Fire Chief or Shelter EPA stoves feedback

Medic21

Minister of Fire
Feb 26, 2017
576
Northern Indiana
So far I am not sure the liner has made that much of a difference other then an added safety factor.

With the stove in "idle" mode, over time, the inner flue temperature still goes down to ~100 - 150 degrees. Perhaps this will be normal and perhaps the liner just helps recover the flue temperature faster?

Using my Mark ii 25 manometer, the draft prior to installing the SS liner measured .08. Now readings jump between .08 to 1.04. Will need to reach out to HY-C to inquire about installing a draft regulator as the manual states one might be required, however HY-C support stated the manual is still being update.


Last, not sure why, but with this stove, the house has a much stronger camp fire/wood stove smell. Could also be that new stove burn off still. The smell kind of gives you a slight headache.
I have gotten this too. Usually when it's warmer and Humid out. I load too much and the draft drops off. Less load and inducer running longer and no problems here.
 

Mrpelletburner

Minister of Fire
Jan 20, 2011
612
N.H.
It is ~34 degrees outside right now and rain. I have had the basement door cracked opened today, help with the air flow.

Just installed another CO detector with a readout as the other CO detectors didn’t have a readout.

The smoke could be from 2 sources... 1 the crazy amount of smoke from the stack blowing down against the house as there has been a slight breeze today. The other source has been anytime I open the load door, even opening the draft door first. I have also had some major back draft puffs. One happened after I closed the draft door. Assuming the smoke ignites, causing the puff of smoke.

We did crack open a couple windows.

I will say, this stove outputs some serious heat!!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Medic21

Minister of Fire
Feb 26, 2017
576
Northern Indiana
It is ~34 degrees outside right now and rain. I have had the basement door cracked opened today, help with the air flow.

Just installed another CO detector with a readout as the other CO detectors didn’t have a readout.

The smoke could be from 2 sources... 1 the crazy amount of smoke from the stack blowing down against the house as there has been a slight breeze today. The other source has been anytime I open the load door, even opening the draft door first. I have also had some major back draft puffs. One happened after I closed the draft door. Assuming the smoke ignites, causing the puff of smoke.

We did crack open a couple windows.

I will say, this stove outputs some serious heat!!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
I get a good amount of smoke opening to fill and so far I have not found a way to stop that. I tell the wife it's the price of free heat. It does help to run the inducer on for a few min prior to opening and I just added a switch to do that at the stove today.

Anytime it back puffs is because of not enough air and a bunch of fuel. The dryer the wood the worse that is. Smoke is fuel, there is enough heat, all it needs is air. Wether it's CO, off gassing, or just the smoke it can't burn in a rich environment as it pulls enough air it literally explodes. Whenever it happen crank the thermostat up and let the inducer give it air or crack the door and give some air that way. The problem usually resolves after a little burning and the wood puts off less fuel and can burn with the little air this drafts. Key is to have a small flame at all times. You may not need to load as much as you are.

Yes it puts out the heat. My fan blows constant while the inducer is running and it heats the house quick. Once you dial it in your golden though.
 

Mrpelletburner

Minister of Fire
Jan 20, 2011
612
N.H.
The CO detector reads 0.... There still is that strong smoke smell. Perhaps it is the smoke from the chimney blowing back against the house? The house is 2x6 construction and very well insulated, not sure if that means air tight. I have the basement door opened a little bit to help add additional fresh air.

Even with a window slightly opened, the house is still 73.

Here are some photos

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Last edited:

woodey

Member
Feb 8, 2018
107
ST. Lawrence Valley N.Y.
The CO detector reads 0.... There still is that strong smoke smell. Perhaps it is the smoke from the chimney blowing back against the house? The house is 2x6 construction and very well insulated, not sure if that means air tight. I have the basement door opened a little bit to help add additional fresh air.

Even with a window slightly opened, the house is still 73.
ment
Here are some photos

View attachment 223534 View attachment 223535 View attachment 223536 View attachment 223537 View attachment 223538 View attachment 223539
Do you have larger seasoned splits you can place stacked front to back and nothing side to side . The placement of the wood in the pic(along with the small splits).allows for to much air movement between the wood causing a very very hot quick burn.
 
