What is the best camper or RV wood stove?
We think there are two stand-out models: the Cubic Mini Wood Stoves and the Dwaft Wood Burning Stoves. Both of these brands manufacture mini camper stoves that are ideal for RVs and other small spaces.
They each have a range of different-sized tiny wood stoves for RVs depending on your square footage, and they’re all pretty affordable. We’ll take a good look at them to see if they are going to be suitable for your ride.
Camper And RV Wood Burning Stove
Cubic Mini Wood Stove
|View Grizzly Mini Wood StoveView CUB Mini Wood Stove|
Dwarf Mini Wood Stove
|View 5kw Dwarf StoveView All Dwarf Stoves|
Pipsqueak Wood Stove
|View On Amazon (UK)View On Ebay (US)|
*Also consider the US made Caboose Tiny Wood Stove.
Are wood stoves good for campers and RVs?
The truth is that they’re not ideal for ALL campers and RVs, especially not for those who are moving around a lot.
If your home on wheels is in a permanent or semi-permanent location, then a mini wood stove could be the ideal solution for heating and cooking. However, if you are on the road every other day, it’s probably a bad idea.
Reasons wood stoves aren’t so great for those on the move:
- You can’t move while the stove is burning
- The chimney pipe needs to be plugged before traveling
- Stoves take a long while to cool down completely
So if you travel a lot in your RV or camper, the Superfastracing Diesel Heater or the Mr Heater Propane Radiant Heater (or another alternative) will likely be the better option.
However, if you park up your home in the same place for weeks, months, or years at a time, you won’t find a better and more comforting heat than you get from a wood stove.
Here is a little bit more info about the Cubic Mini and Dwarf Wood Stoves. I won’t cover the Pipsqueak stove here because it’s difficult (and expensive) to find in the US, but read our Pipsqueak wood stove review for more info if interested.
1. Cubic Mini Wood Stoves For RVs
The Cubic Mini Wood Stoves are the smallest camper stoves for heating and cooking – especially the CUB wood stove!
For all the info you can check out our:
When using good heat shields, these tiny burners don’t need a whole lot of clearance, and they take up a tiny amount of space. They’re easy to install (though use a professional if you have any doubts), and once in they don’t take much to maintain.
Here are the differences between the CUB and Grizzy stoves.
|CUB 1.75 – 4.1 KWh||Grizzly 2.3 – 5.2 KWh|
|Measurements||11” W x 12” H x 10.5” D||13” W x 15” H x 12” D|
|Output||6000 – 14000 BTU||8000 – 18000 BTU|
|Heat Capacity||Up to 200 sq. ft.||Up to 400 sq. ft.|
|Weight||25 lbs||39 lbs|
|Ideal for||Vans, RVs, Campers, Skoolies||RVs, Campers, Skoolies|
The CUB is ideal for small RVs, vans, and travel trailers, while the Grizzly is good for larger RVs, Skoolies, and campers.
The downside with all tiny wood burners for campers is that you do have to keep adding wood to the fire at least every hour or so if you want to keep it going. This means they don’t go well through the night unless you’re getting up every couple of hours.
They are good for cooking on with small pots and pans, but you’ll probably need or want a second camper stove on hand for when you have multiple things cooking.
The Dwarf stoves are better for cooking on because you can vent them from the back giving you the entire top for cooking. The Cubic mini stoves are vented through the top and you need to remove the rail for cooking.
- High quality
- Great performance
- Reduces humidity effectively
- Easy to install
- Often discounted/on sale
- Very small cooktop
- Needs very small pieces of wood
- Have to frequently put wood on the fire
- Requires frequent emptying of ashes
2. Dwarf Mini Wood Stoves For Campers
There’s a lot of good information about the Dwarf mini stoves from Tiny Wood Stove in this video.
