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What do you use for a vacuum for your pellet stove?

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by Steveo, Aug 26, 2008.

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  1. Steveo

    Steveo Member

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    I am going to buy a vacuum for my pellet stove and am not sure which one I should get. What are you using?

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  2. stoveguy2esw

    stoveguy2esw Minister of Fire

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    i use a loveless ash vac. mine is the "base model" so its a bit loud , they have a quiet model as well which costs a bit more. they run upwards of 200 bucks though. a "shop vac" can be used as long as the stove is dead cold out. if you wish to use this type vac , get either the kind which has the cartridge filter (looks like a car's air filter) or a "drywall bag" otherwise the very fine ash generated by burning pellets will blow right through the "foam sleeve" type filter or the paper filters that look like a coffee filter.
  3. woodsman23

    woodsman23 Minister of Fire

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    I use a simple shop vac with extension hose kit and the whole unit stays outside while cleaning but the stove needs to be cooled first. I also made up a 1/2" hose with adapter to clean out the small areas inside the stove and it works well.
  4. Jakethepup

    Jakethepup New Member

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    What a great question I have been thinking about this too since I have yet to get my insert installed, but I was thinking about just using the central vac hose, as long as the stove was cool. Would there be a problem using the central vac?
  5. imacman

    imacman Guest

    Better make sure there is a HEPA-type filter on it, or else the fine dust will go right through the standard filter out into the air.....what a mess!
  6. BignBeefy

    BignBeefy Member

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    Ash vac. I wonder what would happen if you burnt your house down and then you debated wether the 200 bucks was worth it,since you didnt wait for that last ember to go out....
  7. kinsmanstoves

    kinsmanstoves Minister of Fire

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    This h gone around a couple times before. Stick with the standard shop vac and a clean filter.

    Eric
  8. chrisasst

    chrisasst Minister of Fire

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    Using a fire resistant metal flex hose and a specially designed filtering system for ash, the Cheetah II Ash Vac solves the problem of removing ash from wood burning stoves and fireplaces safely. A special snap spring assembly allows for cleaning the secondary filter without taking off the lid. Please note, this unit is designed to pick up ashes once they have cooled. The nozzle of the hose is approximately 1" in diameter and is not designed to pick up coals or granules of coal.
  9. Jakethepup

    Jakethepup New Member

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    my central vac has the exhaust to the outside air right by my garage, I would just need to make sure there was nothing hot before cleaning. Then any dust that gets out of the vac would be in the outside air.
  10. tubbster2

    tubbster2 New Member

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    I too have a central vac, but think a "prefilter" made out of a 5 gallon bucket may help it a bit.
    Just have to figure out how to do that. I thought I saw a thread about it somewhere....
  11. DiggerJim

    DiggerJim Feeling the Heat

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    Electric heat...I wonder what would happen if you burnt your house down because the pellets started burning up the auger into the hopper and then you debated whether the savings on heat was worth it because you were too cheap to pay the electric company the extra thousand or so this year (less than the cost of a cup of Starbucks every day)...

    :)

    Everything has risks. Everyone's house currently has a measurable (albeit small) risk of catching on fire right this very minute. We're all making risk/reward calculations all the time. It's not even like catching an ember in the shop vac is definitely going to cause a house fire --- vacuum, take it outside and empty it in a metal garbage can, cover to smother and you're fine.

    IMHO of course.
  12. tinkabranc

    tinkabranc Minister of Fire

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    I use an ash vac. It's a bit loud but works great.
    Got one cheap at a yard sale some time ago.
  13. woodsman23

    woodsman23 Minister of Fire

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    I dump my ashes right into the garden. I use a regular shop vac with a foam/paper filter, just make sure i empty it each time i clean the stove. I simply sweep all ash into catch below the vac everything else, take it out side empty ash drawer and vac into garden and i am good to go, clean vac and have ready for next cleaning... 200 bucks for a vac??? i can get an extra ton of pellets for the cost
  14. offingmoot

    offingmoot New Member

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    even in the middle of winter yuo empty them into your garden, i will pass on that rather dump them in the basement and save the gardening for a nice day in the spring!!
  15. woodsman23

    woodsman23 Minister of Fire

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    If i wait till spring then dump them is is a real mess so i do it during the winter months and around here we get nothing but damm lake effect snow by the feet so by the time they make it to the ground it's spring.LOL
  16. fredarm

    fredarm Minister of Fire

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    A neighbor of mine used his central vac to clean the ash from his new pellet stove. It started a fire in the dirt canister in the basement. The central vac tube network distributed the smoke throughout the house, causing extensive smoke damage. It was a real mess. Based on his experience, I would say using a central vac to clean youe stove is not recommended, except maybe at the end of the year when you haven't had a fire for at least a week. Even then I proabably wouldn't do it.
  17. kilarney

    kilarney New Member

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    How long do you let your ashes cool? It doesn't seem to take that long, but I'm wondering what other people think.
  18. j00fek

    j00fek Feeling the Heat

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    so if you clean the stove every time it needs it before you start er up shouldn't be no problem with a shop vac...
  19. hossthehermit

    hossthehermit Minister of Fire

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    New to this, BUT, my old lady can suck start my Harley, don't anticipate any problems.
  20. Steveo

    Steveo Member

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    Suck start your harley? That one went right over my head. How does she suck start a harley lol?
  21. MainePellethead

    MainePellethead Minister of Fire

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    I simply use a small shop vac from wal mart....I dump all my ash in the compost which gets used in garden in the spring :)
  22. LewLasher

    LewLasher Member

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    I just got my pellet stove last week, and so I have all summer to shop for a vacuum.

    The Harman manual specifies either a HEPA filter or a drywall filter.

    I plan to clean my stove when it is cold.

    Target sells a Dirt Devil model M084500V for about $50 that comes with a HEPA filter. Are there disadvantages to this model vacuum (not powerful enough? capacity too small? too hard to clean filter?)? Are there other suitable vacuums available for less than $100?
  23. Breckwell Tech

    Breckwell Tech New Member

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    loveless ash vac is the best way to go.
  24. Xena

    Xena Minister of Fire

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    I use a Loveless Drywall Vac. Originally bought it
    for cleaning up after a home project but the drywall
    bags have been perfect for cleaning the stove.
  25. slls

    slls Minister of Fire

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    Shop vac from walmart and a drywall bag. Already had the vac just needed the bag.
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