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Corinth Pellets rundown... or Runaround??

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by smaxell1, Dec 4, 2008.

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  1. smaxell1

    smaxell1 New Member

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    I have posted a couple of times regarding the quality of Corinth pellets that I received from a local stove company here in the Bangor, ME area. I bought the stove and the pellets at the same time in September-ish of this year. Paid $3500 for a Glow Boy 120, and 4 tons of pellets. When I bought the stove, there were no pellets available - and they were quoting a mid-October delivery date. So far, so good. When the weather started to get cold, I was buying pellets by the bag here and there - wherever they could be found. I tried several different brands - Comfy Cozy (crappy), Lignetics, Athens, even Corinth. The Athens and Lignetics burned great. The rest of the pellets left a lot to be desired. Lots of ash, large clinkers, etc.

    I finally got my four tons of pellets delivered in October as promised. When I started burning the Corinth pellets, I started to have serious problems with the stove. It backed up a couple of times into the drop chute - and was burning nicely in there as the metal was cherry red when we came down in the morning!! Called over to the stove shop, and they said they have had no problems with Corinth pellets. I figured I needed to mess with things more, so I added outside air. Played with the air damper... basically this stove has been adjusted every which way you can as an end user. I also have taken the leaf blower to the outside vent pipe with a homemade adapter (for suction, not blowing), removed a plate in the interior of the stove to allow (minimal) access to ash traps in the interior, vacuum and clean the interior of the stove on almost a daily basis.

    After seeing a couple of posts on the board about Corinth taking responsibility for some quality issues, I contacted them via e-mail. I got in touch with Samantha Eldridge, who was recently put in the position of quality control. Either Corinth created this position because of the problems with their pellets, or someone else who was in charge of quality control DROPPED the ball and got canned - and she got the job. She had been quite helpful as far as saying that she would help fix the problem in several e-mails over the course of about two weeks. She directly said that if the pellets were a problem, she would be able to see that they were swapped for new ones. I finally got an e-mail today saying that someone at the stove shop - I will call him "Dan" - wanted to talk to me directly. When I spoke to "Dan", he told me that they have had no complaints on the quality of Corinth pellets regarding ash or clinkers. Not one to mince words, I told him that in an online forum there had been several complaints about them - and several of them mentioned the very place "Dan" works. He told me that several employees that work at the same location are burning these pellets with no problems.

    Anyway, the long and short of it is: "Dan" says it is a problem with my stove adjustment. Huh... I can only adjust ONE thing besides the feed rate on LOW or HIGH, or the air intake. If I run it on the two middle settings, the only thing I can adjust is the air. Run it on low.... clogs with ashes. Run it on a higher setting, clogs with clinkers. So... either the stove is defective... or the pellets are. "Dan" is sending someone out to look at the stove tomorrow. I really hope they don't plan to charge me for that. I will post an update after talking to the stove tech tomorrow. So far, Samantha seems to be a good talker, but not so much on the production end - even though she seems to have come through for others.

    It certainly will make for an interesting read with what the techie says...

    We will see ... but I am not holding my breath on this one... at least I only have to pay for three years on this stove... :(


    ---scott

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  2. Richardin52

    Richardin52 Member

    Joined:
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    A farm in Maine
    I have had no problems with these pellets in my stove what so ever. Sounds like it may be the stove and not the pellets.
  3. Lobstah

    Lobstah New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2008
    Messages:
    202
    Loc:
    Central Ma
    Regarding pellets, keep in mind that quality also includes consistency. They may have had a bad run? Don't know.
    As you said, it will be interesting to see what Dan says.

    Look at the good side...your dealer is coming out to look at your problem. I had many problems with my install, and my dealer in Wayland, Ma. hasn't even picked up the phone to call.

    Jim
  4. cdodge04

    cdodge04 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2008
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    179
    Loc:
    Belfast, Maine
    I got 2 tons and I can't wait to get them burned. Every bag I open has A LOT of pellets in the 2 inch range. They have a lot of ash and don't burn as hot as the Penningtons and Forest Prides I tried.

    I am burning the ones in the brown bag with the red lettering though and I think someone said in another thread that these are the older ones. Soon as I get through the ton of these I'll burn the ton that I have in the blue bags....
  5. j00fek

    j00fek Feeling the Heat

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    Auburn, Maine
  6. smaxell1

    smaxell1 New Member

    Joined:
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    http://www.dansons.com is the site - and there is the manual available there. I also have the technical manual that does not come with the stove, at least it didn't come with mine.

