i just purchsed a harmon p38 pellet stove should i use my existing chimney or vent direct?
Depending on local codes you may do it either way. Some areas (check with building dept. or fire dept.) require a full reline if you use your existing chimney, others allow the vent to run into the clay liner about eighteen inches. There is a link to the manual for that stove on Harman's web site. It has some examples of typical installations.
Here is a link that might be useful: Harman's web site
Thank you for your reply, jimkelt. At the present time, I have a wood burning stove going and I am having a problem with creosote draining from the clean out door on my porch from condensation. I cleaned the chimney out and put a cap on and I am still having this problem. Would I still have this problem if I hooked up a pellet stove to this existing chimney? When looking up information, I found that my problem my be not burning the wood burning stove hot enough.
Would a pellet stove do the same thing?
Thank you, Grandpa
"Would I still have this problem if I hooked up a pellet stove to this existing chimney?"
Pellet moisture content (mc) is @ 8% so there is no creosote caused by such heaters, but you will definitely get a lot of ash in the pipe. Thus pellet heaters are high maintenance & in a power outage your P38 will shut down. So, unless you have a generator, you will be out in the cold, literally.
"When looking up information, I found that my problem my be not burning the wood burning stove hot enough."
A 30 lb load of wood at 20% mc, considered by most to be "seasoned firewood", contains 6 lbs of water, or Â¾ of a gallon. That water must be boiled off, 212 degrees minimum, before serious combustion begins. So the normal procedure is to get the fire up to 500 degrees & let it run at that temp for @ 10 minutes before choking the air to get the temp to the 300~400 degree range. In keeping the temp @ 300 or above you burn above the creosote zone.
However, your wood mc is probably the cause of your creosote. "Seasoned wood" is a variable term so it can be as high as 20-25% mc to some folks. Since pellet heaters do not have creosote obviously the mc of their fuel is the clue that most stove burners never seriously consider.
The trick to eliminating creosote is to get the mc in the firewood down to @ 10%, which also increases the b.t.u. output of the wood by 20%. That is done by splitting then storing the wood under roof with it exposed to unshaded sunlight, behind plastic or glass, & waiting at least 2 years.
We have been burning 27 years with the same class A metal chimney & wood heater.
My brother-in-law has been burning the same length of time, except that he did it the "normal way". Unfortunately this year he will have to replace his class A chimney because creosote has eaten it up.
i know this does not address your primary concern regarding creosote but for what's worth i'd suggest direct venting just because it's simple and direct (pardon the pun)...
Pellet stoves burn at a temperature that is high enough not to produce creosote. If you burn a premium pellet (most of what is out there fall into this category) you will get less than 1% ash. So they are very clean. Some stoves you will only need to clean once each month or so...
Back to venting. With your situation would it be possible to just install straight out the back of your chimney? The pellet stove is power vented (pushes it's exhaust instead of relying on draft) so it does not actually need the chimney. If you have issues with your chimney and need to use it, I would probably recommend relining. In the long run the benefits may outweigh the additional cost. Or another option, since they are direct vented out any outside wall. Is there somewhere else you would want to put a freestanding stove?
Hope this helps.
"Pellet stoves burn at a temperature that is high enough not to produce creosote."
So do wood heaters when burned 300 degrees or above with truly "seasoned wood".
"If you burn a premium pellet (most of what is out there fall into this category) you will get less than 1% ash. So they are very clean."
Apparently youÂve not read about pellet burning problems in the real world?
From what I read, & it is far more than the above link, ash / soot are a problem, as is the auger, circuit board, burn pot, power outages, price gouging on pellets, etc. Who wants that headache?
And did you note the maintenance required on the P 38?
Either the P 38 is faithfully cleaned or else. So, unless he wants another chore added to his schedule, he would do well to reconsider this matter.
Can you imagine your spouse enjoying your "nice looking heater" while wiping her cold running nose because there is a power outage, the auger locked up, the circuit board failed, etc? What wood stove has those problems? Then why would any sane person pay @ $1,400, + pellet piping exhaust expense, for such pain?
I would take the P 38 back, even if there is a 10% restock fee, because the following is cheaper & makes sense.
Buy a Condar thermometer & then run his wood stove according to CondarÂs instructions
And buy a moisture meter to verify that the fire wood is truly "seasoned"
Do that & his creosote problem disappears! Total cost + shipping, $50. So even if it cost 10% to restock the P 38 his outlay is less than $200.
