can a stove wear out?

Dagoof

Member
Apr 6, 2015
18
Eastern Idaho
Last year was my first year with a new Enviro stove, and after a little learning, it put out great heat all winter - enough to cook you out in the basement family room and help out a ton upstairs.

This year it's okay, but just doesn't seem to be the same. It's much harder to find the right balance between to much air (all heat going out the chimney) and not enough air (slow smolder).

Last year, I could cook anyone in the family room. This year it's still putting off heat, but I notice cold drafts in the same room.

My wood is two years old in the Idaho desert. It got a skiff of snow on it, but it should be very seasoned and relatively dry.

Can something change with my stove to cause it to not give out as much heat?
 
  • Like
Reactions: woodfreak666

Squisher

Minister of Fire
Nov 1, 2015
1,623
vernon BC, Canada
When was the system cleaned last?
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2fireplacesinSC

Sodbuster

Minister of Fire
Sep 22, 2012
1,132
Michigan
I would lay good money on the wood Dagoof. Did your stove get a good cleaning after last season?
 

JA600L

Minister of Fire
Nov 30, 2013
1,270
Lancaster Pennsylvania
Did you change species of wood this year? Different woods create very different heat.

Also, temperature has a lot of an effect on draft. If it's not burning well it could be due to higher outside temperatures and less draft.
 

kennyp2339

Minister of Fire
Feb 16, 2014
4,425
07462
I willing to bet that the wood is actually to dry, after you load the stove up does it belch out a ton of smoke even after adjusting the air intake for a normal clean burn?
I'm think the wood is off gassing to fast, get a moisture meter and test your wood.
 

Attaboy

Member
Jan 2, 2017
173
The great white north
You need one of these:

http://www.harborfreight.com/catalogsearch/result?q=Moisture+meter

Every January a certified wood heating tech does his yearly service call in my home, he cleans and inspects chimney, flue pipe and stove, he actually takes the stove partially apart by removing baffle, ceramic blanket, brick rails, all the fire brick, the door, he inspects the complete stove interior for cracked welds, warping, that the flame shield is still good and in operating condition, door and window gaskets, latch, handle, etc., etc.,etc., he vacuums every nook and cranny in the stove and puts everything back together again and starts up the first fire, looks like it may be time to have yours done as well.

.
 
Last edited:

byQ

Feeling the Heat
May 12, 2013
494
Idaho
I willing to bet that the wood is actually to dry, after you load the stove up does it belch out a ton of smoke even after adjusting the air intake for a normal clean burn?
I'm think the wood is off gassing to fast, get a moisture meter and test your wood.
I'm in this same area and I often have wood in the single digits moisture wise so you may have a point.
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
10,775
Southern IN
I willing to bet that the wood is actually to dry, after you load the stove up does it belch out a ton of smoke even after adjusting the air intake for a normal clean burn?
I'm think the wood is off gassing to fast, get a moisture meter and test your wood.
I'm in this same area and I often have wood in the single digits moisture wise so you may have a point.
If the wood is very dry and burning at a consistent rate, should you be able to adjust the amount of primary air to control the rate of gassing? Why would it be harder to find the sweet spot setting this year? The wood sure shouldn't be going out or "smoldering" I wouldn't think...
Every January a certified wood heating tech does his yearly service call in my home, he cleans and inspects chimney, flue pipe and stove, he actually takes the stove partially apart by removing baffle, ceramic blanket, brick rails, all the fire brick, the door, he inspects the complete stove interior for cracked welds, warping, that the flame shield is still good and in operating condition, door and window gaskets, latch, handle, etc., etc.,etc., he vacuums every nook and cranny in the stove and puts everything back together again and starts up the first fire, looks like it may be time to have yours done as well.
And when I list it all out like this, the $200 he charges me doesn't seem as expensive. ;)
 

