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  1. mikkeeh

    mikkeeh Burning Hunk

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2011
    Messages:
    206
    Loc:
    NE Ohio
    Tried cleaning my stove in the "test" mode as suggested in a few posts. The combustion fan ran, but so did the circulating fan. Is this normal? Thx

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  2. mepellet

    mepellet Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2011
    Messages:
    2,004
    Loc:
    Central ME
    My convection fan runs intermittently while cleaning and putting the stove in test mode. I assume it is normal.
  3. Lousyweather

    Lousyweather Guest

    hmmm...cleaning your stove in TEST mode?.....tell me more.....might learn something new here.....

    (popping up some popcorn now....)
    kinsmanstoves likes this.
  4. mikkeeh

    mikkeeh Burning Hunk

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2011
    Messages:
    206
    Loc:
    NE Ohio
    Test mode turns on the combustion fan...creating a negative air pressure in the stove.....causing the fine dust that you generate while scraping/brushing the stove to be forced out the vent, instead of into the room.
  5. subsailor

    subsailor Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2011
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    1,422
    Loc:
    Winthrop, Maine
    It works very well.Hardly anything comes into the house. My distribution blower runs intermittently as well.
  6. TheMightyMoe

    TheMightyMoe Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2012
    Messages:
    552
    Loc:
    Fairbanks, Alaska.
    I do this as well. Sounds right. Test mode tests both the fans, and the auger motor (Door is open so auger doesn't run)
    PJPellet likes this.
  7. mikkeeh

    mikkeeh Burning Hunk

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2011
    Messages:
    206
    Loc:
    NE Ohio
    Thx guys!
  8. Melissa220

    Melissa220 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2012
    Messages:
    349
    Loc:
    central ME
    I haven't dared try this yet, although I have heard it several times. Uncertain only because when I turn to TEST after cleaning, both fans run. Are you letting it run to the point where the dist blower stops before beginning cleaning? I clean the stove and brush everything off with the vacuum nozzle in the firebox and the vacuum turned on.
  9. mepellet

    mepellet Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2011
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    Loc:
    Central ME
    I open the door then turn it to test and start brushing away at the heat exchanger, sides, bricks, flame guide, and side shelves. I then close the door and turn the dial back to 4. Then open it back up and scrape the burnpot. That completes the uipper portion. I then clean the lower portion with a shop vac with a brush head. Clean the igniter area and glass. Done. All about 10-15 minutes. Every other week I clean the fines box and every month or so clean the venting.
  10. subsailor

    subsailor Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2011
    Messages:
    1,422
    Loc:
    Winthrop, Maine
    X2. The dist. blower will cycle on and off. I leave mine in test until I've done the whole stove unless I'm gloing to clean the blades on the combustion blower.
  11. Melissa220

    Melissa220 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2012
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    349
    Loc:
    central ME
    :eek: It has been taking me about an hour to do all that. Are you including brushing the exhaust fan blades and the ESP? Perhaps I am being too nit-picky? ;em
  12. TheMightyMoe

    TheMightyMoe Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2012
    Messages:
    552
    Loc:
    Fairbanks, Alaska.
    I'd say 15-30 minutes sounds right. Let unit cool.

    Lay down a garbage bag.
    Turn it to test / scrape exchanger / scrape pot / brush (4" Paint brush) all ash into pan.
    Remove pan, vacuum top, bottom, fines box, igniter box real quick.
    Whenever I pull ash can, I brush the fan blades (1" Paint brush), brush the esp, I also run my 1" vacuum hose through the venting to the 90* to vacuum any accumulation.
    Put ash can back in, throw a handful of pellets in to make it start faster, and turn it on.

    That is my monthly / ash can is getting full cleaning. I don't plan on brushing the venting till end of season or if stove makes me.
  13. Melissa220

    Melissa220 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2012
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    349
    Loc:
    central ME
    I don't even touch the fines box. I would say I am doing a full cleaning on a weekly basis. Guess I shouldn't have to worry about a dirty stove! ==c
  14. TheMightyMoe

    TheMightyMoe Minister of Fire

    Joined:
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    Loc:
    Fairbanks, Alaska.
    Fines box can get you in trouble if it builds up bad.
  15. subsailor

    subsailor Minister of Fire

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    Loc:
    Winthrop, Maine
    I never knew about the fines box until I joined this forum. I cleaned mine for the first time this year, it was only half full.
  16. TheMightyMoe

