When is it too windy to fire up the stove?

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isipwater

Feeling the Heat
Jun 6, 2013
371
Southeastn, AZ
Hi, I am in south east Massachusetts and with the current Juno snow storm system.

Current winds are 45 mph with occasional gusts up to 75 mph.

I have a Lopi Endeavor with a straight stove pipe (no bends) that is centrally located in the house.

It is still safe to start a fire with these strong winds? Thanks!
 
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aansorge

Minister of Fire
Aug 12, 2011
925
Southern Minnesota
You'll get a strong draft, but it should be fine otherwise.
 

CptJera

New Member
If the chimney is still attached to the house, I'd say go for it! Good luck with this storm.
 

isipwater

Feeling the Heat
Jun 6, 2013
371
Southeastn, AZ
If I have a super strong draft, I could just put less wood in the stove so that the temperature does not get out of control.

But I am wondering if the strong winds will make my stove back puff any smoke into the house. Any thoughts on that concern? Thx
 

CptJera

New Member
I'm relative new to wood stoves and couldn't say but I'm certain a few of the resident experts here will have some sound advice for you on the issue.
 

xman23

Minister of Fire
Oct 7, 2008
2,170
Lackawaxen PA
I have a standard dome cap with no screan. I never had down draft in high winds.
 

tsquini

Minister of Fire
Jan 8, 2009
707
North Shore, MA
The wind should not effect you too much. If you notice the wind slowing down your draft you can adjust your damper.
 

Grisu

Minister of Fire
Nov 1, 2010
4,121
Chittenden, VT
I think that is hard to generalize. You may be ok, you may get overdraft, or you may get backdraft. It is even possible that you get one outcome when those high winds are coming from one direction and another when it is blowing from the opposite direction. The possibility that would concern me most would be backdrafting when the wind induces a negative pressure in the house. Had you ever the feeling that high winds seemed to suck out air from the leeward side of the house? That would be a potential sign for negative pressure pulling air from the house which could induce a backdraft from the stove.

If unsure try a small fire first or turn on the furnace for a day or two.
 
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isipwater

Feeling the Heat
Jun 6, 2013
371
Southeastn, AZ
I think that is hard to generalize. You may be ok, you may get overdraft, or you may get backdraft. It is even possible that you get one outcome when those high winds are coming from one direction and another when it is blowing from the opposite direction. The possibility that would concern me most would be backdrafting when the wind induces a negative pressure in the house. Had you ever the feeling that high winds seemed to suck out air from the leeward side of the house? That would be a potential sign for negative pressure pulling air from the house which could induce a backdraft from the stove.

If unsure try a small fire first or turn on the furnace for a day or two.
Yes, I think starting off with a small fire is the way to go. It is hard to say which direction the wind is coming from. I don't think I have ever felt that air has been sucked out of the house before in a storm. I am using the oil this morning and will try a small fire later this morning and report back.
 

Mainely Saws

Feeling the Heat
Jan 11, 2010
309
Topsham , Me.
Good morning to you !
I'm up here in midcoast Maine with a 30+ ft tall interior chimney & my stove is clicking along without any issues in these high winds . Your results may certainly vary but I'd suggest going easy & keep an eye on your stove to see how it will perform under these conditions .........
Stay safe .........

Bob
 
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branchburner

Minister of Fire
Sep 27, 2008
2,758
southern NH
Shouldn't be a problem. Those of us who heat 100% with wood of course have no choice... it's either run the stove, or freeze. Never had a problem with high winds in cold temps... generally the stove drafts stronger than usual.
 
