What am I doing wrong with our new Century wood stove??greenspun.com : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread
We recently installed a Century wood stove. I am no stranger to wood heat, but this is the first stove of this type I have had. Its non-catalytic, but has the clean burn features of newer stoves. I cant seem to get the same level of heat out of this stove as I could with the older types I have had before. Wondering if its something Im not doing right, or if this is just a characteristic of this type stove?? Did we buy a lemon?? Or do these stoves just have to be stoked to the hilt to radiate much heat?? Any suggestions would be appreciated.
-- Phyllis from the Texas Panhandle (email@example.com), October 17, 2001
I also have a non-cat, mine is a Kuma Classic it is step top, glass front free standing, We haven't been able the get the top of it over 315º so far, it gets plenty hot inside tho' Ours is rated for a 2500 sq.foot house our house is something like 1800 sq ft. and I can get the house as warm as I like,(about 85º in the front room) I've even had to open the door to outside, to cool the front room off a little, we also have a large ceiling fan running all the time.
When the stove is cold is doesn't burn as well as when it is hot, (preheated from the 1st fire) I tryed an over night burn in a cold box and sooted it so bad it shocked me to see it the next morning, I have learned to heat it up real good with a small fire and get some coals going so that the back corners are good and warm before putting in big wood, the wood needs to be warm too, not strait from outside. and I have learned that a "top down" burn works much better because of the way the air flows in the box.
I can cook anything on a camp fire and used and old style wood burner years ago, the type that when ever there is room for another log you put it in, this little air tight doesn't work the same way, I'm still learning with it. If you want to ask more questions try www.woodheat.org it is a great site.
-- Thumper (firstname.lastname@example.org), October 17, 2001.
Hi Phyllis, how is your stove doing now? I have been trying different ways of loading mine, and I found that putting the logs in so that the ends are front to back inline with the air flow, has given the best burn I've had yet as to the time needed to get it going, and I tried cracking the ash pan for more air, wow that was like a blast furnace and a little scary, now I am writing a burn diary of the kind of wood and times to reload. I thought about it and it does take longer to get heat out of this one than other stoves I've been around. My 1st few loads took 30 to 40 min. to get going, and over 2 hours to get the room really warm, I started useing alot of smaller well split wood at first, and it has helped to pick up the time and temperature rates, to get the stove hot, then I put in a big one on the coals and add a few splits to get the flame up quickly, and maybe crack the ash pan 5 minutes tops, no more because it just gets too hot too fast, (it shows a blue/white/green tint flame and roars like power bellows a smithy's forge) I think all the fire brick and insulation a non-cat needs to get the smoke burning temps, is why it takes longer to get the heat out of the stove.
-- Thumper (email@example.com), October 30, 2001.
Thanks, Thumper!! I had not thought about putting the wood in front to back like that, and it certainly makes sense. Havent tried opening the ash pan either, but I will. We have had some pretty warm weather lately, and havent needed the stove. Its not normal for me to be eager for cold weather, but this year I am!! Want to get that stove figured out!! I'll post on here and let you know how its going once it gets good and cold!!
-- Phyllis from the Texas Panhandle (firstname.lastname@example.org), October 31, 2001.
I had a similar opinion and had same problems with our Century wood stove before : long to light up, poor heat, etc. Getting it started being tough before the heat establishes a continuous burning action. But how could I modify the stove without damaging its original desing and burning capabilities? Until I made a small modification.
Ours is one with an ashtray located under the burning room, accessible from a removable tile. How to bring more oxygen into the burning chamber, specialy in the very first hour of combustion?
By cuting off only 1" the tile «next» to the removable one, permitting a slighter oxygen to get in the burning chamber. Once the heat is on, the new ashes will gradualy plug that opening and combustion will self establish with a higher temperature.
This modification is always reversible. Just replace it by a new tile identical to the original one.
If you try it and like it or have a better idea send me an email
-- Georges Bouchard (email@example.com), December 29, 2001.
Hopefully I can be of some help to any and all. I am actually a welder for Kuma Stoves Inc as well as the Internet Sales Manager, so naturally the dificulty with the Kuma Wood Classic Is what caught my eye. Putting your wood in the stove from front to back is imperative, the air is not allowed to get under the wood if it lays in the stove side to side. The reason is that most newer stoves provide the primary oxygen from the top down in front of the glass. This is why your stove will work better with the ash pan open. Please dont think I assume you dont know how to operate a wood stove, but allow me to stress the importance of a few small tecniques in starting a fire and loading for an all night burn. When starting a fire use a lot of paper and very small kindling as this produces a lot of heat fast, newer stoves need to be well heated before the will transfer heat properly and achieve the burn efficiencies that they are rated at. It is extremely important to burn your stove HOT at least once a day, such as in the morning after adding wood. When trying to achieve the longest burn times out of your stove it is important to start with a good hot bed of coals. Stuff as much wood in as possible and let it get good and caught on fire, then shut the air supply ALL the way off. (Stoves are required by EPA to allow a small amount of air to the fire even when the controls are off) These principles apply not only to the Kuma Stoves but probably 98% of all other brands as well. firstname.lastname@example.org
-- Jason Freeman (email@example.com), January 21, 2002.
Has anyone rigged their stoves for outside air? If so, where did you put the hole?
I thought of using the back of the leg.
Can you burn small pieces of coal in these stoves?
Do newer stoves smoke?
-- george schmidt (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 22, 2002.
Jason my new friend!!!!!I discovered all that you said about the Kuma stove by trial and error, I am very glad to hear that the stove is supposed to run full out with the damper closed, I got concerned with it the first couple of times we got it so hot and couldn't shut the air off, so You have help me alot with that info. Please drop in on the email exchange at www.woodheat.org and read through my post, (oooh, what secrets you must know... ;-) mine are about my Kuma Classic, I am just about to send in episode 6, [we cleaned our chimney for the first time] and this is my first wood heat stove, I grew up around them, but the old ones just don't work the same as the new ones. Read ya'later......
-- Thumper (email@example.com), January 22, 2002.
Hay there George, the new stoves only show smoke at startup, or with a reload of fuel, about 5 min is the best time I've heard of to no smoke, and that is with a hot box, a cold box takes longer,because it has to reach the high temps to burn the smoke inside the stove.
Go over to the woodheat site it has lots of question and answer stuff, for the most part outside air is not recomended, the fire doesn't burn as well with cold air, but the site and email exchange explain all of that better than I can.
-- Thumper (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 22, 2002.
I too have recently purchased a new style woodburner. I have the small model from Century. After using it for one full winter here in northern MN, I have learned a few things about how to operate it. I have some likes and dislikes about the stove: I like the amount of heat I get out of a small amount of wood - it is extremely efficient. Dislikes: Stove is hard to light, and smokes excessively until you get a hot fire going. You need a lot of hot burning kindling, or the other solution is to never let the fire go out.
-- max from northern MN (email@example.com), April 01, 2002.