Newbie advice please: evaluating used woodstoves for purchase


New Member
Aug 16, 2018
Hi folks,

My late father loved this forum and installed two vintage woodstoves with info from it. I have bought an old farmhouse with the heating gutted, and am looking into using a woodstove as a primary heat source in the barn, and a secondary in the house.

I am seeking advice for a total newbie about what to look for, what to look out for, when buying a used stove. I am looking at used ones online, including one that is about 100 years old. Thank you!


Burning Hunk
Nov 29, 2017
Puget Sound
The specifics will depend on the exact stove but in general you are looking to avoid cracks which can sometimes be small, warped parts, and any signs of over firing which can appear as reddish color cast iron.

The more knowledgeable people on here will be able to point out specific areas of stoves that develop problems if you know the exact stove.

Jan Pijpelink

Minister of Fire
Jan 2, 2015
South Jersey
I second that. Stick your head inside the stove and use a flashlight to find the smaller cracks. A white discoloration on the outside can also be an indication of over firing.