Attaboy

Member
Jan 2, 2017
173
The great white north
And when I list it all out like this, the $200 he charges me doesn't seem as expensive. ;)
Actually it is $105.00 and you are correct viewed through my eyes worth every penny ! :)
 

Squisher

Minister of Fire
Nov 1, 2015
1,623
vernon BC, Canada
Ha! One price seems high and the other seems cheap to me. Lol.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Woody Stover

Attaboy

Member
Jan 2, 2017
173
The great white north
Ha! One price seems high and the other seems cheap to me. Lol.
He increased his rate last year, prior to that it was $85.00 for several years. I do the flue and chimney cleaning in May or June and he does it in January, all I do prior to his service call is empty the stove of coals and ashes the morning of his call so the stove is completely cold for him.
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
19,040
central pa
He increased his rate last year, prior to that it was $85.00 for several years. I do the flue and chimney cleaning in May or June and he does it in January, all I do prior to his service call is empty the stove of coals and ashes the morning of his call so the stove is completely cold for him.
Yeah no where near enough for me. That would barely allow for any profit.
 

Attaboy

Member
Jan 2, 2017
173
The great white north
Yeah no where near enough for me. That would barely allow for any profit.
Which is why I have not switched or called anyone else, plus he is one hel! of a nice guy and extremely knowledgeable on anything stoves and chimneys, I appreciate his service and work immensely, however no offense I do not plan on telling him his colleagues think he is just plain too inexpensive.

He did mention when he was here that this is his quiet time of the year for him, he accumulates his calls and only goes out a couple of times a week during January and February which I wrongly believed would have been his really busy time of year.
 
Last edited:

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
19,040
central pa
Which is why I have not switched or called anyone else, plus he is one hel! of a nice guy and extremely knowledgeable on anything stoves and chimneys, I appreciate his service and work immensely, however no offense I do not plan on telling him his colleagues think he is just plain too inexpensive.
Good deal for you when I came on with my dad I made him raise his prices he was to cheap also. And the funny thing is after we did it many customers said that he was to cheap to begin with.
 

Squisher

Minister of Fire
Nov 1, 2015
1,623
vernon BC, Canada
I jumped right in at the same rate as my competitors and honestly once my cert comes through I plan to bump it a bit as now I have a feel for the market and the other service offerings. I see no need to be the cheapest as I feel I'm very professional and well equipped.

But I will say. The market here is closer to your $105us than $200us.
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
10,775
Southern IN
Actually it is $105.00 and you are correct viewed through my eyes worth every penny ! :)
Yeah, that would be a decent price here. Not sure how that would convert to the Canuck economy in your area. "Great White North" could be anywhere, and if it's anything like the US, prices across the nation will vary quite a lot. Squisher indicates that it's a deal in his book...
 

Squisher

Minister of Fire
Nov 1, 2015
1,623
vernon BC, Canada
Oh I see that now, $105 canadian would be a heck of a deal IMO. $200us is a fair price I think. Sweeps gotta eat too!

More important than a bit of price fluctuation or getting the 'best' deal is the quality of the sweep. Lots goes into doing it well besides just the cleaning.

Sounds like you guys are both pretty happy with your sweeps. Which as members here probably speaks well for the sweeps, because you guys are educated about stoves/chimneys and burning.
 

Attaboy

Member
Jan 2, 2017
173
The great white north
Yeah, that would be a decent price here. Not sure how that would convert to the Canuck economy in your area. "Great White North" could be anywhere, and if it's anything like the US, prices across the nation will vary quite a lot. Squisher indicates that it's a deal in his book...
I just pulled a list on the internet of certified chimney sweeps within 30 minutes of me and there are 15 registered members with their association, mind you I am positive that there are even more unregistered ones running around then registered certified ones. You know the unregistered sweeps that patrol the streets see a chimney on a house stop and knock on your door and tell you he is in the area anyway and will charge you less because he is already here.

