Clay tile flue with big offsets - can I chip them?

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wilderness88

New Member
Aug 27, 2019
9
Nova Scotia
Hey team,

This is my first post on the forum, and I'm excited to see if I get some answers.

I've got a 5" SS liner that I can't fit down my existing clay tile liner in my chimney. The interior dimensions of the clay liner are 5.5" x 5.5", and some of the clay tiles are offset by a bit, creating lips that are preventing me from going any further down.

I tried threading the SS liner down with a cone, pushing from above and pulling from below, but it keeps getting snagged on a significant offset about 5 or 6 feet down the chimney. There appears to only be one other offset flue tile in there, meaning there are two.

I'm wondering if it's possible to chip away the offset edge with a chisel attached to a pole, or if I might be able to smash out one side of the clay liner without damaging the other 3 sides. I just need to get rid of these two lips / offsets and I should be able to thread the SS liner down the rest of the way.

Has anyone done this before, or have a suggestion?

Thanks!
Justin in Nova Scotia
 
Hey team,

This is my first post on the forum, and I'm excited to see if I get some answers.

I've got a 5" SS liner that I can't fit down my existing clay tile liner in my chimney. The interior dimensions of the clay liner are 5.5" x 5.5", and some of the clay tiles are offset by a bit, creating lips that are preventing me from going any further down.

I tried threading the SS liner down with a cone, pushing from above and pulling from below, but it keeps getting snagged on a significant offset about 5 or 6 feet down the chimney. There appears to only be one other offset flue tile in there, meaning there are two.

I'm wondering if it's possible to chip away the offset edge with a chisel attached to a pole, or if I might be able to smash out one side of the clay liner without damaging the other 3 sides. I just need to get rid of these two lips / offsets and I should be able to thread the SS liner down the rest of the way.

Has anyone done this before, or have a suggestion?

Thanks!
Justin in Nova Scotia
What is this liner for?
 
Hi there,

I have a J.A. Roby Polaris wood stove, which I've built a custom tile hearth for. I have all my stove piping and elbows ready.

My plan is to run the SS liner down the existing clay liner, connect the attached T-body to the stove piping, and run the piping to my stove.

FYI, the chimney was "untombed" when I removed the horsehair plaster wall around it, and dismantled the old fireplace. The fireplace was relatively small and too small for an insert. I then bricked back in the space by re-using the bricks. I guess I should have double checked for

See attached for a photo.

Thanks,
Justin
 

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People break out the clay liners all the time.
 
Hi there,

I have a J.A. Roby Polaris wood stove, which I've built a custom tile hearth for. I have all my stove piping and elbows ready.

My plan is to run the SS liner down the existing clay liner, connect the attached T-body to the stove piping, and run the piping to my stove.

FYI, the chimney was "untombed" when I removed the horsehair plaster wall around it, and dismantled the old fireplace. The fireplace was relatively small and too small for an insert. I then bricked back in the space by re-using the bricks. I guess I should have double checked for

See attached for a photo.

Thanks,
Justin
Is jaroby ok with running this stove on 5"? Regardless you will need to fit insulation in there for the liner. So pretty much not much choice but to break out the tiles
 
I've been led to believe by a stove supplier that I can step down to 5" for the liner. He told me a 5" liner will be sufficient and I hope he's right, because money is getting tight.

I can remove the clay tiles, but I'm not sure how to do so without destroying the adjacent clay tiled flue for my oil furnace... there isn't a separator between the two clay flues. They just abut up to each other.
 
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I've been led to believe by a stove supplier that I can step down to 5" for the liner. He told me a 5" liner will be sufficient and I hope he's right, because money is getting tight.

I can remove the clay tiles, but I'm not sure how to do so without destroying the adjacent clay tiled flue for my oil furnace... there isn't a separator between the two clay flues. They just abut up to each other.
If there is no wythe wall between the liners you probably can't remove one without the other. In that case we would replace both liners.
 
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Ouch... this is going to be incredibly expensive.
We try not to damage the adjacent one and get away with it occasionally. Maybe 1 out of 10 times. But I wouldn't count on being able to do it. We never count on it.
 
