Q&A Can't get coal fire going - HELP

QandA Posted By QandA, Nov 17, 2007 at 9:24 PM

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  1. QandA

    New Member 2.
    Staff Member

    Nov 27, 2012

    Are there any real-world coal people out there? We bought our first coal stove this year . It is an Alaska Kodiak. I tried to follow your fire starting instructions on this web site, and I am still failing miserably. I seem to be having an awful time deciding when my fire is big enough before I try to toss some coal in. My efforts have resulted so far in no fire, or a very small circle of glowing coals, that eventually just fizzle out. Help, I want to be warm...


    Hey, I wrote the article and have burned and started many a coal stove.

    One major thing....you can't get a coal fire going until it gets quite cold outside...24 hours a day under 50 degrees or so. The chimney just won't draft right.

    So, follow the instructions carefully.....use small pieces of hardwood to start a wood fire...follow with slightly bigger pieces 1" or 2", keep draft fully open. When wood have turned to hot red glowing coals, place a small amount of coal on top...maybe 1"..so you can still see the wood glowing below. Wait about 15-30 minutes til you are fairy sure that coal is lit...then load er all the way up. It may take HOURS for the fire to totally establish itself - just leave it alone after you fill it til the stove get nice and hot.

    Then adjust and continue to follow the coal tips listed at https://www.hearth.com/what/coaltips.html

    Link: Coal Burning Tips
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