Woodstoves have always been popular with a certain segment of the population, but these days there has been an upsurge wood stove used for a variety of reasons. Chief among the reasons are increased concern with our environmental impact and the current economic realities. These are great reasons, but if you do go this route, you also want something that fits you home and lifestyle. One of the most popular style these days is a soapstone stove, which has distinct advantages in both style and efficiency.
So, what is soapstone wood stove anyway? It is basically a traditional iron stove with a outside shell of soapstone. The reason for doing this is to take advantage of the heat retaining and radiating qualities of soapstone. A soapstone stove will stay hot, and heating your home consistently, even hours after the fire has out. So, the more soapstone the better. You will want a nice thick layer of soapstone on your stove, say 2 inches or more. While this will cost you more, you will see the advantages in the performance of the stove.
Given the popularity of soapstone woodstoves, you will have no problem in finding a number of quality brands and models to choose from. Of course you will need to do your homework and check out the specifications every stove. There are lots of resources of impartial reviews, but make sure they really are impartial and not written by someone who has a financial interest in your buying a particular stove. Some great sources for real life customer feedback are sites like Amazon. Of course not all the reviews on any site are trustworthy, so buyer beware.
Once you choose the stove that it right for you, it's time to think about installation. With any type of home heating equipment, not just woodstoves, it pays to get professional help. There are many health, safety, and efficiency concerns that can not be ignored. If you do decide to do the installation yourself, make sure you read up on all the building codes and safety regulations before you start. They are there to keep you and your family safe.