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EnviroFire pellet stove technical question

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by Pellet1, Oct 3, 2008.

  1. Pellet1

    Pellet1 New Member

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    This is my first post and I want to say hello and thank all for a lot of great information. I recently got into pellet burning by buying a used(2001) Envirofire EF3 bayi. It was all sooted up and I got it for a pretty good price. I thoroughly cleaned it(took some doing to get the creosote off the heat exchanger), and then installed it. I then had it WETT certified.
    I fired it up and it seemed to work very well, so I left it alone as it was in the spring. About a week ago I started it up and found that it went out during the start cycle, so I put a small handful of pellets in the burning box and hit the start button again. The fire control knob(feed control) was set at midrange, as recommended. This time it burned, but just barely, so I turned up the feed rate to almost full, and the stove burned nicely.

    I was concerned about the auger cycle as, at mid range, it was giving about 5 seconds green to green with the green being on for only one second(green on being when the auger is rotating) . So I e-mailed for some tech info and they returned with info on the feed times at various settings. They said that at mid range, the time is supposed to be 7 seconds, green to green, with green on for 3 seconds and off for 4 seconds. My stove is giving 5 seconds green to green--with green on for 1 second and off for 4 seconds. I traced the wires from the set control to the timer module and the module says 1 second and .3-10 seconds. I either have the wrong module or was given wrong info. If the auger is supposed to turn for 3 seconds each time, then that would affect the total feed for any given setting, and may explain all the creosote buildup, due to very low burns.

    Can anyone out there shed some light please? What are typical cycle times? Anyone with the same stove who can verify? Thanks, and sorry for the longish post.

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  2. nailed_nailer

    nailed_nailer Minister of Fire

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    I have an Enviro EF-2 and anytime I have a problem with it or needed parts I got in touch with Climate Control Systems.

    http://www.hearthtools.com/enviro_pellet.htm

    They have a troubleshooting guide for all Enviro stoves and online manuals.

    I also buy all my parts from them.

    Great service and helpful folks.

    ---Nailer---
  3. Pellet1

    Pellet1 New Member

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    Thanks nailer. What year is your EF2, and what is the time length of the green on cycle? Apparently the newer stoves now have a 3 second timer, whereas my 2001 stove has a one second timer. I wonder if that difference was because of burning problems at lower settings in the older models?
  4. nailed_nailer

    nailed_nailer Minister of Fire

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    My EF2 FS (Freestanding) Has a date code on the label of October 2000.

    My stove is barely electronically controlled. It is more Temp switch and feed rate controlled.

    I don't have a cycling green light to indicate auger feed cycles. I have a "dial a fire" knob.

    The knob does control the auger cycles. But, there is no "light" associated with the cycles.

    Follow this troubleshooting guide and you should be all set.

    http://www.hearthtools.com/parts/2004enviroTrouble.pdf

    ---Nailer---
  5. Pellet1

    Pellet1 New Member

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    OK, I understand. If you have no auger on cycle light, is it possible for you to hear when the auger is cycling and perhaps just take an estimate of whether it cycles on for one second or three seconds, just by sound alone?? When my dial a fire knob is set at mid range, my auger is off for 4 seconds and on for one second, for a total of 5 seconds per cycle. I am especially interested in how long the auger runs in each cycle---1 sec or 3 secs.
  6. gutterboy2ca

    gutterboy2ca Member

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    Hello there Firestarter, First time here, nice to see some relatively close people here too with my same questions, lol.Ok, i have just purchased my first pellet stove, its a EF3-Bay, also bought it from the local Dealer Used, was in there showroom for a number of years.They pulled it out a month ago and went Bigger for the Showroom.I got full 1 year warranty, and basically bought it as it was only stove i could find for $1200.Can
    It worked awsome the first afternoon and all nite set to about 9,Oclock position, just a hair above the Blue Zone.Later next day, went out, Dead, Have to keep relighting it no matter where i move the damper slide too.It just will not stay running Below 12,Oclock position.We're not Impressed, why did they even put a Blue Zone on there.After talking to the dealer,and seeing that Model still on there floor as a New Item, he said any we have ever sold all run the same way, will not stay running bleow 50% on Dial.WOW, thanks for letting me know that, stupid twits.
    For your question regarding Time intervals, heres mine with stopwatch.hope it helps.
    LOW=1.5 sec Green & 9 sec OFF
    Med=1.5 sec Green & 6 sec OFF
    High=1 sec Green & 1.5 OFF
    Hope you can come to some conclusions with this, appears to me the time interval for Auger Movement needs to be bumped up to 2 sec ON.
    I'll take a short Vid tomorrow nite and upload it to Youtube for you or whoever else it may help..Feel Free to email with anymore questions, Brian.. :roll:
  7. Pellet1

