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Buying a used FS Empress

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by TriMom, Mar 18, 2013.

  1. TriMom

    TriMom New Member

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    After much debating we think we may enter the pellet stove club buying a used pellet stove. We found a 4 year old Empress we are going to see tomorrow. If we like the whole pellet heating we will get a second pellet unit an insert for the other side of the house.

    Seems like Enviro parts are expensive compared to other brands from reading some threads here. How is reliability?

    Enamel hold up well?

    Does the OAK work like a true OAK?

    What's up with installers not wanting to do OAKs? One shop said do it if it makes clearances better.

    We'd do corner installation and stove would fit our spot with windows with it's height.

    Anything specific we should check out on this stove?

    This is the spot we plan to put it with venting on left side. Trying to find a photo of the outside to post.

    [​IMG]

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  2. imacman

    imacman Guest

    You need to check the clearances you need with that stove....that corner with all the windows seems very tight, unless those windows are permanently shut and can't be opened..
  3. TriMom

    TriMom New Member

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    I spoke to Pellet Stove Service about possible issues and installation. I'm sure I will be in good hands with his help.

    Venting will need to go above window on corner (right side) and with OAK clearances can be less.

    [​IMG]
  4. Don2222

    Don2222 Minister of Fire

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    Hello

    The Enviro Empress FS is a great unit. Lots of heat for a small stove. The parts are all strong and reliable. I did work on one recently that had a very noisy auger motor. I had to remove the auger and buff it clean with the wire wheel and replace the motor with a High Performance Gleason-Avery auger motor. Now it works just like brand new!
    Parts do get old after 4 years of heavy usage but the enamel is still new looking and the stove is in super good shape.

    This what I found in that Empress. That is only one stove out of many good stoves. It just pays to check it out!
    http://www.hearth.com/talk/threads/...me-and-blue-goo-see-pics.106715/#post-1393353

    The fire code is min 18 inches away from an open window or door with an OAK. If no OAK you must be 4 feet away from an open window or door!

    I prefer the Selkirk DT for pellet stoves venting that pre-heats the OAK air. The best system by far. Pellet Stove Fire Pots like warm dry burn air! ! ! Also only one hole to cut thru the wall ! ! !
  5. imacman

    imacman Guest

    AFAIK, there is no proof of that at all. If you have documentation of that as fact, I'd like to see it.
    DexterDay likes this.
  6. Don2222

    Don2222 Minister of Fire

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    Well, maybe I should say they do not like cool damp air.

    I know warm and cool is debatable, but no question that dry is much more favorable than damp.

    Air being warmed does help the air become dry. But that is New England for ya. LOL
  7. imacman

    imacman Guest

    Again, I've never seen any documentation of that as a fact.....love to see some.

    I live in New England, and I've burned my stove in the cool, damp weather and have noticed NO DIFFERENCE. Once the stove is fully heated-up, I think it's a non-issue.
    DexterDay likes this.
  8. Don2222

    Don2222 Minister of Fire

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    All I can say is it made a HUGE difference in my Astoria this year especially in the early morning hours! Seeing is believing. But it depends upon the stove, the install, and many other factors. I wish it was documented also. Maybe there is no guage or test to show the difference?
  9. smwilliamson

    smwilliamson Minister of Fire

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    Yes, they are. They may be the most expensive in the industry. There is a markup which is passed through to the consumer because Enviro uses Regional Distributors to get their products out to market. They make a lot of models and all of the parts are somewhat specific. They do make an outstanding line of product though. Very reliable and bounce back from neglect very well. The stove can handle about 2 tons of mediocre pellets before it chokes.

    Yes, unlike the Harman Enamel, the undercoat enamel is not white. when and if it chips on sherwood products...and it will from time to time, it usually chips to bare metal thus not so noticeable.

    Yes and no. If you run the OAK vent all the way in to the inflow behind the firewall, then yes. If you dump into the outer shell then no, then it is a air mix. Either way, I think the ignitor port is still open to the room air as well as the exchanger rake which also has an opening to the front of the stove. There is also an air wash under and above the glass which is open to the room air. Install an OAK to reduce clearances and install to create a more efficient and safer install...you have nice new windows there so I would suggest and OAK...also, if you are installing in a kitchen...you don't want the stove pulling over cooking grease through the air.

    It's more work right? Good sign of a lazy shop or one that subcontracts installs.

    It can be done, no problem. The vent will terminate over the lower windows and below the upper ones. You may consider a 48" single cut hearth pad if you want to eclipse the floor vent. I usually cut out out the pad to accomodate the register and then drop it back down but the pad needs to FULLY cover the register of be short of it...being short may not create enough clearance for the stove.

