Anyone with a Piazzetta Sabrina ?

NorthoftheQuabbin Posted By NorthoftheQuabbin, Jan 29, 2015 at 10:56 PM

  1. NorthoftheQuabbin

    NorthoftheQuabbin
    Member 2.
    NULL
    

    Jan 29, 2015
    101
    17
    Loc:
    Massachusetts
    As a new member of the forum, and the owner of a recently purchased Piazzetta Sabrina pellet stove, I was wondering if there might be another member here who's experiencing the same problems with their stove as I am.

    Basically, in just a few months, I'm on my second stove, since the first one was replaced under warranty.

    The problem that I continue to experience, is the stove's inability to run for any amount of time before it develops a "clinker" and subsequently overloads. This seems to occur no matter what type of pellet I use.

    My experience with the stove(s) reached a point where things became so bad, that it warranted the distributor to visit my home and inspect the it on scene.

    They in turn decided to re-vent the stove differently and change the parameters. However, this yielded little if any improvement. As a result, I was told that the only way I could continue with this stove, was to shut it down every 12 hours and clean the burn pot. Needless to say, this was a sub-optimal conclusion for me.

    What's most interesting about the situation, is that I also purchased a Piazzetts Monia stove at the same time, which has performed flawlessly from day one.

    Any thoughts or suggestions?
     
  2. chken

    chken
    Minister of Fire 2.
    NULL
    

    Dec 7, 2013
    1,110
    230
    Loc:
    Maine
    First, welcome to the forum. Second, the Sabrina and Monia are closely related cousins so that it's extremely odd that one should work well and the other be problematic. Third, the manual recommends shutting down the stove once a day for a grate scrape. Having to scrape every 12 hrs seems extreme to me, indicates a poor burn. Clinkers are typically related to the pellets. Minerals in the pellets if fired at a certain temp, about 2000F, can form a clinker. Fourth, there are lots of threads on Piazzettas, both the Monia and Sabrina, if you do a search.

    I've only once had a situation where the pot overloaded, and that was after burning 7 days straight, with almost 20 bags thru the stove, with no scraping whatsoever.

    On your problem, it would help to know what brand of pellet you burn and a pic of your clinker and overflowed pot would help, and a description of your vent. How many tons have you burned, has the vent been cleaned, what's your normal cleaning routine, that sort of thing. Clearly, the installer saw something about your vent that they were concerned about. What was it?

    Also, what did they change about the parameters? Did they use a manometer to adjust the combustion? What's the flame look like?

    I have to agree that having to shut the stove every 12 hrs seems like a non-solution.
     
  3. NorthoftheQuabbin

    NorthoftheQuabbin
    Member 2.
    NULL
    

    Jan 29, 2015
    101
    17
    Loc:
    Massachusetts
    Hi chken-

    Thanks for your quick reply.

    I did do a search initially, however, after reading through several posts, I felt that I wasn't finding the answers I was looking for.

    In any case, to answer your questions, the latest stove has been in service since the end of October/bringing of November of 2014. And, along the way, I've tried numerous brands of pellets, both hard wood, soft wood and mixed - hoping to find a better result.

    At the distributor's request, I'm currently using Okanagan Premium (red) soft wood pellets.

    As far as the parameters are concerned, my understanding is that they increased the combustion fan speed slightly via the control panel.

    With regard to venting, the initial configuration involved a simple straight-out design. However, they have since reconfigured it by adding about 6 feet of vertical pipe, which terminates into a sharp right angle. I guess the goal was to create a better draft.

    Concerning the flame, frankly it's never able to maintain the sharp, torch like characteristics of the Monia. Rather, it seems to fluctuate between that and what has been described as a lazy flame. When the stove is left to run more than 24 hours, soot overtakes the glass and the burn pot becomes congested, which leads to overflow :(

    I would estimate that I've burned close to 2 tons of pellets since the start of the season, with a full cleaning conducted twice.

