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  1. snowrider

    snowrider New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2007
    Messages:
    26
    Loc:
    Eastern MA
    Anyone own a St. Croix? I have a Harman that I am going to dump soon. The dealer closest to me sells and services St. Criox. He said out of any line they have carried, these are by far the best with the least issues. Now, of course he's going to tell me that. Does anyone have experience with them???

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  2. Xena

    Xena Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Messages:
    2,491
    Loc:
    South Shore MA
    I have the Prescott EXP. Bought it new in Oct 2005,
    brother and I installed it, zero issues (knock on wood)
    and we have been burning as our main source of heat
    going on three years now. Love it more with every cold day.
  3. snowrider

    snowrider New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2007
    Messages:
    26
    Loc:
    Eastern MA
    I'm going to look at the St Criox line up today and am already leaning to the EXP. The dealer said they dumped Harman years ago and stayed with St. Croix as they have had very few issues with them. Do you mean to tell me you dont have squealing!! Excess carbon build up!! Loud Banging!! Smoke in your hopper!!! Feed Motor problems!!!

    I'm done with Harman. After looking over the last 6 pages in this forum, it's clear that Harman has some serious issues....

    Thanks for the reply!!!
  4. Xena

    Xena Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Messages:
    2,491
    Loc:
    South Shore MA
    You're welcome!

    Nope. Never had a mechanical problem of any kind,
    and it burns 24/7 from November to April every winter other
    than down time for cleaning. I did have the right side firebrick
    panel break in half, but it's only there for aesthetics so I'm not
    too concerned. I've been in touch with the company that distributes
    parts for St Croix, and they told me the firebrick is going to be replaced
    with steel panels that are painted to look like a brick pattern so I
    will most likely buy those when they become available (eta feb/march 08).

    The EXP model rocks btw. Huge ash pan. I empty it once a month
    and even then it's not full.

    We shot a video last year of the stove operating steps
    if you would like to have a look here is the link. Volume wasn't
    up enough on the vid camera so you may need to turn it up a bit
    to hear it.
    http://s12.photobucket.com/albums/a203/sporty04/?action=view&current=St_Croix_Prescott.flv
  5. paulslush

    paulslush New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2007
    Messages:
    37
    I service a small amount of St.croix pellet stoves out here in Western ma. The most common failure is the igniter that sells for around 90.00. Most calls are the result of poor maintenance or none at all in some cases. I have an older model Pepin that burned back into the hopper from not being cleaned out at all. I took it all apart and cleaned it and tested it, its been working fine for two years for me. The biggest problem we have is getting parts from our distributor, it takes a long time...............very long time.....!
    Yes the fire brick does crack over time so if they come out with a steel panel that sounds like an improvement. Just remember there
    are mechanical parts that over time may require service. A good annual cleaning, taking the back off and cleaning all the dust out and lube the motors and shaker grate cam will go along ways for trouble free operation.
  6. smirnov3

    smirnov3 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2006
    Messages:
    435
    Loc:
    Eastern Ma
    I think part of the reason there are so many Harman owners with problems is that there are so many Harman owners. It is a very popular stove

    (maybe we should have a survey to see how many of what make stove people use - 1 vote per stove that you burn)
  7. Xena

    Xena Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Messages:
    2,491
    Loc:
    South Shore MA
    Possibly but it doesn't account for the entire picture.
    You have to remember that despite it's popularity,
    many people don't want anything to do with computers
    and the internet. Additionally, most pellet stove owners don't seek
    out a forum such as this one until they have problems.
    Regardless, like the OP said, the stove and it's warranty
    are only as good as the dealer that stands behind it..
    or in his case, the dealer that drops the ball which seems
    to be the bigger problem.
  8. GVA

