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Over fired the insert tonight

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by etiger2007, Nov 7, 2012.

  1. etiger2007

    etiger2007 Minister of Fire

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    I am freaked out right now. I loaded up six ash splits on a decent but not the biggest coal bed and left the door cracked to get things going with me sitting right in front of the unit. So by the time the stove hit 600 degrees stove top I had the air closed down 90%. Well it kept climbing and climbing until the magnet thermometer on the stove top was buried at 8?? turned off the light and a portion of the stove top was glowing now im really freaking out. I have read on here to open the door and let some cool room air cool the fire box so i did that with the fan on for about a minute, then I looked at my ss liner through my fireplace grate and its starting to glow red. So I shut the door and closed the air down and put a box fan on high blowing on the unit. I did hear that train sound in the liner so Im thinking aw chit I have a chimney fire going ( i did clean the liner spic and span prior to the heating season. So I go outside and I saw no glowing chimney cap or any glow of a fire in the chimney just pitch black sky line. So after about ten minutes of having a fan on and the air shut down all the steel glowing and ss liner glowing has gone away and the stove top is at 600 as I type. What do I do now before I have my next fire to make sure Im still in proper working order once thats determined I will never load the stove for an all night burn again, I will have a four split max and get what I get.

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  2. pen

    pen There are some who call me...mod. Staff Member

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    If you didn't this time, make sure you rake the coals forward so that the logs are not sitting entirely on red hot coals, load your wood, don't leave the door cracked ever since it shouldn't be necessary with seasoned wood, and start turning the air down in intervals as the temp climbs well before 600.

    If the stove behaves normally next time, then you didn't crack anything and shouldn't have any air leaks.

    One jaunt into this territory shouldn't tear the unit up. If it did, it deserves to head to the scrap pile.

    pen
  3. bag of hammers

    bag of hammers Minister of Fire

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    Ed hope all our "Osburn rocks" posts in the last couple days didn't jinx you
  4. etiger2007

    etiger2007 Minister of Fire

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    What about the liner Pen should that be OK. I never smelt any funny fumes or anything.
  5. etiger2007

    etiger2007 Minister of Fire

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    I know hammers it rocks alright lol. Wow that was crazy. I kept great composure as the olny thing the wife said was " you got it under control"
  6. pen

    pen There are some who call me...mod. Staff Member

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    I wouldn't do that to it daily, but they are meant to handle a chimney fire upwards of 2000 degrees. Glowing happens at 1/2 of that.

    If you are certain that chimney is clean, then carry on. If you want to be OCD, go ahead and do another cleaning and visual inspection with a strong spotlight. Since I'm doubting you've burned enough wood this year to have much of any accumulation to this point, and expecting that your fuel is well seasoned, I doubt you had a chimney fire, and simply saw that liner taking a lot of heat on from the stove in that location.

    pen
  7. etiger2007

    etiger2007 Minister of Fire

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    Thanks Pen and because I try to always be safe I will not light up again until I drop the baffle and inspect the liner and run a brush down it again. My wood is seasoned I have only burned ash and black walnut both over two years old and both under 20 % moisture. If you dont think I had a chimney fire what do you think that train sound was?
  8. pen

    pen There are some who call me...mod. Staff Member

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    My stove sounds like a train in an overfire circumstance as air is screaming though the unit trying to feed that raging fire. With the right load, I'll catch the "dog house air" turning on and off like a flame thrower. The train sound is there when it's shooting fire, off when it stops. That's even if things are under control.

    That's my best guess anyway. If there are no deposits in that chimney, then you simply can't have a chimney fire. Generally, deposits aren't found that low in the liner either, especially with good fuel and being cleaned recently.

    pen
  9. Benchwrench

    Benchwrench Member

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    Don't sweat it, however I'm sure it was an interesting experience.
    The only time I would worry about damage to ther stove is if it had a history of being overfired. Usually this is from not having a stove thermometer and a person starts smelling odd stuff like the stove paint cookin.
    You can tell if the stove has some damage when the metal shows it's no longer true. A person can take a straight edge to the suspected component and see if there is any "sag" in the steel. Burn tubes (if you have 'em) are replaceable.Otherwise I wouldn't worry at this point. We all make mistakes, the key is that we learn from them.
    Now I make a disclaimer that I'm no expert on the subject, just my personal opinion.
    These things are engineered to be put to the test. The problem arises when there is sustained overtemps but in your case it was shy of being too hot, enough to cause damage and it was not a prolonged period of time to warp/damage the stove.
    Everytime I start a fire, there is always a "train" sound emanating from the flue just above the stove. (I've got incredible draft to begin with)
    etiger2007 likes this.
  10. Sprinter

    Sprinter Minister of Fire

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    First year burner. Would you further explain the idea of raking the coals forward? I know it's been mentioned before, but I'm not sure I understand why and how to load that way.
  11. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    First, change your underwear. Then have a stiff shot slowly consumed while watching the fire.

