Dutchwest 2461 smoke smell and failed combustor

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barnyardengineering

New Member
Jan 2, 2023
54
Rochester NY
I'm glad I found this forum. We have had this Dutchwest 2461 for a very long time. It has always been frustrating and unpredictable. You can leave the air intake wide open for hours, and it will just sit there and smoulder, then all of a sudden it will take off and it's 95 degrees in the stove room.

This fall when I started burning it, I was getting a lot of smoke smell in the house. I could see puffs of smoke coming out from under the cover. So when it warmed back up in October I got a tube of furnace cement, pulled the cover, and ran a bead around all the seams on the top of the firebox. I also inspected the combustor and saw that it was partially eroded (only 1 year old).

The next time I fired it, it worked the best it ever had. No smoke smell. Fire took right off and burned. Air control even worked.

Worked, up until that Christmas storm. Then I started smelling smoke in the house again, but only when the fire had died down and the stove cooled off. Get the fire burning again and it would go away.

We got a couple of warm days last week so I let the fire go out and got ANOTHER tube of furnace cement and went over all the seams again. I also inspected the combustor and it is completely disintegrated. Supposed to last 4-5 years. This one didn't make a season and a half. Junk.

I did not have a replacement combustor and I needed heat so I put it back together.

The smoke smell is worse than ever, almost constant. However, I can not see any visible smoke coming from the stove.

Troubleshooting says, clean the chimney. I've cleaned it. Many times. It's clean. I don't know what else to do.
 

Prometeo

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2022
481
italy
I'm glad I found this forum. We have had this Dutchwest 2461 for a very long time. It has always been frustrating and unpredictable. You can leave the air intake wide open for hours, and it will just sit there and smoulder, then all of a sudden it will take off and it's 95 degrees in the stove room.

This fall when I started burning it, I was getting a lot of smoke smell in the house. I could see puffs of smoke coming out from under the cover. So when it warmed back up in October I got a tube of furnace cement, pulled the cover, and ran a bead around all the seams on the top of the firebox. I also inspected the combustor and saw that it was partially eroded (only 1 year old).

The next time I fired it, it worked the best it ever had. No smoke smell. Fire took right off and burned. Air control even worked.

Worked, up until that Christmas storm. Then I started smelling smoke in the house again, but only when the fire had died down and the stove cooled off. Get the fire burning again and it would go away.

We got a couple of warm days last week so I let the fire go out and got ANOTHER tube of furnace cement and went over all the seams again. I also inspected the combustor and it is completely disintegrated. Supposed to last 4-5 years. This one didn't make a season and a half. Junk.

I did not have a replacement combustor and I needed heat so I put it back together.

The smoke smell is worse than ever, almost constant. However, I can not see any visible smoke coming from the stove.

Troubleshooting says, clean the chimney. I've cleaned it. Many times. It's clean. I don't know what else to do.
Maybe it's a bit stuffy the combustor? And so it acts as a cap, and smoke can come out of any joint, try to remove it, and feel if you have smoke
 

barnyardengineering

New Member
Jan 2, 2023
54
Rochester NY
A pic of my setup. I know the elbow and horizontal run isn't ideal but the door was on the wrong end of the stove.

20230108_093934.jpg
 

barnyardengineering

New Member
Jan 2, 2023
54
Rochester NY
after this flue piece, in your photos Is there also another flue, outside? Height?
Yes, there is a stainless lined masonry chimney that exits the roof through the adjacent room (the "wood shed").

There are 18 x 8" high masonry units above where the pipe enters the chimney, plus another good 12" of stainless protruding above that. So that's 13'.
 

barnyardengineering

New Member
Jan 2, 2023
54
Rochester NY
This is driving me insane. Just as soon as I think I have it figured out, the stupid thing takes a sharp left turn and I'm back to knowing nothing again.

Yesterday I figured out if I smelled a little smoke, i could just open the air inlet and it would immediately stop. Once the fire was burning I could close it back off again and it would be fine until I reloaded.

All of a sudden this afternoon, that stopped working. I've done nothing different. Putting in the same amount of wood at the same interval. Now it doesn't matter where I set the inlet, it's smoke smoke smoke all the time.
 

Prometeo

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2022
481
italy
from your photo, it seems that the pipe above the stove, it is not well sealed, is there a gasket? if not, you may have draft loss and then the smoke. Be very careful, buy monoxide detector, with sound alarm
 

Prometeo

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2022
481
italy
from your photo, it seems that the pipe above the stove, it is not well sealed, is there a gasket? if not, you may have draft loss and then the smoke. Be very careful, buy monoxide detector, with sound alarm
another thing, does the stove take air from an external pipe or from inside the room? In this last case you should have a hole that takes air from outside, otherwise the room goes into depression, sucking smoke from the stove, from any joint
 

barnyardengineering

New Member
Jan 2, 2023
54
Rochester NY
from your photo, it seems that the pipe above the stove, it is not well sealed, is there a gasket? if not, you may have draft loss and then the smoke. Be very careful, buy monoxide detector, with sound alarm
What do you mean? I don't see anywhere where it is not sealed. The thimble in the wall is just a heat shield, if that's what you mean. It's sealed where it transitions through the wall into the chimney.

I replaced the cat this morning and re-lit the stove. The fire took off much more quickly than before, and so far no smoke smell at all. Fingers crossed.
 

