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Pellet stove chimney/type installation questions

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by steedums, Oct 4, 2012.

  1. steedums

    steedums New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2012
    Messages:
    18
    Loc:
    Maine
    I've been looking at getting a pellet stove to supplement my oil heat system and have come up with 3 potential installations/options:

    1) Direct exhaust vent through exterior wall. I'd rather have the pellet stove more centralized, but it looks like direct venting is the easiest installation. However, I have wood siding, and am concerned that it would be stained with soot. Is this a common problem?

    2) Run exhaust vent up through roof. I would like it located centrally on my 1st floor, and could run an exhaust vent through the ceiling, but it would likely have to go through a closet in the 2nd floor, and then out the roof. I'm not sure if it is safe/legal/etc to run the double-walled metal exhaust vent like this. Is this feasible?

    3) Get a fireplace insert. I have a 1st floor fireplace that currently has a propane insert which I very rarely use. It already has a vent setup for the propane insert. Could I simply remove the propane insert and hookup the existing vent to a pellet stove?

    Thank you in advance for your feedback

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  2. hockeypuck

    hockeypuck Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2009
    Messages:
    253
    Loc:
    south central NH
    I would vote number 3.. but need more information... number 2 would be my last choice but need floor plan to properly judge. Do you have any reason to buy a wood burning stove.. ie have land with trees (free fuel)? If you are sure that you will never be able to harvest your own wood, the next question is what do you do during power outages. Propane inserts can run with out power. Do you have a generator? If you are fine with the power outage question then it boils down to cleaning. Are you going to get on your roof to clean a stove in your fire place or are you good with having someone else do it? Cleaning a stove vented through the wall will not kill you :). Most efficient sounds like pulling a liner and replacing the propane insert.

    As a foot note I have both a wood insert and a free standing pellet stove. I still have a number of chord on my small lot to burn and like the option of burning just about anything in a wood insert.
  3. DexterDay

    DexterDay Guest

    1.) No - I have all of my vents at the min or close to the min and have NO soot. Make sure the stove is installed properly and is burning properly.

    2.) Yes - Going straight up is acceptable and is best for natural draft in the event of a power failure. Also, as long as Clearances were maintained then no worries should be had. Just make sure if going through a closet or room, that a chase is built around it and all clearance to combustibles are met.

    3.) No - The Pellet vent is not the same. You could remove the LP liner and install a Liner for the pellet stove. Is the fireplace masonry? Is it a steel Pre Fab? Is it centrally located?

    Welcome to the Forums. More suggestions will be along shortly.
  4. smoke show

    smoke show Guest

    I have an install like option 2, works good in my situation.

    I used prefinished shelving boards to build the chase, looks decent and not permanent.

    Like this- 1361866alt.jpg
    and they come in 8' lengths.
  5. Delta-T

    Delta-T Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2008
    Messages:
    3,095
    Loc:
    NH
    I say go with #1....central location is less important with pellet stove than with wood stove (pellet stove is convective heat=hot air movement, not radiation). #2 seems like a lot of obstacle just to vent a stove, #3 is probably not...as is mentioned, likely different pipe. All 3 are certainly "doable" but #1 has the least impact to your structure and your wallet in most instances.
  6. jjs777_fzr

    jjs777_fzr Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2007
    Messages:
    304
    Loc:
    NorthShore, MA USA
    Re #1 I'd say yes it is a common problem but dependent on many factors for soot buildup with side vented installs.
    The few I have seen in person I could easily tell where the soot was affecting the look of the siding or eaves.
    And the soot does not clean up so easily - even with a high pressure washer.

    I'd go with #3 if I was the OP.
  7. Lousyweather

    Lousyweather Guest

    #2 scares me, going thru a closet......you might intend to provide for clearances, but, in practice, who knows whats gonna get plopped in there in the future?
  8. DexterDay

    DexterDay Guest

    My Quad is a Direct vent (no rise) and has been burning for over 4 yrs and has Zero soot issues. A Quality stove that is burning properly (read: Clean) will not Soot up your house.

    Most pictures posted here that have a Very Large Black Soot spot are normally Englander stoves. Its no fault of the stove, more of the owners fault for not knowing how to keep it clean. Or its a sub par install and its EVL is way over 15'.

    I have several friends and family members that have Direct vent installs (plus lots of members here) and they dont have any soot either.

    Soot means you need to cut back on fuel or increase the air. Or the stove just needs a good cleaning. Or.....
    smoke show likes this.
  9. steedums

    steedums New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2012
    Messages:
    18
    Loc:
    Maine
    Thank you for all the replies. To answer the questions:

    Burning wood sounds like more work. I do have 2 acres, with most of it wooded, but I don't have the time to take up logging. My time is better spent and work and then buying a cord of wood or a ton of pellets.
    The power doesn't go out here often or for long. I have a small ~4000watt generator that has rarely gotten use to plug in random things (not a house setup, just extension cords)

    How much cleaning does the venting for a pellet stove require? My house is a 2 story colonial with a fairly steep roof, so the chimney is probably 25ft up. It's not something that I would want to go up with any regularity.

    It sounds like soot against the siding isn't really an issue as long as the stove is burning clean. Direct venting sounds like the simplest option. What is the minimum to go out on direct venting? They look fairly short (18"?)

    What would the clearances be for going up through a closet? I take it that a "Chase" is a box built around the piping? That sounds easy enough.

    Pulling and replacing the chimney liner sounds like a PITA. I'll cross that option off my list as I'm sure that'd be expensive. The fireplace/chimney are brick, and it is against an exterior wall.

    Thanks again
  10. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear Minister of Fire

    Joined:
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    12,121
    Loc:
    Standish, ME
    What does your stove's manual say about venting that particular stove? Some stoves can not be vented straight out. in other words exactly what stove are we attempting to vent?
  11. steedums

    steedums New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2012
    Messages:
    18
    Loc:
    Maine
    I was looking at the bosca spirit 500. The manual says it only needs to be 12" out for venting

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