I suspect that the price my regular tech. is charging me is probably towards the lower end of the scale for certified tech's.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Woody Stover

Attaboy

Member
Jan 2, 2017
173
The great white north
More important than a bit of price fluctuation or getting the 'best' deal is the quality of the sweep. Lots goes into doing it well besides just the cleaning.
Which is why I am dealing with one who has been in business over 25 years now, he is a member of his professional association and is trained, certified, bonded, insured and re-trained on a regular basis. He is normally here between 60 -75 minutes, mind you when he cleans and inspects the flue and chimney they were already very well cleaned by '' moi '' several months earlier and I only start burning end of October / November therefore not much accumulation in 21/2 - 3 months however he does a fantastic job with the stove which I do not touch during my cleaning. Yes I value his service and quality work !

He is not asking me to pay more, the day he ups his pricing I will still happily pay that new rate to him for his services.
.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: bholler

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
10,775
Southern IN
Yes I value his service and quality work ! He is not asking me to pay more, the day he ups his pricing I will still happily pay that new rate to him for his services.
If that's the case, I'm sure you are giving him a big tip, or at least a bottle of wine or a couple six-packs for Christmas....or on Boxing Day! ==c
 

Attaboy

Member
Jan 2, 2017
173
The great white north
Last edited:

Dagoof

Member
Apr 6, 2015
18
Eastern Idaho
When was the system cleaned last?
Cleaning? What is this cleaning you guys speak of?

Did you change species of wood this year? Different woods create very different heat.

Also, temperature has a lot of an effect on draft. If it's not burning well it could be due to higher outside temperatures and less draft.

My wood is maple mixed with a little of everything else. There was probably a little more May Tree last year and a little more Cottonwood and Quakie this year, but it seems like more than just the species of wood.

It's actually been colder this year, I've got tons of draft.

I willing to bet that the wood is actually to dry, after you load the stove up does it belch out a ton of smoke even after adjusting the air intake for a normal clean burn?
I'm think the wood is off gassing to fast, get a moisture meter and test your wood.
Too dry? I didn't know that could even be a problem. What would you do? -- Wet it down?
 

Attaboy

Member
Jan 2, 2017
173
The great white north
Cleaning? What is this cleaning you guys speak of ?


Too dry? I didn't know that could even be a problem. What would you do? -- Wet it down?

You surely can't be serious ! :eek:
 

Sodbuster

Minister of Fire
Sep 22, 2012
1,132
Michigan
You need one of these:

http://www.harborfreight.com/catalogsearch/result?q=Moisture+meter

Every January a certified wood heating tech does his yearly service call in my home, he cleans and inspects chimney, flue pipe and stove, he actually takes the stove partially apart by removing baffle, ceramic blanket, brick rails, all the fire brick, the door, he inspects the complete stove interior for cracked welds, warping, that the flame shield is still good and in operating condition, door and window gaskets, latch, handle, etc., etc.,etc., he vacuums every nook and cranny in the stove and puts everything back together again and starts up the first fire, looks like it may be time to have yours done as well.

.
This I like to do this myself so I know my stove, and can do my own maintenance. To each his own, but I like to know my stove inside and out; but if physical limitations prevent you from doing that, I certainly won't disparage you. Or if you just have the cash, more power to you..enjoy. :):):)
 
  • Like
Reactions: woodfreak666

kennyp2339

Minister of Fire
Feb 16, 2014
4,425
07462
Too dry? I didn't know that could even be a problem. What would you do? -- Wet it down?
lol no, but mix in larger pieces and keep the primary air on the low side, in all seriousness if the wood is to dry you will see darker almost black smoke coming out of the chimney, the fuel load is off gassing to fast and its to rich, then after that part is over you are pretty much left with wood split coals that really don't burn to well because all the violets were milked out of it. Something to def consider, it will go hand in hand with stove temps and overall performance. A good reference in poindexters thread on burning <12% wood in a BK or something along those lines.