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Greenwood boiler problem

Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by joeski206, Nov 9, 2007.

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  1. sparky1961

    sparky1961 New Member

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  2. sparky1961

    sparky1961 New Member

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    The draft is very important on this type of wood boiler so that u don't get smoked out. The draft needs to be a .06to .07 for the boiler to funtion properly u can check it with a draft meter
  3. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    Welcome to the Boiler Room, sparky. I expect that ISDBTU or one of the other Greenwood boiler owners will be happy to share their fuel loading techniques and tips with you.

    I get a face full of smoke from my EKO if I open it at the wrong point in the burn cycle. A lot of this involves learning the limitations of your equipment and working around them.
  4. jebatty

    jebatty Minister of Fire

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    No comment on the Greenwood, as my first and only experience is with Tarm. With 3+ months of experience, satisfaction is at least 90%, and I think time and more experience will raise that. The Boiler Room has been superb in solving the early issues and solutions were endorsed by Tarm, which independently also has been very helpful. Thanks to everyone.

    Indoor installation on the Tarm, albeit a little drafty (plenty of air available) in the workshop. No smoke issue, even with fire in full burn. Just cut the draft fan, open the bypass damper, and open the primary burn door slowly. Dry wood, small wood, also not an issue. I burn pine, which is shorter on the burn cycle as a less dense wood, but practically no ash, no creosote in the stack, and about as complete a burn as I can imagine. Honestly, I could not have imagined before so much heat from so little wood.

    Comment from CT/MA/RI border on pyrolysis I think just answered another question I had. On initial and into burn secondary combustion/gassification roars; as the burn continues practically no visible combustion/gassification through the sight glass, yet stack temperature stays right about were it was before (425-475). I assume this is pyrolysis at its zenith.

    The only issue, and I'm not really sure it is an issue, is that sometimes the primary burn load collapses on the nozzle and seems to block it. I assume this happens also when I am not around to observe, so I also assume combustion continues until the nozzle is cleared sufficiently, because every full burn is complete and no evidence of burn problems in the stack, refractory, or otherwise. Further insight on this would be appreciated.
  5. henfruit

    henfruit Minister of Fire

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    i get smoke also when loading, i have to try to load it real quick before the the new load catches. i have a draft inducer on mine that will give me .12 wc of draft. i have built a hood over it that vents out side. it does help a bit. my other problem is all my wood that i had left over from my wood stove is all split and 20 inches long, i wii have to get round wood for next year. i may even move it to an out building to end the smoke. has any one that has a green wood or seton ever had or tried to clean the water pipes inside the boiler? temp is so warm here today upper 50s i have had to let it burn out. give me a good time to do some cleaning out.
  6. Bartman

    Bartman Member

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    Would it help, or can yo even do it, kill power to the unit when loading? Would that make a difference?
  7. antknee2

    antknee2 New Member

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    I have the same problem with the Seton boiler which is the same principle as a Greenwood boiler . Even with my garage door open after loading for a few minutes the walls are starting to look nasty!!
  8. antknee2

    antknee2 New Member

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    Very cool you mentioned cleaning the heat exchanger tubes , I bit the bullet an cut the heavy galvanized outer skin on the left side of the boiler towards the back and cut through the 2'' high density insulation to have perfect access to the back side of the tubes , what a mess back there , the brush I used is about 4' long . Also much lower stack temp , lower wood consumption. Anthony.

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  9. Bartman

    Bartman Member

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    Even though my boiler isn't the latest and greatest, it still seems to have some similar quirks, although probably not as bad. If I were to have bought a new boiler and the front got toasty, I would be having a canary. Lately I have been tossing around buying a new boiler, but for me, there are more logistical problems that have to be ironed out first. So for now I'll live with the old girl and make her pretty.. :) with a new paint job, she's gonna be yellow now, but if it gets burnt I'll be ticked off. When loading mine, you hit the "stop" button, get a "green" light to open loading door, in theory that was to prevent a "smoke out" or flame out the door. The scenario worked somewhat, I've learned over the years to crack the door slowly, let the fire suck in some air and flame/smoke will stay put, (for a little while). But sometimes I'm too impatient or just not thinking and I get it to billow a bit.
  10. ISeeDeadBTUs

    ISeeDeadBTUs Guest

    Actually, the fact that it is 50ish out does not require ceasing burning. . . just very careful loading. Someone said kill the power to prevent smoke?? I doubt that would help, since that would close the damper. Waiting till the fire is down to a coal bed, then loading with something dry and barkless on that bed is best. Any birch should go on the next tier up. And get loaded and get the dayum door closed already!! Then leave it for 8 hours (or less if it's below zero out; more like 12 hours when its this warm out) and the smoke shouldn't be an issue.

    This all assumes you don't have the GW in finished space, No! Wait!! Don't tell me you believed some salesman??!!! :lol:
  11. td182a

    td182a New Member

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    I have had a Greenwood 100 running for about 2 months now. Does anyone out there have a problem with creosote with the Greenwood? I have all types; liquid, goo, crystallized, etc, emanating from mine, from the loading door, chimney outlet box, chimney, stuck on the water tubes, you name it; its there. I gave it a good cleaning the other day, there is about 3/4 inch solid creosote in the bottom of the chimeny outlet area. No way to get it out without removing the back end.

    I have installed a draft inducer (linked to on their website), now I think I have a hotter fire and was hoping to eliminate the creosote, but no such luck. It drips out the bottom of the chimney, and runs down the damper door when it's closed.

