Avalon insert and Carbon Monoxide in the house

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Welderman85

Feeling the Heat
Nov 1, 2017
349
Chesaning MI
I have a slight issue I can't quite figure out. I only burn on weekends. It all started a few weeks ago I burned all day Sunday shut it down and when I came home from work my co detector was going off . I called a HVAC guy and had the furnace and water heater checked . All was good. Well last night it did it again. I had a fire Friday but not Saturday but there was still some coals in there and when I opened the door you could feel the cold air pushing down. So it had a back draft. How can I stop. this . My set up is a avalon petition insert in the basement of my trilevel home. It has around 25 feet of out side wall chimney. With a insulated 6" flex liner. I have noticed the draft changes with the weather sometimes but once you warm the flue it has a strong draft.
 
I have also had several fires during the week after work between these incidents with out any issues. And I also just lit a fire and it took a little bit of time with the map gas hand torch to reverse the draft. I just thought soves and inserts were air tight and couldn't figure out how it was pushing CO into the house
 
If you have a tight house a bathroom fan, kitchen fan, furnace might have reversed the draft. Sometimes wind will blow down a chimney if conditions are right.

The best way to stop it is to keep the flue warm.
 
It's good to hear that there is a CO monitor in place. This sounds like draft reversal due to negative pressure in the basement. This is not untypical. It may be close to neutral in which case anything that draws air in the house may reverse the draft, especially as the fire dies down. Things that could affect the draft would be anything that consumes or exhausts air in the house like a clothes dryer, bath or kitchen fan, but also a furnace (or boiler) or gas hw heater. Also, air leakage on the upper floors via a leaky window or attic door can make this worse. If the chimney is exterior, then outside cooling can exacerbate the effect.
 
My furnace kicked on once the fire dies out and I bet that's was the cause. I checked the ppm of the CO and it was around 30 by the stove and 15 in the rest of the house. Is There a way I can stop this from happening? Thank you
 
If the furnace cutting on is the cause then your options are going to be somewhat limited. Providing "makeup air" for the furnace I'm thinking is the easier solution maybe. This could be just to crack a basement window or some other way to duct outside makeup air to the burner air intake on the furnace. Any "playing" with the furnace should be done by a professional. If your getting a downdraft through the stove you'll usually get a smokey smell in the house.