1. Welcome Hearth.com Guests and Visitors - Please enjoy our forums!
    Hearth.com GOLD Sponsors who help bring the site content to you:
    Hearthstone Soapstone and Cast-Iron stoves( Wood, Gas or Pellet Stoves and Inserts)
  1. dutch041582

    dutch041582 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Loc:
    Pikes county, PA
    hi im new to this and i just lost control of the fire in my insert had to close the damper i guess and the air intake on the bottom of the stove i was getting back draft bursts coming from around the door that has stopped and i am just sitting here watching to make sure nothing else happens... i have no idea on brand or make i just know it is a cast iron solid door unit so i can not even see inside i am afraid to open the door cause i dont want it to take off again i am just wondering if i am doing the correct thing.... thank you and i apologize for the typing i cant concentrate at the moment

    Helpful Sponsor Ads!





  2. jdp1152

    jdp1152 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2012
    Messages:
    769
    Loc:
    Massachusetts
    Open the air a tad. You're starving the fire of oxygen too soon and it's pulling it back down the flue. Otherwise known as whuffing. Can be dangerous, yet avoided. Never shut your air down more than 50% at a time and let the fire adjust the bump down again.
  3. dutch041582

    dutch041582 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Loc:
    Pikes county, PA
    try not to laugh at me but my box goes direct into a single wall liner and the flame wants to take off up the liner and im pretty sure i dont want that to happen


    i just got nervous cause the flame got way to big for the unit and i only have aprox. 4 pieces of wood in the unit
  4. dutch041582

    dutch041582 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Loc:
    Pikes county, PA
    this is my unknown unit

    Attached Files:

  5. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2008
    Messages:
    7,607
    Loc:
    Doylestown, PA
    Based on the original post and the look of the stove, I'll wager large sums of money that this is an unlined chimney.

    Have you had the stove/install/chimney checked out by a professional before you started burning?
  6. dutch041582

    dutch041582 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Loc:
    Pikes county, PA
    there is a full single wall stainless spiraled liner with that vemiculite insulation poured around it all the way to the top. Had it inspected and cleaned about 2 weeks ago just bought the house and this is what was here. I am in the process of getting a new unit with a blower installed just trying to make this one work for the time being.
  7. dutch041582

    dutch041582 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Loc:
    Pikes county, PA
    i am trying to figure out if i want the quadra fire voyager or the 3100i-4100i just still researching wich one will heat my 1300 sqft. better
  8. jdp1152

    jdp1152 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2012
    Messages:
    769
    Loc:
    Massachusetts
    It definitely looks like a slammer, but clearly isn't based on your feedback. Regardless...back the air down in increments and you'll likely not have the same issue again. Cut it down. Sit for a few minutes. Rinse/repeat. Not as easy with an opaque door, but the principle is the same....don't starve a hungry fire. Quench it down so it has time to adjust.
  9. jdp1152

    jdp1152 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2012
    Messages:
    769
    Loc:
    Massachusetts
    1300 sq feet should be pretty easy for any medium sized insert. I can heat a 1000sq ft of awful layout and a ton of windows/skylights with a small insert. I don't even push it hard.
  10. dutch041582

    dutch041582 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Loc:
    Pikes county, PA
    ok thank you very much iv been looking at this site for days trying to find info about proper burn techniques and control but seems very hard to find how to properly control these old units with just two slide levers
  11. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2008
    Messages:
    7,607
    Loc:
    Doylestown, PA
    Good to hear!

    You'll get the hang of it.
  12. jdp1152

    jdp1152 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2012
    Messages:
    769
    Loc:
    Massachusetts
    Go to the pre epa stove forum on this site and someone will probably be able to help you more. Doesn't change the fact that whuffing/back puffing is pretty much explosions in your stove caused by starving the fire to quickly resulting in it pulling down the flue to get that oxygen. Read this forum for a few months...even well healed wood burners have the issue from time to time when they're impatient and wanting to go to bed. It happens...you live and learn. Even if you had a manual for that stove, it probably doesn't have half the information you need because that would constitute a liability on their part.
    dutch041582 likes this.
  13. dutch041582

    dutch041582 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Loc:
    Pikes county, PA
    Again thank you very much... I now know what not to do im just glad it didnt turn out to be a very very bad mistake i will make sure i never close the air supply fully.
  14. jdp1152

    jdp1152 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2012
    Messages:
    769
    Loc:
    Massachusetts
    Its good youre looking into a replacement. If the flue is decent shape, probably won't hurt the pocket book too badly. A lot easier to play things by feel when you can see what is going on inside the stove/insert. Might as well ask while we're in this thread...you looking for long sustained burns to replace your heating or ease of use/knocking the heat bill down? Might help some folks chime in for recs.
  15. dutch041582

    dutch041582 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Loc:
    Pikes county, PA
    full heat we use electric here and i get hardwoods for free so i want my insert to be my primary source of heating. My current wood supply is 6-8 month split dry time

    I have a 6 inch liner and the chimney is located in the center of the house so no parts of the system is in cold weather.
  16. dutch041582

    dutch041582 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Loc:
    Pikes county, PA
    was given a price of aprox $3100 for the quadra fire voyager unit and install with out liner replacement
  17. HaTaX

    HaTaX New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2013
    Messages:
    82
    Loc:
    Minnesota
    I am in a similar situation to you, except that I moved into the house 9 years ago and the old beast was left behind. I have a slammer install and am going to be putting a liner in within the next 30 days, but for now I'm just cleaning the chimney and smoke shelf area myself, it's a straight shot so really not too bad once the 500+ lbs are out of the way...

