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St, Croix Hastings (black soot)

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by bouffmike, Dec 21, 2009.

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  1. bouffmike

    bouffmike New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2009
    Messages:
    1
    Loc:
    Kittery Maine
    This is my third year owning this stove, I did a self install and would say that I am confident that it is installed correctly 98%, the reason not 100% I am not a professional. Anyways this unit comes with a control board, I have not ever been able to figure out the feed trim or the draft trim, the only functions that I have mastered would be the ON/OFF button, The HEAT LEVEL, AND THE Thermostat functions.

    I clean the stove every 6-8 bags this is about when my ash pan needs to be emptied I do a full vacuum and clean what-ever I can get at with my hands, a brush and the vacuum.

    I have been experiencing a new problem this year and it's very early in the season, I am having a black thick soot build up in the stove and the burn pot seems to be getting filled with heavy black ash, also the outside of my house has a 3 foot diameter ash colored build up from the stove pipe.

    I am using the same brand of pellets that I have used for the past three years, The stove is not hook up to a fresh air source, I did not need it so far.

    I really need some help from an experienced owner of the same stove but if not I'll take any advice I can get.

    Thanks Mike

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  2. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
    Messages:
    46,587
    Loc:
    South Puget Sound, WA
    Greetings Mike. I moved this over to the pellet forum for a better response. Sounds like the stove is not getting enough combustion air or the exhaust passage is clogged with flyash. This might be a good time to pull out the manual and review maintenance, pages 10-12. Is the exchanger tube cleaner used daily? When cleaning the stove are all 3 ash cleanouts being vacuumed out? If yes, are the annual maintenance procedures also being done? If not, it may be time to get the dealer in to do a full maintenance including oiling, on the stove.
  3. krooser

    krooser Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2008
    Messages:
    2,440
    Loc:
    Waupaca, WI
    I think your stove is plugged with ash...do everything that BeGreen sez PLUS use the search feature and look for "leafblower trick"... an electric leafblower can be used to suck out the ash that is trapped in back of the firebox... it really works and is cheap. BTW I also have a St. Croix but I have an older Pepein without the digital controls.

    A couple hints... run your stove on 4 or 5 for an hour at least once per week (more often is better)... it will help burn off the soot and creosote that may develop. Also you damper should only be open the width of a pencil.. if your stove needs more air it's definitely dirty.

    Good luck.
  4. mnkywrnch

    mnkywrnch Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2008
    Messages:
    563
    Loc:
    Baldwinville ma
    The feed trim and draft trim are only for level 1 operation unless you have a tall vertical exhaust you shouldn't need the draft trim,the feed trim for level 1 is just to keep the glass a little cleaner at that low burn rate.The black soot is definitely an indication your stove needs to be cleaned,Begreen and krooser gave you great advice I personally use the leaf blower after I clean what I can and it does a great job.If you take down the baffle that's below your heat exchanger tubes my guess is the tubes will be packed with ash,I use a long bristled paint brush on the tubes it does a good job.The two ash traps to the left and right of the burn pot need to be cleaned as well take a rubber mallet and tap the walls above those cleanout you will be amazed at the crap that falls down,and don't forget the third ash cleanout behind the ashpan.Once you figure out how to clean the stove really good your black soot issues should go away,also have you remove both the exhaust and convection fans?
  5. Xena

    Xena Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Messages:
    2,512
    Loc:
    South Shore MA
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