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Need help w/new Avalon Hybrid Fyre

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Diane from WI, Jan 16, 2013.

  1. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    It's not a dumb question at all. Lots of folks including a lot of old timer guys make this mistake. And many stove manuals are not clear about this distinction for EPA stoves. By closing down the primary air you are forcing the draft to pull the air through the secondary manifold and out the burn tubes. That increases burning efficiency and heat output.

    With a modern stove burning good dry wood it should produce more heat at the correct low setting. For our stove the correct setting is from about 1/8 open to all the way closed depending on the wood. When you get into the late coaling stage you can start opening the air more to burn down the coals.

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  2. Diane from WI

    Diane from WI New Member

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    Ok, thank you for making me feel better! I will start low burn tonight. Been burning high all day....-30 wind chills by Monday!

    BIG QUESTION- should the bottom of the stove be caulked or contain a trim piece since I think this is where my ash is coming from (see my last post in this thread). Not using he blower ever again is not an option......

    Again, this forum is simply amazing........deepest thanks!
  3. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Diane, is this your unit?
    http://www.avalonfirestyles.com/product-detail.aspx?model=350
    No need to always leave the blower off, just when you are loading wood or cleaning out ash. Vacuum up and turn it back on.

    You know of course that there is no way that a single stove is going to heat 6000 sq ft, right? The Avalon Hybrid fireplace insert is only rated up to 2500 sq ft and that is not at -30 degrees.
  4. jdp1152

    jdp1152 Minister of Fire

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    No, it should not be caulked (at least not on any of the install manuals I've seen). You just need to stop the fan before loading and sweep your hearth before turning it back on. Probably don't want to run the fan for a few minutes after a reload anyway, but we all get impatient sometimes. Of the several manuals I've read during the research phase, seemed that most recommended anywhere form 10-30 minutes following a load before using the fan. Gives your stove a chance to get back up to optimal temp. If you're jumping the gun and throwing a few splits on a big coal bed, probably can kick it on right away after hearth sweeping.
  5. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Don't turn the air all the way down all at once. Do it in stages. Start the reload of wood, let it get burning fairly well, turn the air down 50% or until the flames start getting lazier. Then wait about 10 minutes for the flames to regain strength. Turn down the air another 50% to about 1/4 open or until the flames start getting lazier. Wait for the flames to regain strength and repeat. Until the flames stay pretty lazy and the bulk of flame is spouting forth at the top of the firebox, over the wood.
  6. flyingpig

    flyingpig Member

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    I second jdp1152 comment above. With the fan on, any hot coal dropping down in front of the stove may result in small red coal/ash shooting out from the fan...and that'll go directly to my face. Most of the time I also leave the fan off until I'm ready to turn down primary air.
  7. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    I can see how this could be happening if the blower was left on during cleaning. If this is the new insert it looks like it has a fairly shallow firebox and no ashlip. That looks like it would make neat cleaning a bit more of a challenge.
  8. NE WOOD BURNER

    NE WOOD BURNER Minister of Fire

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    Diane,
    This forum is full of people who know their stuff! And they share their stuff that they have learned with ease. I find this forum to be very informative and have learned much about newer model stoves. I have burned wood my entire life. What I read on this sight is very encouraging to update my older stoves with newer technology.
    What encourages me to invesigate further is what i feel to be truthful wood usages and home heating requirements some large and some smaller. this year i am burning oil only to find out what my true usage would be to meet my requirements for heating. though its been warmer than usual i am surprised how much run time I hear on the furnace. After this year i should have a good baseline to make an informative decision on my wood heating for next year. my goal is to heat my house with wood and use much less than I have in years past. 8 cords will keep me comfortable but with lots of labor involved. the 8 cords keep my house on average of 65 F with great fluctuation. I am impressed with the fact you can run your stove wide open and not burn out your chimney. that would be alot of heat on your chimney and gives much credit to your liner.
  9. jdp1152

    jdp1152 Minister of Fire

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    When I lived down your way, Cary stood for Centralized Area of Relocated Yankees. Still true?
  10. flyingpig

    flyingpig Member

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    Yes. But more asian recently...including myself. :)
  11. jdp1152

    jdp1152 Minister of Fire

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    Everything in town is still beige I take it?
  12. flyingpig

    flyingpig Member

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    You got it right. But lots more recent updates. Now NC540 extends all the way down to Holly Springs. Large condo/town home with shopping mall coming this fall on Highhouse/Davis Drive.

