Few Questions ? Pellet brand 21=22? Controlling heat? Negative air pressure

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kaaljean

New Member
Dec 20, 2021
6
MA
We have had our stove up and working for a month now and I have a few more questions.

Pellet brands and how they are in this season. From what I understand going to local places that sell pellets, I hear , this years are not as good as last and there seems to be mixed messages and I guess I would rather hear opinions from end users then sellers. When we bought our stove (used) it came with New England Pellets, they seems okay as far as heat and ash but I had nothing to compare them to. Big Box stores Tractor supply home depot etc not only had bad reviews but employees were saying customers were upset with this years batch so we avioded. Then we were directed to a local small business with pellets and the owner said the best he had was Energex (sp?). We bought like 10 bags to try and they had a strong saw dust smell and did not burn as hot as the new england. I found a store a little further away that had Vermont and LaCrete. We bought 15 bags of Vermont Pellets. The ash was lower and the temps were high , almost too high some days. We went back and got 1/2 ton of Vermont,because last week it got below zero and I wanted an ample supply. while the ash is low, it is a little hard to control the temp. The first 2 Vermont bags we used yesterday seem to be less hot but was under 10 outside so I am not sure if it was the new batch or the temps (it was 0 last week and they seemed hotter) so I will wait and watch for now.

We have a King Pellet stove, Our house is a cape cod, about 800 sq ft very open first floor just the half stairs divide the front two rooms and 3 doorways are open to the kitchen and dining. The stove is in the left front corner. When on the stove had no issues warming the first floor. Now I was a stats major so I could put a spreadsheet of numbers, but the engenex pellets were keeping the downstairs 76 starting on of 2 for an hour and then on a 1 and the upstairs 70. The vermont pellets first bags were keeping the downstairs 80 on a 1 and 74 upstairs in all but one bedroom which was 71 after about 2 hours of being on. It was almost too hot , we would shut it off or 4 hours but then the temps would drop and turn it back on. I do not think of house is tight or the best insulation. We bought the house recently and Mass Saves program or something like it in my town is coming out in a few weeks and I was told to wait on any energry saving measures because I had to have an audit to qualify for progrms or rebates.

We are home almost 24/7 and we use all three floors. There is a family room and office in the basement. The basement has electric heater only. The basement is 58-60 at all times without heat (except furance room which is 52-54) and the electric heat on for an hour can keep it at 68 down to 63 for about 6 hours, the time someone is usally down there working. the pellet stove does nothing for the basement. I do turn the oil heta on once in the morning while the stove heats up for 15 minutes. The first flrst floor can get too hot even on 1 sometimes with the pellet stove. I turn it off , let it get colder and then back on but it is a cycle of every 4 hours on and off including getting up t night. The top floor if the first flloor is too hot is comfortable so it is like we are moving our life upstairs downstairs and following the heat and comfort. Any suggestions? Are the vermont pellets too hot? just my smaller size house?

Last is negative air pressure question. I will admit I was a little nervous at first with the stove especially since my husband will be working out of town. I finally got used to it, it was serviced, cleaned professionally and was running the same everyday. The stove is off every morning from 4am-9am and I clean it every morning before turning it on. Then last night I turned the stove on and smelled strong smoke which went upstairs in and in other rooms quickly, and turned it off right away. I let it shut off and my husband restarted an hour later and it was fine. Of course now I have worries as to why? Could it be negative pressure? My husband was upstairs showering with the exhust fan on, the bathroom is at the top of the stairs (stairs have a half wall going up and the door was slightly open. The bathroom gets the most hot air upstairs from the stove, it is almost a direct path. The dryer was also on which is right below the stove in the basement. This is the first time the stove and bathroom fan have been on at the same time. Or we have been carefully adjusting the cold air intake. A few days ago it was so windy so we had to adjust the cold air intake because the flame was too high/big. My husband adjusted it again before turning it back on. Could the smoke on start up have been the neagtive air pressure or cold air intake. I know my stove is clean. We just had it serviced, I clean it daily, the gasket was replaced, all the pipes going outside are brand new and we added a long vertical pipe as recoemmded since our house does get hit with strong winds.

