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PE Pacific Insert Not Bullet-Proof

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Hogwildz, Aug 18, 2009.

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  1. greythorn3

    greythorn3 Minister of Fire

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    you might want to drill stop the cracks before they get anyworse if they dont cover it before you buddy welds them up.


    Ray

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  2. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    24/7 running of a wood stove should not be considered running it hard. You might pass on to your respective dealers that there are a few hundred eyeballs watching this issue right now. The only time I have seen my stove get over comfortable hot temps is when the EBT fed a full fuel load with more air than it needed at full secondary burn. That is why my EBT hole is now plugged and out of operation.
  3. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    If these manufacturers know what stove body temp will break their freakin stoves then they need to tell the buyer straight out. They have the labs and the test results. Plain and simple. Hell, I use the advice from the only two that tell ya not to burn over 700. I figure they buy their steel and welding rods from the same place the guys that built my stove buy theirs from.
  4. rob bennett

    rob bennett New Member

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    Is there an over firing temp listed in the manual? If not then then I think you are ok saying that you never over fired it according to the instructions.
  5. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    There isn't one in your PE manual. And yes, there isn't a small claims court judge in the country that would not find that warranty ambiguous due to no temps in the manual.
  6. stoveguy2esw

    stoveguy2esw Minister of Fire

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    not looking to get rotten fruit thrown at me but , here we go...

    without a standardized way of measuring the stoves temperature under controlled conditions where do you read temps and with what device? personally i believe stoves (at least steel ones im not as familiar with cast or stone) should be kept below 700F at its hottest point (hottest surface on the stove you can find) most steel stoves should be able to handle more than that in short terms and infrequently, but when you get to cruising above 700 you are risking damage to the stove. i agree with the poster who stated that the operators manual should give an idea of safe cruising temps for the stove preferrably with recommendations on where to read them and with what kind of device. i do lobby for this whenever i can bend an ear even in my own shop finding a reliable location wouldnt be hard to do for most manufacturers but finding a standardized device to measure with is the harder part.

    BB i know you arent a risk to bust that 30, you probably could do it , but i doubt you would push it that hard.
  7. branchburner

    branchburner Minister of Fire

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    When the definition of "overfiring" is left so vague, matters are made worse by conflicting opinions and advice from manufacturers, stove shops, chimney sweeps, inlaws, etc. Some of the VC stories make it sound like customers were almost being instructed to overfire. Unfortunately, not everyone with a stove is comparing notes with their friends on hearth.com. I would imagine a large number of folks are unaware if they've ever overfired their stove. Except for the small sampling posted here, it's hard to know how many overfiring issues arise with the various manufacturers.

    As to the warranty, the company is not going to ask what temps you ran your stove at; they are going to look at the stove, and that is the moment they will define "overfiring" for you. This forum is a great place to see who will stand behind their stoves in an iffy situation. It seems the response from Travis has been pretty impressive on the last few Lopi issues that have come up here.
  8. CK-1

    CK-1 Feeling the Heat

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    What does "Limited Lifetime" mean anyway?
  9. roselaker

    roselaker New Member

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    Wow! I have been lurking for a week or so, reading and learning a lot. I grew up with wood heat and after reading of the success with the summit's, I went and bought a Summit Classic "on sale" just yesterday (to replace the dying pellet stove that came with the house). Now I am all excited and impatiently waiting for it to be delivered on Thursday and reading of this new issue about possible bad welds. This is so discouraging... I am going to take pictures of every weld I can see on this stove before I fire it up. I'm no professional welder, but I have welded a bit, and can recognize bad welds. (my instructor showed me how.) :gulp: I think these pictures may come in handy depending on what the welds look like when new. Oh, and I have read in other posts here about the EBT flapper getting stuck on other summits, hmmm... seems like this could result in a VERY hot burn at no fault of the owner. I will post the pics if they are of use, and continue to watch and see... Thanks for all the insight that you fellow burners take the time to share.
  10. Sisu

    Sisu Feeling the Heat

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    I just wanted to thank everyone for their support, thoughts, and knowledgeable opinions. It is great to have some experienced welders comment on the welds.

    Here is an update as to where I am right now with my claim. I called the dealership contact today. He stated that he has forwarded my claim (along with the photos I sent him) to PE and is waiting to hear back from them. I had a bit of a chat how I am feeling a bit frustrated about this whole thing. He was sort of eluding that PE might make the claim it was overfired (all based on that the baffle and firebox welds cracked) by reaching temps above what the stove was rated for. Then he said that I didn’t use a thermometer to gauge the heat being produced. He also said that he didn’t think that anyone has ever returned a firebox to PE (in our previous conversation he said he thought only six had ever been returned) in the history of PE.

