Pennington Wood Pellets Review

pennington wood pellets
Pennington Wood Pellet Fuel

Pennington wood pellets are made by Pennington Seed. Pennington is well-known for grass seed, fertilizer, bird seed, and related products for the home and garden. The company has a long track record of supplying products to big box stores like Walmart and Home Depot. This nationwide network means you can find Pennington wood pellet fuel in many places across the country. Unlike Pennington, it’s common for most wood pellet manufacturers to remain regional. They supply local populations with pellets made from locally sourced forest products.

Staying regional helps smaller manufacturers save on transportation costs. A great deal of the total cost of a bag of wood pellets is the cost of the fuel it takes to deliver them, and to bring the raw materials to the factory that makes them. Pennington is a part of the Central Garden and Pet Company, which serves the entire United States from 10 regional supply hubs. That makes it possible for Pennington to compete on a nationwide basis with dozens of local pellet manufacturers. Let’s see how the quality of Pennington Wood Pellet Fuel measures up against other brands.

Pennington Wood Pellets: The Wood Pellet Facts

Hardwood or Softwood?

Pennington Wood Pellet Fuel makes a point to label their bags as containing “premium oak hardwood.” The term “premium pellet” is used by the Pellet Fuels Institute to mean that a tested sample of the pellet contains less than 1 percent ash by volume. Calling the logs premium simply indicates high quality logs are used in the manufacture of the pellets. That’s not a useful description of the pellets.

Pennington Wood pellets are a premium pellet, made from hardwood trees.

Heat Produced

pennington wood pellets heat chartHomeowners who burn firewood for heat know hardwood logs outperform softwood logs. With only a few exceptions, hardwood is denser than softwood, and the denser the firewood, the more heat it will produce. That is not the case with wood pellets. Some of the hottest burning pellets are made from 100 percent softwood. Other high-performing brands are made from various blends of hardwoods and softwoods. It’s not possible to simply look for hardwood or softwood on the label of wood pellets and draw any conclusions about the amount of heat each pound of wood pellets will contain.

The amount of heat wood pellets produces depends on many factors. Some of the factors are how the pellets are handled and stored after they’re produced and sold. However, when different brands are tested under similar circumstances, Pennington wood pellets were found to be in about the middle of the pack of 4 dozen brands for producing usable heat. Check our handy chart to see how Pennington wood pellets stack up to the hottest and coolest pellet brands.

Ash Produced

pennington wood pellets ash chartAnother important factor when purchasing wood pellets is the amount of ash the pellets produce. While all premium pellets produce less than 1 percent ash when burned properly, consumers should understand that 1 percent of a 40-pound bag is a lot of ash. If you’re burning wood pellets as your primary heat source, choosing a low-ash brand can save you a lot of stove cleaning over a heating season.

Pennington wood pellets are slightly worse than average for ash waste. They have been tested to produce about .625 percent ash per pound. See our handy chart to see how that stacks up against the competition.


Pellet prices vary a lot depending on the retailer and the time of year. Pennington Wood Pellet Fuel is sold by large discount stores like Walmart, and is priced competitively with any discount brand. Most Walmarts and other big box stores advertise a per-bag price, but if you contact the store, they’ll quote you a discounted price if you purchase an entire ton.

The Final Word on Pennington Wood Pellets

Pennington wood pellets are a good choice if you’re looking to save money, and don’t care too much about high performance and low ash. Because big box stores don’t specialize in products like wood pellets, it is worth your while to visit the store before ordering to determine how the pellets have been stored. If the pellets are out in the weather, and the packaging is damaged, you might want to look for another supplier. Otherwise, your Pennington wood pellets should be just fine in your pellet stove or furnace.

Have you used Pennington Wood Pellet Fuel? We’d love to hear about your experience in the comments!