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Mrpelletburner

Minister of Fire
Jan 20, 2011
612
N.H.
Do you have larger seasoned splits you can place stacked front to back and nothing side to side . The placement of the wood in the pic(along with the small splits).allows for to much air movement between the wood causing a very very hot quick burn.
I do... so 3-4 stacked in the center, front to back?
 

brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
4,412
NE Ohio
Do you have larger seasoned splits you can place stacked front to back and nothing side to side . The placement of the wood in the pic(along with the small splits).allows for to much air movement between the wood causing a very very hot quick burn.
Great point!
Stacking tighter and using larger pieces are another way of extending the burn time out.
Normally you would use this trick during colder weather, so you will normally have hot coals left to load on, which is good, because trying to ignite larger tightly stacked splits from a cold start is very difficult!
 

JRHAWK9

Minister of Fire
Jan 8, 2014
1,232
Wisconsin Dells, WI
The tighter you can pack them the better it will be. The looser you pack them the more surface area you have to ignite.
 

brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
4,412
NE Ohio
That log cabin style stacking of smaller splits works great for a quick/hot (short lived) fire on a spring or fall day though!
 
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JRHAWK9

Minister of Fire
Jan 8, 2014
1,232
Wisconsin Dells, WI
That log cabin style stacking of smaller splits works great for a quick/hot (short lived) fire on a spring or fall day though!
yep.....I was assuming he was after longer burn times. You won't accomplish that with so much free space between logs, especially a furnace like they have.
 
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Medic21

Minister of Fire
Feb 26, 2017
576
Northern Indiana
Another thing. Load and get burning one layer at a time. If you load it tight it will take forever to get burning and if the inducer kicks out befor all is burning good you will get those puffs.

I was lucky I have cut and split at 20" my whole life so everything was perfect to load. I have two stacks in the basement. One stack is the size of what you loaded the other is squares the three across barely fit. For over night on a cold night I'll do 2 1/2 rows getting each layer going before I add the next. Then I turn it down to 71 degrees. Will go 10 hours like that.
 

brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
4,412
NE Ohio
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Medic21

Minister of Fire
Feb 26, 2017
576
Northern Indiana
Boy, that sounds like a pain...recipe for a lotta smoke roll out, no?
It is a pain in the ass. There is not enough airflow with natural draft and the inducer is not enough to supple the needed air to get it burning. Case in point, the flue temp remains the same with one split loaded or with it stuffed full when loading. Before I did that I would get backpuffing when the inducer shut off. Once the layers are charred I don't have that problem.
 

brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
4,412
NE Ohio
I've only ever owned 1 wood furnace that had a draft inducer...I hated it, and highly doubt I'll ever own another...I ended up turning it off and just run it manually, basically treated it like a large central heating wood stove...
 
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Mrpelletburner

Minister of Fire
Jan 20, 2011
612
N.H.
When loading it tonight, I followed the 1 row at a time method. Amazingly, I didn't have any smoke filling the basement when loading.

 

Turd Ferguson

New Member
Jan 26, 2018
54
South Central MA
I too am getting better at loading this thing. Got the door temperature up and over 700 degrees over the weekend, and got the house to 65+. It was interesting finally cycling off the high-limit instead of the low-limit, haha.

I still need to do some more fine tuning with reloading while the thermostat is satisfied. If the logs don't catch before I close the door, it takes FOREVER for the furnace to come back up to operating temperature. Door temp is at or under 300 degrees.
 

Mrpelletburner

Minister of Fire
Jan 20, 2011
612
N.H.
First image at 10:40 last night, thermostat set to 71. Second image from 7:40am today. Stove was still throwing heat (thermostat read 72). Believe it was ~29 degrees out last night.

My old stove would of needed a refill at 2:30-3:30am.

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IMG_0032.JPG
 
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Mrpelletburner

Minister of Fire
Jan 20, 2011
612
N.H.
So back to the smoke smell and my headache.