    TheMightyMoe Minister of Fire

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    Aug 2, 2012
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    Loc:
    Fairbanks, Alaska.
    Build up will vary pellet to pellet, and with usage. But if you don't catch it before things start backing up, that's when you run into problems. A lot of people run into this one. Mine was full after maybe 40 days.
  17. subsailor

    subsailor Minister of Fire

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    Loc:
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    What kind of problems does it cause?
  18. Melissa220

    Melissa220 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2012
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    349
    Loc:
    central ME
    I am not able to lift the bag of pellets to dump into the hopper. I bail them in till there is about 2 - 3 ponds left in the bag and then I hand sift the good pellets out, leaving the majority of fines in the pellet bag. Labor intensive, but what else am I going to do while watching something mindless on TV?
  19. mark2m

    mark2m Member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2009
    Messages:
    32
    Loc:
    Orange County, NY
    Been doing this since the first cleaning and never had a problem. I don't place the stove in test mode though. Normally I let it run out of pellets and shuts down at that time I just cycle the stove temp / room temp dial off and back on again. This will trigger a new heating cycle and the stove will begin to feed pellets and start as it would normally. Combustion fan comes on but the room distribution blower won't. Right after cycling the dial I open the door and start scraping, brushing. Auger won't feed any pellets until the door is closed again. Typically after that I close the door and open the hopper lid and that will draw the air through the auger tube and you will see a bunch of fines being pull through the tube along with some of the ash in the burn pot. I will open and close the lid a couple times causing the auger to turn and this will bring more fines with it. Sometimes I remove the plate from the front side of the burn pot and with the hopper lid open in will pull a bunch of the ash that builds up in there also. You can do the same thing and open and close the lid a few times. It seems to help pull more of the ash out. If not a couple quick wipes with my finger usually is enough to remove most of the ash. Last thing I do before loading pellets is clean the glass and I'm all set.

    Oh and a couple of notes.

    If you still have pellets in the hopper the affect from opening the lid is not quite as great since it creates a restriction to the air flow and the air will take the easiest path through the air intake.

    When you clean your stove this way and don't open the hopper lid or door quickly enough the ignitor will begin to heat since the stove is trying to start up.

    Also the ignition sequence is started and does time out. I will just cycle the stove temp / room temp dial again to start a new cycle and allow the stove to load the burn pot properly after I load my pellets.

    I've brushed out the stove where the ash pan sits with the combustion fan going also. Just make sure you don't get the brush caught in the fan. It just makes things a lot less messy for me to do this.

    I'm not saying this is the right way or best way to clean your stove but it works well for me.

    HTH
    Mark
  20. subsailor

    subsailor Minister of Fire

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    Loc:
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    I think I'll continue to use the TEST setting.
  21. Lousyweather

    Lousyweather Guest

    ok, I'll clarify as to what I was alluding to above.....you CANNOT CLEAN YOUR STOVE BY PUTTING IT IN TEST MODE! Be careful with this, because, trust me, folks will read this and beleive the only thing they have to do is throw the unit in TEST every once and awhile, and not do a proper cleaning.
    kinsmanstoves likes this.
  22. mepellet

    mepellet Minister of Fire

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    Loc:
    Central ME
    I only remove the combustion blower during the monthly cleanings and give it a complete wipedown. During the weekly cleanings, I just use the same 2" paintbrush that I use for everything else and give it a quick brush. I forgot to mention that I also stick the 2" paintbrush down the exhaust path as far as I can but it doesn't reach the ESP. I only cleaned the ESP at the end of last season and unless I see the exhaust path in that area getting smaller due to ash accumulation, I don't plan on removing it until the end of the burn season.
  23. mepellet

    mepellet Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2011
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    2,004
    Loc:
    Central ME
    Thats why I vacuum out every couple cleanings. Only takes 2 minutes.
  24. mepellet

    mepellet Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2011
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    2,004
    Loc:
    Central ME
    Ahhh! Tricky tricky!

    Gotta think about the people that don't know what was originally meant. As you can tell a lot of us already understood but not everyone will!
  25. Melissa220

    Melissa220 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2012
    Messages:
    349
    Loc:
    central ME
    I brush the ESP lightly with a toothbrush taped to the end of a pen.

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