    Sorry didn't mean to hijack this post. I'll move this conversation to PM.
  13. rideau

    rideau Minister of Fire

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    Do you have the universal or cypress front?

    I don't know why you should have agap at the bottom on the install. The cypress looks like it almost sits on l"legs" at the edge, but the universal looks like it is flush with the floor. I cannot imagine the insert being designed with a gap at the bottom that is 1/8 inch. How could you ever clean under it? Just a huge problem. Also don't understand whi ash and coals are coming out. Are they falling out through a gap, are they falling out when you clean the stove or reload? I'd speak with the manufacturer. Unless they have designed a gap underneath for air cooling or some such thing, I'd surely seal any gap so I could clean the hearth without ash getting pushed under there. Where does the blower blow? If it blows air out under the stove, then you obviously cannot seal a gap down there. Or if the stove pulls room air in through a gap. But, again, I'd ask, because I think you are always gpoing to have a problem if ash regularly spills out of your stove.

    How much of a lip is there inside the stove to hold ash and coals? You will burn less wood burning at a lwoer temperature, so will have less ash, but you'll still have plenty of ash. You just should not have a problem with it spilling out of the stove, though..or with coals spilling out. That's ridiculous to have to deal with that. Talk to the people who designed this stove 9the manufacturer) and find out if that gap should be filled, and, if not, how you can stop the ash and coal spillage.

    Seems people are assuming you were running the fan all the time, including when you were reloading. Were you? If you weren't running the fan when you were reloading, then I don't see how not running it when you are reloading or initiating theburn will solve your problem. If you were, and the unit was only blowing ash when you were reloading and getting the burn going, then having the blower off at that time may help a lot. But if it is ash that is getting under that unit that is being blown, what's totop it from being blown later in the burn?

    Just seems to me you should not have a situation where you are getting ash under the unit. Sorry to keep repeating.

    Glad you are on the way to solving the problem. Good luck with it.
  14. jdp1152

    jdp1152 Minister of Fire

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    The gap is meaningless. It's merely a face plate for aesthetics. Sealing it won't change anything. I have a gap under mine because my fireplace isn't level so one side has about 1/4th of an inch and the other side has very little. An insert is nothing more than stove that sits in the fireplace and is hidden by said faceplate.

    Air intakes under the stove and blows out the top.
  15. Diane from WI

    Diane from WI New Member

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    Answering questions:
    1. I am not expecting to have the unit heat my house. All floors have hot water heat in them (yes, 6000 SF of heated floors). That is set at 62 degrees throughout the five heating zones. In addition, we have the forced air set at 62 degrees. So the fireplace is to supplement that and gets our open living area up a few extra degrees.
    2.yes we go through a ton of wood. It's all seasoned and dry.
    3.we have the metropolitan face which has little x's across top and bottom for ack of a better description.
    4. Wood and ash do spill out 50% of time that we open door. The lip to keep wood in is about 2 inches high. So if wood tips forward during burn, it does spill out.
    5. We ALWAYS turn off blower when loading, open door slowly and pull out damper. ALWAYS.
    6. The 1/8 inch gap gets ash under it. See picture. This is right after I carefully loaded it. That is what spilled out. So after every load, we shovel what you see into the ash can(and take outside) or back into fireplace. THIS is where I think some is crawling under the unit due to the gap. As you can see from picture, the front of he unit is filthy. That is why we ave to clean it every few days. The blower is blowing out ash, so it is getting into the lower somehow.

