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New Harman XXV, Lots of Ash

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by Rokal, Jan 16, 2011.

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  1. Rokal

    Rokal Member

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    Newly installed Harman XXV, dealer installed, direct vent, no OAK, burning Okanagan's on Room Temp Mode (70-75), Feed Rate 4, Blower set between H and L. Went through 7 bags in 4 days, house is approx 2400 sf. Outside temps have been cold on Long Island with high temps around 30 and lows in the teens.

    I cleaned out my stove after the forth day and the ash pan was 3/4 full, ash was all over the stove, glass is messy and needs cleaning every day.

    Any reason, other than pellets, that so much ash would be produced? Any suggestions on tweaking setting to reduce ash?

    Thanks in advance.

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  2. kinsmanstoves

    kinsmanstoves Minister of Fire

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    one way is to pick up another brand of pellets and burn 7 bags and compare ash content and sooting.

    Eric
  3. Lousyweather

    Lousyweather Guest

    your settings sound ok, as well as the useage, given the cold snap we are having these days. No amount of tweaking will give you more heat with less ash, but like said above, you can change pellets, which should change the amount of ash somewhat....
  4. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear Minister of Fire

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    Burning 7 bags of premium pellets will produce about 2.8 pounds of ash, those Oakies likely produced a lot less than that.

    Since you have some Stove Chow there put some of those through the stove and compare.

    Now a pound of ash from one pellet brand will not produce the same volume of ash as a pound from another pellet.

    Ash content in pellets is measured by weight, what your eye sees is not the weight but the volume.

    Here are some links to information you might find interesting:

    http://www.hearth.com/econtent/index.php/forums/viewthread/50101/

    http://www.hearth.com/econtent/index.php/forums/viewthread/42511/
  5. Rokal

    Rokal Member

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    Here are some pics of the stove...

    Attached Files:

  6. Lousyweather

    Lousyweather Guest

    looks normal to me!
  7. Doocrew

    Doocrew Feeling the Heat

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    Looks GREAT to me. If you think that is problematic, run a few bags of crappy pellets through and see what it looks like. Me thinks your expectations differ greatly from the reality of owning and maintaining a pellet stove.
  8. Rokal

    Rokal Member

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    I just took those pictures this morning after burning approx 1.5 bags. I thoroughly cleaned the stove on Saturday.

    I will break out the Stove Chow for a comparison.

    Thanks.
  9. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear Minister of Fire

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    The color behind the burn pot and on the glass looks like things are well within normal.

    Anyone who wants the glass to be clear has to clean it everyday and perhaps more often than that if the stove is in low burn most of the time.

    When you wipe down the glass it would also pay to get the ash out of the air wash otherwise the glass will get cruded up faster.

    You are burning low moisture compressed wood.
  10. Turbo-Quad

    Turbo-Quad New Member

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    I was looking at a XXV and if that looks normal or great, I may pass. My Mt. Vernon never gets like that.

    I need to add that I clean it every day. Two at the most but it doesn't get close to that after two. I suppose I could let it go for 4 days but the exhaust blower gets noisy.
  11. mnkywrnch

    mnkywrnch Minister of Fire

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    Cleaning your stove everyday is IMO is excessive.I go no less than seven days between cleanings.
  12. Turbo-Quad

    Turbo-Quad New Member

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    I have the non AE so it has no automatic cleaning features. Does the XXV have auto cleaning features?
  13. Rokal

    Rokal Member

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    The XXV does not have an autoclean feature. I just cleaned the stove and loaded in the Stove Chow. Here is a pic of the stove firing up on Chow...

    Attached Files:

  14. Rokal

    Rokal Member

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    Since I cannot go on experience, I am relying on information in the Harman manual and what the dealer has told me. Supposedly, the Harman XXV should be able to burn a ton of pellets (50 bags) before the ash pan needs to be emptied. Since it was 3/4 full after only 7 bags, there is a BIG discrepancy!
  15. krooser

    krooser Minister of Fire

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    Me too.........
  16. morsnow

    morsnow New Member

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    I have burned a lot of different brands of pellets in my xxv. consumption sounds normal. I can burn almost 2 bags a day when its real cold. I have had the best luck with a blend pellet(hard and soft) for less ash. I usually do a good cleaning between 1 and 2 weeks depending on pellet. I know from my experience I would find it hard to believe you could burn a ton without emptying the ash pan, and I dont think my stove would be very efficient after 2 weeks without a cleaning. The best luck Ive had was green team, as I couldnt believe after a full week my glass was still clean.(other than the small swath on the far right of the glass) . The reason I bought a harmon was based on the burn pot design. I dont find it to matter on what pellet I burn. The xxv keeps my house warm with crappy pellets or super premium. The hotter the pellet, the faster it burns. The less heat it puts out the longer it lasts. just less time between cleanings. find a good deal on some pellets and see if they work for you.
  17. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear Minister of Fire

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    A ton of premium pellets can produce 20 pounds of ash that can be more than 5 gallons of ash.

