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Smoke and flame on side off burn pot

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by Bxpellet, Dec 1, 2007.

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  1. Bxpellet

    Bxpellet Feeling the Heat

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    I just cleaned my Harman Advance, followed instructions, slide the burn guide and back panel back into place, I get smoke and flame on one side, shut it down, took it apart, checked all areas for build up scraped clean,put everything back, still get flame and smoke shooting out left side of burn pot, Its almost like it does not sit in tight enough, stove is new, does anybody have any ideas, I would call the store but they are crazy on Saturdays,

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  2. eernest4

    eernest4 New Member

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    You have a harmon advance, im not fimiliar with it. I run a pel-pro 50,000 btu but I would guess that you instaled the fire pot incorrectly.
    The grill that the pellets burn in.

    You probably dint catch one of the catches ,or slid it in on the wrong angle or something along those lines.

    Just so I understand better, the right side is doing nothing but the left side works ok

    It may not be sitting in there properly. How many times have you taken the fire pot out & reinstalled it.

    Is this your first time doing it , because you mention it is a new stove. Maybe you got it in wrong.

    I put mine back in wrong the first time I did it, but I noticed it & tried different ways
    to put it back in until i got it right; before i lite off the stove.

    A second possibility, is there an accumulation of ashes in the ash trap under the fire pot.

    That would cut off fresh outside inlet air to the combustion chamber.

    Did you look real good with a flashlight. Sometimes there are ashes way in back that are hard to see and cant be easily reached with anything but a vac cleaner, but dont use your household vac, the ashes will blow your vac motor in under 3 minutes. My freinds 129.99 vac only lasted 70 seconds & fried from either bearing failure or electric failure. Couldn't filter out the fine soot from the motor.

    ALWAYS MAKE SURE EMBERS ARE COLD DEAD OUT BEFORE ANY VACUUMING. that way, you keep vac instead of having one shot throw away flamethrower.

    Here is how to set up to vac.

    Use only a wet/dry shop vac & buy the paper bag filter that goes around the outside of the regular shop vac filter & install it over your regular filter then look see how much water you can saftly put in the canister without possibility of getting filter wet.

    Water catch most of ash & soot, paper bag filter get more & regular filter stay nearly clean.

    You can plug hose into vac discharge outside in the yard & blow off your reg filter enough to reuse it, several times. You can even blow off paper filter bag if it is not ripped. If it ripps, replace it with a good one. Change your water every time you vac.

    so no need to buy 300.oo ash vac, 39.95 wet dry shop vac good enough & on some models ,you can even convert the motor to a electric leaf blower. Mine does.
  3. Bxpellet

    Bxpellet Feeling the Heat

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    Tried everything you said, the flame guide just slides in and the back panel sides on top, and holds it in place it has happened before and when I played around with it it worked fine.
    It looks like there is play in it, Right now I have the stove on and there is a Little smoke, almost like the metal heated up and expanded and sealed it up,
  4. GVA

    GVA Minister of Fire

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  5. Bxpellet

    Bxpellet Feeling the Heat

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    I saw that last time, did the same thing, is it possible that the metal warp from the heat, Stove is going now, small amount of smoke is coming out the side, before it was flame and smoke, is there a possibility of smoke going into the house or does it exit out the vent?
  6. drizler

    drizler Minister of Fire

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    Can't speak for Harmon but with mine it happens sometimes. Mine has a couple 2 inch plugs in the back behind the false front where ash accumulates after a month or so of corn burning. When one side, and its always one side, gets plugged up with fallout that happens a good cleaning takes care of it. It doesn't seem to have any negative effect on the stove really. Try giving yours a good cleaning whenever it starts acting up as it seems to be the universal cure for most things. For your specific problem though I would question if the burn pot is in either backwards or needs seating down in there better. May be it is hung up on something. Your burn pot shouldn't fit so tight that it would be hitting if it got a tad warped. Anyways as long as its running nicely I can't see it being a real problem long term.
  7. GVA

    GVA Minister of Fire

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    The smoke won't go into the house it's just the combustible gasses burning off where they shouldn't be
    I've reseated mine a couple times and still had it burn around the sides but wasn't too worried about it, the gaps seem to get plugged with flyash and the flames outside the burnpot stop.
    But sometimes you think it is seated flush when it isn't..... It happens to most of us....

    Driz the burn pot on these stoves is not removed
  8. Bxpellet

    Bxpellet Feeling the Heat

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    Thanks for the help, It's been running all day, it seems to be fine, 28 degrees outside 74 on the first floor, 71 upstairs in the hallway. GVA I installed the stove myself, I never had it draft tested, should I bother, I was looking at magnehelic meters on ebay, what type of meter should I get could you help me with this.
  9. drizler

    drizler Minister of Fire

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    Draft tested? If you have the recommended 5 vertical foot of pipe out there it will draft. My version of draft testing was to pull the plug on the stove and make sure the smoke from the pot all went up the flue. Seriously these units aren't that terribly fussy like your furnace oil gun. They are power vented so they get plenty of draft. If you are over drafted your pellets will burn out before they replenish themselves when its on the lowest setting ( usually). Under drafted you won't get a bright enough burn and the pot may fill up and eventually overflow or go out due to it filling up. What you want is the lively fingerlike whitish flames with fingers sticking up. If its lazy and orangish like a wood stove dampered down you aren't getting enough air. Whatever you do don't get obsessed with fine tuning the thing to death especailly till you get fully used to the stove and its operation. You shouldn't have to mess with settings much at all like you would with corn. Anything burning fairly cleanly with nice fingers of flame fairly even should be just toasty fine.
  10. Bxpellet

