I want to love my new Harman, but I’m not convinced yet.

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Smoke’n

New Member
Nov 7, 2021
7
Chester County PA
I’m about 1 and 1/4 tons in on my new p61 and I do love how easy it is to operate and the heat is great but for a new stove there’s a few things I’m concerned about. After the first ton I did a “deep clean”. Emptied and vacuumed. Cleaned out under the igniter, cleaned the blowers and cleaned the fines box under the auger. Ever since I’ve been getting and intermittent clunk from what I’ve read here is either the auger or the slide plate. I’ve cleaned all the pellets out twice now and inspected everything as best as possible and don’t see any issues with either. No pellets jamming up or signs of friction. Also the flame seemed to be getting a little lazy in room temp mode like it was cutting it self off but the room temp was about 10* lower then what the stove was set at. I thought maybe the exhaust probe needed to be cleaned off but as I started to pull that out it looks like just a sheet metal screw holding it in and was coming out tight so I was concerned it would be stripped if I removed it all the way. I’m still under warranty so I’d rather not have to be making repairs my self yet other then maintenance. How often do you all have to clean the exhaust probe? I have been running cheap pellets due to supply around my way but my understanding and reason for spending the extra on the Harman was they’ll eat anything. Just wanted some second opinions. Feel free to tell me I’m being over critical or whiney about it. And just some background on myself I am a mechanic by trade, 15 years in automotive and 5 years in on electromechanical so I’d like to think it’s not operator error but wouldn’t be the first time I’ve been wrong! Thanks for any input guys!
 

DAKSY

Full Time RVer
Staff member
Dec 2, 2008
9,369
Wherever we're parked
Almost sounds like your symptoms are with the fines box. Make sure the slide plate is correctly positioned & the cover is on tight.
 
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Tonyray

Minister of Fire
I’m about 1 and 1/4 tons in on my new p61 and I do love how easy it is to operate and the heat is great but for a new stove there’s a few things I’m concerned about. After the first ton I did a “deep clean”. Emptied and vacuumed. Cleaned out under the igniter, cleaned the blowers and cleaned the fines box under the auger. Ever since I’ve been getting and intermittent clunk from what I’ve read here is either the auger or the slide plate. I’ve cleaned all the pellets out twice now and inspected everything as best as possible and don’t see any issues with either. No pellets jamming up or signs of friction. Also the flame seemed to be getting a little lazy in room temp mode like it was cutting it self off but the room temp was about 10* lower then what the stove was set at. I thought maybe the exhaust probe needed to be cleaned off but as I started to pull that out it looks like just a sheet metal screw holding it in and was coming out tight so I was concerned it would be stripped if I removed it all the way. I’m still under warranty so I’d rather not have to be making repairs my self yet other then maintenance. How often do you all have to clean the exhaust probe? I have been running cheap pellets due to supply around my way but my understanding and reason for spending the extra on the Harman was they’ll eat anything. Just wanted some second opinions. Feel free to tell me I’m being over critical or whiney about it. And just some background on myself I am a mechanic by trade, 15 years in automotive and 5 years in on electromechanical so I’d like to think it’s not operator error but wouldn’t be the first time I’ve been wrong! Thanks for any input guys!
OK.. have P61A . 8 yrs now. 24/7 burning... no issues other than replaced ignitor last season.. 7 yrs on that one..
when i get a clunk sound now/then it is usually when i have burned hardwoods and some are bit long.
that's usually the slide plate de-capitating some pellets... don't know what you are burning but could be longer pellet size.
some brands seem to cover all sizes in 1 bag..lol quality control issue maybe..
I burn softwoods and most pellets are on the smaller end.. most...so, never get a clink or crunch sound anymore..