Why, he would still have enough money left over to buy a 5k generator with electric start & have it wired to needed outlets, the fridge, freezer, tv, bath, washing machine, etc. Would that make your wife happy? It sure did mine.
Case in point
Harman's Poor Customer Service
But then you knew all about such, didn't you!?!
Wow... I don't post that often and usually do lots of reading, but if there's one area where internet propaganda is alive and well it's the home heating forums.
People (dealers and the like) pushing their products and beating down the competition. Just like the above posts beating down Harmon stoves...
Do yourself a favour Grandpa, ask people face to face who have a pellet stove. I've learned not to trust these internet heating forums anymore. I have several friends who have pellet stoves of various brands and all of them are pleased with them. Get a good one and you'll be happy.
Fscott, your post is amusing to say the least!
What competing product is it that am I "pushing"?
Grandpa owns a Harman, so my post was directed specifically to what is REQUIRED to maintain a Harman P 38. Would you have me cite EnglandÂs, NapoleonÂs, etc maintenance routines?!?
Those that cannot solve a creosote problem will be quickly & totally vexed to learn the demands for maintenance ANY pellet eater REQUIRES. If grandpa has the money to afford dealer maintenance obviously there is no problem, but I suspect that is not the case.
And, if you would try thinking, you would quickly realize that the problems I cited are in fact common to ALL pellet eater manufactures.
Thus my "propaganda" is what any thinking wood stove burner would tell him to do. Buy a good stove thermometer, a moisture meter, & resolve the creosote problem for less than $50. That is what is known as a logical approach to a problem, fscott.
Are you suggesting that it makes sense that he should pay $1,400+ to solve his heating trouble? If so please contact a reputable lawyer & fill out a "Power of Attorney" form IMMEDIATELY, if not sooner!
Now run along as there many on this board in need of your brilliant insight & humor regarding the Harman product line. You can start here;
Harman Accentra Pellet Stove Problems
harman p-68 feedrate
harman p-68 pellet guzzler?
Harman Pellet Whistles
Pellet stove Insert....HELP!!!
And, if you have the time, the folks over here need your expertise also.
Like I said Grandpa, internet heating forums are very competitive and there's lots of propaganda as the long defensive post by dave illustrates. Your *best* source of information are people in your community who own pellet stoves. Go find them if you don't know any, there are likely several people, including neighbors, who use them. Be very cautious of threads claiming this or that.
As an example, I've seen some ridiculously obnoxious threads against ventless fireplaces. In some cases, the stories are so horrendously ridiculous they become comedic. Just take everything you read here with a grain of salt.
Back so soon, fscott?
So why is it that you have not warned readers, at the links I previously gave you, about the "competitive propaganda" that you see on this website?
And how is it there are NO posters at those links recommending that those Harman owners sell their heaters & buy another manufactures pellet eater if "competitive propaganda" is truly as rampant as you think it is?
Or could it just possibly be that those Harman owners are in fact real owners that are seeking help for their respective problems?
Why is it that you have no technical advice to offer those suffering Harman owners since you seem to be a Harman advocate?
And IÂm still waiting for your answers to my previous questions to you regarding;
What competing product is it that you think(?) IÂm "pushing"?
Are you suggesting that it makes sense that he (grandpa) should pay $1,400+ to solve his heating trouble?
And yet you accuse me of being "defensive"?!? (lol)
And though your wise counsel to "Be very cautious of threads claiming this or that." you exposed your level of expertise when you state "As an example, I've seen some ridiculously obnoxious threads against ventless fireplaces. In some cases, the stories are so horrendously ridiculous they become comedic." because the following hearth owner, & various states & municipalities most assuredly disagree with your position.
"Vent-free gas hearths and logs rely on inside air to support combustion and vent directly into the room. By law, unvented units must have an oxygen depletion sensor (ODS), which will automatically turn the unit off if oxygen levels in the room drop below a specified level. Some local and state laws do *not* allow the use of unvented appliances. Ask your propane supplier which type of fireplace or gas log is appropriate for you."
Consequently would you not agree that an intelligent prospective buyer will read, copy, print out the info, & then check with their local building inspector BEFORE purchasing?
