2008 Jotul F400 Problems...

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Rolltheoldlady

New Member
Oct 19, 2021
4
Manitoba, Canada
Hey all Jotul F400 owners. I have been running my F400 for years, 2008 model. I have searched many forums, and have not seen any posts which comment on the horrible design for regular sweeping. So here is my comment. Every time you sweep --ROOFTOP SWEEP---
, the interior of the stove (under the lid) captures all the soot and creosote between the secondary air chamber, and secondary burn baffle plates. What I am saying is all the sweeping debris gets trapped, and the only way for a "proper" removal is to remove the top lid from the stove, and all these mentioned internal pieces....Also the lid should be removed as soot and ash get all over the back and sides plates and in between them...
Having a stove, which we burn non-stop here in winter in CANADA, that needs complete disassembly as I mentioned (2-3 times) each burn season (and we only burn proper seasoned wood with 11% moisture or less) IS CRAZY, we absolutely hate this stove, BYE BYE JOTUL.

FYI - You need small hands, and have to squeeze your hand (and a wrench), up through front door above baffles to access the lid bolts, not FUN. Then there are "thumb turns" inside the stove on bottom baffle, to release said baffle.
After all this, if you damage or have gaskets...they also need replacing. FUN FUN...NOPE, kinda STUPID. Dangerous stove, if you do not do these steps, and the book says nothing about this needing done...?

Has anyone found a solution to this, it is possible also to remove some pieces from the inside without removing the top, but that way is a nightmare also.
Thank you all.



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bigealta

Burning Hunk
May 22, 2010
155
Utah, NJ
I leave the bolts off, its so much easier. My old jotul 3 only used gravity to hold the lid on and i see no reason it should not be the same for the f400. I believe it's required to remove the lid bolts in some european countries, possibly to help extinguish chimney fires?

I think they even call those lid bolts "Shipping Bolts" or something to that effect.
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
26,199
central pa
You can leave the top unbolted you can remove the pipe and vaccume it that way or thread a small vac hose up over the baffle from the front
 

EbS-P

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2019
1,503
SE North Carolina
You can leave the top unbolted you can remove the pipe and vaccume it that way or thread a small vac hose up over the baffle from the front
I have not unbolted my top. I take the baffle out from the inside. It’s possible. Not easy but takes 2 min to get out and 5 to get back in.

I am removing the bolts this year.

 
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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
90,660
South Puget Sound, WA
The way it was explained years back is that the bolts are primarily for shipping. They can be removed and left off. Just keep an eye on the top gasket and replace when it shows signs of wear or air leakage. A couple signs of air leakage are soot trails leading to the leak at the gasket and uneven burning in the stove.
 

bigealta

Burning Hunk
May 22, 2010
155
Utah, NJ
I just cleaned mine. Bolts stay off, very easy to clean, scooped a cereal box full of ash and soot that fell down the chimney over the summer. Vacuumed out the fines. Got to do a chimney sweep next.

AB211519-C113-4DFC-84EB-7B6CFA1E4866.jpeg 192FEEAF-63C6-4480-96FD-9DC8E651B797.jpeg 8BFF02E8-22D4-4BA4-BF6B-9063A5EA2BEF.jpeg
 
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EbS-P

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2019
1,503
SE North Carolina

Rolltheoldlady

New Member
Oct 19, 2021
4
Manitoba, Canada
I leave the bolts off, its so much easier. My old jotul 3 only used gravity to hold the lid on and i see no reason it should not be the same for the f400. I believe it's required to remove the lid bolts in some european countries, possibly to help extinguish chimney fires?

I think they even call those lid bolts "Shipping Bolts" or something to that effect.
Yeah, I tried leaving the bolts out one season, and it seemed to affect the draft negatively...
 

Rolltheoldlady

New Member
Oct 19, 2021
4
Manitoba, Canada
I just cleaned mine. Bolts stay off, very easy to clean, scooped a cereal box full of ash and soot that fell down the chimney over the summer. Vacuumed out the fines. Got to do a chimney sweep next.

