Please help, so many Castle Serenity issues

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StayinWarmCentralNY

New Member
Feb 11, 2022
5
Cobleskill, NY
(I'm at my wits end. I want to just throw some money at this problem but there are no Castle certified pellet stove repair people anywhere near my area Cobleskill/Oneonta NY. If anyone has any leads, please please send me that info.)

Hi, I've been stove-sitting a Castle Serenity pellet stove built in 2017. It has been doing great up to now and this week everything is falling apart. I bought 15 bags of hardwood softwood mix pellets from a place that only sells that. Internet searches don't present that as a big problem and it may well not be but after using mixed hard/soft pellets instead of 100% hardwood pellets maybe it's a coincidence but ...

First the stove began shutting off. After 16 hours then after 12 hours, then after 4 hours then after 10 minutes. I clean the glass, burn pot and generally around the stove every day, I try to time it when the house will be ok without this heat.

I called customer service which ranges from good to excellent in terms of how friendly, helpful and knowledgable the representatives appear. My first suggestion was to change the proof of power switch. I did and was excited that instead of cutting off in less than 30 minutes, the stove was going three hours later. But it shut off in four hours. Next guess, clean the exhaust, so removed the left panel, removed the hand screws and got rid of what looked like packed in dirt but I now realize was the gasket. But the stove was still functional.

Next guess, lower the blower voltage of every stall by 5. Unfortunately I don't know if that might work because the auger stopped spinning. Pressing feed in diagnostic causes the motor to hum but no movement of the auger at all. Removing pellets from the hopper, there were some smushed pellets in the top and bottom corners of the spiral elevator. Removing as many as I can using fingers and pipe cleaners has not helped. I don't think this model has the black auger motor reset button and if it does, I don't know if I need to press it because the motor sounds as if it activates, it just does not spin the auger at all now.

So here I am. Maybe using the wrong fuel totally destroyed the stove. Maybe there is something small I've missed and it'll be back up in a second. If anyone can help with any suggestions I will greatly appreciate them.
 

rich2500

Minister of Fire
Nov 19, 2005
1,422
Berks County PA.
If you hear the auger motor running You either have a pellet jamb somewhere in the auger chute or the screw came loose that holds the auger to the motor shaft.
 
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StayinWarmCentralNY

New Member
Feb 11, 2022
5
Cobleskill, NY
Not sure if anyone knows the specific brand curran pellets premium hardwood softwood blend. But has the consensus experience been that blended wood pellets work just as well as 100% hardwood pellets? It seems like suppliers consistently have random pellet brands that I've never seen before. Any clues as to what pellets to avoid?
 

gfreek

Minister of Fire
Nov 5, 2010
1,695
WNYS
Not sure if anyone knows the specific brand curran pellets premium hardwood softwood blend. But has the consensus experience been that blended wood pellets work just as well as 100% hardwood pellets? It seems like suppliers consistently have random pellet brands that I've never seen before. Any clues as to what pellets to avoid?
I've burned some Curran blended pellets, more ash build up than the hardwoods I've been burning. Been using TSC branded Pellets last few years out of convenience, burn OK for me....You mentioned using "wrong" pellets in your stove. I don't believe there is a wrong brand, just some burn better or better quality control than others..ie. hardwood, softwood, blended, pellet length, dusty pellets etc..
 

StayinWarmCentralNY

New Member
Feb 11, 2022
5
Cobleskill, NY
The issue is resolved. Local big hardware store, not home depot or lowes, got me in contact with the area stove installer. He says the screw holding the motor to the auger was so loose it could easily have stopped spinning at the least resistance. Not sure when or how it got that way.

His take on the curran pellets is that others have complained about them this year, while other years they've been perfectly good. But if not for the loose auger I probably wouldn't have seen any issue other than how much I have to clean after or how long they take to finish a bag.

I guess it's just a coincidence that changing pellets happened at the same time it conked out.

I'm glad this forum is here to bounce ideas around.
 

gfreek

Minister of Fire
Nov 5, 2010
1,695
WNYS
The issue is resolved. Local big hardware store, not home depot or lowes, got me in contact with the area stove installer. He says the screw holding the motor to the auger was so loose it could easily have stopped spinning at the least resistance. Not sure when or how it got that way.

His take on the curran pellets is that others have complained about them this year, while other years they've been perfectly good. But if not for the loose auger I probably wouldn't have seen any issue other than how much I have to clean after or how long they take to finish a bag.

I guess it's just a coincidence that changing pellets happened at the same time it conked out.

I'm glad this forum is here to bounce ideas around.
Thanks for posting the solution to your problem..
 

StayinWarmCentralNY

New Member
Feb 11, 2022
5
Cobleskill, NY
If you hear the auger motor running You either have a pellet jamb somewhere in the auger chute or the screw came loose that holds the auger to the motor shaft.

Thanks for posting the solution to your problem..
The answer was in the first response. Knowing what I know now, I would have tried harder to figure out how to access the auger motor shaft screw. There's a good chance this is something I could have done myself.