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Fireview with small hole in firebox, intermittent flare with draft on zero

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by BrianK, Feb 16, 2012.

  1. BrianK

    BrianK Guest

    Hi folks,
    I reloaded the Fireview tonight, got the stove top temp up to 600, stove pipe temp 275 and decided to call it a night. I've been leaving the draft around .75 to 1.0 at night, but the stove top was creeping up to 610 when I put it at .75, so I cut it back to 0.

    That's when I noticed a low (not loud) intermittent roar from the lower left rear of the stove and noticed an intermittent bright flare of fire at this area, like it had a small blower blowing on it, while the rest of the firebox is dark except some secondaries in front up top.

    On closer exam, there appears to be a small triangular hole in the left rear corner vertical soapstone (firebick?) liner right behind where this is flaring up which I had not noticed before. (I bought this stove used in December. Its ten years old but otherwise in good condition. I replaced the ceramic cat with a SS cat when I bought it.)

    Here's a video shot from my cell phone. You can hear the stove rattle and the roar start and stop with the flare ups:

    [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XQdN79OFf2c&context=C3c9320bADOEgsToPDskLy5u9Wlj1xc4oNSszyq4IW[/youtube]

    I'm wondering if or how air could be entering the stove through this hole. I see no cracks on the outside of the stove, and given the two layers of stone I don't see how this could be letting air into the firebox.

    Or is this simply due to running the draft at 0 for the first time?

    Where does the draft air entire the firebox on the Fireview?

    I'll snap a few pictures of this hole tomorrow when the stove has cooled.

    I'm assuming this small hole must be repaired. Any idea what is involved? Can it wait till the end of the season, can it be patched, does the stone need replaced?

    I won't be using it till I know whether its safe to use or if it needs repaired prior to further use. This has me a bit flummoxed.

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  2. Todd

    Todd Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2005
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    Loc:
    Lake Wissota
    It looks like something is leaking air back there. Is it coming from the very bottom under the fire bricks? I'd remove the 3 bottom fire bricks and see if there's a crack in the bottom cast or a leaky seam from lack of furnace cement. I would also contact Woodstock and see what they have to say.
  3. BrianK

    BrianK Guest

    Thanks.

    I talked to a gentleman at Woodstock, and he said its not uncommon for the furnace cement to crack and allow air into the firebox in this area. He said to simply repair it with furnace cement, give it 24 hours, then go back to burning. He also said it is not "dangerous" to operate it the way it is, its just more difficult to control the draft.
  4. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

    Joined:
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    27,816
    Loc:
    Michigan
    Brian, that is what I was going to suggest is patching with furnace cement. Glad you called Woodstock on this. However, if that hole is any size at all, going more than 24 hours won't hurt and I would also do a couple of burn-in fires when you get started burning again. This will help to cure the furnace cement.

    One more thing is the draft setting. Generally it is not so good to get that draft setting really low, especially down to zero. You might end up having problems with the stove top temperature going above 700 with the draft set that low. If you get this, then it sounds contrary, but open the draft up to at least 1 and that stove top should cool down a bit. If you have an IR thermometer you would find that with the super low draft setting that the stove top will get pretty hot but the sides of the stove will be much cooler. If you adjust to keep some flame, then you'll get more heat from the sides and the temps will be closer to the top temperature.
  5. BrianK

    BrianK Guest

    Great, thanks Backwoods Savage.

    The stove cooled off enough to empty and snap a photo:

    [​IMG]

    The hole is in the furnace cement between the pieces of soapstone, just above my make shift pointer on the ruler, about 1/2" high, 3/4" wide, not as bad as I thought last night.

    I'm off to the store for some furnace cement.

    Hopefully furnace cement is fool proof.

    If so, I'm up to the task. :)

    Will do.

    The gentleman at Woodstock also said if the stove is over firing to simply set the cat on bypass to let the heat go out of the firebox and straight up the chimney.
  6. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    27,816
    Loc:
    Michigan
    That looks like a quick and easy fix Brian. That is good for you for sure!
  7. BrianK

    BrianK Guest

    Yes, its patched and drying, thanks again. The furnace cement was very easy to apply. I'll fire up a small fire late tomorrow night to start curing it.

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