Wood burning stove question

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Salmonid, Dec 31, 2008.

  1. Got one a few months ago and for the most part, have no problems with it but when its windy out, ( IE Today) the stove cant get hot enough to push the smoke out the top, every gust of wind pushes tons of smoke out the top seal, bottom ash vent and around the doors. Right now I cant even see my feet as I am typing this and every smoke detector in the house has already went off. This happens all the time on windy days so does anyone have a cure for this, good dry wood ( 6 mo old dry split Ash) good fire but every once of smoke comes out the seals in syncronized gusts with the wind I hear outside. Its enough to make me pay the higher propane costs and sell it for scrap. :mad: Been burning about 45 minutes now trying to overcome it but even now it only slihtly better. On still days not a lick of problems.

    Salmonid ( cough cough)

    FLT_TUBE_JNKY Uber Tuber

    I had the same problem with mine a few weeks ago when it was real windy. The only way it would stop is when I had a good hot fire going, but once it died down I would get a little poof of smoke when the wind would gust. Hopefully someone will have an anser to this.

  3. Lewzer

    Lewzer Powderfinger

    How high is your chimney compared to the peak of your roof?

    Are you using one of those double walled galvanized pipes that goes through a hole in your wall and up the side of your house?
  4. Stretch

    Stretch Wishin I was fishin

    When I first light my wood burner if it has been sitting I burn just paper in it to warm up the pipes and get the draw working. Once the paper burns out I make sure when I start the fire that I have the correct vents open so that the draw will take the smoke out thru the pipe.
    I have been told that if you have issues like you described that it could be the smoke stack is not high enough past the roof of house, thus the draw is not working properly. This might be able to be fixed by changing the type of end you have on the smoke stack. I have seen the type that will switch directions, kind of like a windmill, to allow the draw and wind to work together.
    Also make sure the smoke stack is clean, I usually clean mine at the beginning of the season, and I just did it last weekend, thus mid season. I can take a cap off the bottom of mine and run the brush up thru the stack. Hope this helps....
  5. its an 8" pipe, straight up through a slightly angled roof line (room addition) but on the windy side of the house. ( NW corner) Flu was cleaned about 5 weeks ago so thats not a problem, just wondered if someone made a inline fan vent to "help" the air go north instead of it back flowing back into the stove, even now its only slightly better, fire has went out two times as well from the down drafts so its taking longer then normal to get a good hot fire going. Eyes burning, dogs freaking out....;)
  6. misfit

    misfit MOD SQUAD

    could be any one of a few things if you have the dampers opened up.chimney height and relation to roof,as mentioned.if you have many trees closeby,they could also prevent good draft.another thing to try is opening a window or two on the windward side of the house just a little to help draft.if the house is too tight,it could possibly hinder draft also.too many turns in pipe can also affect it.pipe size should be sufficient.another possible thing might be the type of cap as mentioned.before trashed the stve,i'd check all those things.if everything is installed and operating properly you should rarely get any backdraft.
    pre-warming the flu as stretch said, is also a great tip.

    btw,what type stove?
  7. I have been outside, some smoke at times leaving the cap, then the wind comes and there is no smoke, ( if I am on the inside,when the wind comes, it comes right down the pipe and smoke comes out the seals for a few seconds then gets sucked back up flu) Flu is straight up to cap and out, like I said, most times, no probems. Damper is always all the way open. Inside stove, vents are all along the back ( Vertically) so there is no way to clog them. Frustrating part is wife wont give it up, just keeps trying to relight and we have pulled out all the wood and started over incase a wet log was in there, nope. still the same with all dry kindling. Even have good bed of coals now but no matter. Now we are both sick to our stomachs after 2 hours of this, I think I might have her convinced to give it up.

    Last night fire was perfect, not a problem at all and not a lick of smoke.

  8. Oh yeah, its TSC's middle of the line, about 800 bucks, has a blower but its worthless until the stove is red hot, so for the first 1.5 hrs, it only blows cold air, once stove is totally hot, it blows really hot air but it takes a while.

