Outside chimney top, shiny clean?

NextEndeavor

Burning Hunk
Jan 16, 2011
248
62
103
Southern Iowa
I see spotless stainless chimney tops all over town. I'm guessing they don't burn. Mine only smokes at cold startup, wood is seasoned a year in very well ventilated stacks, now under 20% MC and I still get the dark "stuff" a few inches down from the cap. I burn cherry, mulberry, ash, hard and soft maple and walnut. All have that dry snap sound when you bang them together. None of it sizzles and it burns very well. I always get great draft even for warm weather cold starts. No oak this year - giving it more time to dry. I start with split pallet wood and waste scraps from the log splitter. Light-up very easy with 30 seconds of a propane torch. So those of you that burn 24/7 Do you have mirror clean chimney tops? Creosote found when I sweep is low, compared to last year.
 

bogydave

Minister of Fire
Dec 4, 2009
8,426
3,450
803
So Cent ALASKA
Mines not shiny & you only know I have a fire the first hour or so, then not much visible signs that a fire is burning. You have to look real close to see it's in use.

I was just driving thru the neighborhood today & looking to see how many houses had a woodstove or fireplace chimney. Most homes do.
Many had the caps at a tilted angle or missing parts or the whole caps but no signs of fires except in a very few.

Of the stacks that were showing signs of use, all but 1 or 2 were the NG stacks with steam coming out.
Very few wood burners in my neighborhood. I'm guessing it's the work involved to burn that stops most.
Good thing for me (& us here), if everyone burned wood, wood would be more $$ & harder to come by.

I spot the wood burners, they have fire wood stacked somewhere & for some reason now, it sticks out like a neon light :)
Not as many as you would think in my area.
 
N

nate379

Guest
It won't stay shiny if you use it. Mine is dirty a few feet down from the cap, I guess from when the wind blows. It does seem to pretty much clean off after I don't burn and it rains though.

Not too many woodburners here. With nat gas being fairly cheap burning wood is quite a bit of work.
 

HighHeat22

Member
Sep 29, 2011
145
1
78
southern michigan
How cheap is natural gas up that way ?.
 

NextEndeavor

Burning Hunk
Jan 16, 2011
248
62
103
Southern Iowa
You are right, a lot of shiny clean chimney tops but not near as many wood piles. Solid fuel is easy to get around here, if you have ambition, a saw and way to haul it. I was just curious if it's normal to have the smoke stains from an EPA stove that runs 24/7. Mine cleans off real easy but I generally leave it up there even when I sweep. As for cost of natural gas, ours this year is running $0.75 - 0.85 per therm ....... plus about $11 per month for the gas meter charge regardless of using gas or not. Obviously with a 94% NG furnace, I'm burning wood because I enjoy it and getting about ten cents per hour for my labor. But at least it's a recreation that pays something. My other hobbies all take my spare cash.
 

seeyal8r

Feeling the Heat
Jan 20, 2011
272
8
278
Central Oklahoma
Mine was gross looking due to unseasoned wood last year. I took it down, powerwashed it, and gave it a good coat of high heat black paint. My smoke is invisible to the naked eye after the first hour and only a few minutes on reloads. If I throw in some unseasoned stuff you can see the steam but other than that it burns pretty clean.
 

bogydave

Minister of Fire
Dec 4, 2009
8,426
3,450
803
So Cent ALASKA
HighHeat22 said:
How cheap is natural gas up that way ?.
Cheaper than most lower 48 states. (Click on view history to see a graph of the increases)
Example/ thousand cubic ft:: Alaska: $8.71 / ****** Michigan: $11.34*** Penn: $14.46,*** GA $19.06 (Oct 2011 prices) Taxes & fees vary
US, NG prices:
http://www.eia.gov/dnav/ng/ng_pri_sum_dcu_SAK_m.htm
 

raygard

Member
Nov 5, 2011
88
0
46
Columbia, MD
NextEndeavor said:
I see spotless stainless chimney tops all over town. I'm guessing they don't burn. Mine only smokes at cold startup, wood is seasoned a year in very well ventilated stacks, now under 20% MC and I still get the dark "stuff" a few inches down from the cap. I burn cherry, mulberry, ash, hard and soft maple and walnut. All have that dry snap sound when you bang them together. None of it sizzles and it burns very well. I always get great draft even for warm weather cold starts. No oak this year - giving it more time to dry. I start with split pallet wood and waste scraps from the log splitter. Light-up very easy with 30 seconds of a propane torch. So those of you that burn 24/7 Do you have mirror clean chimney tops? Creosote found when I sweep is low, compared to last year.
Don't forget that Stainless Steel will burnish with heat
 

Wade A.

Feeling the Heat
Nov 4, 2010
360
6
278
South
I burn as clean as possible, but wood is a dirty fuel, and my cap is proof of that. I'm suspecting that some of the chimney pipes you see are connected to gas units. Wear it proudly. It is a badge of honor.
 

lopiliberty

Minister of Fire
Oct 7, 2011
959
317
803
Mineral County, WV
I take the cap off when I'm burning 24/7 but I still get black stuff a foot down the outside of the SS chimney but a good rain washes it clean. Only get smoke on cold starts(ALOT of them this year) and during reloading. Neighbors wonder where the wood is going because they never see smoke coming from my chimney :)
 

HighHeat22

Member
Sep 29, 2011
145
1
78
southern michigan
Hey, bogydave link to natural gas prices was sweet thanks.