    GVA Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    Messages:
    2,140
    Loc:
    Waxhaw, NC... Formerly North shore Mass
    [quote author="F7Joker" date="1196886391"] The dealer said they dumped Harman years ago and stayed with St. Croix as they have had very few issues with them. I'm done with Harman. After looking over the last 6 pages in this forum, it's clear that Harman has some serious issues....
    quote]
    Yeah talk to that dealer about what happens to all of the support for the St Croix line if he dump's them too like he did with me and many other Harman owners That bought a stove from him..... No I'm not gonna name the dealer I don't partake in that crap... but he's in N. R......... right? :-/

    Like you said it all depends on your dealer......
  9. snowrider

    snowrider New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2007
    Messages:
    26
    Loc:
    Eastern MA
    Thanks for the heads up GVA. That's good to know. My dealer called me this evening and it looks like he will be standing behind my stove. Yup, your right NR.. I guess you bought your Harman there and was dropped like them right???

    Who the f--- can you trust these days anyway????

    Thanks again!!!
  10. mkmh

    mkmh New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2007
    Messages:
    407
    Loc:
    Southern, Maine
    I own a St Croix and a Harman. The St Croix has been our primary stove, purchased in Fall 2005. We have probably run about 6 tons of pellets through it with only one very minor issue. Last year I encountered a clogged vacuum hose which would not allow the stove to ignite. My dealer diagnosed it over the phone and I fixed itin 20 minutes or so. Very good stove over all.
    This year I have been getting some noise coming from my auger which has me worried a little. I've done a good job with maintenence so far, but eventually parts do wear out.
    Downside for the stove is the small ash pan, and the fact that it seems to require more frequent cleanings than my Harman. It is also a bit louder overall.
    If I had it to do over again I definitely would have bought one with a larger ash pan. The Hastings needs to be dumped about once per week at the rate I burn.
  11. russfamily@hotmail.com

    russfamily@hotmail.com New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2007
    Messages:
    7
    Loc:
    long Island, NY
    I have a St Croix Prescott EXL (think so, the one with the legs on it). I've never had a pellet stove before, but I love it. It heats my house incredibly! 1600 sq feet down stairs and keeps 1100 sq feet upstairs perfect for sleeping. As far as bangs and problems-none. I bought mine 2nd hand (2005 model). My only issue is the brick panels. they have shattered and cracked in many places. I'm ready to remove them altogether. Can it run without them? I definitly would buy a metal set from the company in the spring-the old ones are garbage! Thanks for the video, had to learn to clean it from videos like yours and from YouTube. Tough finding pellets here though, really have to watch for them. Some dealers are selling them for $7.50 a 40 lb bag! WHAT A RIP.-thanks Russfamily

    re: Nope. Never had a mechanical problem of any kind,
    and it burns 24/7 from November to April every winter other
    than down time for cleaning. I did have the right side firebrick
    panel break in half, but it's only there for aesthetics so I'm not
    too concerned. I've been in touch with the company that distributes
    parts for St Croix, and they told me the firebrick is going to be replaced
    with steel panels that are painted to look like a brick pattern so I
    will most likely buy those when they become available (eta feb/march 08).

    The EXP model rocks btw. Huge ash pan. I empty it once a month
    and even then it's not full.

    We shot a video last year of the stove operating steps
    if you would like to have a look here is the link. Volume wasn't
    up enough on the vid camera so you may need to turn it up a bit
    to hear it.
    http://s12.photobucket.com/albums/a203/sporty04/?action=view&current=St_Croix_Prescott.flv[/quote]
  12. Xena

    Xena Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Messages:
    2,491
    Loc:
    South Shore MA
    russfamily welcome to the forum! Nice to see another
    Prescott owner on here. Yes, you can remove the
    firebrick. I've spoken with engineers at the MFG,
    three dealers, and the company that supplies parts
    for Eventemp. They've all confirmed that it is totally safe
    to run the stove without the panels as they are only
    there to make it look nice.
    I was told the steel panels will be available sometime around
    Feb/March. You can order them from your dealer.