The ESP probe or as u call exhaust probe does not have to be factory shiny clean in order to work proper.. I clean mine with a bristle bottle washer brush gently maybe every few months or so and really other than some ashy residue it's always fine.. You DON'T HAVE TO REMOVE IT.!! 8 yrs and never removed it for reasons i mentioned previous.. the gentle brushing now and then will be fine.
cleaning the ignitor compartment and fines box is good maint routines. I do once month on both but do as u feel as in time you will get to see and know how long it takes for the fines to build up and the dry ash in the ignitor compartment..

As far s pellets, not bashing box store stuff or whatever but lower BTU and higher ash chased me away from box store hardwoods long time ago..
last time at HD saw middle road Hardwoods which on bag stated 7900-8200 btu,,
for me that is very low concidering my Softwoods are 8800-9000 btu.. but, that's me and my reasons to pay a bit more for better stuff.
All pellets give heat but big differences in the amount......
glad to see u got a analog dial stove... lots of buggy software errors and such i have read with the newer touchscreen types
you have a Great stove there... enjoy it and don't fret about everything........
keep it clean and most of all, we [members] are open 24/7 for help if u have issues....learned tons here when i 1st got my Harman and still come here for refresher readings..
 
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Smoke’n

New Member
Nov 7, 2021
7
Chester County PA
OK.. have P61A . 8 yrs now. 24/7 burning... no issues other than replaced ignitor last season.. 7 yrs on that one..
when i get a clunk sound now/then it is usually when i have burned hardwoods and some are bit long.
that's usually the slide plate de-capitating some pellets... don't know what you are burning but could be longer pellet size.
some brands seem to cover all sizes in 1 bag..lol quality control issue maybe..
I burn softwoods and most pellets are on the smaller end.. most...so, never get a clink or crunch sound anymore..

The ESP probe or as u call exhaust probe does not have to be factory shiny clean in order to work proper.. I clean mine with a bristle bottle washer brush gently maybe every few months or so and really other than some ashy residue it's always fine.. You DON'T HAVE TO REMOVE IT.!! 8 yrs and never removed it for reasons i mentioned previous.. the gentle brushing now and then will be fine.
cleaning the ignitor compartment and fines box is good maint routines. I do once month on both but do as u feel as in time you will get to see and know how long it takes for the fines to build up and the dry ash in the ignitor compartment..

As far s pellets, not bashing box store stuff or whatever but lower BTU and higher ash chased me away from box store hardwoods long time ago..
last time at HD saw middle road Hardwoods which on bag stated 7900-8200 btu,,
for me that is very low concidering my Softwoods are 8800-9000 btu.. but, that's me and my reasons to pay a bit more for better stuff.
All pellets give heat but big differences in the amount......
glad to see u got a analog dial stove... lots of buggy software errors and such i have read with the newer touchscreen types
you have a Great stove there... enjoy it and don't fret about everything........
keep it clean and most of all, we [members] are open 24/7 for help if u have issues....learned tons here when i 1st got my Harman and still come here for refresher readings..
Thank you, pellets very may well be the issue due to the noise starting when I started a new batch. I’ve been running tractor supply white bag and green supremes. Not ideal but the only thing I could find in bulk. I’ll grab a few bags of something good and see if it changes. As far as not removing the esp to clean it I assume you’re removing the venting from the rear and cleaning it that way? Appreciate the help!
 

Mt Bob

Minister of Fire
Oct 31, 2013
3,953
park county montana
I run a soft brush up through the square hole that is the exhaust, past the probe, which also brushes it. I'm not a big believer in removing it and polishing it. Unless I ran across a stove that was running choked down, and had deposits actually sticking to it. And mine is original,black wire. 2006.
 

