Rust inside the pellet stove after sitting over summer - advice?

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Amin1992

Feeling the Heat
Oct 9, 2019
331
PA, USA
Hey ya'll thanks for helping out. Last year at the end of the season, I cleaned out the pellet stove, removed extra pellets, cleaned her out, and left some ash in the tray to help absorb moisture over the summer.

Got around today to sweeping the exhaust liner and wanted to start it up quick to check it out (still in high 70s here). She started great, but I realized the entire inside is covered in spots of dark orange rust...

The thing is old, so I'm not interested in taking it apart and painting it. It was rusty before. But there is so much in there that I can't even get the trap door to open and close to empty the burn pot!

I want to fix this now, and also prevent it in the future. At the end of the year, could I try spraying the inside with an oil, like a simple vegetable oil? I dont want to make things worst by gunking up or ruining any components. As for now... could I try spraying vegetable oil inside the burn pot, on the trap door, to try and help smooth it out? It worked like a dream before the summer.

Thanks everyone
 

Washed-Up

Minister of Fire
Nov 5, 2011
1,050
Kananaskis,Alberta, Canada
That’s pretty normal, as ling as the rust isn’t deep, just fire it up and don’t worry about it
 

Amin1992

Feeling the Heat
Oct 9, 2019
331
PA, USA
Cool :) Just wanted to make sure. I'm sure the fire will burn it off quick.

Wanted to add: I took off a plate and was able to gain access to the swiveling piece that connects the trap door to the pull rod. Looks like that just got a bit rusty and seized up. Sprayed with WD40 and let soak a few minutes, then sprayed some Silicone lubricant and it's moving freely again.

Thanks
 

mtnbiker727

Feeling the Heat
Mar 11, 2019
305
PA
Put a container of Damprid in there next year. I also spray the burnpot down with cooking spray.
 
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SidecarFlip

Minister of Fire
Feb 7, 2010
5,273
S.E. Michigan
Get yourself a pressurized can of Stabil Fogging oil and spray it down when you do the final clean in the spring. Been using that stuff right along on mine. Corn is extremely corrosive and the fogging oil has saved the inside of mine for 15 years now. TSC (Tractor Supply) has it all the time.
 
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wallywiz

Member
Sep 5, 2010
153
WI
Get yourself a pressurized can of Stabil Fogging oil and spray it down when you do the final clean in the spring. Been using that stuff right along on mine. Corn is extremely corrosive and the fogging oil has saved the inside of mine for 15 years now. TSC (Tractor Supply) has it all the time.

my firebox is rusty as well. Am I supposed to wheel brush the inside to knock off the rust, THEN spray the inside or do I just spray over as is (without wheel brushing).
 

hinkle

Member
Jan 3, 2013
76
Portersville, PA
left some ash in the tray to help absorb moisture over the summer.

I want to fix this now, and also prevent it in the future. At the end of the year, could I try spraying the inside with an oil, like a simple vegetable oil? I dont want to make things worst by gunking up or ruining any components. As for now... could I try spraying vegetable oil inside the burn pot, on the trap door, to try and help smooth it out? It worked like a dream before the summer.
Late reply but, I was told ash left in the stove actually attracts moisture and can lead to rust in the surrounding areas. I was also told to leave an open bag of charcoal in the stove over the summer so it attracts and holds the moisture, by the same person.

I've never done the bag of charcoal but I can say when I clean the stove out and have no ash left vs. when my wife burns a bag of pellets while I'm at work and it goes all summer without me knowing, there is a noticeable difference in the conditions of the interior. :) Jokes, I'm guilty too.
 
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hinkle

Member
Jan 3, 2013
76
Portersville, PA
my firebox is rusty as well. Am I supposed to wheel brush the inside to knock off the rust, THEN spray the inside or do I just spray over as is (without wheel brushing).
I don't know if I would wire wheel the interior. You would just be exposing more bare clean metal to encourage oxidation possibly. But I could be totally wrong.

I have a metal cleaning tool/scraper and what ever it knocks off during the pre season cleaning, I do it even when it is still clean from the end of last season, is enough for the folks I run with.
 

hinkle

Member
Jan 3, 2013
76
Portersville, PA
At the end of the year, could I try spraying the inside with an oil, like a simple vegetable oil? I dont want to make things worst by gunking up or ruining any components.
Just my opinion, I would stay away from the veggie oil sprays. With zero testing or research, I just think it would gunk up as you said. Comparing to a cast iron skillet.

While entertaining the thought and thinking of iron skillets, Crisco all-vegetable shortening came to mind because I have been told it had been used on tanks and submarines, again second hand information. That might be a better option, but it still creates a layer on cast iron that I think would turn into a liquid mess and possibly a fire hazard. A quick search shows it's flammable around 300 degrees F, so maybe not the best choice.