ANOTHER Dutchwest question...sigh....

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shadowmnt

New Member
Nov 13, 2021
6
37357
Have the 2461 and have always loved it (ten years ownership, bought NOS , was 2000 model never used) Replaced the catalytic, refractory unit, top gasket, door gasket, check (dollar test) front and ash doors. I suspect catalytic was shot for more than a couple of years as that temp would never get high as before but I plodded on until the redo this fall. Held a fire good for 6-7 hours.
So now the catalytic REALLY works, however 1. not getting any better hold on the fire 2. ONLY when the catalytic is engaged and working I get a strong smoke odor. I saw a prior thread on this, however I DID finally see where the smoke puffed from. Looking at the stove front, the primary air was CLOSED but I saw a light puff (not continuous) come out of IT. ??? This has me stumped. And disappointed.
Perhaps I need to 'relearn' how to operate since I used it for so long with a dead catalytic? (but the catalytic IS working, that's obvious)

Or something else I'm missing? Am an old lady alone but pretty handy, however NOT into taking her apart and doing a rebuild. When I re installed the top, I was careful (maybe too careful) to not over torque the bolts that hold it down. I tested them after a good fire and cool down and they still seem 'tight' (with a ratchet). Was afraid to do too much more for fear those ears would snap. However, when I put the top back on I didn't get the 'feel' that is was seated in a special 'spot', but the bolts line up with the holes....??
Always used 8-12 mo well seasoned oak, maple, ash, locust, walnut, etc and have no trouble starting a fire, or having smoke until at night or when I leave and engage the catalytic. Once the catalytic 'quits' as the fire dies, no more smoke. ANY input would be appreciated, I loved this stove and now I don't know what to do....
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
91,384
South Puget Sound, WA
The small puff could be due to the fire smoldering, then reigniting. When a flame reappears, a small explosion can happen as the wood gases reignite. This is known as a backpuff. It can happen with weak draft or poorly seasoned wood or too little air to the fire.
 

shadowmnt

New Member
Nov 13, 2021
6
37357
Well, it must happen constantly as the smoke smell in the house is way over the top. Despite not being able to actually see it. I've had the stove 'puff' before as a roll of flame went across the glass and you can sure see the smoke. That's only happened a couple of times per season, and even after the catalytic seemed to quit working.
I have very well seasoned wood. Good draft, and but maybe too little air to the fire. But I've never seen it puff out of the closed primary air control. I'll try not closing it all the way, but am afraid that will cause a faster burn. Appreciate the ideas, tho. Thanks
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
91,384
South Puget Sound, WA
When was the chimney last cleaned? If there is a screen on the chimney cap it may be starting to plug up.
 

shadowmnt

New Member
Nov 13, 2021
6
37357
No screen. I did think I needed to have the chimney checked. It's masonry (brick faced over block, clay flue lined). House is 7 years old. And my draft is excellent. I guess my only thought that this would not be the cause, is that I wasn't having this problem last spring when the stove was shut down. Only happened when I changed out all those components for new....Will have the chimney checked anyway. I'm starting to wish I had just left well enough alone. But I was annoyed at the short hold time on the fire...Don't much like getting up in the middle of the night to stoke it, lol! I thought doing this would solve that. I have to say, though, I am noticing hardly ANY ash build up. Really looks like that is working well. Used be quite a bit of ash and larger particles. Not anymore.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
91,384
South Puget Sound, WA
A new catalyst will burn extra hot for the first several fires, then it will settle down.
 

shadowmnt

New Member
Nov 13, 2021
6
37357
Ok...would that have anything to do with the smoke stink in the house that happens when it is engaged? I love the smell of wood smoke, have burned wood for over 20 years, but this is way over the top tolerable. Has me bumfuggled...
I'm only on my third fire as I let the others go out so I could check things (and it had warmed up here a bit).
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
91,384
South Puget Sound, WA
It shouldn't on an older stove. Did the stove get polished or painted recently?
 

shadowmnt

New Member
Nov 13, 2021
6
37357
no. Nothing different except the new parts described earlier. Just can't understand the puff from the left side primary control. I know they are not airtight but......
 

Diabel

Minister of Fire
Jan 11, 2008
3,500
Ottawa, ON
Welcome to the forum.

1. Have the chimney cleaned.
2. Remove the cat, clean it (gently) with a soft brush.
3. Do not close the primary air too much. As it gets colder you will be able to close it more.
 

shadowmnt

New Member
Nov 13, 2021
6
37357
Thank you. I've lurked here for some time. Love my wood heat.
Ok to number 1 and 3. Don't understand to clean the cat. It was brand new installed 3 weeks ago. Can you explain your thought on that?
 

Diabel

Minister of Fire
Jan 11, 2008
3,500
Ottawa, ON
Thank you. I've lurked here for some time. Love my wood heat.
Ok to number 1 and 3. Don't understand to clean the cat. It was brand new installed 3 weeks ago. Can you explain your thought on that?
Missed that. Three week old cat needs not cleaning yet.