    Pellet1 New Member

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    Hi Gutterboy(Brian) Since my last post, I have continued to do some looking around and asking questions. The circa 2001 stoves came equipped with a one second auger timer module. I contacted the maker of that module(Syracuse, NY) and he told me that the one second interval module is what was ordered for that year stove. Sometime later??????? they switched to a 3 second module. I also spoke with a local Enviro dealer who said that the 3 second module would not be suitable for that year of stove--that my auger motor and gearbox may be getting tired and that they would be happy to come out to test it and determine what the stove needed. No thanks, I said. I did the live test on the motor, and when power is applied to it directly, it rotates the auger shaft at 1 RPM(right on specs). The bushings showed no sign of wear and everything looked good. So I put it all back together and started the stove. I then set the dial a fire to mid point and watched the auger shaft(set bolt). I counted 60 one second pulses of the auger, and guess what?? The auger shaft completed exactly one revolution. So, from that I concluded that there was absolutely nothing wrong with the auger and motor. The problem, IMO, is bad engineering of the feed. To feed successfuly, the auger pulse needs to be longer, and, you guessed it--that is exactly what they did. If you look at any Enviro parts supplier(there is one listed earlier in this thread), you will see only 3 second modules for sale.

    As well, I was in contact with Enviro, and was told by their chief tech that it would be quite OK to put a 3 second module into my stove. I may do that if/when absolutely necessary. It appears to me that they corrected an engineering error with the 3 second module in later years.

    As a side note--I set the dial at the mid point feed position and dumped a 40 lb bag in the stove and started the clock. That bag lasted 40 hours, and the stove threw only minimal heat(I would say equivilent to a setting in the blue zone. But, with very little increase beyond the 12 o'clock position, the stove will heat up considerably, and will really throw the heat at just near the red zone. I plan to simply adjust accordingly until I need to do something else.

    Amazing what a little research will uncover.
  8. gutterboy2ca

    gutterboy2ca Member

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    Great research, and much appreciated.I've only had mine a week and already i'm having to start research.I have 1 year full warranty on the used stove i purchased.Its Year of manufacturing is Nov 2000, and he said its been run as an only source of heat in the showroom forapprox 7 years.Only part they replaced was the convection fan just this spring.Think i'll tell them to get me a 3sec switch for free and i won,t return the stove.Never hurts to see what they'll say at least.Will post if i get it and if it makes a diff.Thanks for the quick response, Brian.
  9. Pellet1

    Pellet1 New Member

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    Well, if you do get a free 3 second module, get them to throw one in for me too. I may just go to Enviro and request one if your pans out. Personally, I think that is all the stove needs to be a very good working heater. And that is apparently what they did for later models. It is one of the nicest looking stoves that I have seen. I bagged mine just this last spring from a family in Moncton for a grand, including the pipe and hearth.

    Please keep me posted.
  10. gutterboy2ca

    gutterboy2ca Member

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    Hey Pellet1, 3 sec timer is on order, hopefully before next weekend i will test it out against performance of the factory 1 sec timer in it now.I also went to canadian tire tonite there BBQ stuff is on clearance, got a nice little Digital Meat Probe that goes to 500F for $11.99 with a 3 ft Braided steel cord and 6 inch stainless Probe, stuck the probe in the Heat exchanger tube and tried a Heat test on my only source of Pellets ATM, they are the Quebec Brand called, LG brand.. www.granuleslg.com Around here in Woodstock area they are the Prefered Pellet , over the Shaw brand and the Cozy Comfort by the Local pellet stove companies (Sunpoke Energy and Woodchuck heating). I haven,t got any other pellets to test the heat range as of today but will post soon to see diff. Here are couple pics #1 is on Med(12' o,clock-Fan on 50%) #2 is High, Fan on 50%)

    Attached Files:

