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Can my pellets really be this wet?

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by Andy H, Jan 17, 2011.

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  1. Andy H

    Andy H Member

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    Loc:
    Upstate NY
    Stove was running really bad, it turned the glass black in a few minutes, almost no heat.

    i shut it down, did a good cleaning, I even took the outside vent pipe apart and cleaned that out really well

    i tried to start it again and it wouldn't start even though i could see the igniter getting red hot. I used a little torch and got it started after a bit of a struggle. it burned just as bad, the flame was really lazy pellets were not dancing in the burn pot like they usually do. I shut it down and when i opened the door everything was covered in a black soot. for the heck of it I went outside and checked the pipe again and in the trap there was maybe 1/2 cup of water in there?

    could this all be because of wet pellets? I can't remember the brand but i got them at Tractor supply and thank god i only have a couple bags left. I'll pick up a different kind from lowes on the way home but i can't help but wonder if it's something else that i'm missing. I can't believe pellets could be that wet.

    oh yeah, the pellet stove is a forester 5824

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  2. Jack Morrissey

    Jack Morrissey Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2009
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    Loc:
    Stoughton, Ma
    I doubt if its the pellets, sounds like you got snow into your exhaust pipes that has melted...esp if you found water in your (trap)??
  3. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear Minister of Fire

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    You need to give that stove a very deep cleaning.

    You also may have a waterlogged combustion blower cavity.
  4. Northeaster2010

    Northeaster2010 Member

    Joined:
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    Southern NH
    I got a bad bunch of pellets a couple of weeks ago that did the same thing lucky I increase the draft and burned them but they did not through much heat. They said they had allot of complaints to from these. I good ones now and stove is throwing great heat again.
  5. slls

    slls Minister of Fire

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    Try the moisture test.

    here’s a cooking recipe for pellets (lets ya know if they have excess moisture in em);

    1, place 1/2 cup pellets in a GLASS not plastic bowl.
    2, cover the bowl with a saucer to make moderately airtight
    3, nuke them in microwave for about 45 sec, to 1 minute.
    4, immediately when finished heating remove the saucer and tip it up vertically, look for moisture on the bottom of the saucer, there should be a little, if enough is present to allow it to run down the bottom of the saucer, they have excessive moisture and probably will not burn optimally.

    Courtsey Mike of England's Stove
  6. BDPVT

    BDPVT Member

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    Vermont
    I think the clue might be "pellets not dancing in the burn pot like they usually do". Sounds like you do not have enough combustion air for some reason. Did you check the fan?
  7. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear Minister of Fire

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    "for the heck of it I went outside and checked the pipe again and in the trap there was maybe 1/2 cup of water in there?"

    It "ain't" the pellets.
    CT Pellet likes this.
  8. Don2222

    Don2222 Minister of Fire

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    Salem NH
    Hello

    If the exhaust fan is not holding the vacuum switch closed. The back ash chamber may be very dirty. Putting a manometer on the hose barb where the vacuum hose connects in the right side of the stove will tell you if the stove is dirty. It the manometer reads alot less than -.60 WC then the stove and/or the ash chamber could be very dirty. Clean the stove and vacuum hose and hose barb or replace the vacuum hose if it is loose, Then
    Remove the ash chamber covers part #s 20 and 32 shown on page 16 of your USSC Forester 5824 owner's manual. Then brush or blow out with a compressor and the stove will work fine.

    See red arrows in diagram below:
    Click pic to enlarge.

    Attached Files:

  9. CT Pellet

    CT Pellet Minister of Fire

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    X2.......
    If your pellets were this wet, they would not be pellets....they'd be massive clumps of sawdust.
  10. smwilliamson

    smwilliamson Minister of Fire

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    Simple solution to determine if is the pellets....burn a bag or a handful of anything else. Same result? Ain't gonna be the pellets. Different result? You may very well have a damp batch. My guess is poor air flow first a cleaning ought to render it fixed, that stove of yours may also need a control board reset....anyone been playing around with the draft adjustment?
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