    In the final analysis, the distributor said, that given the size and lay-out of my home (it's a two-story open timber frame with a high peak that's approximately 5000 square feet), the stove is working beyond its recommended capacity. And, therefore, it needs to be shut down every 12 to 15 hours and have the burn pot cleaned out. Again, this seems odd to me, since Monia is located only about 30 feet away, and runs flawlessly - albeit in a much smaller area with a much lower ceiling.

    As I previously mentioned, the first stove was replaced under warranty, because everyone involved (i.e. both the seller and distributor), war sunder the impression that it was defective. However, this stove seems to be exhibiting the same poor performance.

    In all fairness to the distributor, they've offered to take back the stove and issue me a full refund. However, I'm not one to give up so quickly. One, because to truly love the look of the Sabrina, and secondly, I don't' want to end up with mismatched brands :(

    So, as I see it, this gives me two options, find a solution to make this stove work properly, or live with the fact that I have to tend to it on a continuous basis.

    At this point, it's kinda like having a Ferrari with Weber carbs again.
     
  4. NorthoftheQuabbin

    NorthoftheQuabbin
    Member 2.
    NULL
    

    Jan 29, 2015
    101
    17
    Loc:
    Massachusetts
  5. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear
    Minister of Fire 2.
    NULL
    

    Nov 10, 2008
    13,363
    1,663
    Loc:
    Standish, ME
    Well I don't have one however that sure looks like a lazy burn to me (lack of combustion air through the pellet pile in the burn pot or too much fuel for the available combustion air).

    Tell us about all stoves (or air movers in the house, this includes fireplaces, furnaces, boilers, and exhaust fans, there are other things as well but they can wait) installed in the house especially as to venting, combustion air source, location (floor differences in particular), and the prevailing wind in relation to the stove vent terminations.
     
  6. millerized

    millerized
    Member 2.
    NULL
    

    Jan 5, 2015
    74
    19
    Loc:
    Inwood, WV
    Getting enough outside air?
    Does it work any better with the other stove on or off?
     
  7. NorthoftheQuabbin

    NorthoftheQuabbin
    Member 2.
    NULL
    

    Jan 29, 2015
    101
    17
    Loc:
    Massachusetts
    Hi Smokey -

    Other than the smaller Piazzetta stove and an oil burning furnace in the basement (which, I only use for heating hot water), I have no other heat sources in the house. There's is a fireplace in an adjacent room that is only used to vent the other pellet stove.

    As far as venting for the stove question is concerned, it vents directly through the back wall and then up approximately 6 feet to a 90 degree angle and out. It also has a "fresh-air" kit installed.

    As I mentioned previously, it was first vented directly through the back wall and out straight - about 3 feet or so from the house. Additional venting was added in hopes of creating more draft. But, that didn't seem to change much.

    The stove sits in the corner of a sizable room (about 800 square) that's part of an open structure, which has a high peak (probably 25 feet or more) that also ties in with the second story.

    As far as prevailing wind and stove vent terminators are concerned, you're getting a bit out of my depth, however, I live in a heavily forested area that is typically shielded from wind.
     
  8. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear
    Minister of Fire 2.
    NULL
    

    Nov 10, 2008
    13,363
    1,663
    Loc:
    Standish, ME
    The vent termination is the cap on the end of the venting, if your prevailing wind is out of the west and the vent termination is on the west side of the house you are venting into the wind which is frowned upon in the venting world as the wind can slow down the air flow through the stoves vent system. There are vent caps that operate on the venturi effect caused when the wind hits the end of the vent, this reduces the effects of the wind and allows the vent system to breathe.

    Do both stoves have a fresh air kit installed?

    Is that pellet stove flue in the fireplace chimney properly blocked off (sealed and insulated) to stop the natural tendency of a draft being setup in it allowing the room the stove is in to become slightly depressurized.

    Is the furnace room connected to the rest of the house through wall or ceiling penetrations or doors and so forth.