    Next time, let the coal bed die down further before reload. Don't leave the door open on a reload and shut down the air quicker. Don't be afraid to close the air all the way if that gives you more control and it doesn't completely snuff out the fire.
  12. weatherguy

    weatherguy Minister of Fire

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    The first time I loaded my insert when I didnt have electricity to use the blower I had it take off, I got it under control before it got to your point. Using it after that without elec since I was out a week and needed heat I would turn it down from the get go and let it slowly get up to temp.
  13. mtcates

    mtcates Member

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    Has anyone here actually ruined a stove from over firing? I accidently fell asleep in a chair the other day with my stove door cracked. I was only asleep a short time but when I awakened the stove thermometer was pegged at 900. Who knows how much over that it really was. No damage to the stove that I could tell. My old stove before the new one turned red on top over 100 times the 5 years I used it. That was before I found this site and had never heard of the term over fire. I was just making heat fast to heat my house. I had no furnace at the time and when I was away for a day or so in the winter I had to heat my house back up from very cold using only the stove. That stove is still fine.
  14. rdust

    rdust Minister of Fire

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    When you rake the coals forward you're only loading part of the wood on coals. If you can load n/s you do this in hopes of having the load burn like a cigar front to back in the stove. If you load on spread out coals the wood tends to light up all at once and outgasses quickly which can lead to an overfire situation or what you'll see posted around here as "going nuclear".
  15. etiger2007

    etiger2007 Minister of Fire

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    Ok, I guess I have to say what happened lastnight needed to happen for me to gain a respect for this stove. I loaded the wood on a so so coal bed and left the door crack, the wood was loaded so high it was touching the tubes in the top of the stove. I will burn smaller loads from now on and I think this situation has made me a better burner today. Im not affraid of the stove but I better respect it, if I dont and If I dont take any learning experiecne from lastnight I might as well sell my stacks and put candles in the firebox and just look at it. I plan to inspect the unit tonight after work, im going to remove the baffle and inspect the liner the best I can. I also would like to say again Thanks to Hearth.com there were no fire fighters in the drive way lastnight because after reading post on here I had options on what to do in cases like these, I felt when I realized there was a problem I fixed it within a timely matter and nothing was lost. Thanks again guys for all your help and concern.
    Monosperma and pen like this.
  16. etiger2007

    etiger2007 Minister of Fire

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    The one time I did this It seemed to me to burn dirty, I dont understand why.
  17. etiger2007

    etiger2007 Minister of Fire

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    Green the only reason I opened the door was because although the fire was starting I could see alot of smoke in the fire box and when I opened it it would get sucked up the chimney. Is this smoke ok during a start up of a fresh load? I just dont want to fill the liner with creosote.
  18. Fod01

    Fod01 Feeling the Heat

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    Hi Pen - you said to rake the coals so the logs 'are' sitting entirely on coals. I know you meant 'are not', but since someone asked why rake the coals forward, there may be some confusion there.

    Gabe
  19. pen

    pen There are some who call me...mod. Staff Member

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    Thanks for noting the correction needed!
  20. pen

    pen There are some who call me...mod. Staff Member

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    Yep, it's fine. By opening the door you are simply diluting the smoke so it looks better and air has a straight shot up the chimney. Modern EPA stoves have quite a restrictive path(s) for air to enter the stove, w/ the door closed, it may appear that smoke is lingering, but that's fine; it's just waiting to build up enough heat in the firebox for that smoke to be burned by the secondaries.

    pen
    corey21 and etiger2007 like this.
  21. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    etiger, How far did you open that door? To get that cooling effect, you should leave it open wide and leave it. Your post makes it sound like you may have opened it only an inch or two.
  22. etiger2007

    etiger2007 Minister of Fire

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    Sorry I had it wide open.
    MasterMech likes this.
  23. osagebow

    osagebow Minister of Fire

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    Glad you came out OK, Ed. Very scary stuff. Actually logged on to post a similar episode. Might as well put it here, not to hijack...

    Forgot to rake coals forward last night, have a long N/S stove.I threw on 4 long, large splits of very dry soft maple. Forgot to set alarm timer, then ran upstairs to deal with brat on brat violence. Came back 40 minutes later to pegged thermometer (900F+)

    Turned on blower, opened door, closed inline damper. Called wife down to see flames flickering out of door. This kinda got her attention. Then had her feel how warm ceiling and walls were getting. Then explained to her not to repeat my stupidity. 10-15 minutes later, needle started to back off.

    Thanks to y'all,
    OB

    EDIT - Hope to see those Redwings soon Ed, great organization. (coming from a Pens fan!)
    etiger2007 likes this.
  24. etiger2007

    etiger2007 Minister of Fire

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    No worries thanks for the post.
  25. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    My stove is really seems to control things when the door is closed and the air control is shut. I can't see opening the door, myself.

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