Help - New House with Fisher Stove - Questions for first time user

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Jan 6, 2017
Hi all!

I'm in NC awaiting this winter storm and need help with my wood stove!

Short story: can I use this stove safely if our power goes out? Fire bricks are badly cracked and I've never used this before

Long story: we just bought a house a few months ago and I've never used a wood stove before. It came with a Fisher, based on my readings on this forum it's a Fisher Baby Bear. We're just at the beginning of this big storm and I'm hoping our power doesn't go out. But in the event it does, we may need to try out this woodstove.

Before I try it, I'd of course clear off the christmas decorations but if you folks say "don't even try it" then no point taking them down yet.

I don't see any damper installed. But my main worry is the fire bricks causing a problem. Any advice or suggestions would be very helpful!
Help - New House with Fisher Stove - Questions for first time user Help - New House with Fisher Stove - Questions for first time user Help - New House with Fisher Stove - Questions for first time user
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Your main concern is that you don't have any idea what is in that chimney. Right now is not the time to be learning how to burn in the stove or getting a surprise from the chimney.

Turn up the thermostat and stay safe. The kind of snow you have coming shouldn't be a power killer.
I agree with brother bart.... when you bought the home did you have an inspection done that included the chimney? If not my recommendation would be to call a chimney sweep in your area and have them come and clean and inspect the chimney for you.

That may not help you out for the storm, but it will get you ready for the next potential power killer.
As far as the fire brick goes cracking is not as major of an issue as pieces missing. most people at some point will end up with cracks in their firebricks. I would burn my stove if the bricks were cracked like that. While you are waiting for your chimney you can replace them most box stores will have them for sale for $2-3. From the looks of the bricks if that is the worst of them, than in my opinion that would be your call.

I think you may be wrong on the stove ID, the baby bear had one air damper on the front and the Mama and papa had two. I could be wrong but I think you have a Mama, and with good wood that stove will crank some serious heat. I have my Mama cranking right now, and the only reason the furnace is running today is because it is literally 1 deg out. Normally I can heat my whole house with it.

Which brings up the next point do you have seasoned wood to burn in the event of an emergency? If not now would be a good time to get some delivered. Even if you are only planning on it being burned for an emergency having a face on hand that is stacked and covered is money in the bank. The drier the wood the happier you will be with the performance of your stove.

Pipe dampers are a good idea and most of these stove did have them, If you set up allows room for one I would recommend installing one. Out of curiosity can you measure how close that is to the wall, even though it is brick there are 2x4's etc behind them.

Once you have your chimney swept and everything inspected and you are good to go, I would also recommend trying the stove out a few times, so you know how it will do, and get used to it. Then when the time comes that you do need it you will be ready. And who knows once you burn it a few times you may like the rest of us get bit by the wood burning bug and decide to use it daily.

Keep us posted and let us know how you make out.