28 thoughts on “Pennington Wood Pellets Review”

  1. Pingback: Maine Woods Pellets Review - Wood Pellet Facts

  2. Hello Joanna- Thanks for reading Wood Pellet Facts.

    Wood pellets are 100-percent wood, usually common softwood and hardwood species. They don’t have any food value, but they’re not poisonous or anything like that. They’re dried to very low moisture, so if they’re ingested, they’re bound to swell up. It would basically be like chewing on a log or wood chip for an animal.

  3. I was wondering how to know if wood pellets contain any walnut/black walnut wood? I am looking to purchase wood pellets to use as animal bedding. The only difference I can find (besides price) between “fuel pellets” and the “bedding pellets” is that bedding pellets are pine and fuel pellets seem to only say “premium”. However, bedding pellets seem to be a lot more expensive and harder to find. My only concern is if there is any walnut or black walnut wood in the hardwood or “premium” pellets that aren’t labeled for bedding. Thank you!

  4. Hello Katey- Thanks for reading Wood Pellet Facts.

    The “premium” label on the labels refers to how much ash is produced when the pellet is burned, so it won’t help you with your problem.

    It is possible for you to shop around and get 100% softwood pellets. These pellets won’t necessarily be pine. They will probably be a mix of trees like spruce, pine, and fir. They shouldn’t have any hardwood like walnut in them.

    The most popular brands of hardwood pellets are blends of hardwood and softwood species. Other brands are 100% hardwood. Others are 100% softwood. Some pellet companies produce some of each type. If you look around for pellets made by Okanagan, LaCrete, Spruce Pointe, you’ll find 100% softwood, usually made from fir trees. There are many other brands. Any bag labeled 100% softwood should be OK for what you need.

  5. Hello Heath- Thanks for visiting Wood Pellet Facts.

    Pennington pellets aren’t a good choice for pellet smokers. They are hardwood pellets, but pellet smokers use hardwood species that lend some flavor to the finished product. That’s why you’ll find pellets for pellet smokers made from trees like apple, pear, and hickory. Even oak pellets give red meat a bit of a tang. The hardwoods in regular pellets are usually from trees like poplar or maple that don’t have much aromatic quality, and simply produce heat.

  6. worst pellets i have ever used.large chunks of ash,low heat the bag says that it is clean burning with little ash. this is a lie. these pennington wood pellets are more work this year than the past 15 years. is there a warranty? please get back to me.

  7. Hello Marcel- Thanks for reading and leaving a comment at Wood Pellet Facts.

    Pennington pellets are mostly sold here in Maine in big box stores like Sam’s Club. They’re fairly inexpensive, but not high performers in any category. I don’t know of any warranty that applies to any brand of pellet, but many large retailers will let you return unopened bags for any reason. It’s worth a try.

  8. I live in lumberton nj 08048 and would like to use your pellets in my woodburning pellet stove,…is there a store near me that sells your pellets,….thank you g thompson

  9. I have used Pennington Hardwood Pellets before, But this year I have had more sawdust the past. I had to use a sifter to get the dust-out. In 1 ton of pellets, I got a 5-gallon bucket of sawdust

  10. My bag didn’t mention oak hardwood but wood blend. Burns good, good heat but is really dusty when being poured into stove. I usual use a different brand that I have used for years, but I run short and had to buy this brand. My regular brand has a very fine ash compared to these. The ash looks like it has been rained on.

  11. Hello Michael- Thanks for visiting Wood Pellet Facts. Pennington pellets are kiln-dried. As I understand it, that reduces, but does not completely eliminate the phenol problem common with regular wood pellets when used as cat litter. You can contact the manufacturer directly for more information.

  12. Hello Bob- Thanks for offering our readers the benefits of your experience with Pennington wood pellets.

    In our experience, the timing and location where you purchase pellets has a lot to do with how much sawdust you find in a bag of pellets. If pellets are moved around a lot, both over the road and in warehouses, they have a tendency to start to break down into smaller pieces, which makes more sawdust. We’ve found that end of season bargains on wood pellets tend to have bags of pellets that are pretty beat up, for instance. We’ve also found more holes in bags at the bottom of the pallets when buying old pellets.