I have the stove for comfort first, as in my first post we are here for medical care for my son and I want him (and all of us to be comfortable). Of course I enjoy not having to see the oil truck this month too. I want the best pellets for our stove and house size, not worried about saving $50 a ton just want what is best right now. Ialso want to make sure if we cant have the dryer on or the exhust fan in the bathroom on, I know all the rules of the stove before my husband leaves again. I want to worry about my son not the stove.
 

johneh

Minister of Fire
Dec 19, 2009
4,073
Eastern Ontario
Can't comment on the way your stove heats. Right now it is -39::C (-40::F)
and my stove is maxed out using the hottest pellets I know
Cudex.
Your smoke does the stove have an OAK (outside air kit) or does
it draw combustion air from the inside? If it is from the inside of the house
then
1 install an oak
2 crack a window open when using the dryer and or exhaust fan
 
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Harmanizer

Burning Hunk
Oct 23, 2012
231
South East Massachusetts
LaCrete and Vermont are two of the best pellets available in this state.Outside air intake will take care of negative pressure in the house.See about having one installed.
 

Mt Bob

Minister of Fire
Oct 31, 2013
3,953
park county montana
1 OAK as said
2 Why house so hot?
3 All stoves have adjustments, some better than others, it would help to tell what your stove is, and pictures of installation and venting
4 Some stoves are particular about pellets, my Integra prefers high quality, the Harman will burn anything. If I have lesser pellets in stoves, I turn the heat up on the Integra, the Harman does it automatically.
5 The room with the stove will always be hotter,as it is a room or space heater.
 

tlc1976

Minister of Fire
Oct 7, 2012
1,041
Northwest Lower Michigan
For me the amount of wind outside definitely makes a difference in how hot I have to run the stove to keep up. And I’m mostly shielded from the bulk of the wind with trees.
 
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kaaljean

New Member
Dec 20, 2021
6
MA
Is the cold air intake the same as the ouside air kit. It is a second tube coming out of the back of the stove and it is vented outside kind of like a dryer? That is what we have been adjusting a bit because of the wind,

Not sure besides the pellets and the floor plan being open why it is so hot. It is about 2-3 degrees hotter with the vermont pellets. I was wondering if they are too hot. The stove was just a basic used (3 years old) King stove, like the same one that is at tractor supply. The first floor is a rectangle with a half stair case in the middle. The stove room is 12x10 but is open to the kitchen on one side and open to the family room on the other side, the stove room is 82-84, the family room on the other side is 78-80 which is about 20x12 and the kichen and dining area is 30x10 and is 78 on side closest to the stove and 74 on the far side (which is doors to the outside and probably the leakiest part of the home). All windows have plastic on them and thermal shades. Im not complaining too much about the heat, I moved from Vegas like heat so it was 110+ in the summer, but I would love a little heat to go upstairs! We have tried fans in all sorts of directions with no luck.

What does it take to have the thermostat overide for oil heat. One issue we have is the first floor which is where the thermostat is at reads 78 right now on 1. The upstairs right now is 68. I would like the oil heat to kick on once before bed and raise the upstairs to 72=74 while getting ready for bed . Do I have to move the thermostat?
 

Mt Bob

Minister of Fire
Oct 31, 2013
3,953
park county montana
Let's try again, what stove model do you have? Saying it is a King is like saying you drive a ford.
No such thing as wood pellets that are too hot.Warm air is difficult to move. You can use the search box above and find hundreds of threads about it, here and on the wood stove forum.
You can always move your oil burner t/stat upstairs, or buy a different one.
 

tlc1976

Minister of Fire
Oct 7, 2012
1,041
Northwest Lower Michigan
The Pro Pellets I use are definitely hotter than the Kirtland pellets I used to burn. They both cost the same so more heat for the same price is always good.