View attachment 283587 View attachment 283588 View attachment 283589
Yes, leaving those bolts out helps alot, turns maintenance to an easier job. However, my stove seemed to run way better with them in, and tight....perhaps needs new gaskets again for the lid...
 

Rob_Red

Feeling the Heat
Feb 2, 2021
313
Southern New England
I know if I let soot just fall into the top of my hearthstone when chimney cleaning it would be a huge pain to remove it due to the baffle, cat, and the bypass mechanism. The top of the stove doesn't come off, because of this I would avoid at all costs.

I don't know of any modern stove design that would be convenient to clean this way? is this really a knock on Jotul?
 

EbS-P

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2019
1,503
SE North Carolina
I know if I let soot just fall into the top of my hearthstone when chimney cleaning it would be a huge pain to remove it due to the baffle, cat, and the bypass mechanism. The top of the stove doesn't come off, because of this I would avoid at all costs.

I don't know of any modern stove design that would be convenient to clean this way? is this really a knock on Jotul?
I think many stoves the baffle can come out the front easily. I only have 1.5” from top of stove to lintel. Cleaning procedure was a concern when I chose my stove. I made sure it was possible to get the baffle out and clean without taking the top off.

Evan.
 

MongoMongoson

Member
Feb 6, 2021
215
Wisconsin
I know if I let soot just fall into the top of my hearthstone when chimney cleaning it would be a huge pain to remove it due to the baffle, cat, and the bypass mechanism. The top of the stove doesn't come off, because of this I would avoid at all costs.

I don't know of any modern stove design that would be convenient to clean this way? is this really a knock on Jotul?
With the PE Summit, I open the door, pull the baffle pin, lift the baffle, pull it forward, tilt, and out it comes. The only thing that bugs me about it is replacing the baffle gasket each time, but I do know there is a home brew basket solution for that. I just haven't done it yet.
 
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Rob_Red

Feeling the Heat
Feb 2, 2021
313
Southern New England
With the PE Summit, I open the door, pull the baffle pin, lift the baffle, pull it forward, tilt, and out it comes. The only thing that bugs me about it is replacing the baffle gasket each time, but I do know there is a home brew basket solution for that. I just haven't done it yet.
pulling the baffle is the easy part, between the baffle and the stove pipe is a bypass door and a Cat that are installed in a shelf of sorts. I would never want to pour a bunch of soot all over that stuff.
 
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bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
26,199
central pa
Yes, leaving those bolts out helps alot, turns maintenance to an easier job. However, my stove seemed to run way better with them in, and tight....perhaps needs new gaskets again for the lid...
Probably needs new gasket. Or less draft. How tall is the chimney do you have a pipe damper? What pipe temps are you running at?
 

rijim

Feeling the Heat
Jan 19, 2009
250
RI
Ran one for 12 years with bolt out, cleaning was easy stove ran great. Ash door gasket needs replacement every 4-5 years, other than that it was a breeze to maintain.
 

adrpga498

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2005
941
New Jersey

Whirled Peas

Member
Mar 7, 2019
22
Vermont
I run an F400 and will throw in another vote for 'remove the bolts'. I did that a few years ago after a deep end of season cleaning and never put them back and. I can't tell any difference with my draft.
 

MHN

New Member
Nov 17, 2021
1
NY
Working on cleaning one of these Jotul Castile F400 now at my new place. I'm not good with this myself, but have had 2 chimney sweep companies come and go now, both unable to remove the baffle to access the flu for cleaning. The last one was in there for 45 min unable to get it out the front. The tight fit and angle never seemed to make the clearance possible to remove. I tried myself after the first and also had this problem.

I've seen others have removed the screws for the top, but I can't imagine how these would be remotely possible to access with the baffle blocking access to the top. And needing a wrench at that? I see in the diagrams/photo where they are but am not even sure how they'd be accessed?

Really struggling to clean this thing. This last company took 3 months lead time to get these guys here for the appt.
 
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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
90,660
South Puget Sound, WA
Pulling the baffle is a pita and unnecessary. It's much easier to remove the top. Shipping bolts hold it in place. The top is gasketed and can be left unbolted. It's been many years but I think there are 2 bolts (10mm?), on the left and right center underside of the top. They can be reached through the front door.
 

