove and the stove’s firebox are no exception. Thankfully, the SootEater pellet stove cleaning kit includes a long-handle pellet stove cleaning brush to clean your whole stove.

The brush is bent in the middle at a slight angle, allowing you to scrub hard-to-reach spots inside your pellet stove. The end opposite the brush head contains a scraper, too, should you come across any stubborn debris stuck inside the stove.

Three Cons of the SootEater Pellet Stove Cleaning Kit

1. It Connects Via Threaded Rods

A close-up of the threaded connector rods of a SootEater Pellet Stove Cleaning Kit displayed against a white background.

We make a few different rotary cleaning tools that connect via nylon or polypropylene rods, and they utilize one of two connection styles: button-linking or threaded rods. The button linking method allows for the most secure connection, allowing you to run your drill in either direction for precise, thorough cleaning.

SootEater for pellet stoves utilizes threaded rods instead of button-linking connections. This connection style works fine, but it’s not uncommon for the rods to come unscrewed as you run your drill. You can avoid this by screwing them together extra-tight, or running your drill on low to medium power.

2. It Has Limited Reach

SootEater for chimneys has an 18-foot reach. SootEater for chimney liners extends 24 feet (and even up to 33 feet in our European version). In the SootEater product family, the pellet stove version is dead-last in reach at just nine feet — half of the chimney cleaning version.

This isn’t a huge deal, as pellet stove pipes tend to be much shorter than chimney flues and liners. And, if you need some additional length, we do offer a 6-foot extension kit to offer 15 feet of total reach. Just be aware that the extra rods will run you about $18 to $25.

3. It Requires a Drill

The thing that makes SootEater work so well may also be its biggest con for some. If you don’t have a drill, SootEater probably won’t work very well for cleaning your pellet stove.

If you don’t have a drill and you still want to use a SootEater, the good news is that you don’t need an expensive drill for the kit to work well. We’ve tested all of our rotary cleaning tools on drills of varying qualities, and they work virtually the same with any drill. A $25 – $30 drill will run SootEater just fine — and it’s still cheaper than a chimney sweep.

Should You Get a SootEater Pellet Stove Cleaning Kit?

It’s important to keep your pellet stove as clean as possible as often as possible. That’s why choosing the right pellet stove cleaning kit is so important.

So — is SootEater for pellet stoves the right one for you?

That depends. If you don’t own a drill, that may disqualify you out of the gate.

If your stove pipe is longer than nine feet, you’ll need to buy the extension kit (and if it’s longer than 15 feet, you’ll need to buy multiple extension kits).

But if you have a drill and your pipe is the right length and width, SootEater may be exactly what you need. It will allow you to clean your own stove pipe without the need for a chimney sweep season after season to maintain a safe, efficient, high-performing stove.

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Louis Greubel

Louis earned a bachelor's degree in English with a focus in rhetoric and composition from St. Louis University in 2017. He has worked in marketing as a content writer for over 5 years. Currently, he oversees the HY-C Learning Center, helping HY-C subject matter experts to share their decades of home solution products experience with homeowners and sales partners across the country.