PE Summit getting too hot overnight?

jmdavis984

New Member
Nov 22, 2019
45
46140
For the past 2 nights I have loaded 3-4 splits and and kept the air as low as I could without snuffing the flames. I put wood in it at 10PM, and it had candle flames until 11:45. Then the secondary burn started to happen, and it took off. The stove went from 350 degrees to 650 degrees in half an hour, and continued to accelerate. So I turned the blower up to dump heat, and it stayed at 650 for an hour until I went to bed. The same thing happened again the next night. Both nights I loaded EW. I use the biggest splits I have.

I can't control this stove! And that's NOT ok in my book. I don't think it's safe that I can't snuff the flames when I think they're getting too hot. With my old smoke dragon I could spin those air controls to clamped shut and the flame went out in seconds. This stove runs wild whenever it wants to, and if I can't figure out how to control it I'll be forced to relegate it to recreational rather than a reliable heat source. Or commit to only putting in small loads and getting up with it overnight.

Here's a couple pics of the flames. This is a 680* fire AFTER running the blower on full for half an hour. The fire box is completely engulfed in flames, with flames pouring out of every baffle plate hole.
 

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Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
12,121
Southern IN
Wow, that secondary is coming all the way to the bottom of the glass! :eek:
I would have to run the damper control through the masonry. I'm not really up for that.
Well, when do you want to get up? I'll call you.. ;)
 

BrotherBart

Modestorator
Staff member
I call cruising at 680 bedtime.
 
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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
81,893
South Puget Sound, WA
For the past 2 nights I have loaded 3-4 splits and and kept the air as low as I could without snuffing the flames. I put wood in it at 10PM, and it had candle flames until 11:45. Then the secondary burn started to happen, and it took off. The stove went from 350 degrees to 650 degrees in half an hour, and continued to accelerate. So I turned the blower up to dump heat, and it stayed at 650 for an hour until I went to bed. The same thing happened again the next night. Both nights I loaded EW. I use the biggest splits I have.

I can't control this stove! And that's NOT ok in my book. I don't think it's safe that I can't snuff the flames when I think they're getting too hot. With my old smoke dragon I could spin those air controls to clamped shut and the flame went out in seconds. This stove runs wild whenever it wants to, and if I can't figure out how to control it I'll be forced to relegate it to recreational rather than a reliable heat source. Or commit to only putting in small loads and getting up with it overnight.

Here's a couple pics of the flames. This is a 680* fire AFTER running the blower on full for half an hour. The fire box is completely engulfed in flames, with flames pouring out of every baffle plate hole.
FWIW, that does not look like an out of control fire.
Old smoke dragons were put out of commission because they allowed wood to smolder like a smudge pot. Modern stoves do not run like them. Your stove is fine, but the operation still needs work. If you want a lower fire, close down the air sooner. I posted a sequence that may be of help. It's of a fully loaded Alderlea T6 (same firebox as the Summit). Final cruising temp was 625º with the blower off.

 

jmdavis984

New Member
Nov 22, 2019
45
46140
After a night of contemplation, I think I need to get a thermocouple and figure out how to get the flue collar temp. The comment was made that the baffle burn tubes put heat directly on the front of the stove, so the temperatures there may be higher than stove top or flue collar temps. Any recommendations on how to secure a thermocouple to the flue collar? I have the metal tape from the liner insulation kit, will that work?

I also do get better burn times and a calmer response in the mornings, after the coal bed is much cooler. I will start burning down my coal bed sooner tonight and report on the result
 

jmdavis984

New Member
Nov 22, 2019
45
46140
Last night I stirred and burned down my coal bed before putting in my "overnight" load. I still had to fiddle with the air control for an hour before I could turn it down all the way and maintain a consistent burn, but the fire was MUCH calmer and easier to control. I started it way too early, since I wanted to be "awake" to see how it would react, so it didn't burn overnight, but I got a good 6 hours out of 4 splits, and it never got crazy hot. I had nice lazy flames and floating blue secondary flames, just what I want.

I really appreciate everyone here speaking some calming advice. This forum is definitely an invaluable resource to guys like me that are new to burning in an EPA stove.
 