  11. Pellet1

    Pellet1 New Member

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    Did you order it on you own or did the dealer order it. Please let me know the price too. PM or e-mail me if you prefer. Thanks
  12. hearthtools

    hearthtools Moderator Emeritus

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    All the Replacement auger timers now are 3 second timers
    Enviro EF 2/3/4/Solas 3 sec auger timer EF-036
    the problem with 1 second timers was that if Pellets were LONG the feet time was not enough to keep a fire going on low because as you know Longer pellets are less dense and less amount of fuel would feed that if the pellets were short.
  13. hearthtools

    hearthtools Moderator Emeritus

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    Just to clear up how the Older NON control board Enviro and Older NON control board TRAVIS stoves work.
    This kind of stoves use Timers, potentiometer and switches.

    The feed rate of the pellets is determined by the ON/OFF cycling of auger motor.
    Remember the auger motor turns at a constant speed of 1 RPM (some 4 RPM). Therefore, to vary the pellet feed, the on and off time of the auger motor is varied.

    The auger timer Control the FEED time. How long the power is sent to the AUGER motor. This never changes regardless of Feed rate setting.

    The Dial O fire or Feed rate switch. (potentiometer)
    a potentiometer Regulates the the ohms 800 to 1,200 ohms on lower rates down to 1 -10 ohms on higher rates.
    controlling the time BETWEEN feeds.
  14. gutterboy2ca

    gutterboy2ca Member

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    Awsome Tutorial there Rod, much appreciated explaination, so if the 3 sec is the now regular replacement part for this stove, is this going to solve my problem of stove not staying running below 11 o'clock position?sometimes as we watch the cycle, it will blink 5 times(1 sec each) without a single pellet dropping to the pot.5 sec of auger turning along with 9 sec each x 5 in the off cycle is over 60 sec on inactivity in the burn pot, thats when it goes out.Fingers crossed that replacing this timer is going to give us peace of mind that the stove is still running thru the nite.
    Right now with nite temps in the mid 40's and daytime in the 60's we really don,t want to have it set above 12. o'clock just so it will stay running. Sound reasonable to you Rod? thanks in advance, brian, BTW, Love the site, great feedback and a wealth of hands on knowledge..Brian
  15. hearthtools

    hearthtools Moderator Emeritus

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    Yes a 3 second timer will help your problem. on second on is just not enough to feed pellets.
    All pellet stoves have a hard time with the Lower setting if the pellets you are using are over 1 1/4" long.
    because with longer pellets the auger will dump a few pellets at a time then every so often pellets will build up in the top of the drop shoot and it will dump a bunch at a time then ither smothering the LOW fire out or not giving it enough pellets to keep a fire going.

    the only solution is to turn up the feet rate. and this is what you will be doing when you change the timer to a 3 seconds on timer.


    BTW the EF3 is one on the simplest stoves to use and maintain.
    Just make sure you scrape the Heat exchange scraper as often as possible other wise it become so crusted up you will not be able to scrap it any longer.
  16. hearthtools

    hearthtools Moderator Emeritus

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    OH
    this type of stove does NOT control the Combustion blower speed (lack of Control board or phase controller) so sometimes it is necessary to Lower the Air draft on Lower settings so you dont have to much air burn or popping pellets out of the pot.
    So you will have to match the air to fuel Manualy. More fuel more air.
    Less fuel Less air.
    Newer stoves do this with the Electronic control boards by dropping the voltage to the Combustion blower when you run it on lower settings.
    the EF4 has a Phase controller that drops the voltage when you turn up or down the feed rate.
  17. gutterboy2ca

    gutterboy2ca Member

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    so if i will still need to turn up the feed rate even with a 3 sec timer, really whats the point, i might as well just turn up the feedrate with the 1 sec timer, is this correct? i was under the assumption the 3 sec timer on low was going to dump more pellets in the burn pot then the 1 sec timer. If theres no advantage to the 3 sec, meaning we are still going to have to run it on 50% capacity, i might as well run it on 50% with the factory 1 sec timer..Unless i missed something there....
  18. Pellet1

    Pellet1 New Member

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    My guess is that putting in a 3 second timer will greatly alter the feed rate at all settings, when compared with the 1 second timer. The fire control POT will have the same values of resistance, so therefore the OFF times between cycles will vary the same as with the 1 sec module. This will make the feed rate much better at the lower settings, but will probably make the higher settings way too hot for the stove. One big advantage though, will be far less auger motor cycles. If I can find a 3 second module for a reasonable price, I will try one.
    There are better prices out there, if I could only be sure of the numbers for the module. For example, the 1 sec. module is TRS51A11s2----my guess for the 3 second module( I used the available charts) is TRS51A13s2 but would like some verification if possible.

