Pressure Heat brand wood fireplace insert

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New Member
Dec 6, 2020
Wellsburg, IA
I have a Pressure Heat brand wood fireplace insert. It has a remote fan that I'm assuming blows air around the firebox and out the vent above it if it worked properly. It's my understanding that this company went under years ago so I can't find any info on this insert anywhere. I replaced the fan outside last year because the old one was seized up. If I turn it on when there is no fire going, it doesn't blow air through the vent, so I've been hesitant to use it at all for fear something isn't right. I can reach through the outside vent and feel the air inlet and it feels blocked. Is there something in these inserts that only allows that vent to open when it reached a certain temp or something like that, or should it be open and free flowing all the time? Seems like that would be drafty when not in use. Just trying to figure out how this thing is supposed to work and running in to all dead ends. Anyways I have it all torn apart and don't want to put it back together until I figure out if that inlet should be blocked off like that when not in use or not. TIA for any and allhelp!

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I know nothing about this fireplace, but the name and the way you have described it may be a clue. The fireplace might be set up to work like the modern FPX in that it takes outside air and blows it through the convection system in order to positively pressurize the room with heated air. If so, there may be a thermal snap switch that keeps the fan off until the fireplace warms up. There could also be a simple flap valve that stops cold air from entering when the fireplace is not burning. All of this is speculation, but I don't think that burning in the fireplace would be dangerous to try this out. That is assuming that it has been cleaned and inspected for integrity and flue safety.
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The fan has a switch on the wall to turn it off/on. I do know there is no other mechanism controlling the operation of the fan, but that flap or whatever it is blocking the air inlet could be, like you suggested. I was just hoping to find someone who knew about these inserts to verify before I reassemble the thing again. Thanks!
Also, the switch/fan are the only electrical components in the system. Is it possible that flap could operate on some kind of thermostatic control, like the air inlet on some wood stoves? I might just get it good and hot to see.
Did you test the motor before putting it in? If it works, use a meter to trace out the circuit starting with the wall switch. Make sure there's power there.
Yes, the fan works properly, it just doesn't push any air due to that inlet being closed off right where it enters the heat exchange around the insert. I'm just trying to figure out if that is something that will open once it's hot or if I need to tear into it further
Ah, ok. It wasn't clear that the fan comes on when switched on. That removes the question of a thermal switch. If the fireplace is safe to use then burning a fire to test shouldn't hurt anything.
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