PistolPeets

Member
Jan 1, 2019
107
Upstate New York
I have a similar setup to yours. Thermometer on upper right hand side of door. But I have a 16' liner. 650 is around cruising temps for me on every load. These stoves are tough and are built to handle it (so I'm told). I can only fit around 4 splits at a time. On startup, I'll close the air back to around 90-95% once the stove temp reaches 200-250 and I'll get good secondaries at that point. Once I see that the flame doesn't get too lazy, I'll close the air all the way or sometimes leave it cracked open a hair. I run my blower around 75% to keep the noise down and it still keeps the house as warm as if it was running at full speed. This also allows for slightly longer burn times since less air is cooling the stove. I won't reload until I've stirred the coals at least once and the temp drops below 300. This allows coals to burn down to fit more wood in. Then, I leave the air wide open for 10 minutes probably before cutting it back to 90-95% again. Sometimes it will spike higher with really small pieces, so I've learned to use them sparingly and try to fill the bulk of my load with larger pieces.

I hope this helps. I'm on my second season with my stove. They just take some time to learn.
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
12,121
Southern IN
Last night I stirred and burned down my coal bed before putting in my "overnight" load. I still had to fiddle with the air control for an hour before I could turn it down all the way and maintain a consistent burn, but the fire was MUCH calmer and easier to control. I started it way too early, since I wanted to be "awake" to see how it would react, so it didn't burn overnight, but I got a good 6 hours out of 4 splits, and it never got crazy hot. I had nice lazy flames and floating blue secondary flames, just what I want.
I really appreciate everyone here speaking some calming advice. This forum is definitely an invaluable resource to guys like me that are new to burning in an EPA stove.
Yep, if you put a big load in on a big coal bed, you get a lot of wood gassing at once. The secondary then just does its job and burns the smoke/gasses. If it is being fed a lot of smoke to eat, it's gonna burn strong. That's why earlier I suggested manipulating the coal bed so that some splits don't have coals under them.
The fact that you have to be careful not to cut the air too far so that you don't kill the re-burn...that's encouraging. And yes, even if you get too much wood burning early, the load will gas out somewhat and settle down within an hour or two. Glad to hear you are getting more comfortable with it. Like PistolPeets just said, there's a learning curve to be negotiated.
I'm hoping to observe some full-load burns in the T5 soon, so I can make sure the stove continues to burn clean after the first couple of hours, and I haven't cut the air too far at the start.
In your setup, I might install a digital probe thermocouple into the liner, but I'm not sure if guys try to get that 18" up, or what? My free-standing rear-vent setup, I have the surface meter lying on the tee snout about 6" in back of the flue exit, so my temps there won't correspond to other burners who are reporting temps at 18" from the flue collar.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
81,893
South Puget Sound, WA
I'm glad you are making progress. So far I haven't seen or heard anything alarming. It's a learning process and you will gain confidence as you go along. Make your big fires in the morning so that you can observe the full burn cycle during the daytime

If you get a digital probe, try inserting the washer end in between the liner adapter and the flue collar and wedge it in.
 

jmdavis984

New Member
Nov 22, 2019
45
46140
I do think I'm getting there. I hope to always have a healthy respect for the stove and not get too comfortable with it. I do think that I'll be getting a thermocouple and digital readout with alarm. It makes a lot of sense to have something that will warn of an over-fire, and having the flue temps will give me another data point at the very least. Right now I'm cruising at 600 degrees above the door, blower on 75%, cranking out heat, and have been there for a half hour. Time for bed.
 

jmdavis984

New Member
Nov 22, 2019
45
46140
If you get a digital probe, try inserting the washer end in between the liner adapter and the flue collar and wedge it in.
I like the Auber AT100 that you referenced in your Fire Starting thread. Do you have a recommendation for a probe?

I'm not sure what you mean by "the washer end" of the probe. My experience with temperature probes tells me they look like this: https://www.sweetmarias.com/media/catalog/product/cache/3a08b2e9193e3803175427b9031c9396/r/e/replacement-k-type-thermocouple-1_1.jpg
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
12,121
Southern IN
I do think I'm getting there. I hope to always have a healthy respect for the stove and not get too comfortable with it. I do think that I'll be getting a thermocouple and digital readout with alarm. It makes a lot of sense to have something that will warn of an over-fire,.
In the mean time, use your phone timer in case you get distracted on a new load and forget you have the air open too far. ;)
I like the Auber AT100 that you referenced
Hey, I thought you were going to bed. ;lol
 
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