PE Summit getting too hot overnight?

jmdavis984

New Member
Nov 22, 2019
44
46140
I am having some trouble keeping the heat down on my PE Summit LE Insert with a 15' insulated liner. It's easy to control during the day, just loading 1-2 splits at a time keeps the temps between 600 and 300, measured above the door with an IR thermometer. However, my overnight burn is 5 large splits, and I cannot seem to control the rate of burn or the temp in the firebox.

I burn mostly ash, with some maple and black locust thrown in. My wood is around 12-14% moisture. I load my wood NS on top of a good coal bed, and leave the air control open until I get good flames. After that I slowly turn down the air control until I get sustained burn at the lowest setting. The temp measuring is usually around 400* when I shut it down. All of this is with the blower on the lowest setting. However, this doesn't produce a slow burn. The fire continues to accelerate until the front of the stove is measuring +730*! This is TOO hot for me, and too hot for a slow overnight burn. And the outside temps are still mild, around 35. I hate to think how crazy this thing will get if it were 15* outside.

What am I doing wrong? Am I letting the load get too hot before shutting it down? Should I load the splits and leave the air control low? Should I load EW? Am I being over-cautious? My last stove (a 70's slammer) ran away from me, and I do NOT want to experience that again. Any advice would be appreciated.
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
11,768
Southern IN
I might try installing a flue damper, even though it would entail attaching a rod and having come it through the front of the surround. The flue damper we already had in the pipe made a bit of difference on my SIL's new 2019 T5, but I put in a second one recently. That gave another slight increase in control. I will probably take additional measures before it gets cold out.
Her stove top readily goes to 700 if I don't aggressively cut the air once I see signs of the secondary beginning to fire. It's hard to cut the air quickly, yet not so much so that you can't maintain a clean burn. This is on a 15' stack, straight up. I'll probably get her the blower, which will be another device to use in keeping the stove top to a temp I'm comfortable with..700 or a little under.
We have the meter on the stove top, close to the flue exit. Not sure how that compares to the front of the stove..I'll check that when I get a chance. At first I thought 'temp will be lower on the door,' but maybe not with the secondary flames hitting that area. Your stove top temp might not be as high. But since they previously has some cracked boxes in the front top corners, I'd want to keep temps lower in that area..
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
11,768
Southern IN
You can also try shoving the coals back, leaving a line of coals in the center, front to back, and load some large flat splits of dense wood on the floor, against the side walls with no coals under them. then some slightly smaller splits on top of them, not hanging over the edge of the big splits below. They won't cat quite as fast. Load a few small splits in the center on the coals. Burn these with enough air to get the stove up to temp quickly. Then maybe you can start cutting the air before too much other wood gets gassing, and you have a conflagration on your hands.
I really haven't burned my SIL's stove enough to get good at it yet. She's been pretty much on her own but the small loads she burns have been enough to keep the house warm in this mild weather.
 

jmdavis984

New Member
Nov 22, 2019
44
46140
I might try installing a flue damper.
I have an insert, and only 1" of clearnace between my lintel and the top of the insert. I would have to run the damper control through the masonry. I'm not really up for that.
 

Mike.O

Burning Hunk
Dec 20, 2017
158
..
I wouldn't get too worried. 730 isn't a big deal. I have the same setup on 15' insulated liner. I hit around 700 on every single load, twice a day for 4-5 months. Mine is a 2008 I believe and no signs of any issues.

I have found the biggest difference in peak temp is the amount of coals and STT on reload. The lower I can get it before reload, the cooler the peak temp stays for me. Also shutting the air down sooner helps. But I really wouldn't even blink at 730 as long as it consistently peaks there. If it keeps running up after, then yes start to worry, but if you hit 730 every single time and not much more then just run it. They're made to do it. Plus your chimney will be spotless running at those temps >>

Edit for grammar.
 
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buc74

Member
Oct 16, 2012
80
Fond du Lac, WI
Our Summit will also hit 675-725 when loading full based on the thermometer in the upper right corner of the door. We can turn the fan up and it will cool her down fairly quick. Maybe try that?
 

jmdavis984

New Member
Nov 22, 2019
44
46140
Hmm, sounds like maybe I was over-reacting a little bit. I still don't like it running that hot though. Seeing the flames pouring out of the baffle plate and straight up to the liner sure seemed like things would get hot up there. It seems like a lot of heat was being wasted. It does burn clean though.

I did turn the blower to high and was able to drop 75 degrees in about a half hour. So I can control it that way if I have to, but I don't want to have to babysit the thing overnight.
 

