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Pic of inside my masonry chimney. Do I have a lot of Creosote?

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by NewtownPA, Oct 11, 2007.

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  1. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    >>> EDIT: I added a chimney liner. Click here to see how I installed it:
    http://www.hearth.com/econtent/index.php/forums/viewthread/10193/P0/
    <<<

    The PREVIOUS OWNER installed everything you see on this page. The woodstove and setup came "as is" when I bought the house.


    Ok tell me if I have a lot of creosote? I Photoshopped the image to brighten it since it was so DARK down there!

    Last night I burned a CSL (Creosote Sweeping Log). I was confused if it should SMOULDER the entire time, or if it should BURN. So I burned it for 75% of the time and smouldered it for 25% of the time.

    A little background:
    Owned the house for 3 years. Had it cleaned twice (this pic is one day after the chimney sweep cleaned it). He said it needs to be chain-whipped and quoted $400 for doing that. (Is that NORMAL?!!! FOUR HUNDRED FRIGGIN BUCKS?!! Might as well put a new liner for that price!)

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  2. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    New CROWN that cost me $140.

    Looks good to me - but I'm a computer programmer so what do I know?! :)

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  3. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    Output from the wood stove.

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  4. struggle

    struggle Minister of Fire

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    That is about the way my upstairs chimney looks I guess after burning all winter so it does not seem that bad to me. I have certainly seen much worse.

    The experts will chime in soon.

    Do you have a chimney cap? If not that is a must I would say for sure.

    Ok NOW I see a big problem. YOU need a much better fitting stove collar for sure. That does not look like it could seal at all at that angle and could cause a creosote problem by letting in cooler air in right there.
  5. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    Oval flex liner. This is a short piece from what they told me...

    What the heck is that pipe in there for? Dunno...

    Oh and when they "swept" the chimeny they did not remove any of that insulation. Is that a fire hazard (bits of creosote that collect on the other side of the insulation?)

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  6. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    You're too fast!!! :) :D

    Yep, here's the cap. Is it sufficient?

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  7. struggle

    struggle Minister of Fire

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    You have no block off plate? Or is it removed for the picture? If no block plate I am stepping back out of this one since it will not meet safety codes at current set up.
  8. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    Here's what it looked like BEFORE they cleaned it.

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  9. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    What you see is what it is... I've never seen back inside there before. That pic is the first time I looked. What does a block off plate look like?
  10. struggle

    struggle Minister of Fire

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    Cap looks good to me.

    Now about that block off plate and that flue collar joint :ahhh:
  11. n6crv

    n6crv Feeling the Heat

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    In the number 3 picture it looks like there is Creosote sitting all over the top of the stove. Sure hope the sweep did not leave it like that?
  12. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    Well the joint looks dislodged because they guy had pulled the stove out and it sort of came out a bit. If it was pushed in snug would that be ok?

    Can you tell me more about the block of plate. I have never owned a woodstove prior to this one and I am trying to learn as much as possible about how it all works. I don't want a disaster!!! :)
  13. struggle

    struggle Minister of Fire

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    Others will chime in about that. At your current set up it is considered quite dagerous from all my reading around here. I would search for block off plate and see what you come up with.

    Others will very soon follow as I have a free standing unit and all I know is this is NOT a SAFE set up.

    A block off plate seals the cavity in which you liner passes into the chimney and the fact you have a direct connect you may want to disclose what type of stove you are running. It might need to be running on a liner instead of a direct connect to a chimney like that as the liner you show atttached to the stove must dead end some where in the chimney as it clearly does not exit the chimney top tile.
  14. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    That pic was taken moments before he swept those bits off. They were crumbly creosote.

    I'll tell you one thing. I'm sick of "professionals" (in any profession) who either don't do a good job, or who gauge their customers. I'm a DIY person myself; as long as I know what the heck I"m doing, and that's why I am here since I don't trust these guys... I want a safe and sound system without overpaying.
  15. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    My stove is an Avalon Rainier Insert.

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  16. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    Avalon Rainier Insert

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  17. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    I burn this much wood a season:

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  18. Stevebass4

    Stevebass4 Minister of Fire

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    a block off plate goes between the the insert and where the direct connect goes into the flue - think of it as damper in a normal fire place - you want a fire open the damper. it's just a stainless steel plate with a hole in it so your pipe can go through it

    i just cleaned my chimney for the first time and i removed the whole insert / block off plate / direct connect and ran the brush down the flue tiles and cleaned the smoke box until it looked new

    most here will sugest that you should use a liner and i plan to get one soon but my set up is like yours right now

    also the CSL does nothing so save your money
  19. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    Your setup the fact so much cresote fell on top of that stove while cleaning tells you how useless using common fiber glass insulation for a block off plate

    It chunks that big fall threw then what about Carbon monoxide gases and smoke backing up? the flue collar connection is about the worst I have seem Common crimping is 1.5" deep.
    When one see more than an inch that is not a good connection probably leaking like a sieve. Then where are the flue collar screws? to hold that connection in place?

    This is a prime example of why I still have a job as an inspector Inspections would catch these code violations. Every direct connection requires a b damper block off plate and not stuffing common fiberglass insulation in there and that's it .The flue collar connection no crimping should be seen. It should be fully inserted to the rib above the crimping then secured by 3 screws.

    In one of the pictures it shows an incorrect distance on the hearth in front of the loading door. I hear yeah about paying for a professional installation Installations get much better when the installer know an Inspector is going to call out installations such as you have. In my town it only cost $30 for the permit and inspection. which in your case would have been a bargain, to call out your installer to do it correctly.

    Honestly, if that is an exterior chimney, code would require a full liner to comply with cross-sectional code.

    This is not an attempt to beat you down, but pointing out your installation is not all that safe. too many compromises were made
  20. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    No problem.

    Just letting you know, the PREVIOUS OWNER installed this thing. It came with the house "as is".
  21. Burn-1

    Burn-1 Feeling the Heat

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    In addition to what Elk pointed out, it looks like there has been a fair degree of movement in your flue tiles unless they were not flush with each other to begin with. The fairly markedly 'stepped' appearance to the lower tiles might indicate gaps between the tiles.
  22. Mike Wilson

    Mike Wilson New Member

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    Okay, basics so that you can go forward.

    1- get a full length liner installed in that chimney. It will give you longer burn times at better temperatures, provide more heat, and give you significantly better performance. It also makes chimney cleaning much easier, as you only have to clean the liner. Oh, and its safer.

    2- Have a metal block off plate installed. It is 2 pieces of metal that go around your flue, and seal off the damper. It will greatly increase your safety in case of a fire, and also increase the heat you get from the insert.

    I would insist on both of these items being done, and do it before this season begins.

    -- Mike
  23. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    Unfortunately when building a chimney the flue tile joint mortar remains pliable for quite some time and as one adds additional flues when building a chimney some movement can occurred on freshly installed lower clay liners ant cause them to off set The miss algnment is quite common But as burn pointed out it can lead to loosing mortar at the joints
  24. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    1. How much would it cost to get a full length liner (I assume Class "A"?)? Total length is about 25 feet.

    2. I think I understand the concept of "block off plate" now - but I thought it was only one piece of metal. What is the second piece?

    Thanks!
  25. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    If I wanted to get a full length liner, would I have to continue with the oval flex, or would it be better if it was round?

    Can I use this Super Flex for lining the masonry chimney?
    http://bellfiresusa.com/parts/super_flex.htm

    [​IMG]

    This is what it looks like in real life:
    [​IMG]
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