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Air Control on PE Summit Insert

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by mr2autoxr, Sep 28, 2009.

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  1. mr2autoxr

    mr2autoxr Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
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    Loc:
    Dexter, MI
    I just had my stove installed and have had a couple of fires but none that are 100% to my liking. I have a question about the air control slider. I notice mine will go left to the "H" on the ash tray but when I look down the slot goes further left, under the words "START".

    Does it go over this far to start up? Or does it just slide over until it stops and that is it.

    I question this because my fires seem to be starving from air and are hard to get going. The company that installed it said I DIDN'T need to knock out the 4" hole on the left side as I have a massive firebox and am getting plenty of air already.

    I think they were wrong on this and tonight I'm thinking of taking that plug out.

    Thanks for you help and comments!
    Mike

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  2. madison

    madison Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2008
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    Loc:
    41.33°N 74.18°W and 44.67°N 111.0°W
    If there isn't an outside air source under the insert, than I believe the 4" knockout should be removed see page 10 http://www.pacificenergy.net/PDF/manuals/5055.511SUMINSERTA 160309(W).pdf

    Though there could be other issues that may also need to be investigated, ie, chimney patency, chimney height (you would have smoke backpuffing when you open the insert door if insufficient draft is the issue).

    And most likely --->>> insufficiently seasoned wood.

    Try cracking open a window or door, move primary air lever to "H" , start a fire with dry kindling and stove door cracked open a bit, if smoke billows into the room, check the chimney.

    Check back here for other comments, you'll get them.
  3. mr2autoxr

    mr2autoxr Member

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    I know I have a decent draft as with the door open slightly I'm not getting smoke back into the room. And my wood is definitely seasoned, been split and stacked for 15months now!

    I'm going to knock out that plug tonight as I have read the same thing you show in the manual. I'll report back on if that makes a difference.

    Mike
  4. madison

    madison Minister of Fire

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    41.33°N 74.18°W and 44.67°N 111.0°W
    Mike,

    Others will chime in later today, but, some pics of the setup, chimney location, height, "tightness" of the house, etc will be of benefit to help diagnose the problem. If it sucks a lot air thru the cracked open door, than the knock out may be the issue. Plus with the outdoor temps not that cool, you may really need to heat up the chimney and leave the air control open.
  5. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    South Puget Sound, WA
    Humor us for a moment and tell us a bit more about the installation. How tall is the chimney? Is the insert connected to a liner, or direct-connected (short stub into the fireplace flue)? Is this an interior or exterior chimney?
  6. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    Next to nuke plant Berwick, PA.
    Knock out the knock out first off. The installer is a moron if they can't follow simple manual instructions. The knock out is left in place only if an outside air kit is installed.
    Make sure your not cutting the air back before its really ready for that. Otherwise you will cause the fire to smolder.
    As other suggested photos & some details would be very helpful.
  7. summit

    summit Minister of Fire

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    central maine
    all the way to left to start, cut back when you can't stand the heat.
  8. mr2autoxr

    mr2autoxr Member

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    Ok,
    Took the knock out tonight and sure started up much better. I have to say though every thing else the installers did was correct as I've been learning a lot on here over the last year. It is a 14ft SS flex liner all the way up. Block off plate on top and bottom of the chimney. The chimney is interior and the house if fairly tight but not perfect as it was built in '78.

    Here are some pictures of the fire after starting it about 5:30. I did a top down to get a coal bed and now at about 8:00 I did a big reload. The stove top temp above the door on the right was at 400F and now after the reload has been in for about a half hour it is 350F. Figure it will come up soon. This whole time I've had the air wide open.

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  9. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    At what temp are you cutting the air back?
  10. mr2autoxr

    mr2autoxr Member

    Joined:
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    Loc:
    Dexter, MI
    Late last night and this morning I have been cutting the air back from High to about mid way at around 400-450F. Then I let it sit there for another 15-30min and cut back to Low. I have seen temps all the way up to 550F now on the front face of the insert.

    It is burning much nicer now and it seems to be heating up the house fairly well. Now I just need to get some real wood in there and not my junk stumps, crotches, etc to see if I can really get the heat pouring out and up to 650-700F.

    I had the secondaries going last night as I could see the fire shooting out of the holes in the baffle, pretty cool!

    Mike
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