    I have tried for help from the factory, and in all fairness a gentleman did call back one day, we played telephone tag but he's been 'it' for awhile now but hasn't called back. So other than having a nice chat with Nancy, I can't get any info. Some questions I want to ask, the book says 6 in chimney Minimum. The exhaust outlet is 8 inch, my thimble is 8 inch, so I put in an 8 in chimney. Could this be my problem? And if it is, and I'm not getting enough draft, wouldn't the draft inducer fix it? Would the extra chimney size increase or decrease the draft? I have about 6 ft of 8 inch black pipe with 2 ninties into an 8 inch thimble into a 7X11 masonary chimney inside the house.

    One last question, if I purchase a draft meter, which is the best one and where can I get it?

    Thanks for any help, this site is a wealth of info.
  12. td182a

    td182a New Member

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    An addition to the above post, after installing the draft inducer and only loading wood when the draft in open and inducer running ( the inducer is wired into the draft door circuit), I now have a negligible smoke problem when loading.
  13. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    How dry is your wood, td182a?
  14. henfruit

    henfruit Minister of Fire

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    yes mine is in the house. bad decision i know. i really think theses need to burn straight out to get the best performance. water storage would be nice.
  15. Bartman

    Bartman Member

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    When I purchase a gasifier, it has to go in my basement boileroom, no exceptions. It's amazing all the different stories and reports on the various brands, I really need to see these in action before buying.
  16. sparky1961

    sparky1961 New Member

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    how hi is your water temp set at . Also large unsplit wood works really well . u also need .06 to .07 draft that is very important to for the boiler to operate properly.
  17. ISeeDeadBTUs

    ISeeDeadBTUs Guest

    Mine is all 8". Though I ordered the draft inducer, I never installed it. As far as creosote, in 8" it shouldn't be a big deal. Yes, the beast will 'leak' goo, but since it's in a shed, so what?
  18. kuribo

    kuribo Feeling the Heat

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    If there is creosote or any other "goo", the unit is not gasifying and you are not getting complete, efficient combustion...
  19. ISeeDeadBTUs

    ISeeDeadBTUs Guest

    You say that so authoritativly . . .like yer an engineer or work for GW. Either??

    The 'goo' I believe is a mix of water (from the fuel and/or refractory material) combined with 'soot'. So, since I'm NOT an engineer, I'm going to feel free to talk like a 'dummied-down' one. The 'goo' is unburned fuel and water. You think that means the unit is not 'gassifying' and the combustion is 'not efficient'?? Where exactly do you place 'not efficient'? 60%? 75%? 85%??

    Jimbo
  20. henfruit

    henfruit Minister of Fire

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    sparky, i think my high temp is at 185 and the low is at 165. with out the inducer on i pull.05 wc really not enough. if i wired my inducer to the damper circut i know then i would have more then enough draft when it is gaseifing.maybe to much? i have 6" into 7x11 brick tile chimeny that 30 ft. tall outside wall faceing due north wide open towards mt. washington, also 2 90s.
  21. kuribo

    kuribo Feeling the Heat

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    Actually, I am an engineer...but that doesn't mean I know everything, surely!

    What I do know is that when a gasifier is operating correctly, there is very little ash left over when the fuel has been burned. I also know that water should not be in the liquid state- if it is, temperatures are too low and the water vapor that is suppose to go out the flue is condensing inside the flue. This is not good. Also, there should not be any water coming out the refractory after the unit is broken in....

    I also know that if there is "goo" it means that the volatile gases burned in the gasification process are not being burned, therefore gasification is not happening. "Goo" is unburned fuel thus waste; the process is not operating efficiently.

    The benefits of gasification are near complete combustion at very high temperatures which eliminates the creosote, tars, and other byproducts of incomplete combustions (which are part and parcel of the typical OWB which people are recognizing as inefficient)...

    If you are getting creosote or other "goo", along with liquid water, you are basically operating at the level of the typical OWB, with comparable efficiencies....
  22. ISeeDeadBTUs

    ISeeDeadBTUs Guest

    TFF :smirk:

    So everyone here that figures they are running a gassifier at say, North of 82%, then sees any 'goo', creosote, and/or water in a form other than vapor, just dropped down to say, 50%?
  23. kuribo

    kuribo Feeling the Heat

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    f you are getting material amounts of creosote or other byproducts of incomplete combustion, no matter what efficiency you are getting, it is not as good as it would be with complete combustion. Nor are you operating at the high temperatures associated with gasification. Gasification= burning of volatile gases (creosote). A large part of the heat energy released by combustion results from the burning of the volatile gases. If you are not burning them and they are condensing, forming creosote, you are no better off than with an OWB as far as efficiency.

    One could be gasifying for part of a burn, then go into an idle mode where the gasification stops and the temperatures drop, allowing the volatiles to condense (forming creosote).
  24. antknee2

    antknee2 New Member

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    Sorry to here your Greenwood is not operating cleanly , we need more info to try to give some good advice . Acurate draft readings , stack temp readings inside flue by boiler , flue tempature on top of your chimney , average moisture content of your wood , average time your damper stays open , do you have some buffer tank to absorbe excess btu output , finaly what type of chimney[ inside or outsie ] how long ??? This can be solved . Check out some of the tools of the trade. Anthony

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  25. td182a

    td182a New Member

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    Eric Johnson, I am burning bug killed pine, dryed standing. It should probably be a bit drier, but I burn it in a Pacific fireplace insert as well, and it burns very clean and hot.

    The boiler temp is set at 160 / 180.

    In order to run effectently, this boiler should probably run full out for a long period of time, then shut down. I suspect the reason I have such a problem with creosote, is that it is starting and stopping too much. I don't see a way around that, other than with water storage, and not needing water storage is one of the reasons I purchased the Greenwood!
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