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Woodstove Blowers....to use or not?

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Shmudda, Jan 2, 2011.

  1. Shmudda

    Shmudda Burning Hunk

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2009
    Messages:
    118
    Loc:
    Western Pennsylvania
    I have a freestanding Lopi Liberty with a blower, it is a non-cat stove and will produce 75,000 BTU/hr. Up until two days ago I used the blower all the time when the stove was going. My thinking was I wanted to get every last BTU out of the stove to heat the house. For the last couple days I decided to shut the blower (warmed up some) and just let the stove radiate the heat, and WOW what a difference in performance. The stove is heating the house better, staying hotter, and burning much cleaner with less coals and more ash produced. Don't know if I'm going to use the blower for awhile as I might ride this out and see how it performs when it really gets cold. Right now it's only in the low 30's and the house is 75 deg F and I really haven't been throwing more then one log in at a time. The stove temp is staying around 450-500 deg or so.

    Lets hear what some others do with their stoves, do you use the blowers or not?

    Craig

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  2. snowleopard

    snowleopard Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2009
    Messages:
    1,494
    This is interesting! I don't have a blower, but have thought about getting one. However, so far I'm getting good uniform heat from the stove with moderate-sized fires, so just waiting and watching through the winter to see how it goes.

    Keep us posted on what you learn, okay?
  3. charly

    charly Guest

    Craig, I found the same thing with my QuadraFire 5700. I really don't use my blower anymore either. Same thing, stove burns better with it off.
  4. Big Al

    Big Al New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2010
    Messages:
    323
    Loc:
    Rhode Island
    I have one but haven't used it in a while. I haven't felt the need, house gets plenty warm without it.
  5. rdust

    rdust Minister of Fire

    Joined:
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    3,798
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    Michigan
    I have an Endeavor which is a smaller version of the Liberty. I use my blower when it's cold to help move the heat around the house. Two story house with a less than perfect floor plan so the blower helps. If the house is up to temp I typically don't run it(or run on low) but during the week I usually need some heat in the joint quickly when I get home from work.

    I'd imagine it's burning cleaner since it's keeping more heat in the stove. I know my stove top stays at a higher temp a lot longer without the blower running at the end of the burn. I usually will get mine up to temp before I turn on the blower.

    To sum it up mine is running more often than not.
  6. shawneyboy

    shawneyboy New Member

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    Loc:
    NE PA
    I think it depends on the stove materials. I know someone with a soapstone, like I have, the blower does not seem to effect burn but does move the air better. It does cool the stove somewhat when it reaches coaling stage but really as long as the btus are in the house, what is the difference? I am probably going to get one for my stove, I guess I will see if it is worth the money.
  7. maverick06

    maverick06 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2008
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    724
    Loc:
    media, pa
    I have an insert (FPX 33, same as lopi declatation). Without the blower, i get about zero heat out of it, with the blower, the house is great!
  8. MarkinNC

    MarkinNC Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2010
    Messages:
    529
    Loc:
    Leicester, NC
    I use my blower a lot. That in combo with the ceiling fan blowing down (from a vaulted ceiling), really pushes the air towards the other end of the house. I have tried it without the blower and the convective heating feature is less pronounced, but it will work. I have found that turning the fan speed up will push the heat even better than I ever imagined. When my stove top is 700 to 750 the blower is usually on as an insurance policy that it will not get hotter (as fast).

    But it is my first year and I am still learning. I'm also very happy with my choice of a Lopi.
  9. andybaker

    andybaker Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2008
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    391
    Loc:
    Northwest OH
    This is interesting, this is the first year I hardly ever use the blower and the house is warm, to my wife, too warm.
  10. bboulier

    bboulier Feeling the Heat

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    441
    Loc:
    NE Virginia
    Like maverick06, I have an insert. Without the blower, I would get some, but little heat. Would be OK to snuggle up close to in an emergency, but I have a battery back-up for the blower if times get tough.
  11. bboulier

    bboulier Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
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    441
    Loc:
    NE Virginia
    When we purchased the Jotul 550, I was in favor of a free-standing wood burning stove that would take up more space and allow cooking on top, but my wife was only persuaded by an insert. I agreed. Has worked out well!
  12. Mrs. Krabappel

    Mrs. Krabappel Minister of Fire

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    Blue Ridge Mountains NC
    I don't have a blower but think it would work well for my hearth mounted stove. I have found a small fan to be critical for spreading heat.
  13. modo

    modo New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
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    62
    Loc:
    midwest
    Same here guys. The only time I run my blower is when the stove gets near overfire, which isn't very often. I just run it for a few mins. to cool the stove down a bit. I heat about 1800 sq. ft.
  14. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    South Puget Sound, WA
    This is our first season with a blower. I added it late last season. At first I didn't use it much, but considering it's very quiet and we are in a cold snap, I have been trying it more lately. So far I like it for more rapid warmups and getting heat more into the extremities of the house.
  15. remkel

    remkel Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2010
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    1,459
    Loc:
    Southwest NH
    Have never used a blower. My stove is set up in the basement and I just leave the basement door open and let the heat rise through the house. I am able to heat approx. 2000 sq ft this way. Only time the heat kicks on upstairs is overnight when the stove is at the end of the cycle and it has dropped into the teens or below.
  16. gpcollen1

    gpcollen1 Minister of Fire

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    Not sure what you are really getting at?? Using a blower, especially on a well designed stove for a blower, helps get more heat out of the stove. That is pretty simple and not much to argue about. Of course there are other variables that come into play like will it effectively lower the internal temp of the stove and affect combustion and performance - maybe. Will I use more wood - sure, if you are going to try and burn hotter and keep the blower going. Of course it matters how high the blower is turned on.

    You don't always need the blower. Mine doesn't get turned on until December, I don't need the extra heat until it gets colder. In general, my blower stays on low and rarely ever gets turned up above 50%. That blower works exceptionally well at getting the house warmed up as opposed to without - NOT EVEN CLOSE.
  17. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Could have bought the Oslo with a blower . . . dealer suggested I save my money and see how it would work without a blower . . . that recommendation impressed me since the dealer could have made a little extra change by just telling me that I had to have a blower to make the Oslo work well and I probably would have gone that route . . . instead he was truthful and pointed out that if I wanted to try a blower after running the stove for a while it would be a simple add-on. Three years in now and I can't say as though I've ever felt a real need for a blower.
  18. madison

    madison Minister of Fire

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    I'll admit and agree that the blower does affect the burning in the back of the stove where the blower is located in our freestanding stove - and results in opening the draft a bit more in the end stages of the burn than without the blower on, I did not originally think that the blower would have this affect on the wood combustion. but still feel that it improves overall BTU output and distribution despite this observation.

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