Customer Testimonials

Take some time to see what some of our satisfied customers have to say about us and the products we sell.

Jeff AndersonHibbing, MN

Kim PrestonDuluth, MN Wood & Outdoor Wood Boiler

This is my 3rd heating season with my Portage & Main BL 2840 – it looks and functions as good as new. While the Duluth (MN) winters are variable, they are always cold. As we approach the end of this heating season, I’m happy to report that I still have ample wood in the wood shed – see picture. The 2840 is our primary heat source for our 1700 SF house with full basement plus attached garage. Our installation includes a plate heat exchanger (very efficient) to interface to our in-floor, hydronic system. Typically, we stoke the boiler in the morning and then again in the evening with just enough wood for 12 hours or so. Our 2840 is easy on the wood pile compared to our last boiler! While I always look forward to the spring warm up, I have to admit that I miss the boiler stoking ritual when it comes time to shut down the 2840 for the season. I highly recommend Strawbale Farms, Portage & Main Boilers.

Tom Bitney, Stone ServicesChippewa Falls Wisconsin

The neighbor and I both owned Taylor boilers. He knew mine wore out and I was thinking of purchasing a new one. He stopped by this February not knowing that I had purchased and installed a Portage & Main boiler in September. He could hardly believe that I had bought a new boiler because “Your woodpile looks the same as it did in fall and mine is down to half!

John AndersonMondovi, Wisconsin

I purchased a BL 2840 in 2015 for our farm to replace the Empyre Pro 200 gasification boiler. I was pleased with the performance of the Empyre over the last three heating seasons but it wasn’t large enough for our needs with the addition of the farm shop. The BL 2840 is required to heat a drafty old farmhouse, 3000 sq ft. and a small farm shop, 800 sq ft. with in floor heat. Dave is well-informed about Portage & Main and helped with our needs for the farm and budget. I was concerned the BL 2840 may be too small but those concerns were quickly diminished. I am quite satisfied with the performance. On the coldest, windy days in Buffalo County -25 nights -10 days it kept the shop at 55 and the house at 72. It holds a 12 plus hour burn cycle on the coldest days. It is comparable to the efficiency of the gasification boiler yet heats more area and requires significantly less maintenance then did the Empyre. Ash is kept to a minimum reflecting on its efficiency. In addition, this year I burn a combination of mostly green wood mixed with some dry. The Portage & Main allows for this flexibility with a busy farm schedule whereas other gasification boilers do not! Price on the 2840 is lower than the Empyre, yet, I state with confidence the construction and ease of maintenance of the Portage & Main is superior. I would not hesitate to recommend Dave and Portage & Main Wood Boilers to anyone interested.

Kathy FredericksSpringbrook, Wisconsin

I have had my Portage and Main boiler for several months so I have not had much time to assess. I’ve had two Central Boilers in the past one lasting 11 years, the last one 14. I did not enjoy the ash removal system in those nor the daily addition of Ashtroll. The care of this is more streamlined. I do believe I’m using less wood which is great because I wasn’t fond of heaving around great quantities of that either. My purchase went as smoothly as possible. I looked on one day and on day two, the stove was installed in four hours with a minimum amount of mess. Dave and installers were extremely helpful, efficient and personable. My experience with Strawbale Farms Portage & Main boilers has been positive and I expect that will continue.

Adam and Kathy PollardVulcan, Michigan

Dave, my husband Adam and I would like to tell you how much we have enjoyed our Portage and Main boiler. I had made a bet with Adam and his father that they would not have the boiler installed, working, and yard back to normal by Michigan’s opening day of rifle season. I’m happy to say I lost the bet and we are loving our cozy warm house and Adam appreciated his heated shop even more by the deadline! Strawbale Farms was great to work with and answered any and all questions we had. Adam built a greenhouse this winter, so we are also heating that area with the boiler. We appreciate your help and are thankful everything went so smooth! We look forward to many years of comfort because of our Portage & Main boiler!

Derrick HansenLuck Wisconsin

I would like to thank you for helping us make our decision to change from an indoor forced air woodstove to our BL 2840. Our wood consumption burning indoors was roughly 8 to 11 cords a year. We burn roughly the same amount per year with our BL 2840, (now including hot water), with half the work! We used to have to load the basement throughout the heating season. We used to have to remove ash and clean the stove indoors making a huge mess no matter what precautions we took. We used to have to clean three stories of chimney flue, going up a 12/12 pitched roof with eight chimney brush extensions. With our old farmhouse, and despite insulation and ventilation improvements to the roof, ice dams would still form below the chimney, no longer with our BL 2840 installed 125 feet from the house! We handle the wood far less than we used to. We don’t have to split the wood down so fine. I used to never burn softwoods like box elder in the indoor stove. Now we are improving the forest by getting rid of it, and mixing it with seasoned hardwood to stretch out are covered and stacked cordwood. Throughout the winter, I now simply go out and cut dead standing Elm and dump it right in front of the BL 2840. The boiler is industrial grade, easy to use, and we plan to have it in use for at least 30 years or until we can’t cut firewood anymore, whichever comes first. We take a lot of pride in our BL 2840 and look forward to adding subfloor heat in our new shop.

Lon PetersonFoxboro Wisconsin

I bought my Portage & Main BL 2840 from Dave and Shari in February 2015 and couldn’t be happier. I saved over three cords of wood over my previous boiler. Not only saving on wood but my electric bill went down also. It took less wood to achieve the same comfort level. The boiler kept the water temperature up with less wood. I think it’s the best out there!

Troy Dahlgren, Dahlgren ConstructionHugo Minnesota

Thank you Strawbale Farms, the BL 2840 is awesome! Have no trouble keeping the kids a warm 72 with 5000 square-foot house. The first year I had it running we use 90 gallons of LP for a 13 month period. This runs cooktop, dryer and on-demand water heater. The neighbor used 800 gallons of LP with half the house and 68 on the thermostat.

Mark and Andrea Nyseth StrumWisconsin

The Portage & Main BL 2840 we purchased from Strawbale Farms is a great unit. This is our third year running it and the performance has been 100% accurate. We previously owned a Woodmaster 4400 and the Portage & Main is a far better boiler in my opinion. It burns hotter, cleaner, a lot less wood and very easy to maintain. I wish we would have purchased a Portage & Main to start with. It is a very high quality built unit. We are 100% satisfied with our BL 2840 and the great customer service. We would definitely highly recommend Strawbale Farms and Portage & Main Boilers.

Randy VolkAndover Minnesota

2016 — 2017 is my seventh year using the Portage & Main ML 36 outdoor wood boiler. This is the first wood boiler that I have had so I don’t have anything to compare it to. I heat my home, 3700 sq ft. and my shop, 2900 sq ft. with 16 foot ceilings. The boiler has worked very well for me. On the coldest nights, minus -20 and below, it will go a good 12 hours on a fill of red Oak. The electronics have been trouble-free and worked flawlessly. I am in the tree service business and can say I burn a lot less wood than some of my customers with other boiler brands. I have had a great experience with Dave and Shari at Strawbale Farms. I highly recommend them.

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