    That is when I asked him “didn’t you tell me in our last conversation that you stated that the "baffle crack" was only a seam”? I also asked him what exactly were the requirements/parameters for overfiring etc., and what are the temperatures one should not exceed?! I also asked him to tell me where in the instructions does it require or even suggest the use of a thermometer and where should it be placed?! That’s when he started to backpeddle like crazy and stated that he wasn’t suggesting anything and that these are the things that PE will likely ask questions about.

    He did state that this process could take weeks, which is a long time without woodheat. So now I am left waiting to what response PE will give me. The gas furnace is now running and I am not looking forward to the gas bill. Especially since my firewood is free (other than my time, labour, and gas for the saw) and is just sitting here in the woodpile instead of burning in the stove.
  11. Nonprophet

    Nonprophet Minister of Fire

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    With these stoves costing thousands of dollars, it's easy to see where both manufacturers and customers are nervous about getting stuck with expensive repairs or, worse yet, irreparable damage......

    Rumor has it that some high-end electronics (like expensive digital cameras) have built-in accelerometers in them that will tell the service center if any warranty claim is due to a camera drop instead of a faulty component. You'd think that stove manufacturers would be able to install a similar "sacrificial metal" strip that would offer definitive proof of over-firing by changing color, crumbling, etc. Like others have said, it seems ludicrous that manufacturers would warn against over-firing without specifying what that actually means........

    I will say that I read these forums often, and I pay VERY close attention to which stove manufacturers take care of their customers by standing behind their products. I will be very interested to see how PE follows up on this case as they are one of the manufacturers on my "might like to buy from" list.


    NP
  12. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    If they deny the warranty claim, take them to court There is nothing in the PE warranty or manual that could ever win.

    Not to mention that it would be cheaper for them to replace your insert than to fight it in court.
  13. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    Is that even realistic. What kind of suit? Small claims?
    And do you really think they will come down from Canad to attend? Or would they hire a local lawyer.
    I am going to try and get to taking better photos and go down to the PE dealer I bought mine from either tomorrow or Saturday.
    I will take the manual and have them show me the over fire warning & temp or lack of in the manual.
    I bet the warranty and manual change if a few more of these come around. I doubt it will be to the consumers advantage of course.
    But until I get word back, I want to try and give them the benefit of the doubt. I love the insert, but want it made right.
  14. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Considering that you put thermometer(s) on the stove indicates that you have been watching temps and have at least a mental record of what the stove has been running at. If PE chose to challenge that, it would have to produce some credible evidence which from my armchair, would appear to be guessing as compared to your actual record.

    Bad welds and assembly happen to all stoves at some times. I'm hoping PE wants to understand the issue and resolve it soon.
  15. greythorn3

    greythorn3 Minister of Fire

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    ya right, in court the one with the most $ usually wins. ;(
  16. madison

    madison Minister of Fire

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    My observations: After one yr with a T6, I could not find any cracks in welds. My wife and I both like the type of heat and ease of control of the unit and are so far satisfied with our purchase. Stove top temp monitored, only exceeded 700 once while observing the EBT (see #4 below).

    I will add that I have begun to question the QA/QC at PE, I have had a few issues that seem to indicate that there is either a lax or non existent quality control inspection process. More than a couple times while trying to diagnose and repair some issues, i would chuckle to myself that my unit must have been made after a "BC bud" lunch break.

    A few of my posts from the last yr for illustrations regarding the QA/QC:

    1. Loose and stripped ash chute bolt : http://www.hearth.com/econtent/index.php/forums/viewthread/23299/
    2. Boost manifold (replaced under warranty by PE) : http://www.hearth.com/econtent/index.php/forums/viewthread/30126/
    3. Door fit : Seems to be an issue with communication between Mfg, Dealer/installers and owners: it seems most users/owners end up refitting them. Many links on this subject.
    4. EBT like #3 above, but it sounds like some users are disabling this device. Post#8 http://www.hearth.com/econtent/index.php/forums/viewthread/34532/#366508

    I will again add that we like the T6, and PE did respond to the one warranty issue we did persue (#2), the boost manifold was drop shipped to my residence.

    My dealer did elaborate/complain that warranty work is a pain with "all woodstove mfg's" in that the dealer must initially eat the costs and that their (dealers) labor for the warranty work is not compensated. I cannot attest to the truth of this statement, but it certainly seems to fit the picture when we read about dealers trying to dodge and avoid warranty work.
  17. Sisu

    Sisu Feeling the Heat

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    I agree there could be some qa/qc issues with PE. When I initially bought my stove in 2005, I had to replace the door twice via the local dealer. I had gone all out and had ordered the brushed nickel radiant door! Out of the crate I noticed that the plating was bubbled in some areas (delaminated from the steel). The replacement that was given to me had the same problem. Finally the third door was (and is still) fine. I didn't think too much about it at the time because the replacement process was seamless and quick.

