Hearthstone Heritage Primary Air Control Does Not Seem To Work

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New Member
Jan 5, 2022
I have had a Hearthstone Heritage 8021 since 2016. I don't think the primary air control ever worked. It moves from left to right and back freely but has no noticeable impact on the air flow in the stove. We were never in the house with the stove long enough for it to bother us (experienced with wood burning stoves) and we just put up with the lack of control. Essentially we used the door to control the air. Now we are here for longer stretches in the winter and the problem is much more of an annoyance. The air control lever moves freely from left to right. I can see it is attached to a semicircular plate. I cannot see or hear any other movement. I am thinking either something is clogged or the lever and semicircular plate are disengaged from something. Does anyone have any experience with this issue?


New Member
Dec 13, 2020
Eastern Long Island
Hi @lcasey! I've got the 8024 Heritage from last year, not sure if it is any different, but we haven't experienced any issues with the primary air control... only the draft since our wood is a little bit pitchy despite seasoning for 1.5 years here on wet Long Island. Maybe someone else can comment on this, but the "free movement" is likely because it is only moving a cover over a small opening for the air flow. We do notice quite a difference when there is a good draft, pre-heated wood on coals between fully opened and closed.

If your chimney is clear without obstructions and you are using fully seasoned wood you should definitely notice a difference. Running with the door open isn't good because you aren't getting any combustion and secondary burns which is where the main source of heat comes from. Maybe you can get a stack or bag of kiln dried wood and see if that burns well?

All in all we're about 85% happy with our Heritage hybrid... but the wood and draft are the two most important factors.


Minister of Fire
Dec 23, 2010
No. NH
Common complaint with many stoves actually. When the draft control doesn't appear to have an effect it almost alwsys means there is air leakage elseehere. Regasketing generally is the fix, though Hearthstone door handles can sometimes be wonky too, make sure doors close properly!
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Feeling the Heat
I've been burning a Heritage 8021 since 2012. My set-up includes a flue running about 23 feet from the top of the stove, straight up through a chase on the second floor. Even with a full load of dry oak on a hot bed coals the air control has always shown a significant effect on the fire. However I've never felt it was enough, so after checking door gaskets and all around the stove with a stick of incense revealed no leaks, I added an inline damper to the flue just above the stove outlet which helped a lot. Still a good fire on very cold day might show signs of running away from me. The solution was to mount an outside air kit to the stove and attach a section of 3 inch duct with its own damper.

I'm suspect this may sound extreme to those here with greater knowledge of these things, but it's worked really well for years to produce long burns, no smoke, and a 450 to 550 degree stove-top.

In short, your air control sounds like it needs work. You may find, as I did, that external damper(s) may help.

(that's not a crack in the stove top! just a vein in the stone)

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