    ---scott
  7. smaxell1

    smaxell1 New Member

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    Well... here is the update on the Corinth pellets/local stove company on 1a in the Brewer, ME area. I was supposed to have a techie stove guy out here to look at my stove today. I got out of work EARLY to meet the guy here (at 2pm). I called the stove company to talk to "Dan" at 3pm to see if I was going to get someone there to look at the problem. They told me that their tech had gotten tied up on another call and had a stove in pieces... and wanted to come tomorrow. Well... I gotta work tomorrow, so they are now not coming until Monday. I had been running the hopper almost dry hoping Corinth would replace the pellets, but since they are not going to come until Monday I figured I would throw my last two bags of Lignetics that I had in my garage into the stove. What a complete difference. High flame, great heat. Amazing difference from the crappy Corinth pellets that I have three tons+ of in my garage. At least I have a couple of days of nice heat until the stove guy comes out and tells me it is my fault that the stove and the pellets are not burning correctly. I will post another update to the crappy Corinth pellets story after that.

    ---scott
  8. j00fek

    j00fek Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
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    Auburn, Maine
    i think you just answerd your own question.

    I figured I would throw my last two bags of Lignetics that I had in my garage into the stove. What a complete difference. High flame, great heat. Amazing difference from the crappy Corinth pellets that I have three tons+ of in my garage.

    :)
  9. Saltair

    Saltair New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2008
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    Loc:
    Eastern ME
    For what it is worth I am working on a ton of the new, blue bag, hardwood corinth pellets and have some trouble with clinkers. Not real bad but some. I started with Athens and in comparison the corinth are much better, but still not as good as I hoped. Given the miserable experience I had with athens I may have a better opinion of corinth than i would if i hadn't started with real crap. I am mixing them with Comfy Cozy 2 part CC to 1 part corinth and that has stopped the clinkers, but heat output is soso. Still looking for a the best pellet for this stove.
  10. smaxell1

    smaxell1 New Member

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    It isn't a question in my mind. Corinth and the stove installers are saying it is the stove. I say it is the pellets. That part was pretty much proven to me before this point ;)

    ---scott
  11. smaxell1

    smaxell1 New Member

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  12. smaxell1

    smaxell1 New Member

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    [/quote] Alright, here is the update. I called the stove store to see if they were indeed going to send someone out. They said their installer has Mondays off, but a guy - I will call him "Mick" - would be out to look at the stove. I am most certainly coming up with all of these names to protect the anonymity of the stove shop, as I did in my earlier posts. ;) "Mick" showed up as scheduled, and surprisingly came in with three things. A new control board, a pair of needle nose pliers, and a socket wrench. He had me shut the stove down, and replaced the control board. His claim was that there was a run of boards that did not allow setting the pellet drop on low and high settings. I had cleaned the stove from top to bottom the day before - completely vacuumed out, glass cleaned, vent cleaned, heat exchanger tubes cleaned, ash trap cleaned behind the heat exchanger with a leaf blower hooked to the outside vent and a fish tank brush run through any place it would fit.

    When "Mick" got here, there was a tremendous ash buildup in the stove. At least two cups of ash under the burn pot, horrible streaks on the glass, and probably at least 5-8 cups of ash in the tray. I will remind you this is on a 24 hour burn from a clean stove. "Mick" agreed that there was an excessive amount of ash. He also stated that he knew that Corinth had been having serious problems with quality, and noted that they have been having problems with quality for quite some time since the demand increased. After he fiddled with the stove, he was able to produce a fairly decent flame. The hopper was almost empty at this point because I had intentionally let it run low hoping that someone would replace the obviously defective pellets. I let the stove run for a while, and was still getting decent flame. I ended up throwing two bags into the hopper after leaving the house for a while, and since then have had nowhere near the flame that I had with "Mick" here. I turned the stove down on low and went to bed, and when I got up, the house was freezing (50 degrees) and the glass had a terrible film on it. I cleaned the glass, and turned the stove up to the highest setting. The flame again was nowhere near what it was earlier in the day. This is the first time I have had to fire my oil furnace up for any length of time to compensate for lack of heat.

    I plan to send an e-mail to Samantha Eldridge from Corinth, to see what she plans to do at this point. She has claimed that she can take care of this, but it really looks as if I am getting the shuffle from one side to the other. Both sides have acknowledged that there have been pellet problems, but neither wants to take the hit.

    Keep ya posted on what happens...

    ---scott

    [/quote]

    Update on the update...