Apparently you consider yourself to be knowledgeable on this subject & free to violate your earlier warning "Be very cautious of threads claiming this or that." as though your opinion was indeed a fact by blowing off the above links info as though such is "horrendously ridiculous" & "comedic"?
fscott, just what is it that you do to earn a living?
I read lots of different heating forums for advice. What I've found is more pushing and bashing. I don't post much at all. And I certainly ain't pushing Harmon or any brand for that matter.
But Grandpa has already purchased a pellet stove. You on the other hand recomended that he return his stove with a 10% restocking fee and buy a wood stove of a specific brand, and thus show him several threads as to how terrible the Harmon stove is.
Just a cautious "beware" from me. There's a lot of competitive propaganda on all heating forums.
I'm done responding. Good luck Grandpa.
Thank you all for your replies and helping me with my chimney problems. Since the temperatures have dropped abit and we can burn the fire hotter the creosote problem has gone for now.
I truly did not mean to cause since a controversy, but I do appreciate all the opinions. Grandma and I are having problems with carrying wood and keeping the fires going. We are not young any more and the arthritis is getting to us both. We figured a pellet stove would be less work and less messy. We did not know if our present chimney would be suitable or work properly for venting. At the present time, we will be installing a harmon when the weather clears and hope we did the best thing.
Again, thank you all for your time.
Why do you refuse to answer my questions, fscott?
You have stated twice that you read a lot & yet prove that you do NOT comprehend what you read.
"But Grandpa has already purchased a pellet stove. You on the other hand recomended that he return his stove with a 10% restocking fee and buy a wood stove of a specific brand Â"
So what "specific brand" of wood stove did I "recommend" (sic) that grandpa buy, fscott?!
And, if he still has his wood stove for he never stated that he sold it, would grandpa not be better off paying a 10% restock fee ($140), which I doubt is required at this time of year if the pellet eater has not been used, & buying a moisture meter & a stove thermometer since his cash outlay would be less than $200?!
" Â and thus show him several threads as to how terrible the Harmon stove is."
Grandpa was shown Harman treads because he owns a Harman.
Why does that fact not register in your mind!?! Had I shown him treads on an England, Napoleon, etc pellet eaters, is it possible that he would reject the info merely because he owned a Harman & thus such info was not applicable to his situation?
Ever try thinking, fscott?
It is easier & cheaper to correct a creosote problem caused by his wood stove then to deal with the maintenance REQUIRED on ANY pellet eater. Were that not bad enough, & it certainly is for most, there is the inescapable matter of no heat output from ANY pellet eater when there is a power outage. Have you noted what is going on in the Midwest?
Consequently your refusal to answer simple logical questions, when your obvious reading distortions are challenged, is very telling thus your claim that "And I certainly ain't pushing Harmon Â" rings hollow.
Just a cautious "beware" from me. There's a lot of competitive propaganda on all heating forums."
Then, please, document where such is going on!!!
"I'm done responding."
No, you are NOT responding, you are in denial, avoiding the subject & any questions pertaining to such.
You have not caused any controversy. Fscott thinks(?) that I push a "competing product", & yet when asked, several times, to identify such product refuses to answer. Fscott claims to read a lot but fails to think when reading.
I too have arthritis so understand your dilemma. How long have you been burning the wood stove? Do you buy or cut your own wood? What size are your splits? Do yourself & the Mrs. a BIG favor. Keep the wood stove & return the p 38. Clean up that chimney, buy a thermometer, a moisture meter & then follow the instructions faithfully & you will have no creosote.
And get a hand truck to bring your wood up to the house. DoesnÂt take much strength to pull & it sure saves on the back. You can stash the wood in two Sterilite plastic containers (30x19x16). Buy them at Wal-Mart after Christmas season when they are at half price.
What I posted earlier ought to make you rethink pellet eaters, especially in the light of the week long power outage in the Midwest that is still going on. All power crews no longer clear right-of-way like they once did so these type outages are going to happen more often.
That & the maintenance required for pellet eaters is not for most, especially folks our age. Who wants to get down daily & clean a "burn pot" so that it doesnÂt have "lazy flames"? But you must or you will have little or no heat. Did the dealer warn you about these things before you bought the Harman? I suspect not.
This country needs to bring back the black snake & apply it to such people, especially used car salesmen & pole_cat_ticans. Why, there would be honest deals & a government surplus in revenue over night.
"Grandma and I are having problems with carrying wood and keeping the fires going. We are not young any more and the arthritis is getting to us both."