    I really think Branchburner said it well stating "When the definition of “overfiring” is left so vague, matters are made worse by conflicting opinions and advice from manufacturers, stove shops, chimney sweeps, inlaws, etc." Being a serious wood burner, I fully read the manual and spoke to the local dealer about the operation and performance of the stove numerous times.

    I first spoke to the dealer when I bought it and then after the first burn season. I wanted to make it absolutely sure that I was operating it properly, since this is the first PE and EPA rated stove I have owned and used (and because I spent serious coin on it). Every time, after I explained in detail how I run the stove, I was reassured by the local dealer that I was operating the stove properly. Last summer, I even brought in my baffle and some digital pictures of the side rail insulation last year to the local dealer because I was concerned about the sagging/warpage. They looked at the baffle and the siderail/insulation pictures, and again I was told that everything looked normal. Unfortunately, they are now closed, so I don't have them to verify my direct dealings with them. I am just going through the dealership headquarters, who have never seen my face before.

    I read that PE is fairly automated when it comes to the welds. I am not sure if all the welds in the firebox are done via automated welders, but I think most of them are. Any manufacturing whether by human hand or machine can fail from time to time, and I am sure PE isn't immune to that.

    So now the waiting game continues. Like Hog said, "I love my insert, but I want it made right." Loyalty is a two-way street. I will post any further developments. If there are more PE owners with similar models out there (and I am pretty sure there is), thoroughly inspect your stoves and give us a report.
  18. drdoct

    drdoct Feeling the Heat

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    These sentences alone should tip you off to how they deal with customers. Without any shred of evidence it's your fault. I can almost hear their automated help line:

    Welcome to PE help line...
    Please press 1 if you have a warped baffle..... <beep> Due to you overfiring your stove it's not covered, sorry!
    Please press 2 if you have cracked welds..... <beep> Due to you overfiring your stove it's not covered, sorry!
    Please press 3 if your door won't fit properly....<beep> Due to you overfiring your stove it's not covered, sorry!
    Please press 4 if you think it's our shoddy workmanship.... <beep> We're sorry, 4 is not an option... please pick from the following 3 menu items.....


    Hope they make it right, and before Summer too. (for both of you)
  19. timfromohio

    timfromohio Minister of Fire

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    I have a PE Pacific insert purchased and installed in 2005 - I'll be inspecting very carefully this weekend. Let's keep this thread going and post whatever is heard from PE.
  20. fredarm

    fredarm Minister of Fire

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    Same with my Vista.
  21. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Yeah small claims court. Cheaper and in and out fast. You tell your side. They tell their side and the judge makes a decision. Or if you really want to swing for the fences see about getting it on Judge Judy. She would have a ball with this. :coolgrin:

    You would be going after the dealer since he is the one ya handed the money to and he would hand it off to his business liability insurance carrier.
  22. karri0n

    karri0n New Member

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    Judge Judy might be a good idea - for one thing, the producers pay out, no damages at all to PE. Another, this gets some real attention that PE won't be able to ignore.
  23. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    Ok, I pulled everything out of the inside. Fire brick, baffle, baffle rails & insulation, the top s.s. guard, everything. Wire brushed it, everything else looks ok.
    In a few spots, including the areas that cracked. The weld are more either globbed or not much there like where the cracks are. Some doesn't look like much penetration.
    I am guessing in these areas it may not be automated welds, but rather done by hand, cause they are in tight confined spaces. I think maybe the long outer welds are automated, ans the inner's hand welded. I also saved all the crap that came with the insert. Including the QC inspection check list.
    The top boxes look like they didn't even look at the stuff and check them off individually. There is just a scribbled line through all those boxes.
    The lower set of boxes are checked of one at a time. I'm thinking the quality control guy got lazy and just scribbled a line through the fist set of check boxes, maybe not even actually looking at them.
    I am taking photos, the manual & the QC checklist to the dealer tomorrow. Hope he is cooperative, I am doing all I can to stay calm and not blow a gasket on someone.
    I'll post the new photos in a few after I take them all.
  24. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    If you need to be bailed out, I will be on the way.
  25. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    lol, Ya better send me your phone number for my one call then. The OL aint got a pot to wiz in.
    I might have to take you up on that.
    Ok got my pics, gonna shower then post everything here.
    Be back in a bit.
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