Quadrafire AE MT Vernon grinding sound when self-cleaning

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ljkelly76

New Member
Feb 1, 2021
5
Connecticut
Hi -

I have a Quadrafire AE MT Vernon insert that makes a grinding sound when it is opening the bottom of the fire-pot during cleaning. A couple of times the bottom of the burn pot refuses to move back into place and I've had to forcibly pull the bottom back to where it belongs, but it seems to get be getting caught somewhere . I've checked the linkage and everything seems to be working right. Has anyone else run into this - and any ideas as to how to fix this?

Thanks, Lee
 

kappel15

Minister of Fire
Sep 14, 2014
2,543
Iowa
Pull the ashpan and look up at the rails. If they are getting rusty, time to sand em down and put a little high temp anti-seize grease on em. Also scrape pot floor to remove any carbon buildup. Also with ashpan removed, check bolt on back wall, making sure it is tight as it is the mounting bolt for the auto clean motor. Check all linkages of autoclean arm, to make sure they are snug. kap
 
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Scoop11

New Member
Jan 3, 2022
5
Long Island, NY
Pull the ashpan and look up at the rails. If they are getting rusty, time to sand em down and put a little high temp anti-seize grease on em. Also scrape pot floor to remove any carbon buildup. Also with ashpan removed, check bolt on back wall, making sure it is tight as it is the mounting bolt for the auto clean motor. Check all linkages of autoclean arm, to make sure they are snug. kap
Kap - I have a similar issue with the auto clean grinding, more like screeching. What type of high temp anti-seize do you use or recommend? Thx SC
 

CRISPY1

New Member
Jan 9, 2022
6
MA
I have the same problem. The rails look clean- I did lube with high temp dry graphite spray. No change- maybe a little change. I scraped the pot and bottom plate with the special tool- no change. To sand rails do you take them out ? and for the burnpot bottom do you take that out to clean ? If so is there any kind of video or step by step diagram that I can look at ? thanks
 

Scoop11

New Member
Jan 3, 2022
5
Long Island, NY
I have the same problem. The rails look clean- I did lube with high temp dry graphite spray. No change- maybe a little change. I scraped the pot and bottom plate with the special tool- no change. To sand rails do you take them out ? and for the burnpot bottom do you take that out to clean ? If so is there any kind of video or step by step diagram that I can look at ? thanks
Crispy - I’m not aware of any video, nor am I a stove tech, just an avid DYIer. I removed the ash pan and removed the burn pot — a little tricky since the bolts were seized. Then slipped out the burn pot bottom. With easier access from above I used 220 grit paper on both rails and the guides on the burn pot bottom, but brass or steel wool would likely work better instead of the paper. Then vacuumed the area, applied the anti seize, put it all back together with a new burn pot gasket (which I had pre ordered because I also replaced a bad thermocouple at the same time). All seems to be working great. Good luck! — SC
 

kappel15

Minister of Fire
Sep 14, 2014
2,543
Iowa
Pays to put that high temp anti-seize grease on pot bolts too, for next time you have to remove em. kap
 
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CRISPY1

New Member
Jan 9, 2022
6
MA
Okay so good news is I did find alot of slag on the bottom plate and I wire wheeled it off and everything works smoothly. Bad news is I snapped both pot bolts off and they are stuck in the bottom plate. Does anyone have a good way to get them out without damaging the bottom plate ? Looks like they are threaded into the bottom plate Possibly ? Is it a case of grinding them flush and drilling them out ? replacing with a regular nut and bolt ?? HELP !
 

Scoop11

New Member
Jan 3, 2022
5
Long Island, NY
Okay so good news is I did find alot of slag on the bottom plate and I wire wheeled it off and everything works smoothly. Bad news is I snapped both pot bolts off and they are stuck in the bottom plate. Does anyone have a good way to get them out without damaging the bottom plate ? Looks like they are threaded into the bottom plate Possibly ? Is it a case of grinding them flush and drilling them out ? replacing with a regular nut and bolt ?? HELP !
Crispy - on my free standing ‘08 Mt Vernon AE the original fire pot bolts threaded into a Molly like nut in hex shaped holes in the bottom plate. Each side took a little wiggling and persuasion but both finally freed up and out. I replaced with grade 8 bolts/flat-washers/nuts with anti seize on the threads. Hope that helps! Thx SC
 
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CRISPY1

New Member
Jan 9, 2022
6
MA
Crispy - on my free standing ‘08 Mt Vernon AE the original fire pot bolts threaded into a Molly like nut in hex shaped holes in the bottom plate. Each side took a little wiggling and persuasion but both finally freed up and out. I replaced with grade 8 bolts/flat-washers/nuts with anti seize on the threads. Hope that helps! Thx SC
Thanks, I took my dremel and ground them flush and yes they wiggled free. I replaced them with 4x20x 1 1/2 stainless bolts/washers and added wing nuts. Also applied high temp graphite. Now that I know it need annual service this should make it much easier
 
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kappel15

Minister of Fire
Sep 14, 2014
2,543
Iowa
They use rivnuts on pot bolts. And just using a normal bolt is fine. kap
 
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Scoop11

New Member
Jan 3, 2022
5
Long Island, NY
Thanks, I took my dremel and ground them flush and yes they wiggled free. I replaced them with 4x20x 1 1/2 stainless bolts/washers and added wing nuts. Also applied high temp graphite. Now that I know it need annual service this should make it much easier
Glad it worked out for you!
 

CRISPY1

New Member
Jan 9, 2022
6
MA
So I just got a thermocoupler error after cleaning the pot a few days ago. Wires are all intact. sensor is bolted down tight. I wiggled the rod at the ceramic cone and did a restart and error went away. the rod is touching the pot and floor where it makes it's curves . Is that a problem ?
 

kappel15

Minister of Fire
Sep 14, 2014
2,543
Iowa
I would say it wasn't touching the inside end of the cover and wasn't getting a reading. kap
 
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CRISPY1

New Member
Jan 9, 2022
6
MA
Okay so I didnt realize it had to be pushed all the way in and contact the end of the cone. I probably bent the wire slightly when pullin the pot. Thanks for the quick response- It's supposed to be in the single digits with wind !
 
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CRISPY1

New Member
Jan 9, 2022
6
MA
So my grinding auto clean issue just wont go away !! I replaced the pot and lower section because the auto clean motor is still sticking/grinding !! The rails are clean and when disconnected from the motor it slides freely. I'm thinking I waited to long to replace the fire pot parts are stripped the gears in the motor ?? If I push on the arm it will open but you have to help it. Anyone have a manual or video that shows how to replace the fire pot motor ? It looks involved !! Or is there something else I am missing ?
 

kappel15

Minister of Fire
Sep 14, 2014
2,543
Iowa
I would make sure all pc.'s are clean and lubed with high temp anti-seize grease, before spending money on a new auto-clean motor. Too replace it, you have to take the control board out and there is a plate behind it you take off to access the motor. kap