    So, my question stands....could the ash falling out (and our cleanup of it) be getting it into the blower and spewing all ore my house? (See pictures on the start of this thread). If so, that bottom should be caulked, no?????
  16. Diane from WI

    Diane from WI New Member

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    Sorry about the upside down picture- will try to repost. Darned iPad.

    Attached Files:

  17. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Yes, the issue here is a shallow firebox front lip and no ash lip on the insert. The ash on the hearth is getting sucked up into the blower which intakes air front and bottom center. With this stove I would consider perhaps having an ashtray fabricated and attaching it to the front of the stove just below the door opening.

    For now, take the vacuum and clean out the front grille and hearth. You will need to do a thorough cleaning of the blowers and air duct channels too as soon as you can stop the stove for a day. (pages 26 and 28 of the manual) After an ash lip is installed this should become less of an issue.
  18. Diane from WI

    Diane from WI New Member

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    I hope the problem is solved!
    Everything IS installed correctly. The duo from the fireplace store (installer and owner) came out and spent almost two hours looking, talking, photographing and eventually moving out the fireplace. I was correct on the slight gap at the bottom - ask that climbs over the lip (on almost every burn) falls to the floor. When we sweep up, some goes under the fireplace. When they removed the faceplate, there was a three inch pile of ash immediately behind the faceplate (so not under the unit). This showed me that 1. Husband has NOT been as careful as me when cleaning ash spills (pushes shovel toward unit to scoop up, in effect pushing ash UNDER the unit) 2. We need to not overload fireplace so that ash spillage out front is minimized 3. Ideally, we would elevate the unit 4 inches (yes, there is room in our actual fireplace area, but it means pulling the liner up as well and bricking the bottom for aesthetics). This would mean that ash spillage would have a lessened chance of sneaking UNDER the unit. 4. We can consider getting a tray fabricated for in front of the unit when we open door to catch spillage 5. We need to continue to scoop half of the ash out every 2-3 days so our wood is laying in the box and not on top of the ash pile, lessening the chance that it may fall forward (and out the door when opened)
    The guys vacuumed out the entire surrounding area to the unit. They showed me how to remove the faceplate if this shoudl become an issue again. They showed me under the unit (and the lack of ash in that area).
    I am VERY happy - burned since they left and....my mantel is CLEAN FOR THE FIRST TIME IN 4 MONTHS!
    So, next question......Where can I have a tray fabricated in case my hubby continues to be a pig when he loads firewood?
    A VERY sincere thanks for all of the suggestions. I am HOPING this ends my disdain for this unit!

    Attached Files:

    milleo likes this.
  19. jdp1152

    jdp1152 Minister of Fire

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    Glad you've discovered the issue. Not surprising. Insert + Blower requires cleanliness. Any sheet metal shop can fix you an ash pan for next to nothing cost wise. Pick up a can of stove brite paint and match the color and you're all set. Couldn't probably even make one yourself if you got a sheet metal break (maybe rent one?)
  20. Diane from WI

    Diane from WI New Member

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    Solved the issue for now. If it continues, kicking husband out of the house is the next logical step.
    Kidding.
    Thanks again, all! YOU DO GREAT WORK!
  21. flyingpig

    flyingpig Member

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    Glad to hear that you got your problem solved. Please try Begreen's suggestion on slow burn and keep us updated on the overflow ash. You should be able to reload every 4-6 hours rather every two hours.
  22. rideau

    rideau Minister of Fire

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    Very glad this was a simple problem to solve. This should make your life a lot pleasanter. Hope you enjoy the insert for a very long time indeed.
  23. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Good to hear. It sure looks cleaner. Can the gap be caulked with something like MilPac?

    You should be able to have any decent sheet metal shop bend you up a simple ash lip. I would have them make a 1" L bend downward for the back side and 3/8" L bend upward on the front edge. I would also ask them to radius the corners to eliminate sharp corners. 20ga steel would work. It will need to be drilled for attachment holes unless just held in place with magnets. And it would need to be cleaned and painted for a more presentable look. You can remove it at the end of the season.

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