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Review of Fireplace Xtrordinair:Travis Industries --- Model 44 Elite -- Fireplace burning Wood only

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Review of Fireplace Xtrordinair:Travis Industries --- Model 44 Elite -- Fireplace burning Wood only
Installation Type: Wood/Coal - Freestanding into metal Chimney
Date Reviewed: 2005-12-08 14:12:06

Satisfaction Ratings from 5 stars (best) to 1 star (worst)
Satisfaction with unit = ✰✰✰✰
Satisfaction with dealer = ✰✰✰✰
Satisfaction with manufacturer = ✰✰✰✰

Other Information about the Home and Stove
Room Size (Sq ft): 500 | House Size (Sq feet): 2700
Bought in 2005 , Price Paid: 4000.00
Location : Reno, NV 89501, USA
Purchased from: Select Store Type -

Caluwe Hydronic Wood and Pellet stoves
Likes: Big opening, can get long pieces of wood in. Cranks heat when its going. Real clean burning unit, very little smoke is emitted when cat is engaged. Also seems to leave very little creosote buildup...burned 4 stove cords last winter and chimney was still nearly clean.

Dislikes: No all night burn, 3-5 hours max but it does hold coals for up to 24 hours though not hot emough at that time to reignite kindling.
The grate is terrible and the little undersized andiron/horizontal bar is useless, its not tall enough to hold the wood in when you stack it up to get a long hot burn...always falls against the doors and then you need 3 hands, one to open one door, one to hold the other door closed and a third hand to push the wood back in. We actually had a fully burning piece roll out onto the floor while we tried to load more wood.
Posi-pressure is a good idea but does not work well in a 2700ft2 wide open floor plan 2 story house and 2 story open great room, most of the house is interconnected with large spaces and the blower is just not strong enough to overcome air leakage.

Comments: Chimney air comes from the crawl space. No cold air intrusion problems. We did get better posi pressure when we switched from using crawl space air to heating actual outside air but still cannot get pressure positive enough to overcome leaks and this is supposedly a tight house. Pretty darned expensive but cheaper than a masonary unit and heats better...
I wish I could get Posi-pressure to work...have thought about another fan to increase flow, anyone else try this?

* Dates that reviews were submitted were not recorded prior to Nov. 2004