Draft Start Help

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19glendale

Member
Feb 1, 2015
38
Northern Virginia
Hello. My stove drafts just fine once it's going, but I have had 2 cases where it smoked up the house first. One was damp kindling on a rainy day and today, not sure, but might have had to do with the gas furnace being on and/or the wind situation. It was 25 outside and 72 inside, but I could feel some cold air coming out of the stove before I lit it. Once it's going, and in most cases, immediately, it drafts perfectly. Also, I was lazy starting the kindling and it had probably too much ash in the bottom.

My question is: What ways are there to get a draft started before lighting the fire? I suppose a hair dryer is the best option, but wondering if there are any other options?

THANKS
 

KimiBwoah

New Member
Dec 6, 2016
50
Mooresville IN
Twist up some newspaper, lightt the end, and hold it in the outlet if you can. Another is to try cracking a window nearby.
 
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Sprinter

Minister of Fire
Jul 1, 2012
2,984
SW Washington
Boy, sounds like one day last week for me. There are several possible reasons for a reverse draft. For me, it was an inversion thing under very cold conditions. That was hard to correct.

If the situation is not too severe, as you are implying, you may want to get in the habit of starting the fires from the top-down. You can look up such a technique on other threads here. It's a very good method in any case.

Wind conditions can do it depending on your chimney placement relative to your peak and surrounding conditions.

You mentioned the gas furnace. As you probably know already, anything like that can cause a negative pressure in the house, basically sucking air into the flue.

Please let us know how it goes for you.
 

WES999

Minister of Fire
Jan 12, 2008
1,040
Mass north of Boston
torch.jpg

This^
Bernzomatic TS8000 torch.

Point the torch up towards the flue and preheat for a few minutes.
This will start the draft.

Leave stove door open just enough to insert torch.
Then light kindling and fire starter, You should not have a problem.
I have older Fisher with outside chimney in a unheated basement, was difficult
to light without getting smoke in the house until I figured out how to do it.

Torch is the best way IMO to light your stove.:cool:
DSCF1081.JPG
 
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WES999

Minister of Fire
Jan 12, 2008
1,040
Mass north of Boston
Exterior chimney?
Basement install?
To clarify, pic above is stove in living room.
I also have a Fisher in unfinished basement connected to an exterior block chimney.
I don't use it much these days.
Chimney would reverse draft and was hard to light, until I figured out the right way to light it.
DSCF1283 (Medium).JPG
 

Sconnie Burner

Feeling the Heat
Aug 23, 2014
488
Western Wi
Twist up some newspaper, lightt the end, and hold it in the outlet if you can. Another is to try cracking a window nearby.
X2 This is my normal method on a cold start for the first one or after a cleanout.

View attachment 190584

This^
Bernzomatic TS8000 torch.

Point the torch up towards the flue and preheat for a few minutes.
This will start the draft.

Torch is the best way IMO to light your stove.:cool:
View attachment 190586
This is my second method if I know I really have a back draft going becuase of the cold.
 

ccmac

Burning Hunk
Jan 1, 2014
200
Indiana
Benzomatic here as well. Don't really know why everyone doesn't start with one of these........just works so well!
 
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