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Advice on cheapest DIY install (warning, LONG) new chimney pics

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by tickbitty, Nov 14, 2009.

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  1. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    I suspect a commercial hearth pad might work fine, but don't know this stove except via the somewhat thin-on-details manual.

    Contact Mike at Englander, really. Shoot him a PM - stoveguy2esw or email mholton@englanderstoves.com. You need someone with operating knowledge of this stove.

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  2. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Thanks Be Green. I have sent Mike a PM but hate that I'm so "needy" lol. I hope when he has time he will weigh in and can help me.
    I have calmed myself slightly. If the stove is 6" higher my mantel clearance is closer but still OK. My bottom mantel trim though, which was only 1/2" out of clearance, is now 6.5" out. They don't give an option for a shield on that, but since the mantel shield takes it from 24" down to 12", I am hoping that a "trim shield" - perhaps even a full sized one as wide as the mantel above, should take my trim clearance down from 18" to 12" perhaps?

    So if that's doable, I think mainly I can just find something of an approved material (cement boards, block, etc) in the approximately 26" X 29" footprint of the stove itself (with blower), so it's all raised up and level. Maybe have somebody fabricate a sheet metal cover or molding around the outside of it and paint it black so the board doesn't show. Then throw my giant stove board in front and be good to go? Will have to make a block off plate too since the other one definitely won't work hanging off the ground. But let's hope something like that will work. If not, I am seriously depressed.

    I think if we love this SO much and really feel like we want to work our lives (and house) around the insert, maybe we would consider reworking things, building a hearth, raising the mantel, all that, in another year or two. Right now I just want to get it up and going safely without tearing everything apart. Thanks for responding to my panic.
  3. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Getting some feedback from Englander will help. There may be other options, but it depends. It might be possible to pull up the tiles and put some micore over the substrate, then a layer of cement board, then tiles or your stone slab which looks great for a hearth. Let's see what they say.
  4. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Had one more thought about this. Could I put the insert on legs or a pedestal? I know a lot of inserts are very similar to the freestanding models that have legs etc. Of course if it's OK to do it would probably be cheaper to put it on a stack of concrete paver blocks I guess? (and disguise that with some metal or something?)
    Just a thought. Still thinking away.
  5. 53flyer

    53flyer New Member

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    IRT the 6" raised hearth

    Disclaimer: I'm the last person you should listen to for any sort of definitive answer on this particular topic but...here's my 2 cents-

    1. Was it on a raised hearth in its previous home? I realize you said something about the former owner not doing everything correctly but the pic you have of it doesn't show if it' on a raised hearth or not.

    2. Assuming it was not on a raised hearth: how far out did the floor brick go? I thought you usually got "2 different" front clearance figures (one for a raised hearth and one for level install). I'd be surprised if you couldn't just do a level install as long as your non-combustible floor (with whatever R value req) went out "X" distance by "Y" width where I'd assume X would be something like 18-24" from the insert. If that were the case couldn't you just cut out a little of the wood flooring to accommodate. It actually looks like you already have 20-24" of something that looks like brick in front of the existing fireplace set up.

    Am I way off here?
  6. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    It was actually on a raised hearth in it's last home. But yeah I think that what BeGreen was getting at was that I should try to figure out what "r value" does equal 6" of brick according to Englander, if I am to have a regulation install. There must be a figure that equals it and I guess I just need to know if that's something that can be achieved with my house/floor etc to see if I can modify the floor coverings and etc or if I have to build up. I assume I could block it up to 6" somehow so that I could get her going. It does make sense to me that I can't set a "hot" part of the stove on my tile hearth that has unknown subfloor under it, now that I think of it. I thought stove board might work but I guess stove board is for things on legs and pedestals that ALSO have distance as well as the board. So I will see what Englander thinks. In the meantime this beast sits on a dolly in the dining room. It's HUGE, (570 lbs!)

    ETA My husband doesn't think we can make the stone hearth work at this point. He probably has a point, in that a 600lb stove sitting on a 600lb stone in one spot on the floor might be a little much.
  7. humpin iron

    humpin iron Feeling the Heat

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    If you raise the stove 6", will it still recess into the FP? Most FP back walls curve foreward. Sounds by your writings that you are in over your head. Also what are the "K" requirements for the hearth of this stove? A 6" liner on an 8" stove will most likely smoke when you open the door to refuel, at 14 ft your chimney is right on the line of desired height.

    UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES COMPROMISE THE CLEARANCES.

    You may want to rethink this adventure................................................
  8. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Where in the manual is this six inch raised requirement? I can't find it in the online copy of the manual.

    Edit: OK I found it in the diagram. It would be real interesting to hear what ESW says about that. It is just plain strange.
  9. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Thanks HI. Have remeasured the fireplace and it still fits, yes, height and depth. At least it appears so. Stove is currently on a 5" dolly so we can take off the glass fireplace doors and push it in there to be sure it fits in reality and not just in measurements. This is a pretty tall fireplace. All clearances are still in accord except for the lowest part of the trim below the mantel. The clearance for the actual mantel reads that a mantel shield will take the mantel clearance from 24" to 12". The mantel is outside the 24" clearance regardless, but the narrow bottom trim would be at 12", however I will have a full mantel shield below it anyway. I definitely would not violate clearances.

    Still waiting on information from Englander regarding the K requirements since none are given in the manual. The manual does also say you may scale down to a 6" collar with a liner, but I have asked for info on that as well and IF the folks at Englander don't recommend it for the way the stove drafts I probably wouldn't go that way. I have requests out for quotes on both a 6" or 8" liner but so far I have not heard back.

    I'm certainly not planning to do anything reckless or crazy to make this work, but I am also certain that people have worked through much worse and I don't think this is beyond us to figure out. I thought that posting here would get me more information and better informed options, and it has. We may in the end decide we don't feel like doing a lot of work to make this stove fit or like the look of what we come up with, and decide not to go with this stove. I want to have all the information first though before making any final decisions.

    Sorry if I strike you as ignorant - yes, I am still learning.
  10. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Thank you BB. Ha, it is a teeny bit gratifying to me that I was not the only one to miss it at first glance. I was so busy looking at all the other clearances that I missed that one. I think it really must be about insulation below the stove since the stove sits on the part of the hearth that sticks out. But if that's the case I imagine that there would at least be options for a flush hearth, if that hearth was a solid concrete slab or something, right?

    Someone asked if the stove had air space at the bottom. It does, there is a 2" by 16.5" slot below the ash tray outside the door. But since that's where the blower sits, I'm supposing that it's hot air. Hence wanting it to be elevated a little, I guess.
  11. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    http://www.englandsstoveworks.com/manuals/24-JC.pdf

    It does strike me as odd, if the 6" is real and not diagramatic only, that it is not in the written material. The written says simply

    1. Measure your hearth to ensure it is large enough to accept the unit. Your hearth should be at least thirty-six inches (36”) wide and fourteen inches (14”) from the face of the fireplace to the edge of the hearth.

    2. Inspect your hearth to be sure it is constructed of a noncombustible material such as brick or stone. Do not install this stove on a hearth that is constructed of wood framework that is covered by brick or stone and do not install this unit in a zero (0) clearance fireplace.
  12. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    So, I was just perusing the manual for the current Englander inserts. The hearth requirements read very much the same, and the diagram doesn't have the 6" height on it. It doesn't stick out quite as far but does stick out of the fireplace opening 6" (as opposed to 10" on the model I have.) The funny thing though, about the hearth protection part in this one, is that they give all kinds of mathematical formulas for figuring out the "required" R value, but nowhere I can see actually tells you what that required value is! (unless maybe I was temporarily blinded by the algebra)
  13. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    And when you called the 800 number they said what?
  14. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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    I've seen you mention that you don't have a grinder a few times. Do you have access to a sawzall?

    Matt
  15. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Haven't called the 800 number yet, just tried the email and I know this is a busy time so I am waiting on them. Maybe the call would be faster.

    Don't have a sawzall or a grinder, but I think I may have access to either and or both through local relations. I believe that damper is cast iron, would a sawzall cut through it?
  16. 53flyer

    53flyer New Member

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    If they say 6in is the minimum acceptable but you're still a little concerned about reducing the flue, how about a compromise of 7"?

    Look up above the formulas for something making a comparison to asbestos millboard. One I read said any combustible floor must have protection equivalent to 3/8" asbestos millboard which is has a k factor of .84 and R value of .893. The asbestos ref is for K & R value comparison only as you would obviously not be using it.