    You're welcome on the video. At some point I hope to do
    one on the monthly cleaning (ash traps and ash pan).
    The manual is not so clear imo when it comes to the cleaning
    process. More illustrations would have been better I think.
  13. dp2002

    dp2002 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Messages:
    5
    Loc:
    Eastern CT
    Yes, I have a St Croix Hastings model (about month old) and there are many features about the stove that I like (auto start and Smartstat) but the stove has an annoying rattling sound. I bought it from a dealer near me in MA, but they have failed to even check it out after 5 phone calls and a visit. So as other people have said, the dealer can make all the difference. I am now going directly to St Croix to see if they will help at least check this out. But from my experience so far, I would not buy another St Croix. I also bought a pellet stove from Abuchons (shop heater, about 2 month old) and believe it or not, that stove has been excellent. It's quiet and runs flawlessly. But I will update here if things change with St Croix. Good luck!


  14. mkmh

    mkmh New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2007
    Messages:
    407
    Loc:
    Southern, Maine
    I have the Hastings too, and consider it to be a somewhat noisy stove. If you are interested in checking out the rattling noise yourself, here are a couple things to look at.
    1. Make sure the cast iron top is seated properly on teh stove. A couple times after cleaning I didn't have it on perfectly and I got a loud rattle when the fan kicked on high
    2. Make sure the back pannels are seated securely and tightly on the back of the stove. The metal is very thin back there, so if they are not seated tightly against the back of the stove it'll make a heck of a lot of noise.

    I would wait a couple years before thinking the St Croix is inferior to the Aubuchon stove. I believe Aubuchon sells the "cheap charlie/pelpro" line, and i've heard mixed reviews on those over time. They use high quality parts in the St Croix, so you may find that it "ages" better in the long run. I've run nearly 10 tons of pellets through my St Croix with very minimal issues and zero replacement parts <knock wood>. Pretty decent considering I am well into my 3rd heating season.
  15. dp2002

    dp2002 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Messages:
    5
    Loc:
    Eastern CT
    I appreciate the advice. I did try your suggestions and everything looked ok. The dealer where I bought the stove finally stopped by to check out my complaint today. ( I had not emailed St. Croix yet because even though it was weeks, I wanted to give the dealer another chance to have a look before I caused any problems for them). What the dealer told me was that it was the versatile motor causing the rattling noise and that this rattling noise is basically inherent in stove designs with versatile motors. I asked him if he could leave the versatile motor disconnected but he advised against that. So now I will ask St. Croix if they have a solution for this rattling issue. If I can't solve it I plan to sell the stove with only 6 weeks of use, but I won't keep it if I have to listen to this annoying noise. I'll let you know how it goes with St Croix.

    Regarding the Aubuchon stove, you may turn out to be right in the long run, I will have to see if it last the test of time, but the stove is still running quiet and great (probably becuase it doesn't have a versatile motor). The dealer told me I may have problems with clinkers (sp) with some pellets and stoves without a versatile motor, but I have not run into this problem as of yet.

    Thanks again for your suggestions..
  16. Xena

    Xena Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Messages:
    2,491
    Loc:
    South Shore MA


    Do you mean the versa grate motor?

    If so, I think your dealer is full of doo doo. My St Croix has the versa grate motor
    and no rattles here going on three years and my stove gets hard use.
  17. mkmh

    mkmh New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2007
    Messages:
    407
    Loc:
    Southern, Maine
    Too bad the dealer was not helpful. I'm assuming that they were referring to the Versa Grate Motor. If I recall, I may have been getting some noise from my motor after season one, but adding some lubrication took care of the issue. I don't understand why the dealer would not have tried this, as it is in the PDF training materials.

    If your only "beef" with the stove is the noise then I would call St Croix. I'm quite sure they will be able to help you, as I don't think the noise you're hearing is normal.