Tonyray

Minister of Fire
Thank you, pellets very may well be the issue due to the noise starting when I started a new batch. I’ve been running tractor supply white bag and green supremes. Not ideal but the only thing I could find in bulk. I’ll grab a few bags of something good and see if it changes. As far as not removing the esp to clean it I assume you’re removing the venting from the rear and cleaning it that way? Appreciate the help!
No. Not at all..At the lower compartment, take out the ashpan, Remove the exhaust fan blade protector.. .one piece Iron gate contraption with a lever you push up to release it. Simple step. Now you can see thru the exhaust tunnel. Flashlight helps.gently brush the probe as Mt bob posts here. Bristle bottle washer, dryer lint brush, etc. As far as pellet sounds that i touched on previous reply, as long as it is intermitent and not constant,( like everytime the auger turns) its deff the pellets.wont hurt the auger but i would try to progress past the pellets causing it in time. Worth a trip to private dealers as they carry more choices and usually better grades than box stores. Softwoods are my preference for low ash and higher BTU.
 
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Smoke’n

New Member
Nov 7, 2021
7
Chester County PA
No. Not at all..At the lower compartment, Behind the big ashpan, Remove the exhaust fan blade protector.. . Iron gate contraption with a lever you push up to release it. Simple step. Now you can see thru the exhaust tunnel. Flashlight helps.gently brush the probe as Mt bob posts here. Bristle bottle washer, dryer lint brush, etc. As far as pellet sounds that i touched on previous reply, as long as it is intermitent and not constant,( like everytime the auger turns) its deff the pellets.
After making this post I removed the lower side cover and watched the auger with the stove running for about 10minutes and it was quiet as could be. I like the pellet cutting theory because it doesn’t happen often. Thanks for the tips on cleaning, I’ll give that a shot. This forum is a great resource.
 

Tonyray

Minister of Fire
After making this post I removed the lower side cover and watched the auger with the stove running for about 10minutes and it was quiet as could be. I like the pellet cutting theory because it doesn’t happen often. Thanks for the tips on cleaning, I’ll give that a shot. This forum is a great resource.
Anytime..
 
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rickwai

Minister of Fire
Nov 1, 2011
1,313
ohio
OK.. have P61A . 8 yrs now. 24/7 burning... no issues other than replaced ignitor last season.. 7 yrs on that one..
when i get a clunk sound now/then it is usually when i have burned hardwoods and some are bit long.
that's usually the slide plate de-capitating some pellets... don't know what you are burning but could be longer pellet size.
some brands seem to cover all sizes in 1 bag..lol quality control issue maybe..
I burn softwoods and most pellets are on the smaller end.. most...so, never get a clink or crunch sound anymore..

The ESP probe or as u call exhaust probe does not have to be factory shiny clean in order to work proper.. I clean mine with a bristle bottle washer brush gently maybe every few months or so and really other than some ashy residue it's always fine.. You DON'T HAVE TO REMOVE IT.!! 8 yrs and never removed it for reasons i mentioned previous.. the gentle brushing now and then will be fine.
cleaning the ignitor compartment and fines box is good maint routines. I do once month on both but do as u feel as in time you will get to see and know how long it takes for the fines to build up and the dry ash in the ignitor compartment..

As far s pellets, not bashing box store stuff or whatever but lower BTU and higher ash chased me away from box store hardwoods long time ago..
last time at HD saw middle road Hardwoods which on bag stated 7900-8200 btu,,
for me that is very low concidering my Softwoods are 8800-9000 btu.. but, that's me and my reasons to pay a bit more for better stuff.
All pellets give heat but big differences in the amount......
glad to see u got a analog dial stove... lots of buggy software errors and such i have read with the newer touchscreen types
you have a Great stove there... enjoy it and don't fret about everything........
keep it clean and most of all, we [members] are open 24/7 for help if u have issues....learned tons here when i 1st got my Harman and still come here for refresher readings..
I 100% agree on the ESP. I run my 3" brush thru the tunnel to clean the horizontal section and that brushes off the ESP then use shop vac to clean the ash laying on the bottom of the pipe. No need to pull it out. Also no need to clean feeder more than annually.
 