Grizzerbear

Feeling the Heat
Feb 12, 2019
429
SW Missoura
What is the stove temp when you reload. Have you done the dollar bill test to check your gasket. Are you loading ns or ew. What size splits are you putting in it and how tightly or loosely are your loads stacked in the stove.
 

jmdavis984

New Member
Nov 22, 2019
44
46140
What is the stove temp when you reload. Have you done the dollar bill test to check your gasket. Are you loading ns or ew. What size splits are you putting in it and how tightly or loosely are your loads stacked in the stove.
The temp is usually between 300 and 400 when I reload. I load NS, splits are 5"-8" diameter x 18" long. They're definitely loaded loose, not touching any of the walls or ceiling, with gaps in between them because of the shape.
 

jmdavis984

New Member
Nov 22, 2019
44
46140
I wouldn't get too worried. 730 isn't a big deal. I have the same setup on 15' insulated liner. I hit around 700 on every single load, twice a day for 4-5 months. Mine is a 2008 I believe and no signs of any issues.

I have found the biggest difference in peak temp is the amount of coals and STT on reload. The lower I can get it before reload, the cooler the peak temp stays for me.
What is STT?
 

Grizzerbear

Feeling the Heat
Feb 12, 2019
429
SW Missoura
I would try letting the stove cool down some more ....say around 200 unless you just really need the heat. Try loading it tighter together with as little air gaps between pieces as possible. Loading ns is touted as the best way to load for many valid reasons but ew will for sure slow a burn down especially if you don't lay any sleepers underneath to allow air to travel to the back so easy. Do test your door gasket as well but I think simply reloading at a cooler stove temp is going to help you a lot. FWIW if I reloaded at 400 I would hit those temps for sure.
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
11,768
Southern IN
Have you done the dollar bill test to check your gasket. Are you loading ns or ew. What size splits are you putting in it and how tightly or loosely are your loads stacked in the stove.
That's something I forgot to mention; Try to pack the loads tight with as little air space as possible so that it's harder for the splits to catch quickly. I didn't think of trying E-W, but that will slow it down, too.
 

Ctwoodtick

Minister of Fire
Jun 5, 2015
1,165
Southeast CT
If the team are being measured on front, I’m wondering if actual stove top temps are higher. Tough to tell with an insert I know. The stove may be getting too much air which is why the dollar bill test on door gasket should be done.
 
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Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
11,768
Southern IN
The stove may be getting too much air which is why the dollar bill test on door gasket should be done.
I'd bet the gasket is probably fine, since it's a new stove. The PEs just like to run; Ours is the same way, and it's a 2019.
 
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Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
11,768
Southern IN
I would have to run the damper control through the masonry. I'm not really up for that.
Another approach would be to put a reducer on the top of the liner..maybe a 6">5.5". It might be harder to get enough draft when it's warm out, though. I don't have any trouble burning the T5 when it's 50+ outside..
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
81,156
South Puget Sound, WA
I suspect that the problem is simple. The air is not getting closed down soon enough. If one waits too long, the entire mass of wood gets hot at once and is outgassing strongly. Secondary combustion boosts the heat as it ignites that excess of wood gas.

Instead of loading just a log or two in the daytime, practice with full loads so that you can observe the fire and temp. Find the point at which you can start turning down the air, 50% at a time, without snuffing out the flame. The flames should start to get lazy. Then wait a bit for the fire to regain strength and then turn down the air 50% more again. Repeat if necessary. This will make a big difference in how hot the stove gets with a full load of wood and it will notably extend the burntime.

FWIW, I recently added a digital probe thermometer to our stove pipe. It tracks flue temps in real time and has been showing me how quickly those gases are heating up. This has been a real education. When the wood starts rapid outgassing one needs to turn down the air aggressively. Often this is before the firebox is visually filled with fire, especially if the fire is taking off more quickly toward the center or rear of the firebox.
 
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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
81,156
South Puget Sound, WA
It's ok to try E/W but I would stick to N/S and practice. Learn how to control the fire to gain confidence in how it will burn. You'll sleep better at night. Once you have it down to a predictable pattern, then try E/W for a while and learn the difference in how that burns.
 
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Hogwildz

Minister of Fire
You're closing the air down too late/ too high temp. With good dry wood, I been cutting my air complete to low at 200. Close your air back sooner.
 

Mech e

Member
Feb 26, 2019
197
NorCal
www.dtengineer.com
FWIW, I recently added a digital probe thermometer to our stove pipe. It tracks flue temps in real time and has been showing me how quickly those gases are heating up. This has been a real education. When the wood starts rapid outgassing one needs to turn down the air aggressively. Often this is before the firebox is visually filled with fire, especially if the fire is taking off more quickly toward the center or rear of the firebox.
What mfg. and model number digital thermometer did you purchase?
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
81,156
South Puget Sound, WA
The Auber AT100.
 
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blacktail

Minister of Fire
Sep 18, 2011
1,403
Western WA
You could try splitting your wood bigger in the future.