The rooms where I get the strongest smell of smoke is my office and the basement. My office is almost directly above the stove and has a floor register, which is almost a straight shot from the stove. The other ducts are located towards the middle and opposite end of the house.

After loading the stove last night, I noticed that the smoke smell was the strongest when the draft blower was off for an extended period of time (basement door to the bulkhead open ~½" and the door to the basement was opened). In fact, if I was to think back to each time the smoke smell was the strongest, it was when the draft blower was off for extended periods of time. So if I loaded the stove at 10:40pm, the smoke smell was around/after midnight.

I did go to the basement several times to check for leaks from the flue pipe and stove doors, absolutely nothing. I also didn't open either door on the stove, in order to eliminate adding smoke into the air. Noticed that the basement, around the stove, did have a smoke smell, however no smoke clouds in the air. Also my CO detector has stayed at 0.

This morning when checking on the stove, besides the typical wood stove smell, the smoke smell was not over powering. Same could be said for my office area, assuming because the draft blower was running.

Could the smoke smell be small amounts of smoke leaking from my black stove pipe? Purchased the stove pipe at lowes and read that I should invest into black stove pipe from a local stove shop (better quality)?
 

Turd Ferguson

New Member
Jan 26, 2018
54
South Central MA
You could take a pressure measurement at the inducer when it's off to see whether the stove is pulling a draft through the inducer vanes or if it's pushing out of it. You could also test in other places to rule out/in those locations as potential sources of the odor you're smelling.

Lowe's carries a sheet metal crimp tool, $20. I've used it to crimp up the ductwork when I installed my ducting to the house. Depending on the stove pipe ductwork, maybe it needs more/less crimp? I wouldn't go re-crimping until you've found the source of the odor though. You could also pick up some incense sticks and light them to see where the smoke goes around the various joints in the stove?
 

Mrpelletburner

Minister of Fire
Jan 20, 2011
612
N.H.
You could also pick up some incense sticks and light them to see where the smoke goes around the various joints in the stove?
Did this using a lighter. The inducer opening pulls the flame in when off. Several spots around the flue duct where the flame is pulled into the duct.
 

Medic21

Minister of Fire
Feb 26, 2017
576
Northern Indiana
Did this using a lighter. The inducer opening pulls the flame in when off. Several spots around the flue duct where the flame is pulled into the duct.
Do the same with the circulation blower on. Assuming you don't have a cold air return going above the basement. If your house is well sealed and the return air is restricted to the basement it will pull air from somewhere.
 

Mrpelletburner

Minister of Fire
Jan 20, 2011
612
N.H.
Assuming you don't have a cold air return going above the basement.
Correct... We keep the basement door either all the way opened or opened about 4", which I think should be enough to match the return. I also have the basement door opened about 1/2". If we could get another 60deg day, I would install my new basement windows and crack them open.


If your house is well sealed and the return air is restricted to the basement it will pull air from somewhere.
The head scratcher is how the smoke smell is strongest in the office, which is directly above the stove. Also strong in the basement, however could be from loading the stove. I remember my old stove once and a while would retain the smoke smell when loading. The rest of the house doesn't have that same hardcore in your face campfire smell.

Today I have the heat off and windows open, trying to air out the house.



Older photo, before I switched the elbow out. Couple spots of the black draft pipe does this, always pulling into the flue with and without the draft blower running.

r7Ek3W4GQdmzFovCDnyo0w.jpg
 

Turd Ferguson

New Member
Jan 26, 2018
54
South Central MA
Correct... We keep the basement door either all the way opened or opened about 4", which I think should be enough to match the return. I also have the basement door opened about 1/2". If we could get another 60deg day, I would install my new basement windows and crack them open.




The head scratcher is how the smoke smell is strongest in the office, which is directly above the stove. Also strong in the basement, however could be from loading the stove. I remember my old stove once and a while would retain the smoke smell when loading. The rest of the house doesn't have that same hardcore in your face campfire smell.

Today I have the heat off and windows open, trying to air out the house.



Older photo, before I switched the elbow out. Couple spots of the black draft pipe does this, always pulling into the flue with and without the draft blower running.

View attachment 223575
Try it with the inducer going. It'll change the pressure differential for sure.