  13. buy 60 to 80 bags a year. the last 3 bags I have opened have been nothing but dust. Can’t put them in the pellet stove. quality control is non existent. pellets are stored in a dry building. however I notice when I purchased they were being stored outside. no way to be reimbursed. I am out quite a few dollars. going back to buying purheat pellets..they also come in a clear bag.

  14. Hi Renee- Thanks for visiting Wood Pellet Facts, and giving our readers your review of Pennington wood pellets.

    In our experience, bags of pellets that have been stored too long, and moved often, display the kind of pulverization you’re describing. Sometimes retailers buy the remainders of last year’s pellet supply, store them all summer, and then try to sell them during the next heating season.

    In your case, it may be the retailer, not the manufacturer who is responsible for the sorry condition of your pellets. It’s a shame you can’t return them for a refund.

    You’ve highlighted an interesting point. Pellet brands with clear bags make it easier to see if the pellets are in good shape.

  15. I bought Green supreme pallets from Lowe’s this year and they were crap real high Ash on my next pallet I bought Pennington’s natural heat pellets and I love them low Ash good heat

  16. Hello Keno- Welcome to Wood Pellet Facts. Thanks for offering our readers your review of Pennington wood pellets and Green Supreme wood pellets. “Low ash good heat” is what we’re all looking for in a pellet. Glad to hear you were able to find a pellet that gives you both.

  17. I am totally unsatisfied with this brand. After about 45 mins the glass is black 18 to 20 hours the bowl is full of dirty ass and burnt pellets and starting to go up the shoot of the pellet dispenser. Worst pellets ever in 20 years of having a pellet stove.

  18. I bought a house 12 yrs ago with a wood pellet stove. I have always used Pennington Wood Pellets with very much satisfaction UNTIL this year. I am very disappointed in the same pellets I have always bought. This year there is so much ash that my stove burns way too hot and fast, burns up a bag in no time and turns the inside of the stove black after one use. They are TERRIBLE this year! What happened?? The season is nearly over but next fall I will look everywhere I can for a different brand of pellets. The quality of everything has declined while the price goes up. That is exactly what has happened with your pellets. NOT happy.

  19. Hello Linda- Thanks for visiting Wood Pellet Facts, and for offering our readers the benefit of your experience with Pennington Wood Pellets.

    We’ve also noticed a change in the quality of some brands of pellets in the last year or so. It’s unclear if the manufacturers are using different feedstocks (types of wood) or if the pellets have been stored incorrectly, or stored for long periods of time and then sold. Whenever we find bags with a lot of fines (sawdust) in the bags, we assume that the pellets have been hanging around in warehouses for too long, and have been sort of pulverized by being moved around too many times. Pellets exposed to too much humidity sometimes exhibit the same problems.

  20. We have used our wood pellet stove for 11 years now, and have never had a problem until this year. We set up the stove the same every year, but this year, the is burning the pellets faster and will shut down once it runs out of pellets (fire can’t keep up)..We turn up the auger speed to allow more pellets to be dumped, but the result is more ash, black build up on the glass with less heat..Planning on calling the Manager tomorrow of the Farm store we bought them from..I’ll be returning 140 bags!

  21. Have used Pennington pellets last 2 years. 5 tons counting this year 23/24. Consistent quality. Very Dirty. Have to clean area and outside the stove every day because of extreme dust in air when pouring into hopper. Burns Blacked glass residue which can’t be removed. Also Bag quality poor! Bags tear easily when being transported. Price is only good thing about this pellet. Keep looking for a replacement but hard to find considering everything. Price, availability, dirt, and storage of where buying.

  22. I have always used a different brand of pellets but they were out so I bought these and they are the worst! Full of dust, wood splinters, tiny pieces like crumbs. Pellets themselves are very small and so many are just crumbs that they burn so fast and the pellet stove runs out of pellets during the night. I have been burning pellets for a good 20 years and have never had such horrible pellets!

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