Some of the details include:
- Designed for small spaces including tiny homes, school bus conversions, and travel trailers
- They give you freedom from propane
- Wood fires provide dry heat and ambiance
- Tri-burn technology
- Ceramic fire bricks for more radiant heat
- Glass cleaning feature
- Outside air inlet
- Can be used with heat shields or soapstone
- Stove tool and ash pan
- Vent the top or the back for a larger cook space
For such a small stove, it really does have a lot of useful and helpful features. It’s easy to get started and keep running, providing your wood is seasoned and dry.
Here are some of the Dwarf stove specs.
|Dwarf 3kw||Dwarf 4kw||Dwarf 5kw|
|Measurements||17” H x 10.25” W x 8.5” D||19.5” x 12” W x 9” D||22” H x 11” D x 14” W|
|Fuel||Wood and coal||Wood and coal||Wood and coal|
|Output||7500 – 11500 BTU||11000-15000 BTU||14500 – 20000 BTU|
|Heat Capacity||Less than 300 sq. ft.||Less than 500 sq. ft.||Less than 500 sq. ft.|
|Material||Cast iron and steel||Cast iron and steel||Cast iron and steel|
|Ideal for||Vans, RVs, Campers||RVs, travel trailers, skoolies, yurts, tiny houses on wheels||RVs, travel trailers, skoolies, yurts, tiny houses on wheels|
They also have a ‘lite’ version of the 3kw wood stove that is even cheaper than the standard 3kw. It’s basically the same, but it’s missing a few of the bells and whistles.
In this chart, you can see the BTU range of each of the stoves.
There are customization options for the Dwarf stoves as well.
You can add heat shields or soapstone slabs to the side, reducing the amount of clearance space required. There are different colored enamel doors, a wood storage stand, optional cast iron legs, and a top baking stand (only for the 5kW model).
All in all, it’s a very good choice if you’re wanting a heating and cooking stove for your RV.
- High-quality stove (steel body with cast iron door)
- Easy ash cleanout
- Great air control
- High output
- Good support
- larger cook top
- Can be delays in delivery
- Not good for frequent RV traveling
We also have an article comparing the Dwarf and Cubic Mini Stoves in which we found that ultimately the Dwarf Stoves are better, but they do cost a bit more.
RV Wood Stove FAQS
What is the smallest wood-burning stove available?
If not the smallest, the CUB Cubic Mini Wood Stove is one of the smallest wood-burning stoves out there. With dimensions of 11” W x 12” H x 10.5” D it’s exceptionally tiny.
Can you put a small wood stove in a camper?
Yes, most campers and RVs can accommodate a tiny wood stove, but if you’re in doubt, take it to a professional. There are some instances where it is not a good idea.
Can you put a pellet stove in a camper?
There are not many tiny pellet stoves available on the market. The Comfortbilt HP22-N Pellet Stove is one option, but it will be too large for most campers. With 50,000 BTU heat output, it will also be too hot.
Do you need heat shields for an RV wood-burning stove?
Yes, it’s best to use heat shields around a wood stove in an RV or camper. You need to have a large clearance of at least 20 inches without them which will take up too much space. Heat shields bring clearances down to around 2-inches, saving a ton of space.
Can a camper wood stove be vented out a window?
In theory, it could be. However, this is far from ideal. You will lose a lot of heat through the gaps around the vent (unless it’s properly sealed), and you could have bad weather coming in.
Best Camper Stove
The best wood stove for RVs is either the Cubic Mini or Dwarf Stove.
The best one for you depends on your budget, square footage, preferred feature set, and whether or not you’re going to be moving around a lot (or not)!.
The Cubic Mini Stoves are smaller (in particular, the CUB), so if you have a small van then this is probably your best bet.
The Tiny Wood Stove Dwarf has a larger cooktop and there are more options when it comes to choosing the ideal size and kw for your RV or camper.
And if you’re often on the move, a diesel or propane heater might be better.
For larger spaces, check out our Vermont Bun Baker Cookstove review to see if any of those models are suitable for your space. While they’re not designed for RVs and mobile homes, in particular, they don’t put out a huge amount of heat so might work.
Alternatively, check out these other small wood burning stoves for sale!