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  1. wkpoor

    wkpoor Minister of Fire

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    I'm obsessed. I tap with a broom handle at every reload. I've got pretty good at telling if there is any buildup by the tone. I even have to tap my neighbors when I'm over there out of curiousity. If I start to notice a slightly lower pitch I make sure I get the pipe good and hot for a while on the next load.
    Anyone else do this?

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  2. Shmudda

    Shmudda Burning Hunk

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    Obsessive compulsive.........
  3. pen

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

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    If I think there is a build up, I sweep the chimney. With good fuel, a good stove, and good burning habits, you shouldn't have anything in there to be concerned with.

    The idea of burning a hot fire once and a while simply will show you at what temp the accumulation in that chimney will or will not light off at.

    The best practice is to never smoulder any fire. But rather, use less fuel and burn a good fire each and every time.

    pen
  4. wkpoor

    wkpoor Minister of Fire

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    Explain to me how you know you might need to sweep. I was being partly funny and just explaining mine is the tap test. No matter how good my fuel, habits or stove is fact of the matter I am concerned about my chimney and do keep an eye on it. When I sweep it is always dry soot which is all but impossible to ignite. But I keep it that way between sweep/checks by running the stove pipe temps purposely up to about 500 for a few minutes couple times a week.
  5. pen

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

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    Based on experience mostly. Old fisher got it monthly no matter what. Doing that, kept the cleanings under a coffee can of creosote / soot. I started the same with the new stove and liner but monthly cleanings gathered less than a cup, so those consistent results let me go up to about a 3 months time frame for me to feel comfortable since it's a fairly easy chimney to sweep, still get less creosote in 2.5 to 3 months time with this stove than the fisher gave me monthly.

    If the weather is iffy (I don't want to climb on the roof to clean due to snow, but will if I have to), I'll pull the screws on the stove pipe when the stove is under 200 degrees with only small coals and do a visual. If what I see there says I can wait a few weeks for better weather, then I will. If I know I'll be busy in a few weeks, I'll get the job done. If the stove is still warm when I clean, I pull the stove pipes and place a piece of stone over the stove collar and close the air down fully for the 20 mins it takes me to do the deed.

    At the end of the day, I'm sure I could safely go with once a year cleanings, but I just figure why risk it. The less fuel there is in the chimney, the less there ever could be to burn.

    Also, I knew I'd be gone for a few nights over the last few weeks so I cleaned the chimney (even though it really didn't need it) in the event the wife turned the stove into an incandescent light bulb by accident.

    Additionally, I've heard stove pipes that certainly do sound dead when thumped and need a cleaning (my buddies setup w/ a double barrel stove in their cabin for example). However, even when I find it to be time to clean mine, tapping them before and after doesn't make an audible difference. The reason I know how their stove pipe sounds is they would tap on it quite regularly. This year, they asked me to help them install a new double barrel stove to replace their old one. When I took the single wall pipe out, the double wall about fell out of the ceiling. Their banging to break up the creosote unhooked the connector band holding on the twist lock <>

    pen
    Jacktheknife likes this.
  6. webby3650

    webby3650 Master of Fire

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    I wood be careful tapping the neighbors. >>
  7. wkpoor

    wkpoor Minister of Fire

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    I'm the one that cleans it for him. Doubt he will mind a tap or two hehe.
  8. Lumber-Jack

    Lumber-Jack Minister of Fire

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    Since the major creosote accumulation, responsible for serious chimney fires, usually occurs at the top exterior portion of chimneys I don't think tapping the flue down near the stove will give you very good information about what's going on up there..
    However, I don't doubt that you might be able to detect creosote build up on a single walled flue pipe by tapping on it. But as you pointed out, that lower stuff usually burns off with a nice hot fire, which probably wouldn't be there in the first place if you had a nice hot fire every time you burned, like you should.
  9. jeff_t