    Now you have to understand that volume and weight are not the same thing. As ash gets added to the pile a lot of the space in the ash will get compressed out of it.

    Now was your dealer talking about standard grade pellets or the super premium pellets.

    There is a wide range of things to consider and did he perhaps actually say up to a ton?

    In case you are wondering exactly how wide the range is there are pellets that test to 0.17% ash on one side and 3.00% ash on the other (there is also a utility grade that most stoves can't handle). The 3% pellet produces over 17 times the ash by weight as the .17% pellet.

    Your stove's ash pan can hold what ever ash can fit in it by volume, and not weight.
  18. Rokal

    Rokal Member

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    The following is taken directly from the Harman XXV Owners Manual (page 20):
    http://www.hearthnhome.com/downloads/installManuals/XXV.pdf

  19. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear Minister of Fire

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    Yes and I'm sure that you can find such a pellet, since a premium pellet is any pellet that has less than 1% of ash by weight.

    And within that there are pellets that produce very light fluffy ash and very dense ash.

    If you happen to get one that produces very light fluffy ash a lot of the ash will go out of the stove entirely and be in the venting or outside even that.

    What I'm trying to tell you is your mileage is going to differ depending upon the exact pellets you burn.

    In the end the ash pan holds ash by volume ash content of pellets is measured by weight. Take a look at the threads I linked to earlier.
  20. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear Minister of Fire

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    I just took a look at your stove's picture while burning and noticed that what looks like the room sensor is lying on a tile floor.

    If that is the case you might want to find a different place for it.

    Hard to to tell from the picture if that is your room sensor or a cable connection.
  21. summit

    summit Minister of Fire

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    that looks pretty normal to me.
  22. Rokal

    Rokal Member

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    Yes, that is the temperature sensor. I've moved it off to the side of the stove. Thanks.
  23. Rokal

    Rokal Member

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    I understand your point about weight vs. volume. Having an ash pan that is 3/4 full after only 7 bags of super premium pellets just strikes me as odd.

    If most folks are echoing the normal sentiment, I guess the only way to tell if the ash is excessive is to weight the ash.

    So far, the Stove Chow seems to be burning cleaner with less volume of ash. This of course is just by visual observation.
  24. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear Minister of Fire

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    Run through several bags. Pellets are subject to all kinds of variation. The single most important thing is that they should not get wet.

    I don't know if you were running with the sensor on the tile for a long while or not, but folks have had problems when the sensor has been on hard cold surfaces it fakes out the control system on the stove.

    If any stove spends a lot of time in a low burn situation the ash level and the size of the black area on the back behind the burn pot will increase.

    There is a low burn air adjustment for the stove that basically matches the stove to the homes electrical voltage, it is set at the factory for a proper match at 120 volts. If your household electrical system is other than 120 volts you may want that match done. There is a diagnostic unit that a Harman tech can hook up to the stove to check it out and get burn data from.

    I can assure you that you haven't really seen much ash, there are premium pellets that would produce 25+ quarts of ash per ton.

    When Jay ran those burn tests he had a pellet that produced 32 ounces by volume burning 2 bags which works out to 25 quarts per ton. He also ran a series of tests this season you should be able to find links to that test thread in the sticky links at the top of this section of the forum. There is a lot of good information in those threads.

    BTW welcome to the forum.
  25. Rokal

    Rokal Member

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    After the first day, I moved the sensor off the tile floor, about 2 ft away and 1ft off the ground.

    Since the outside temps have been cold, the stove has been burning fairly high to maintain inside temps.

    AFAIK, it is 120 volts. Are you referring to voltage fluctuations? If so, I do have a Kill-A-Watt meter to check for voltage fluctuations.

    Thanks. I've learned alot so far!
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