SciGuy

Feeling the Heat
Aug 17, 2007
363
Constableville, NY
I 100% agree on the ESP. I run my 3" brush thru the tunnel to clean the horizontal section and that brushes off the ESP then use shop vac to clean the ash laying on the bottom of the pipe. No need to pull it out. Also no need to clean feeder more than annually.
I think there's a tendency here on the forum to over emphasize the need for a scrupulously clean ESP to solve a multitude of Harman stove problems. Certainly if the ESP is beginning to be buried in ash or other deposit it will affect stove function. If there is just a fine coating on on the ESP it's not going to affect the ESP's function enough to say so.
 

Mt Bob

Minister of Fire
Oct 31, 2013
3,953
park county montana
I think there's a tendency here on the forum to over emphasize the need for a scrupulously clean ESP to solve a multitude of Harman stove problems. Certainly if the ESP is beginning to be buried in ash or other deposit it will affect stove function. If there is just a fine coating on on the ESP it's not going to affect the ESP's function enough to say so.
Yep. Most times it is a dirty stove or a dirty flue.
 

Tonyray

Minister of Fire
I think there's a tendency here on the forum to over emphasize the need for a scrupulously clean ESP to solve a multitude of Harman stove problems. Certainly if the ESP is beginning to be buried in ash or other deposit it will affect stove function. If there is just a fine coating on on the ESP it's not going to affect the ESP's function enough to say so.
Correct..
 

shtrdave

Feeling the Heat
Feb 13, 2012
318
SW PA
I usually pull my ESP once a year when I clean out the exhaust, I run a 4" brush through mine. Last year I had it out and I happened to see a small piece of a scotch pad laying out so I just cleaned it up some, made it go back in nicer.
 

Tonyray

Minister of Fire
I usually pull my ESP once a year when I clean out the exhaust, I run a 4" brush through mine. Last year I had it out and I happened to see a small piece of a scotch pad laying out so I just cleaned it up some, made it go back in nicer.
I usually pull my ESP once a year when I clean out the exhaust, I run a 4" brush through mine. Last year I had it out and I happened to see a small piece of a scotch pad laying out so I just cleaned it up some, made it go back in nicer.
Yeah after 8 yrs of brushing the esp i just may pull it and wipe it down with cleaner when i do full shut down cleaning. Then go nother 8yrs..
 

Cincinnati Kid

Feeling the Heat
Jan 6, 2009
306
Cincinnati
Yeah after 8 yrs of brushing the esp i just may pull it and wipe it down with cleaner when i do full shut down cleaning. Then go nother 8yrs..
I’ve had my P43 for 10 years now and have never pulled it out to clean. I just use a bottle brush going through the square opening.
 
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bogieb

Minister of Fire
Oct 31, 2014
3,095
South Central NH
I’ve had my P43 for 10 years now and have never pulled it out to clean. I just use a bottle brush going through the square opening.

8 years here for my P61a and never removed it either . I don't know if the P43's has ever been removed,.. I'm guessing not since I bought it used from an individual.
 

scajjr2

Burning Hunk
Dec 9, 2010
233
Kingston, NH
8 years here for my P61a and never removed it either . I don't know if the P43's has ever been removed,.. I'm guessing not since I bought it used from an individual.

I pulled our P43's ESP out this fall when I did my pre-season complete cleaning. 1st time since we've had the stove. Was totally fine. I have a soft flexibile crevice tool vac attachment from an old vac that fits the tube on our ash vac. I use that to clean out the exhaust and gently vac off the ESP. Also works great for the opening under the burn pot to keep the igniter clean.

sam
 

Tonyray

Minister of Fire
I pulled our P43's ESP out this fall when I did my pre-season complete cleaning. 1st time since we've had the stove. Was totally fine. I have a soft flexibile crevice tool vac attachment from an old vac that fits the tube on our ash vac. I use that to clean out the exhaust and gently vac off the ESP. Also works great for the opening under the burn pot to keep the igniter clean.

sam
I use this for ignitor compartment.