    jeff_t Minister of Fire

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    I asked my BIL when he cleaned his chimney last. He said he does it all the time, and grabbed an old broom handle and smacked the pipe. He gave the magic heat a really good whack, and pulled the knob the cleans off the tubes. Done. Luckily, that stove is in the workshop, and he's not married to my sister anymore.
    Wildo likes this.
  10. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    If I tapped my stovepipe, and the sound indicated some creosote buildup, which I am sure you can hear, lighting a hot fire to burn it clean is likely the LAST thing I'd be doing. Just sayin'...
  11. wkpoor

    wkpoor Minister of Fire

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    The heaviest accumulation in my pipe chimney occurrs where the single wall meets the chimney pipe. Not at the top. I think that somewhat normal if you have a long run of stove pipe. If the stuff in the pipe was the shiny tacky stuff then a hot fire could ignite it. But after 10yrs I have never seen that. So all a hot fire would do for me is loosen the dry stuff. I disagree you can't tell with a tap unless your tone deaf. Besides a hot fire to me is where some of you guys run your stove pipe at everyday. I've posted before my stove never seeing very much temp. Usually a half to third stove temp. Inside of stove always has a floured appearance and the bricks look clean.
  12. Lumber-Jack

    Lumber-Jack Minister of Fire

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    Actually I don't think that is normal at all. Usually you are going to get the most condensation of creosote where the chimney is the coolest, and "normaly" that is at the very top portion of the chimney that is exposed to the cold outdoor temps. It seems odd to me that your indoor stove pipe is somehow cooler than the outdoor portion. Yes it's true that the outdoor portion is insulated, but in essence so is your indoor stove pipe insulated, insulated by the walls of your house, with the added benefit of being heated as well, heated on the outside by your wood stove. The outdoor portion may be insulated, but it is only a thin layer of insulation and it is not heated.
    I think if we were to do a poll here of people who clean their own chimneys, and asked them where they get the most creosote build up in their chimneys, the consensus would be the top few feet.
  13. DexterDay

    DexterDay Guest

    I agree. There more than likely is an air leak at the connection

    I had some accumulation there as well last year, where my double wall, meets the Class A, at the Close Clearance connector. Then I noticed there was a rather large leak. One screw didnt penetrate and it just bent it. Letting in cool room air :(
  14. wkpoor

    wkpoor Minister of Fire

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    Thats where I have an adjustable 90 that isn't used in the 90 degree position. That very well might be why I see the most there. However my stove pipe always accumulates way more than the chimney pipe and here again top of stove pipe would be coolest place with air augmentation going on at that point through the joints of the 90. Also I need to point out my chimney is insulated right to the cap. Not like most who have a measure of pipe all by itself sticking through the roof. My Class A is inside an insulated stone covered chase all the way. Only about 3" stick up.
  15. Blue2ndaries

    Blue2ndaries Minister of Fire

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    This would be a good post in the "You know you're a wood burner when..." thread. :)
  16. webby3650

    webby3650 Master of Fire

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    I often see build-up at this location, even when the adapter is screwed in securely. For some reason they seem to build up here. I see the most build-up at top foot, the cap and at the chimney adapter.
  17. pen

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

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    That obviously depends on how much is accumulated in the chimney. The question is, why is there enough accumulated in a chimney that one can notice it?

    pen
    charly likes this.
  18. wkpoor

    wkpoor Minister of Fire

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    Any accumulation changes the tone is my point. I've only swept 2 chimneys, mine and my neighbors, so that is all I have to compare. Both can get a thin layer of crusty dry creosote a couple times a season with 24/7 burning. Its a very difficult thing to quantify but I just know what my newly swept pipe sounds like vs a month later.
    This yr I probably have the driest wood I have ever had along with using the eco bricks. Also I'm making an effort to keep the pipe temp in the 300-350 range. I'm already seeing, and hearing, a difference.
  19. pen

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

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    That's good news!
  20. Wildo

    Wildo Feeling the Heat

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    nobody knows about the rain stick? TAP TAP, TINKLE TINKLE;lol

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