We try not to damage the adjacent one and get away with it occasionally. Maybe 1 out of 10 times. But I wouldn't count on being able to do it. We never count on it.

I don't mind those figures. I'll have someone give it a go to remove the tile liner and update in January. Happy holidays!
 
I don't mind those figures. I'll have someone give it a go to remove the tile liner and update in January. Happy holidays!
I am saying we save the other liner 1 out of 10 times maybe. Many guys won't even try
 
I am saying we save the other liner 1 out of 10 times maybe. Many guys won't even try

Yikes. Well since the liner likely needs to come out anyway, I'll cross my fingers that the process goes smooth enough to avoid me having to buy a second liner for my oil furnace, which I'll seldom if ever use anyway once my wood stove is hooked up.
 
Update: I had a WETT-certified chimney sweep come over, and with quite a bit of gentle coaxing, combined with some strategic chipping, the "choke points" were removed and the 5-inch stainless steel liner was finally wrestled through to my T-body. A few elbow connections later, and she was good to go. The draw isn't as ferocious as it might be if I used a 6-inch liner, but the stove is drawing fine, and the house is very warm. Haven't had to use oil for several weeks now :)
 

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Update: I had a WETT-certified chimney sweep come over, and with quite a bit of gentle coaxing, combined with some strategic chipping, the "choke points" were removed and the 5-inch stainless steel liner was finally wrestled through to my T-body. A few elbow connections later, and she was good to go. The draw isn't as ferocious as it might be if I used a 6-inch liner, but the stove is drawing fine, and the house is very warm. Haven't had to use oil for several weeks now :)
So no insulation and an undersized liner? I hope it works out for you.
 
I respect and appreciate the need for liner insulation, but this is running through a chimney that is in the middle of an insulated home. I remember noting the warm air that came out of the top of the flue up on the roof when I stuck my hand over the chimney, before a fire was ever lit. I'd insulate if it was a chimney on the outside of my house. Based on my convos with local chimney sweeps, nobody on the East Coast of Canada insulates chimney liners when they're going up a chimney in the middle of a house.

I understand that what I've done isn't to the textbook, but it's working just fine. I'll make sure to update when I sweep out my liner before the 2020 burn season. Hey--if it's full of creosote, hats off to you. If it isn't, and I continue to heat my home with a wood stove that's generating plenty of heat with decent draw and minimal ash buildup after running for 3 weeks straight, then perhaps all is well.
 
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I respect and appreciate the need for liner insulation, but this is running through a chimney that is in the middle of an insulated home. I remember noting the warm air that came out of the top of the flue up on the roof when I stuck my hand over the chimney, before a fire was ever lit. I'd insulate if it was a chimney on the outside of my house. Based on my convos with local chimney sweeps, nobody on the East Coast of Canada insulates chimney liners when they're going up a chimney in the middle of a house.

I understand that what I've done isn't to the textbook, but it's working just fine. I'll make sure to update when I sweep out my liner before the 2020 burn season. Hey--if it's full of creosote, hats off to you. If it isn't, and I continue to heat my home with a wood stove that's generating plenty of heat with decent draw and minimal ash buildup after running for 3 weeks straight, then perhaps all is well.
The safety aspect is much more important for an internal chimney. That is why they require more clearance when inside. Just because most of the installers don't care about safety in your area doesn't make it right.
 
The safety aspect is much more important for an internal chimney.
Pretty much the same insulation code requirements in CA, as we have here? I guess if the maker of the pipe requires insulation, you'd have to do it anyway..or do they just make their installation instructions conform to code?
 
Pretty much the same insulation code requirements in CA, as we have here? I guess if the maker of the pipe requires insulation, you'd have to do it anyway..or do they just make their installation instructions conform to code?
Yes pretty similar in Canada. Just a little bit larger clearances required up north. Most instructions don't say anything about insulation. But most do need insulation to maintain ul listing for solid fuel
 
Hi everyone,

A quick update in mid-February, a year later from my last post. I swept my liner in early fall and didn't have much creosote built up at all. The situation seems to be pretty solid, and I'm getting good burn times out of my wood stove, while able to run it with the damper closed for overnight burns. No creosote forming of any note. I'm happy with how everything turned out. I've been running the stove every day since mid-November, and haven't had any issues.