  9. Flue height & type of cap are the factors here. Misfit's idea of opening a window is good, too. Do that on the side of the room the wind is coming from so it helps pressurize the area making it harder for the wind to push against the top of the pipe. Double wall pipe may be what you need with an aerodynamic cap. That type of cap has a domed top that creates a slight vacuum like an airplane does.
    If it goes through a roof for a 1 story part of house next to 2 story part of house the pipe should be at least 8' from the wall or 4' above it. If not, that is your problem. The top should be 4' above anything within 8' of it. That's the State code & a Federal "guideline" on a gas flue. Total height could also be the problem. Gas furnace manufacturers all say the flues for their equipment should have a minimum of 15' total height from where the flue gases enters them to top them. Sometimes even if there is nothing near the pipe they won't work in all conditions unless they are 15' tall. I've been running & designing gas appliance flues since 1980.

    Do not, under any circumstances, put any type of fan or anything else in the pipe!! (Unless you like carbon monoxide & house fires!)

    FLT_TUBE_JNKY Uber Tuber

    Chimney has to be at least 3 feet above roofline if it more than 10 feet away from the higher structure if your house is a 2 story. If its closer than 10 feet than it has to be a foot higher than the peak of the 2nd story. This is the info from my pipping kit when I put mine in a few months ago.

    Edit:What Fisherball said.
  11. Thanks for the info guys, Ill get a measurement and picture of it tomorrow so stay tuned, as for the stove, it now finally seems to be working much better, hardly any smoke now but house is saturated so its kinda hard to tell.

  12. Ok, took a few pics, no measurements yet.
    Here is the flu from looking at the back of the house


    Here i am looking straight South at the side of the house, you can now see the single story addition.


    and here is the flu from the East looking West, I might add the winds were from the North/North east which is weird and may have contributed.


    Maybe this will help, Flu was preinstalled before I bought the house but we just put a stove in where the existing one was.

  13. Lewis


    I burn a ton of wood every year.It is my primary heat source and my electric furnace almost never runs.
    I have very little smoke problems.
    From your pics it looks like you have several structures that could be affecting airflow.
    In your case,I would probably add another length of pipe and change to a dome style cap.
    You could try the cap change first to see if that helps.

    Some smoking is normal until you get the flue nice and hot to create an updraft.
    Good advice on cracking a window to help with draft until the stove gets hot.
  14. misfit

    misfit MOD SQUAD

    ditto what lewis said.the roofs and possibly trees closeby are definitely a problem.i suspected that when i asked about the type house.add another section and it should help the situation.
  15. Is it possible to put a couple more sections of chimney at the top to raise it ? Maybe secure it with a cable or something.
  16. Your cap is a standard aerodynamic cap. You need a special "high-wind" cap. Find out the brand of A-Vent, the official name of that type flue pipe, & check their web site for a high-wind cap. I'm sure they make one. Add 4' to height of flue. If it still lets smoke in then trim tree branches. That's what I'd tell a customer that called my company to solve the problem.
  17. if the stack is to tall and does not stay hot it will not pull a draft,,,
  18. Mine does that sometimes too. Ive noticed that some days it seems that the air is blowing down the pipe and into hte burner. When im having probles lighting and it starts to get smokey i open a window near the burner. For some reason the air sucks in the window and makes the smoke go up the burner and pipe, not sure why think its some sort of pressure thing. Try that and see if it improves
  19. Giving the stove air to burn may be part of the problem. An open window will give it what it needs. Is your house real tight, without many air leaks? If it is then the fire sucks in so much air it may be creating negative pressure inside so it's real easy for air to rush in to try & fill the slight vacuum. Any gas appliance takes 29 cubic feet of air out of the room it's in for each cubic foot of gas it uses, wood takes even more. Most new fireplaces, wood or gas, have an air inlet pipe so they burn better & do not use all the air in the room creating a health hazard. By the way, nice house!
  20. From the pics tho, you can tell the chimney is much lower than the rooftop and nearby trees...wouldnt that be the place to start ?