    I got an e-mail from Samantha Eldridge at Corinth stating that the stove company would replace the pellets that I have with softwood pellets. At this point, rather than play e-mail tag with her, I decided to call. I told her that the pellets I have ARE softwood... they had big green Soft Wood stickers on them. Being a woodworker, I found this amusing and stuck them in my wood shop. Once I told her that, she seemed to figure out that there was indeed a problem with the pellets. She called the stove shop - they were both under the assumption that I had gotten hardwood pellets. She said that they had a bad batch of pellets made from spruce - and they had nearly all of it returned. She was VERY apologetic, and said had she known what I had for pellets, they would have been replaced immediately. She is supposed to call the stove company in the a.m. to pick them up. Hopefully I won't get a hassle from them, because I unstacked all of the pellets and restacked them in my garage. So now it is between the stove place and me. I guess if they have to move them out a bag at a time it will make up for the time I have spent cleaning this stove because of the bad pellets they sold me. This is not to say that their customer service has been bad - it actually has been quite good. Since they were working under the mistaken impression that they had delivered a different product, I can't give them a lot of negative press yet.

    If they come through on this deal, I highly recommend a stove place on 1a in Dedham, ME. They at least sent someone out to try to check the stove and make sure it was working properly - at no charge.

    Anyway.... still kind of awaiting the outcome... but it really looks like problem solved. Kudos to Samantha.... she is very nice -- and seems to be living up to her job description.

    ---scott
  13. j00fek

    j00fek Feeling the Heat

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    hope the out come is good
  14. sparkydog00

    sparkydog00 Feeling the Heat

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    Oct 26, 2007
    Messages:
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    Loc:
    N. Central Mass
    Try Cubex
    They burned best in both stoves I have owned.
    Anything is better than Maine Woods from Athens though.
  15. jenrn54

    jenrn54 Member

    Joined:
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    I posted in another thread about the trouble I was having with Corinth pellets. After contacting the company, several emails later, Corinth did indeed replace my 2 tons with their newest pellets. They are hardwood, burn very hot, have no fines in the bags, no clinkers and a mod amount of ash. In my stove, they burn much better and I am totally satisfied. Corinth sent a delivery man who hauled out the old pellets and hauled in and stacked the new pellets! So, yes, kudos to Samantha Eldredge, very nice and made good with some bad pellets I had!
  16. smaxell1

    smaxell1 New Member

    Joined:
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    Yeah, finally... Corinth got my pellets replaced. Samantha did a phenomenal job once she figured out that they had sent me the crappy spruce pellets. She initially thought I had hardwood ones. Granville Stone was a little clunky on the pickup, since they never told them to bring a pallet jack to get them out of the garage. Mick and I spent a fun afternoon hauling the old pellets out. He did help restack one pallet of the new pellets tho. Have yet to burn any of the new ones - hopefully they work better. Otherwise, I will buy more of the fireside ultra that I got at Home Depot.

    --- I will give a more thorough run down, and end to this thread as soon as I get a chance.

    ---scott
  17. smaxell1

    smaxell1 New Member

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    Final rundown.... Yep Corinth replaced the pellets. Either my stove does not like them, or I am a total dunce and can't figure out how to adjust the air on this thing. They DO burn a lot cleaner than the crap that I had before, though. I can now clean the glass with a damp paper towel - instead of stove glass cleaner containing hydrochloric acid and spending about 15 minutes doing it. I still have a lot of buildup in the burn pot after about 3 hours or so. I am HAPPIER at this point, but not entirely satisfied. I did a LOT of work to replace 3 tons of pellets with restacking and helping them haul the old ones out of the garage. Maybe hardwood pellets would burn better, I guess I am going to try that next, since I will need a couple more ton to last me the season. We'll see, but at this point, I would not buy Corinth... or most any Maine produced pellet. They need to get their act together to compete with the other companies, IHMO. Everyone seems to be having problems with local pellets.

    Granville Stone was slow to respond until Corinth pressured them. Probably would not deal with them again... although Mick seems to be a nice guy - if anyone can help you, I would talk to him.

    anyway... I doubt Corinth will replace this batch - guess I have to suffer through on this one.
  18. j00fek

    j00fek Feeling the Heat

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    Auburn, Maine
    glad you are starting to see the end of the tunnel...hope you can find good pellets next yr, i hope i can as well.
  19. slls

    slls Minister of Fire

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    It's not a good situation when people say don't buy Maine pellets, I guess it will take time for them to get there act together.
  20. akakii

    akakii New Member

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    Loc:
    Portland, Maine
    After I was able to dump my Athens pellets I found a supply of Corinth. Last year they burned the best out of the 5-6 brands I tried. This year's batch so far is not burning quite as cleanly. The ash output is significantly higher. At least the heat output is still very good. I expect variation from batch to batch and year to year. I have no real complaints about these.
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