    I think you need to get someone over there with a pressure differential gauge and see what the drafts actually are in the stove and the house and also to check gaskets and seams on the stoves for possible air leaks. This includes making certain that the OAK line is sealed to the air intake on the stoves.

    Yes I am on a air flow correcting mission.

    Why don't you see if https://www.hearth.com/talk/members/smwilliamson.13019/ will answer a private message.
     
    chken likes this.
  9. chken

    chken
    Minister of Fire 2.
    NULL
    

    Dec 7, 2013
    1,110
    230
    Loc:
    Maine
    Okay some thoughts and questions:
    • what's your cleaning process? Do you clean the vent every ton? Do you remove the back plate to clean weekly?

    • Did the stove run well initially after install or has it always been like this?

    • The flame appears too rich, too many pellets for the amount of air leads to black whisps and sooty glass and sidewalls. I'm guessing the video shows P4 or P5?

    • Your home size is not a problem. My little Sabrina works great in a similar sized timber frame. My ceiling is 26 ft up. I shut my stove down once a week.

    As Smokey asked, did the installer use a manometer or magnahelic to dial in the stove? When he adjusted the combustion fan, did he attach anything to the back right of the stove?
     
  10. chken

    chken
    Minister of Fire 2.
    NULL
    

    Dec 7, 2013
    1,110
    230
    Loc:
    Maine
    Are your pellets short? I mean are they small like the nubbins of a pencil eraser? Or are they long like an inch in length?

    The reason I ask is that pellets vary quite widely, enough so that you really do need to recalibrate for different types. My Fireside Ultras, are very short and thus fall into the pot very fast and can burn with a lazy flame as in your video. My DF Blazers are more variable with lengths up to an inch and thus drop into the pot very slowly and burn with a nice and tight flame. Since I'm burning DF Blazers now, my stove is set, but if I switched to the FSUs, I'd have to adjust the combustion fan to get a proper burn.

    Without a manometer or magnahelic, when the pellets drop into the grate, little bits of ash should fly out, a shower of sparks. If you look into the grate, the pellets should just move around a little but not fly out. That should give you a nice tight flame.
     
  11. NorthoftheQuabbin

    NorthoftheQuabbin
    Member 2.
    NULL
    

    Jan 29, 2015
    101
    17
    Loc:
    Massachusetts
    To answer your questions, alI I can say, is that the folks from stove shop came out to my home on four separate occasions to try to correct the problem. When all else failed, they replaced the stove.

    At one point, they gave up, and called in the people at Piazzetta to come out.

    Piazzetta was at my home 2 weeks ago, wherein they fully assessed the situation, to include the stove's location, all venting, type of pellets being used ect..

    In the end, they concluded that I had to switch to a particular soft wood pellet, and live with the fact that I needed to tend to the burn pot every 12 hours or so.

    As I mentioned before, they've offer to remove the stove and refund my money. But, obviously there's a part of me that still wants to try and remedy the situation.
     
  12. chken

    chken
    Minister of Fire 2.
    NULL
    

    Dec 7, 2013
    1,110
    230
    Loc:
    Maine
  13. chken

    chken
    Minister of Fire 2.
    NULL
    

    Dec 7, 2013
    1,110
    230
    Loc:
    Maine
    I'm assuming the Piazzetta people were the distributor from NH?

    To be honest, once your stove is dialed in, most pellets should burn just fine.

    Just to let you know, my stove's adjustments are quite far from the original factory settings, so there is quite a lot of potential variation in setup. For example:

    P1 factory combustion fan speed = 1850, mine = 2100
    P2 factory = 1950, mine = 2250
    P3 factory = 2150, mine = 2350
    P4 factory = 2410, mine = 2450
    P5 factory = na, mine = 2550
     
  14. NorthoftheQuabbin

    NorthoftheQuabbin
    Member 2.
    NULL
    

    Jan 29, 2015
    101
    17
    Loc:
    Massachusetts

    Both stoves ran well in the beginning and'/or after a thorough cleaning.

    The last cleaning occurred just 2 weeks ago when Piazzetta was at my home.