    Me too.
  17. drdoct

    drdoct Feeling the Heat

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    No offense to you Tickbitty because I've been exactly where you are now. I'm as cheap as they come. Sometimes in our cheapness we'll spend 500, 3 times instead of just paying the 2000 and getting it over with and done right. I'm the last person on earth to advocate debt (I make Dave Ramsey look like a Discover card salesman), but if I ever move and have to do this again.... I'll just go to the stove store and pick out what I like and want and if it is a hard job doing the chimney then will pay for someone else to do it. I've learned the hard way that worrying and problems take much more off your life which is worth much more than any dollar.

    I suggest you line your chimney with 6" flex or rigid. Don't waste your money with anything larger. Why? Because you are going to find a good epa stove that's a good deal and you'll keep looking for one until you find it. Then you'll keep looking until you upgrade again. When you do find a newer stove it will be a 6" flue and you'll already have it and just slide it in and hook it up.

    Again, no offense... because I've ridden that same horse. You won't be satisfied until you've got a good stove sitting in that hole. This one will get you through and enable you to start working on your wood. Don't be like your neighbor and cut in the summer for this year's wood though. Get a few years ahead and you'll be giving him advice ;-).
  18. pgmr

    pgmr Feeling the Heat

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    That was me on your other thread about raising stove up. The blower is always in a COOL zone. Stove will pull cool air underneath (either with blower or without via natural convection) and exit on the top as warm air. My suggestion on the other post was to do a test burn outside and measure how hot the bottom of the stove actually gets. If it's not above 150-160, then you probably don't need to do any mods to existing hearth, except put stove up on 1" blocks of cement board, tile, etc. for air flow underneath - just for a little peace of mind.
  19. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Thank you very much for your suggestions. 7" might not be a bad idea to have a middle range in case this is not the last stove in this chimney to need that liner. The chimney is plenty big enough for a much bigger one but that damper is where I really have the hangup. If I want to use anything bigger than 6" it looks like that damper will be too narrow, and need to come out.

    Taking the damper out entirely or altering it drastically looks like it will take some doing, not beyond reason with the right tools that have been suggested but it will will be irreversible, in that if the stove is removed it won't be a working fireplace again without a whole lot of effort or expense. So we have to just say what the H and tear it out of there, or reconsider whether we want to use THIS stove (over which the other problematic issues have arisen) or just get a different one in the future where maybe we can use a smaller liner and leave the rest of the structure intact. I think we just need to talk it over.

    Thanks for your thoughts on the R value as well. I just spoke to Englander on my lunch hour and asked them about that lack of specification in their newer manuals and he said that he thought the R value should be 2.66 so, he said, if you were building your own hearth protection that could be done with two 1/2" sheets of micore, one 1/2" sheet of cement board, cement mortar, and tile.
  20. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Thank you, I appreciate your frank yet gentle approach! No offense taken at all. I have been noticing how "great deals" become not so much as these problems arise. We now have to $ or get off the pot in regards to this stove and decide whether to make do and put in a bunch of work that may be irreversible for a stove that is not ideal for our setup. It could be made to work but we need to decide whether we want to make it. You are right though that if I get a stove with a 6" setup and liner it can be ovalized through that damper and I won't have to tear the chimney up.
  21. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    OK, I got someone on the line at Englander. They were as confounded as I (or should I say "we") were about this. Kept trying to convince me it was probably a misprint missing the one in front of the 6" and that it probably meant 16" protection in front of the door. But those arrows go up and down! So finally after several minutes of discussion he went and asked someone else who said yes, they prefer it on a 6" or higher hearth due to the heat and movement of the air. (Which a couple of you said.)

    I asked if raising the stove on a pad of concrete block or whatever would be acceptable, and he said sure, they don't really seem to care too much how you get it up as long as it's up.

    So I am back to that. Will discuss with hubs tonight whether the beast he broke his back over this weekend goes in the fireplace with some modifications etc, or whether it goes back on craigslist.

    Thank you all very much for your input. I really do believe that you all have the ingenuity and knowhow to help even newbies work through most any situation. I know this can be done and have the resources to do it. But I don't know if the result with this one will be "worth it" or not. For this year anyway. Will keep acquiring wood though!
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