    Anyway, I went to a few stores and was hunting around for a new insert and I stopped out to look at the quadrafire line. It seemed to me that the 4100/5100 would heat a home better as you have more of the firebox itself exposed to the room. The voyager series sure is pretty to watch a fire in, but for me I questioned how well it would heat the house, and if any room would be warm enough to sleep in without power to run the blowers. The insert I've got now sticks out quite a few inches onto the hearth and I feel without power we could easily keep the entire basement very comfortable and the upstairs would at least be habitable (but in the low 60s I'm sure if it was really cold out).

    There were two other inserts that really caught my eye, the HearthStone Clydesdale and a Pacific Energy Summit. I really was leaning towards the Pacific Energy as it sits out on the hearth and I've seen a few complains with the Clydesdale about heat output. After some reading it looks like it's more just a little picky stove that takes some time to learn, and I'd be willing to deal with that.

    Get yourself a stove top thermometer to help keep an eye on things, flames going up the chimney isn't a terrible thing if it's lined properly and clean but it is wasted heat for sure. And if it's single walled stove pipe coming out the top, you could measure those temps fairly accurately with the same thermometer or an IR gun.

    I gotta say, it looks like someone built that insert themselves! Could we get some inside pictures of the firebox?
  18. dutch041582

    dutch041582 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Loc:
    Pikes county, PA
    These are crummy pictures hard to get good ones but i do not believe it is home made based on the inside and the way the damper is setup.

    Now another dumb question am i supposed to get the fire going hot close the door then slowly close off damper before cutting air supply down?
    If not what is the proper order i should be following like right now i am burning with the door open cause i don't want the fire to run away on me again,

    Attached Files:

  19. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
    Messages:
    29,062
    Loc:
    Northern Virginia
    First thing you do is get that grate out of that stove. Burn the wood on a bed of coals on the floor of the firebox. That grate is just gonna cause you to overfire the stove.
  20. HaTaX

    HaTaX New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2013
    Messages:
    82
    Loc:
    Minnesota
    I was going to note that the back draft bursts you were getting is called huffing, it happens when the fire cannot get enough oxygen and it starts to pull it backwards down the flue. Here's a youtube video of an example (little more drastic then what you saw I bet):

    Looks like the firebox in that thing is just straight steel too! I think the first thing I would do is pull that firelog grate / holder out of there and lay some firebrick on the bottom and sides. You can pick up a box of 6 from Menards for about $12, just lay them down flat in the bottom and then create a row around the sides of the box on top of the ones in the bottom you just placed. Shouldn't need any brackets to hold them in place if they're placed with the long side down, and I'm pretty sure they would go a long way towards helping you maintain a constant heat / fire from it.

    If starting from a completely cold box, you'll want to build a small fire first to get things up to temp and ready for larger splits. 2-3 wrist sized logs along with some cardboard / paper near the front of the box is a good way to go, after those burn for 30 minutes or so you should have a decent topside temp of 300 or better. Then go ahead and move the pile of hot coals to the front of the box, and place your largest logs in the back, with a few smaller ones up front near the coals. Push the coals around the front most portion of the new wood load and you should be set. Keep the door open till you've got some decent (4-6" long) flames and then close er up. You'll want the damper open 100% during these parts, once you see the stove top temps reaching back to 350-400 that's when you want to start bringing down the damper. Check it a few minutes after adjusting the damper to make sure it's not smoldering and watch the temp up top, don't be surprised if it screams up to 600 within 30 minutes as it will probably come back down and rest around 500 or so within an hour.

    Hope that helps out a little!
    dutch041582 likes this.
  21. dutch041582

    dutch041582 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Loc:
    Pikes county, PA
    yes that helps out a lot thank you!! i am actually going to be getting a harman 300i very shortly i think that is the stove i finally decided on replacing this old hunk of steel with. the place has one in stock ready to install for me so i think i can get it in by next week. they gave me a price of $3300 for unit and install the only thing i dont like is my hearth is only 11" and the stove sticks out 12.5".
  22. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
    Messages:
    49,610
    Loc:
    South Puget Sound, WA
    How high is your hearth off of the floor? You'll need to add a hearth extension per the 300i manual. Download the manual for instructions.
  23. dutch041582

    dutch041582 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Loc:
    Pikes county, PA
    its only about 6 inch's off the floor very low

Share This Page