Prometeo

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2022
481
italy
What do you mean? I don't see anywhere where it is not sealed. The thimble in the wall is just a heat shield, if that's what you mean. It's sealed where it transitions through the wall into the chimney.

I replaced the cat this morning and re-lit the stove. The fire took off much more quickly than before, and so far no smoke smell at all. Fingers crossed.
I mean the first connection of the flue, on the stove, if it is good, free from losses. Keep the forum updated if new cat fixes
 

Catesy

New Member
Dec 23, 2022
23
Maine
I always found with a failed cat the stove had trouble keeping the pipe temp up. I never had one crumble, I would imagine it could plug itself resulting in the problem you are having. The stove is a great, but finicky, heater. That is with a working combustor.
 

Prometeo

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2022
481
italy
please provide information if your stove catches air outdoor with a tube or from inside the house, if you have an air vent, and if lately you have better sealed your house (doors and windows)
 

barnyardengineering

New Member
Jan 2, 2023
54
Rochester NY
please provide information if your stove catches air outdoor with a tube or from inside the house, if you have an air vent, and if lately you have better sealed your house (doors and windows)
Pic shows how the stove gets its air. Right through those two little rectangular ports on either side of the glass door.

Nothing has changed about the house since the kitchen was remodeled about 20 years ago. You can see daylight along the top of that wall behind the stove on a bright sunny day. Back door which is immediately off to the right of the pic doesn't seal for beans. The front rooms of the house have zero insulation in the walls and ancient windows. Plenty of air infiltration.
 

barnyardengineering

New Member
Jan 2, 2023
54
Rochester NY
I mean the first connection of the flue, on the stove, if it is good, free from losses. Keep the forum updated if new cat fixes
Oh, the pipe just sets on there. Held by two screws. Zero signs of leakage there, no soot. That connection is the least of my worries.

Usually have to pull it off 1-2 times during the summer to let a dumb bird who somehow managed to wriggle down the chimney, out. Got smart last summer and just opened the cleanout so the bird didn't have to fly through the house to get out...
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
32,888
central pa
Oh, the pipe just sets on there. Held by two screws. Zero signs of leakage there, no soot. That connection is the least of my worries.

Usually have to pull it off 1-2 times during the summer to let a dumb bird who somehow managed to wriggle down the chimney, out. Got smart last summer and just opened the cleanout so the bird didn't have to fly through the house to get out...
There most likely would be nothing leaking out but you may have air leaking in causing even more reduction in draft. Which is probably already marginal at best given the height, 2 90s and long horizontal run
 
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Prometeo

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2022
481
italy
There most likely would be nothing leaking out but you may have air leaking in causing even more reduction in draft. Which is probably already marginal at best given the height, 2 90s and long horizontal run
yes, a hermetic seal that point is essential
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
32,888
central pa
yes, a hermetic seal that point is essential
Well that might be a bit of an exaggeration lol. But you certainly don't want any substantial leakes either
 

Prometeo

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2022
481
italy
however I believe that reduced draft can be compensated for by different air setting, perhaps is necessary a video on youtube of how this stove works to understand it well
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
32,888
central pa
however I believe that reduced draft can be compensated for by different air setting, perhaps is necessary a video on youtube of how this stove works to understand it well
No stoves need a specific minimum draft. With the combination of factors here added up i am pretty sure that minimum draft isn't met. Because of that i don't think the stove will ever really work as it should without some changes
 
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Prometeo

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2022
481
italy
Well that might be a bit of an exaggeration lol. But you certainly don't want any substantial leakes either
probably, chimney graft, on many stoves it is good without anything, but I speak from my experience, in my case, 2 millimeters remained all around the flue with respect to the hole in the stove. This sometimes caused a smokey smell, fixed with gasket
 

Prometeo

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2022
481
italy
I think I have read that the chimney pot has been removed, this could make the flue subject to descending currents that go against the draft and therefore smoke simply comes out where it can ( partially of course ) ?
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
32,888
central pa
I think I have read that the chimney pot has been removed, this could make the flue subject to descending currents that go against the draft and therefore smoke simply comes out where it can ( partially of course ) ?

The chimney isn't tall enough and it has allot of restriction due to the 2 90 degree bends and a long horizontal run. It has nothing to do with the lack of a chimney pot
 

Prometeo

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2022
481
italy
The chimney isn't tall enough and it has allot of restriction due to the 2 90 degree bends and a long horizontal run. It has nothing to do with the lack of a chimney pot
surely that is a big flaw, but if for years it worked enough there should be a cause of the smoke
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
32,888
central pa
surely that is a big flaw, but if for years it worked enough there should be a cause of the smoke
He said it hasn't ever really worked well previously.

"Yes, I hate this stove. It has always been a problem. Never worked right from new. Constantly fiddling and fighting with it to keep a fire going. Eats $160 catalysts like tic-tacs. Completely unpredictable and uncontrollable.

The place Dad bought it from just shrugs their shoulders. "
 

Prometeo

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2022
481
italy
He said it hasn't ever really worked well previously.

"Yes, I hate this stove. It has always been a problem. Never worked right from new. Constantly fiddling and fighting with it to keep a fire going. Eats $160 catalysts like tic-tacs. Completely unpredictable and uncontrollable.

The place Dad bought it from just shrugs their shoulders. "
He also disassembled and cemented the stove several times, i guess, he should remove both 90 curves and further increase height of the flue, or one of the two curves 90 could remain?