    And thanks Hearthtools, for confirming my conclusions about this stove.
  19. hearthtools

    hearthtools Moderator Emeritus

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    the 3 second timer is what enviro updated the stove to. For they found out the 1 second was a mistake.
    the stove will work much better on low with the 3 second timer

    the Factory 3 second timer is listed on my site and I have them in stock http://www.hearthtools.com/enviro_pellet.htm
    PRODUCT: Enviro EF 2/3/4/Solas 3 sec auger timer
    EF-036 -- $78.00
  20. gutterboy2ca

    gutterboy2ca Member

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    Great, thanks Rod, i'll prob order one as soon as my dealer says (Frig you") yours still works, don,t mess with it, lol.Or at least thats what i feel they will say, we'll see, shipping shouldn,t be that bad to maine.Prefer to my mailbox then stuck in canada customs for 3 weeks as usual.. Will let you know soon i hope,Thanks again..
  21. ShaneR34

    ShaneR34 Member

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    Great thread to read.

    I have an EF3 that came existing with our new home. So, this is our first year with it or any other pellet stove.

    My production date on the label is listed as October 2006, so I would assume I have the 3 second motor (which would make sense based on memory of the last few test burns). I've noticed, however, that it doesn't burn very well on the 12 O'clock setting. The flame will go from Photo 1 above to photo 2 (80% of the time looking like photo 1). So, assuming I have the 3 second motor, Rob has me thinking that it's my pellets-- The auger will turn once or twice (maybe 3) with no pellets dropping and then a bunch will come down on the next turn. If I then move the dial-a-fire to the next setting up (2'o'clock) it's fine...anything above that and it roars. I guess it's not a big deal, but I would LOVE to know what a properly functioning EF3's flame SHOULD look like at the 12 O'clock setting....
  22. Pellet1

    Pellet1 New Member

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    Well Shane, nice to hear from another EF3er. All you need to do to know is to time how long the green light stays on per cycle. 1 second or 3 seconds. The time between green lights will vary according to the dial a fire setting. Let us know.
  23. gutterboy2ca

    gutterboy2ca Member

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    Well i've personally not seen enough to know if my own is functioning properly on Med ShaneR34, but its definately not a consistant flame on Med or anything below that, very little difference between 10 o'clock and 12 o'clock, but at least on 12 o'clock it won,t go out in the middle of the nite,although at recent temps outside at nite its Hotter then we like here in the office of my house where its centraly located, and runs approx 80F to 82F, Hopefully your not burning those cozy comfy pellets from Kent Bld Ctr.they are known to Have Extremely long inconsistant pellet lenth,causing auger clogging,some pellets over 3 inch in lenth.Longest one i have found in these LG Granules has been 1 -1/8th, which is prob bout long enough..
  24. ShaneR34

    ShaneR34 Member

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    As I said, I'm pretty sure I have the 3 second motor :) I'll double check the next time I have it on, but I payed close attention to the Auger the times I did have it going, and 1 second doesn't seem right...I could be wrong. lol

    As for the pellets, I went with Easter Embers premium. The Tech I had out to inspect and clean basically told me to get my pellets anywhere I like, but to stay away from Kent. He's part of the reason why I don't want to burn it too low: the previous owner burned it too low and caused creosite to really build up. The Tech said the heat exchange tubes actually had caught fire...but no harm done. All is well after he was through with it. He advised no to burn it below the 10 O'clock setting for any more than a short period of time every now and then.

    So, if I don't see a good flame, I get nervous ;)

    I'll let you know how my testing goes the next time I have it going (which won't be too long. It's starting to get cold here in the Maritimes...)
  25. Pellet1

    Pellet1 New Member

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    If you look at the Eastern Ember and the Cozy Comfort pellets--the Cozy Comfort actually have slightly better specs. Makes one wonder how they come up with them. That being said, I have 3.5 tons of Eastern Ember in my basement.

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