    Start it up and see it run. It should pass through all 3 stages, start up, run and blower acros all 5 heat zones with no errors or crazy noises.
  10. TriMom

    TriMom New Member

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    Found a FS Harman Accentra few years older for $100 more with the Harman pad. Smaller footprint, high end brand, but not the look of Empress.
  11. TriMom

    TriMom New Member

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    I have learned so much here and appreciate all your guidance.

    We went to see the Empress and brought it home with us. I'm excited.

    Now to get hearth protection for the corner.

    Per the manual minimum hearth pad is 27x32 1/8. Manual just says it must be non-combustible but nothing more.

    Thinking of getting a 36x36 and putting under stove which would mean actual corner would not be covered. Is that okay or problem?

    Looking forward to getting it installed and running.

    This photo from sellers home.

    [​IMG]
  12. smwilliamson

    smwilliamson Minister of Fire

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    Nice looking. There is a formula for determining the minimum hearth pad in a corner...I remember needing it on the NFI test but have forgot it and lent out my book...anyone have it and can post? It's in the rear of the book (NFI Pellet Hearth Products Version 2010) under formulas in the practice section.
  13. smwilliamson

    smwilliamson Minister of Fire

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  14. TriMom

    TriMom New Member

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    We had the Granite hearth installed tonight and tomorrow Scott from Pellet Stove Service will install our new to us Empress. I'm so excited.

    [​IMG]to
    DexterDay likes this.
  15. TJC

    TJC New Member

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    We bought a new Empress FS with the Black cast look in Feb. It has been keeping the Man Cave warm ever since.

    Love the heat, the look, the whole pkg of this little stove.
  16. Don2222

    Don2222 Minister of Fire

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    Don't Forget pics of the install today?
  17. TriMom

    TriMom New Member

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    I'll post them after he is done...feel like a kid at Christmas waiting to open presents. Feels good to know our oil usage will be going down!
    Lake Girl and DexterDay like this.
  18. smwilliamson

    smwilliamson Minister of Fire

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    Wow, super complicated. Made a hole, oops, can't go out there (air duct). Made another hole but didn't have enough venting to complete it to code. Will finish on Monday, asked them not to post pics until its done...
  19. TriMom

    TriMom New Member

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    Scott taught us so much about our new stove and worked diligently around the issues we had. Stove is gorgeous in our kitchen on our granite hearth.
  20. smwilliamson

    smwilliamson Minister of Fire

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    Granite people....walking around with caulking guns. Why, why, why would you feel the need to caulk the seam where the granite meets the baseboard. They say so the pad won't move....well it weighs 200lbs with a 270lb stove on it, fixed in a corner....but I'll tell you this, if it does... The pad will pull those baseboards with it.
  21. Don2222

    Don2222 Minister of Fire

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    I have done marble and tile floors Scott. Granite and ceramic tile is very brittle and does not flex. I recommend the strong porcelain tile for hearths when tile is used. If there is any flex in those floor boards with people walking there, it can not only move the granite but also crack it. Moving a 450 lb stove out for service could very easily move that granite if it was not caulked down. Also the caulking prevents water from seeping in under the granite causing all kinds of problems! Clear caulking sometimes looks better than a color, that is what I always use.

    I built a granite fireplace with a zero clearance Heat N Glo SL550-TRS-D set up for LP. After delivery of the granite pieces one of the stones just fell out on the edge creating a large hole. I took it back and it was epoxied back in and polished so you would never know it ever came out. I could not even tell myself by looking at it very closely.

    Therefore I would make sure that those floor boards are solid and do not flex one millimeter, if they does I would recommend beefing up the floor from underneath now. The best way would have been to add a min 3/4" plywood under the slab and even cement board on top of the plywood for a rock solid base!
  22. smwilliamson

    smwilliamson Minister of Fire

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    They are old plank pine floors...they are going to move. It's a 2" thick piece of rock with a stove on it. Maybe we should pour a cement foundation under the corner of the house?
  23. Don2222

    Don2222 Minister of Fire

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    I would put plywood between the joists under the floor and some 2x4s on edge nailed to the joists to hold the plywood on solid. Not hard to do and will save problems in the future.
  24. TriMom

    TriMom New Member

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    We wanted an easy hearth pad that we could move or change if we wanted in the future as we will either likely refinish the floor or replace the floor in the next couple of years.

    Already looking at getting a second stove. Found another Empress or a Castille insert used as well as a new Regency GCI60 for the other side of the house.
    DexterDay likes this.
  25. smwilliamson

    smwilliamson Minister of Fire

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    Go girl! That's pellet power

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