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Englander 25-PDV Upper Auger Jams Daily

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by BenM, Dec 27, 2012.

  1. BenM

    BenM New Member

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    I bought an Englander 25-PDV almost exactly one year ago. We used it about a dozen times last year without problems, then had to return to our other house, so it didn't get used. This year we moved to the house with the pellet stove full time, and have had nothing but problems with it. The second time we tried to use it in November, the upper auger jammed. I removed, cleaned, and reinstalled it, and it worked for one night. The next morning I took it apart, and found the auger had cracked. After 30 minutes of waiting on hold for tech support, Englander agreed to send me a new auger and they also sent a new auger motor. I installed both and it has jammed daily since. One of the times that it jammed, the gearbox stripped out in the auger drive motor. I swapped in the old one and called Englander again, and they agreed to send me another auger and motor, which haven't arrived yet. I have filed our current auger as smooth as possible, so I don't have any confidence the new auger will fix the problem. We are burning eco-flame pellets which work fine in our other pellet stove, a Travis Avalon.

    I would appreciate any help to fix this problem and sorry for the long rant.

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  2. Darryl

    Darryl New Member

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    Just a thought, but have you removed the lower auger to see if something is blocking it ? I had an issue earlier this season where two pieces of cardboard made it down to the bottom auger and blocked it from feeding the pellets to the burnpot. This in turn jammed the upper auger with pellets as there was no where for the pellets to go.
  3. WoodPorn

    WoodPorn Minister of Fire

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    Have you inspected the upper auger housing for any foriegn material??
    Is the lower auger spinning when this happens?
    I don't think your issue is with the auger or motor...
  4. imacman

    imacman Guest

  5. kenstogie

    kenstogie Feeling the Heat

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    what imacman said. plus checking the pellet path sounds like a possiblilty too. Just curious but whats the difference between the PVDC and the PDV?
  6. imacman

    imacman Guest

    PDV is bigger unit. 2000sq. ft vs. 1500 sq ft.
  7. BenM

    BenM New Member

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    I didn't think this would be the problem because it feeds well when the upper auger is turning. I did remove it and check it today when I received my new upper auger, and it was clear of obstructions, only 5-10 loose pellets came out with it.
  8. BenM

    BenM New Member

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    I have checked the housing each time that I have removed the upper auger, well over a dozen times. Usually I find a clump of pellets impacted into the end of the feed tube above where they drop to the lower auger.
  9. BenM

    BenM New Member

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    Yes, I align the auger per the instructions each time I install it. After installing and tightening the bearing flange, I can still turn the auger easily by hand.
  10. BenM

    BenM New Member

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    As far as checking the pellet path, I have removed both augers and and cleared both feed tubes. The only part that I can't fully inspect is the vertical tube between the upper and lower feed tubes. I have shoved a fish tape down that tube and not freed a significant number of pellets.
  11. BenM

    BenM New Member

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    As a follow-up, I received and installed my replacement auger today. I was pretty disappointed by the quality of the replacement part. Here are the pictures of the original auger that cracked and the replacement one that I received today. I didn't do any clean-up of either auger.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
  12. Shaw520

    Shaw520 Feeling the Heat

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    ...that may be where the obstruction is.
  13. BenM

    BenM New Member

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    I'm pretty sure it isn't because after I remove the upper auger and clear the jam, the stove operates perfectly until the next jam. Usually 10-20 pounds of pellets between jams.

    As I expected, the same thing happened with the new auger; it burned great for 3 hours, then jammed and the fire went out. I freed it, and inspected the feed tube. The jam occurred in the same place. Here is a picture from the back of the stove with the upper auger removed:
    [​IMG]

    The jam always occurs with the auger in the same orientation: with the set screw between 8:00 and 10:00 viewed from the end of the auger, and the jam is always in the same left upper quadrant of the end of the feed tube. Upon removing the auger, you can see that the forwardmost part of the end of the flight is jammed obstructed by the clump of pellets. I have even had it jam so badly that it slipped the auger on the setscrews in the bearing block and also wedged itself against the plastic gasket at the bearing end. I guess I'll be calling tech support again tomorrow, but please keep suggestions coming.
  14. slvrblkk

    slvrblkk Minister of Fire

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    Try a different pellet...I know it works fine in the other stove but that doesn't mean the Englander will like it....or vise versa......Had an identical problem with my PDVC and it was the NEWP I started using.......I'd use a different pellet and it was fine....was very frustrating
  15. WoodPorn

    WoodPorn Minister of Fire

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    Are those pellets damp?
    I would Definitely try at least 1 bag of a fresh/different pellet
    2 augers, 2 motors, ....same issue...the only constant is the pellet.
  16. Shaw520

    Shaw520 Feeling the Heat

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    I agree,... try different pellets,... the combination of moisture and size maybe the culprit.
  17. msh227

    msh227 Member

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    I would agree with trying different pellets also..... I have burned Lignetics and the Premium Hardwood Pellets from TSC with good results. I have the PVDC and also have jamming issues to the point where I keep the back cover off the stove because I'm tired of removing it. That being said I'm still pleased with the stove for the price I paid ($600, new).

    Do you screen your pellets to remove the fines? If not you could try that at a minimum to reduce the amount of particulate that could become jammed.
  18. Shaw520

    Shaw520 Feeling the Heat

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    wow,.. great price!,.. care to reveal your source ??
  19. msh227

    msh227 Member

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    Sure... I bought it in Nov. 2010 from Home Depot their price was just over $1,000 got them to give me a 10% military discount got it down to $900 and change, and at that time the government had an energy rebate which took another $300 off the price.
    Shaw520 likes this.
  20. BenM

    BenM New Member

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    I forgot to mention that the problem first arose with a different brand of pellets. The first thing I tried was switching. It jams with all three brands I have tried. Also switching brands isn't very practical for me since I have 4 tons of the eco-flame pellets stored in a dry barn.
  21. BenM

    BenM New Member

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    Haven't tried screening the pellets since the brand I am using seems to have very few fines and they haven't been a problem with the Travis. I will try it though since that is the one thing I haven't tried with any of the brands I have been using. How fine of a mesh do people use? Does somebody have pictures or a description of the setup they use?
  22. stoveguy2esw

    stoveguy2esw Minister of Fire

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    loosen the allen setscrews on the top auger bearing and slide the auger itself back a bit see if that helps. looks like the pellets are getting trapped against the front of the tube
    Shaw520 likes this.
  23. Don2222

    Don2222 Minister of Fire

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    Hello

    You can also smooth out the Auger tube with Emory cloth from Home Depot and then use Dry Moly Spray on the chute. Clean out the stuck pellets and check that area for burrs and then hit it with the Dry Moly Spray.

    I did not know you could pull the top auger back much. How much can you pull it back Mike?
  24. CT Pellet

    CT Pellet Minister of Fire

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    A little light, a bell, a fog horn, a flashing strobe, a fire alarm and an all out air-raid siren just went off in my head. If nothing else except the pellet has changed since the problems began, then trying a different pellet might be the logical next step. Those pellets look like chit, all dusty and crumbly. Possibly because they got wet bot also possibly from getting ground up in a defective feed system. Lets rule out the pellet first before we go switching out a few more hundred dollars in parts. I have serious reservations that this is a stove issue.
  25. BenM

    BenM New Member

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    I have the auger as far back as possible without having it rub on the plastic gasket. Do you mean I should move the auger forward toward the front of the stove?

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