    Bxpellet Feeling the Heat

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    Thank you, Thats what we have, A nice flame, all pellets are being burned, good heat, I guess I did things right!!!! Stay warm, If any other problems arise I will post them.
  11. PelletHog

    PelletHog Member

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    I get the same "flame up the side" everytime I clean my advance as well as several other people I know with the same stove. Even when it was brand new it did it and the dealer (who was there) said that is normal. After several hours of running, it goes away. I can't explain it, but it isn't a problem.
  12. Bxpellet

    Bxpellet Feeling the Heat

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    thanks after a few times trying to set the flame guide, I realized It was on the correct way, and after a few hours it went away, do you get smoke in your hopper or is this normal?
  13. PelletHog

    PelletHog Member

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    I get no smoke at all in the hopper. I have read here some people do, but I would be on the phone with the dealer asap. I am really happy with my Advance, I have not had a single problem with it. There was a learning curve I went through, tweaking the adjustments, ect. The stove seems to work better as the temp drops (I am in MA) , I notice the glass stays cleaner, as well as the complete interior. I think this is due to the stove burning a lot hotter, that's just a guess. I didn't have much luck with the room temp mode when it was 50 - 60 degrees outside, but since it has gotten colder, it is working really well. The funny thing is, I haven't seen two stoves that burn alike for some reason...... every one has its querks (is that a word?) Good luck. I'd have that smoke problem checked now.
  14. stoveguy2esw

    stoveguy2esw Minister of Fire

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    you should not get smoke in the hopper, thats back pressure , you may want to have the draft checked, harmons are occasionally touchy with this , usually the installer if professionally done will hook up a meter and set the draft blower pot to balance it. this ensures a proper pressure maintained in the unit to prevent this issue. another thing that can bring this about is a hopper seal not sealing correctly , airflow if present especially with back pressure allows smoke more easily into the hopper.
  15. Bxpellet

    Bxpellet Feeling the Heat

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    Thanks Mike, it only happened 3 times in the last 20 bags, when I called the dealer he said he never heard that happen before, that is exactly what I thought he would say, I will call in the morning and complain again.
  16. snowrider

    snowrider New Member

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    Ihave a Harmaon Advance, and if you have ready my other posts, you wil see that I have had some problems as well.

    Flame Guide: Every month I will dismantel the stove completely, inlcuding the removal of the back panels behind the brick plate, right down to removing and cleaning the dist. blower. I am very anal with this stove. On the bottom of the fire plate there are two grooves which allows it to sit on the burrn pot properly. I take a large crafstman pry bar, and run it along the grooves. It does not take long for carbon to build up, so make sure they are clean. Also, make sure that the two plates on either side of the burn pot are positioned correctly, If not, you could have some bypassing going on.....

    Smoke in Hopper: When I originally hooked up the stove, I was told that it would be beneficial to use the outside air hook up. The stove ran very chunky, and it burned differently each time the temp changed. When it would burn chunky, I would see smoke in the hopper. Since joining this WONDERFUL site, I was told to remove the outside air and let it draw from the house. My stove has never burned more efficient. My ash line is minimal; after three days of buring, you can still see the holes in the burn pot through the ash.. I do try and scrape it every day. Since it has been burning better, no more smoke in the hopper.

    Does anyone elses Advance make a very high pitch squeel every now and then??? I replaced the feed motor twice, oiled the bearing on the auger (i know it's sealed but it made me feel better) wiggled the auger, oiled the roller bearing on the hopper arm, etc.. sometimes it goes away, sometimes it doesn't... just curious if any other Harman Advance owners have experienced this....
  17. Bxpellet

    Bxpellet Feeling the Heat

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    what do mean by chunky? I have the outside air hook up, It was after I hooked up the OAK that I noticed the smoke when I called the dealer he said it had nothing to do with it, It has only done it a few times, I also keep the stove clean, Mine makes a noise but it is not high pitched, it sounds like a binding sound, and it vibrates causing the metal to rattle.
  18. snowrider

    snowrider New Member

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    When I say chunky, I am referring to the stove burning very rich, dirty, and smoky. If you see smoke coming from your pipe outside, other than during start up and/or shut down, it is not burning properly. The day I removed my outside air... I had immediate results. If you read in your manual, outside air is only reccomended for Mobile Homes, EXTREMELY tight houses, or a town mandate. Pull the outside air hose out, make sure the flapper is free, and see how it goes. I bet it runs beter and the smoke in your hopper goes away. I don't have nearly as much ash since I have done this. I run my stove in auto mode, temp set at 68, feed rate on 3.5, and the blower in the middle.

    The binding noise is when the slide catches a Pellet. Mine does it all the time. people on here say that the sound is normal.... Sometimes it's pretty severe!!!

    Please remember that my relpies are only based on "My" experience with the Advance. Others here may have different opinions.
  19. Bxpellet

    Bxpellet Feeling the Heat

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    Thank you for the response NYC code requires outside air, my house is brand new, it's air tight, there is only smoke when it starts, my vent is on the side of the house pointing slightly donward that is very open, the days that we did notice smoke it was extremly windy, is it possible that wind blew down the vent pipe? pushing the smoke back? Sounds like a stupid question but I have to ask.
  20. ScubaSteve

    ScubaSteve Member

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    About the smoke in the hopper- are you burning the unit with the hopper lid up? On harmans you need to make sure the lid is down and tight or you will get the soke in the hopper and possible bad burn.
  21. Bxpellet

    Bxpellet Feeling the Heat

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    Lid is down all the way, , Father in law notice that when we see smoke the hopper is low on pellets.
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