    As far as power settings are concerned, I was instructed by Piazzetta to run the stove on the highest power setting at all times (P5), and control it by temperature setting.

    I was told this would ensure that the stove went through its grate cleaning process every 90 minutes or so.

    As far as manometer or a magnahelic dial is concerned, I can only assume that those instruments were used. I do recall Piazzetta attaching some device to the back of the stove to check for air loss/pressure ?

    Regarding the adjustment of the combustion fan, that was done via the control panel.
     
  15. chken

    chken
    Minister of Fire 2.
    NULL
    

    Dec 7, 2013
    1,110
    230
    Loc:
    Maine
    Oh, before you do any major setting changes, you should thoroughly clean your stove.
     
  16. NorthoftheQuabbin

    NorthoftheQuabbin
    Member 2.
    NULL
    

    Jan 29, 2015
    101
    17
    Loc:
    Massachusetts

    Yes, the Piazzetta people who came out were from NH. Although, the head sales person was actually from Connecticut.

    And, needless to say, give the ongoing ordeal with the Sabrina(s), I didn't make it onto their Christmas card list this year. Oh, well.

    Anyway, as far as the parameters are concerned, these seems to be some disagreement between camps. Initially the stove shop upped the settings, while Piazzetta admonished them for doing so.
    Interestingly, Piazzetta later altered the settings themselves.

    Neither seemed to change much though.

    At this point, I'm wondering if there's a possibility that I simply received 2 bad stoves ?
     
  17. NorthoftheQuabbin

    NorthoftheQuabbin
    Member 2.
    NULL
    

    Jan 29, 2015
    101
    17
    Loc:
    Massachusetts
    No worries. I wouldn't even know where to begin with changing the settings.
     
  18. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear
    Minister of Fire 2.
    NULL
    

    Nov 10, 2008
    13,363
    1,663
    Loc:
    Standish, ME
    Can you snap a couple of pictures?

    I would like to see the venting and OAK along with their terminations for the stove you are having trouble with.
     
  19. NorthoftheQuabbin

    NorthoftheQuabbin
    Member 2.
    NULL
    

    Jan 29, 2015
    101
    17
    Loc:
    Massachusetts
    I'd be happy to, but noticed that the image uploader on the forum is acting quirky ?
     
  20. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear
    Minister of Fire 2.
    NULL
    

    Nov 10, 2008
    13,363
    1,663
    Loc:
    Standish, ME
    I what way? I just gave it a try and it did what I expected it to.
     
  21. NorthoftheQuabbin

    NorthoftheQuabbin
    Member 2.
    NULL
    

    Jan 29, 2015
    101
    17
    Loc:
    Massachusetts
    It must be on my end then. I'll give it another try.
     
  22. chken

    chken
    Minister of Fire 2.
    NULL
    

    Dec 7, 2013
    1,110
    230
    Loc:
    Maine
    How about reading the settings for us?

    There are 6 buttons on your stove. Let's pretend the leftmost one is button 1 and the rightmost one is button 6.

    If you hold down the rightmost button, button 6 for about 3 seconds, then the parameter list will start scrolling.

    Push button 5 twice, which will get you to "Stove Status".

    Then push button 3, which will then show you your current settings for, combustion fan rpm, stove exhaust temp and pellet feed rate.

    Just write down what you see, and let us know.
     
  23. chken

    chken
    Minister of Fire 2.
    NULL
    

    Dec 7, 2013
    1,110
    230
    Loc:
    Maine
    millerized likes this.
  24. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear
    Minister of Fire 2.
    NULL
    

    Nov 10, 2008
    13,363
    1,663
    Loc:
    Standish, ME
    The cap on the the vent run is from whom? It doesn't look like a horizontal termination cap.

    And is that a pvc pipe I'm seeing the OAK and what is the cap on it? It should not terminate forward of the vent termination.

    How far is the vent from the corner of the building?

    Can I see a closer picture of the OAK termination.
     

Share This Page