Screenshot_20210328-103842_Facebook.jpg
 

Dataman

Minister of Fire
Sep 10, 2018
1,105
Newport, Wa
I just blow it out with Turkey Baster. Works great. ESP I clean once per year with wet paper towel. The 1/4" screw is only hand tight now so it's easy. I figure the brush would damage it, why go there? End of Pellet Heating is soon upon us. But Winter is having another run at us. 5f this AM and -4 tomorrow. Yikes. Looks like burned 1/2 bag last night, house at 75f. (2600ft). Laundry room down the hall at 60f. Heat Pump will take over when above 30f. We use oil heater in bedroom to make it warmer. Plus one in basement where we have my Bike.
 

shtrdave

Feeling the Heat
Feb 13, 2012
318
SW PA
For those that don't remove the ESP how do you clean the exhaust out. I run a brush through mine, and the amount of stuff that it brings out isn't bad but there is enough to see when I look out though it.
 

Mt Bob

Minister of Fire
Oct 31, 2013
3,953
park county montana
For those that don't remove the ESP how do you clean the exhaust out. I run a brush through mine, and the amount of stuff that it brings out isn't bad but there is enough to see when I look out though it.
Not really sure of your question, so will describe cleaning my Accentra.
Remove ash pan, 2 heat exchanger covers, flame guide and then the combustion fan cover. All go in bucket to be brushed outside. Scoop out ash that misses the pan. Vacuum out entire firebox. Brush heat exchanger, comb. fan blade,,and anywhere ash is stuck. Clean holes in pot,and vac igniter area. Usually a bit of crud for the first 2" of the exhaust passage, light scraping takes off. Run a brush, a soft 3" boiler brush, into exhaust channel, past probe, all the way to the 90 elbow on back of stove. Vac. exhaust passage with the cone shape tool. Reverse the hose, use cone tool and blow into the exhaust port, will tap on pipe a few times.
If there is any really stuck on stuff past probe, use a regular stiff 3" pellet flue brush, have to be careful, don't just ram in, can damage probe. But pushing to the side just a little and it goes in fine.
Pipe goes up,at an angle, to the wall thimble. At the transition, where it goes out, I have a cleanout T. So every 2-3 cleanouts, remove cleanout cap, and I can brush down to the 90 on the back of the stove, and out the horizontal to the outside. Blow again from inside the stove, exhaust passage(after putting clean out cap back on.)
I set mine up so it can be totally cleaned from the inside, except for once a year I will remove the bird screen from the vortex cap, as there will be some chunks building up.
 

Tonyray

Minister of Fire
For those that don't remove the ESP how do you clean the exhaust out. I run a brush through mine, and the amount of stuff that it brings out isn't bad but there is enough to see when I look out though it.
I actually use the 3 or 4 inch brush into my exhaust from the Outside. Up and over.Push it all in then with long ext vacuum from inside.
 

shtrdave

Feeling the Heat
Feb 13, 2012
318
SW PA
Okay. I use a soft brush that came with the stove to swipe as far as I can into the exhaust, the brush is probably 30" long. Once a year I take out the probe, and the turn down on the outside. I have a 4" nylon pull through brush. I go outside and the GF is inside, she starts it out through and I pull it the rest of the way and hand it back to her through the window. We do this several times until there is nothing coming out. Mine does idle a lot running in manual room temp.
 

Tonyray

Minister of Fire
Okay. I use a soft brush that came with the stove to swipe as far as I can into the exhaust, the brush is probably 30" long. Once a year I take out the probe, and the turn down on the outside. I have a 4" nylon pull through brush. I go outside and the GF is inside, she starts it out through and I pull it the rest of the way and hand it back to her through the window. We do this several times until there is nothing coming out. Mine does idle a lot running in manual room temp.
Cool way of doing the pipe.. The room manual thing is not my favorite due to heat going outside during idle.