    Not a ton of detail here, but a pretty good reference
    http://www.fieldtoflue.com/documents/St_Croix_Training-Pellet.pdf
  18. dp2002

    dp2002 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Messages:
    5
    Loc:
    Eastern CT
    Yes, it is the versa grate motor I am talking about. (Shows my ignorance on this stove..).

    The dealer disconnected the versa grate motor and the noise stopped, he then swapped the motor, but the noise continued, so I am
    convinced he is in the right area of the rattling. Maybe to your point, it's not the motor itself, maybe it's something connected to the motor. I did go and listen to the one the dealer has running and I can hear the same noise with that one too. What's interesting is that the stove did not have this rattling noise the 1st few days I ran it. I think the dealer was helpful because the noise is now isolated to a specific area.

    The link to the St. Croix Training pdf gave me some new information on the versa grate motor (better illustrated breakdown than the owners manual) and other good info too. Thanks! That educated me a bit more and from the diagram I am able to see areas that could potentially cause rattling. Prior to today I didn't realize it was the versa grate system, so I am looking at this more closely now.

    When I get some time I am going to inspect all this very carefully before I call St Croix.

    I had no experience with pellet stoves before November 07, so all this stuff is new to me. Prior to that I have always gone out behind my house and cut wood and threw it in Vermont Castings stoves. All in all I think pellet stoves are excellent technology and other than this noise I would have no complaints.

    Thanks guys for all your help. I'll let you know how I make out.
  19. mkmh

    mkmh New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2007
    Messages:
    407
    Loc:
    Southern, Maine
    Hi DP. That is good to hear that the dealer did their due-dillagence swapping out the motor. It was definitely starting to sound like you were working with somebody who might not really understand the stove. As I mentioned earlier in this thread, I do consider the Hastings to be a bit of a noisy stove. However, it doesn't sound like the rattles are are normal. Mine has definitely done some of that at times, but if that was the typical operating noise I would be looking to sell my stove, as you are.
    Sounds like you are on the right track with it, and I look forward to hearing how things work out.

    Best regards
  20. russfamily@hotmail.com

    russfamily@hotmail.com New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2007
    Messages:
    7
    Loc:
    long Island, NY
    AHHHHHH! my st croix prescott EXL stopped working. The Auger isnt moving-I'm cold. Think its the motor, unsure. Unpluged and repluged-no avail. Live in Long Island NY (11742)and there are no dealers here at all. If I need a motor, do any other companys use the same auger motor? Any one know were to get one. Any quick fixes out there?-thanks
  21. pegdot

    pegdot New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2007
    Messages:
    415
    Loc:
    Upstate, SC
    Hey, can't help you with the problem but you might want to start a new thread so you'll get more immediate attention. Good luck!
  22. dp2002

    dp2002 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Messages:
    5
    Loc:
    Eastern CT
    If you can't find parts, the dealer near me say that they stock parts for the St Croix stoves. You could probably have them send you a motor over night. They are in MA. Their number is (508) 987-2897.

    Good luck!
    dp
  23. Xena

    Xena Minister of Fire

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    South Shore MA
    I would properly troubleshoot before throwing parts
    at it. The manual has a troubleshooting section.
    If you don't have a manual you can dl it in pdf format
    http://www.eventempinc.com/stcroix/stoves/stoves.html
  24. hearthtools

    hearthtools Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2006
    Messages:
    2,019
    Loc:
    Oakhurst, California, USA, Earth
    They are Popular Back east but not so much west of the Mississippi.
    Due to the fact they are make on the east
    the same goes for hearthstone, Woodstock, Kozyheat.
    Most all other Pellet stoves are made On the NORTH WEST USA and Canada.
    not untill Recently Harmon has been sold in this area.
    and they only sell a few per year.
  25. hearthtools

    hearthtools Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2006
    Messages:
    2,019
    Loc:
    Oakhurst, California, USA, Earth
    ZETA Good words
    I use them all the time.
    DONT THROW PARTS AT A STOVE
    throw a brush and a vacuum at it.
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