EbS-P

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2019
1,503
SE North Carolina
Working on cleaning one of these Jotul Castile F400 now at my new place. I'm not good with this myself, but have had 2 chimney sweep companies come and go now, both unable to remove the baffle to access the flu for cleaning. The last one was in there for 45 min unable to get it out the front. The tight fit and angle never seemed to make the clearance possible to remove. I tried myself after the first and also had this problem.

I've seen others have removed the screws for the top, but I can't imagine how these would be remotely possible to access with the baffle blocking access to the top. And needing a wrench at that? I see in the diagrams/photo where they are but am not even sure how they'd be accessed?

Really struggling to clean this thing. This last company took 3 months lead time to get these guys here for the appt.
This is how I do it.
Post number 43.
 

Rolltheoldlady

New Member
Oct 19, 2021
4
Manitoba, Canada
After feedback, and numerous comments regarding these F400 series Jotul stoves...The verdict is in that they indeed are one of the worst stoves to maintain.
It is possible to remove the baffle system with the lid on to access the chimney swept debris, but this is a difficult procedure.
Removing the top plate and then the baffle system; is the preferred method, but also very difficult for the average home owner and even some contractors do not enjoy this procedure.
Comments of leaving the interior "top plate" bolts out as they are "shipping bolts" is not a correct thought, the stove should not be run without them in place, but people will do as they want, I do not blame you if you follow this method, but do not recommend it, as a chimney fire, and pressure, or other problem could in fact move top plate, or even blow it off if the fire/event is extreme enough. You also may not even notice the amount of smoke entering your home from this.
In a last ditch attempt for this winter season, we are replacing every single gasket, even the side burn plate gaskets, and the all the adhesive cement, to see if stove will run normally and chimney fires are reduced or stopped. If not, this stove will go to the Land Fill, but not until final tests are completed in a controlled shop environment after removal from residence.

Thank you all for the feedback! - RTOL
 

EbS-P

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2019
1,503
SE North Carolina
If I was closer I’d gladly take it off your hands before it gets it final send off;)
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
26,199
central pa
After feedback, and numerous comments regarding these F400 series Jotul stoves...The verdict is in that they indeed are one of the worst stoves to maintain.
It is possible to remove the baffle system with the lid on to access the chimney swept debris, but this is a difficult procedure.
Removing the top plate and then the baffle system; is the preferred method, but also very difficult for the average home owner and even some contractors do not enjoy this procedure.
Comments of leaving the interior "top plate" bolts out as they are "shipping bolts" is not a correct thought, the stove should not be run without them in place, but people will do as they want, I do not blame you if you follow this method, but do not recommend it, as a chimney fire, and pressure, or other problem could in fact move top plate, or even blow it off if the fire/event is extreme enough. You also may not even notice the amount of smoke entering your home from this.
In a last ditch attempt for this winter season, we are replacing every single gasket, even the side burn plate gaskets, and the all the adhesive cement, to see if stove will run normally and chimney fires are reduced or stopped. If not, this stove will go to the Land Fill, but not until final tests are completed in a controlled shop environment after removal from residence.

Thank you all for the feedback! - RTOL
As someone who maintains hundreds of stoves I can tell you without question it is absolutely not one of the worst stoves to maintain. It isn't one of the easiest. Pretty much middle of the road.


I am curious how a chimney fire could possibly move the top? A puffback possibly could but that is extremely unlikely but not a chimney fire
 
Last edited:

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
90,660
South Puget Sound, WA
Comments of leaving the interior "top plate" bolts out as they are "shipping bolts" is not a correct thought, the stove should not be run without them in place,
In the UK this is standard practice. It is why the top is gasketed. But don't trust my word, trust Jotul. This is from the UK manual:

The top plate is fastened by means of 2 transport screws. These must be removed due to the regulation regarding free access for sweeping smoke pipes. This is done by first unscrewing the smoke outlet so that the 2 transport screws situated on the inside of the product between the side panels and the top plate are within reach.

NB! Be aware of that the top plate is laying loose on the top of the product, and shall not be fastened.