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Fsappo

Minister of Fire
Apr 9, 2008
4,331
Central NY
When I lived on a mountain and had high winds with my Kent, I would just use less wood per load, keep the draft choked down and deal with 3 hour load times. I think if you are questioning it, start small and see how your stove reacts. Remember, wind direction and barometric pressure can effect a stove differently, so don't ever think you have it figured out 100%
 
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isipwater

Feeling the Heat
Jun 6, 2013
371
Southeastn, AZ
Filled the fire box one third full. Opened up the bypass damper, used a Super Cedar fire starter. Fire started as usual but in the first 3 minutes, the stove back-puffed smoke two times (small amounts) while I had the door cracked to increase start draft. Closed the door and fire got going and has been doing fine. The flames are dancing a little more wild, especially when I hear a strong gust of wind outside. No more smoke back-puffing, thankfully! It is wonderful having a cozy fire for the family on a crazy snow day like this.
 

isipwater

Feeling the Heat
Jun 6, 2013
371
Southeastn, AZ
When I lived on a mountain and had high winds with my Kent, I would just use less wood per load, keep the draft choked down and deal with 3 hour load times. I think if you are questioning it, start small and see how your stove reacts. Remember, wind direction and barometric pressure can effect a stove differently, so don't ever think you have it figured out 100%
Thanks for sharing. I am situated 1/4 mile from the ocean and the winds can sometimes be punishing. So far so good with my smaller wood load.
 

Oldman47

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2015
1,011
Central Illinois
For wind effects on a house with a straight pipe, go look at a toilet in the same general area. If the wind gusts is having an effect you will see the surface of the water in your toilet moving up and down. The toilet water level is a crude manometer with the plumbing stack connected to outdoors and the surface you are watching connected to indoors.
 

isipwater

Feeling the Heat
Jun 6, 2013
371
Southeastn, AZ
For wind effects on a house with a straight pipe, go look at a toilet in the same general area. If the wind gusts is having an effect you will see the surface of the water in your toilet moving up and down. The toilet water level is a crude manometer with the plumbing stack connected to outdoors and the surface you are watching connected to indoors.
How did you know I was in my bathroom. Well ummm....who knew?? Yes, my toilet water is going up and down slightly.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
85,067
South Puget Sound, WA
This has to be a judgement call based on the individual flue setup. There are simply too many variables in chimney installations for us to advise. Flue height and location, house location, terrain, etc.. are all going to affect how the chimney drafts in these conditions. A smaller, controllable fire is prudent.
 
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isipwater

Feeling the Heat
Jun 6, 2013
371
Southeastn, AZ
This has to be a judgement call based on the individual flue setup. There are simply too many variables in chimney installations for us to advise. Flue height and location, house location, terrain, etc.. are all going to affect how the chimney drafts in these conditions. A smaller, controllable fire is prudent.
I have burned through my first small load and am about to start my second. So far, so good!
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
85,067
South Puget Sound, WA
I can appreciate your wanting to test for a fire. If the power goes out this will be important.
 
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Mag Craft

Feeling the Heat
Apr 2, 2014
355
Wyoming
I live in Wyoming on top of a hill in the high plains. The wind blows here all the time. The wind does not bother my burning wood. On real high windy days I do see the flames moving a little from it, but no smoke or back draft.
 

David.Ervin

Feeling the Heat
Jan 17, 2014
276
O-H
The only problem I've had with high winds is when they come in from the side of the house opposite my OAK intake. It seems to create a low-pressure zone and suck smoke back down the chimney unless I can get the fire ripping hot to overcome the effect.
 

Ram 1500 with an axe...

Minister of Fire
Mar 26, 2013
2,327
New Jersey
If your really concerned, I would load the stove with wood and extra kindling, then I would light a candle and put it on top of your kindling and close the door for a while..... When your ready to light up, open a window or a door.....
 

Charles1981

Minister of Fire
Feb 19, 2013
762
Michigan
Toilet manometer is amazing. I know it is off subject but that is the most amazing thing I have heard in a bit. I can't wait for the next windy day. My wife is going to want to know why I am staring into the bowl.
 

Ram 1500 with an axe...

Minister of Fire
Mar 26, 2013
2,327
New Jersey
Mierdameter.......
 
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