Burning smell until blower turned on

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New Member
I encountered something unusual this morning that caused me concern, but wondering if it is somewhat normal now. I have an FPX 42 Apex which was installed in 2019. We have been 24/7 burners ever since.

Last night was the first night I didn't need to do an overnight burn in a long time. House was 75 when going to bed and overnight temps were mid 30s. When I woke up this morning house temp was 62 and I started the fireplace up from a cold start. Nothing out the ordinary, firebox reached its cruising temp with cat temp right around 900 degrees.

The blower seemed to take a bit longer to kick on then normal. I do have about a 3" ash bed, so likely took a longer to heat the ash bed up with the blower and sensors underneath. While waiting for the blower to turn on the house began having a burnt smell. The smell was identical to the smell the heat has the first time you turn it on for the season (all the dust, pet hair etc. burning off). Once the fan turned on, the smell went away in a matter of 20 - 30 seconds.

Is this normal? Was this just the firebox heating up and all the dust and debris on top burning off? Given this is an enclosed fireplace, I'm not able to see or keep the top clean.


Minister of Fire
Jun 5, 2015
Southeast CT
Tough to say exactly what caused that particular smell for you, but things can get into the blower path and on top of stove. Things like insects, very small pieces of wood I imagine can smell pretty strong. I had a very strong smell in the house once that turned out to be a fly that got burned by a hot light bulb.


New Member
I completely understand the difficulty pinpointing the smell. I’ve been burning all day now without any issues so I’m really thinking it was just debris on top of the stove burning off. I get a bit paranoid anytime I smell something out of the ordinary.
Thanks for the response!