Hey Dave, what part of Grandpa's statement above did you not comprehend? NO WOOD, dave. Now stop trying to convince Grandpa to return a pellet stove and take a 10% loss simply by scaring elderly people into thinking their electric is going to go out, oh no... now they'll be without heat... You dealers just don't stop do you.
Worse than a used-car salesman, a heating appliance salesman. And that goes for ALL heating appliances, wood stoves, pellet stoves, gas stoves, and whatever else is out there.
It's a *HUGE* market Grandpa, and there are lesions of parasitic heating appliance salesman wanting to capitalize on the expanding elderly population growth by scaring them.
You made a *great* decision. Whether Harmon or another brand, or heck even if you chose a gas stove. You'll be happy.
Stick with the Pellet Stove Grandpa, I have a Harman P38 and love it. No creosote here. I have burned Coal, Wood and Pellets over the past 30 years. Pellets are the way to go if you want to eliminate the work. Burning Coal there is a lot of ash had to dump it every day, Burning wood = creosote and a lot of work but does have a nice soothing flame to watch, Burning pellets I dump the ash pan after every ton and do a full clean of the P38 takes me all of 15 mins. Once a week I clean the burnpot and the glass just takes a few mins. Temps in my home remain within 2 deg. of my thermostat set point at all times. It's nice to flip the latch on the hopper dump a bag of pellets in and goto bed. As far as pellet costs go I have always been able to find pellets at a reasonable cost. There will always be someone that is trying to inflate prices that goes for wood and pellets alike. I have never had an issue with my stove auger lockup circuit board etc. I did hard wire a generator to my home last year so the power issue is not a problem here. The only way I would ever go back to burning wood is if I were 20 yrs. younger or I lived in an area where the wood was free...
Your repeated refusal to answer my questions proves that you have nothing to offer in the way of an intelligent discussion about grandpaÂs situation. Thusyour parroted replies are a good indication that you are mentally challenged.
And, since you stated that; "I'm done responding." on Thu, Dec 7, 06 at 14:21 then unapologetically returned (Fri, Dec 8, 06 at 17:09), that did nothing for your integrity.
So you would be wise to check in for an exam at the state mental health office.
ok, rayers2, by answering the following questions grandpa will have better insight into your situation in order to compare such with his.
1) What were the make & model of the coal & wood heaters that you once used?
2) How long were each used?
3) Did you give them up for the p 38 because of physical disability?
4) What is your present age?
5) What did the p 38 cost you?
6) How many seasons have you heated with the p 38?
7) How many tons of pellets are required?
8) What is the highest & lowest prices paid for the pellets?
9) What brand(s) do you burn?
Seems to me Dave that you can not read to well. Here let me paste the original message here again for you. i just purchsed a harmon p38 pellet stove should i use my existing chimney or vent direct? Thats all the man asked. Dave by the way do you sell wood? sure sounds like it. Grandpa has purchased a pellet stove to avoid the work and the creosote. What don't you understand about that. I can tell you have never owned a pellet stove before because you do not have a clue. Your questions do not have anything to do with my last post. Do you have to practice at being an idiot or does it come natural? As for my P38 I have not had any failures due to a breakdown or power outage. I purchased a generator to be ahead of idiots like you. While your in front of your stove in the dark my house is bright I am watching HDTV and my P38 is just keeping me toasty. By the way my floors are clean also no bugs no dust or bark. Get a life and a job you be able to afford a few bucks more for a pellet stove. Just think if you spent less time tending your fire you could actually do some more reading and up your IQ...
"Seems to me Dave that you can not read to well. Here let me paste the original message here again for you. i just purchsed a harmon p38 pellet stove should i use my existing chimney or vent direct? Thats all the man asked. Dave by the way do you sell wood? sure sounds like it. Grandpa has purchased a pellet stove to avoid the work and the creosote. What don't you understand about that. I can tell you have never owned a pellet stove before because you do not have a clue. Your questions do not have anything to do with my last post. Do you have to practice at being an idiot or does it come natural? As for my P38 I have not had any failures due to a breakdown or power outage. I purchased a generator to be ahead of idiots like you. While your in front of your stove in the dark my house is bright I am watching HDTV and my P38 is just keeping me toasty. By the way my floors are clean also no bugs no dust or bark. Get a life and a job you be able to afford a few bucks more for a pellet stove. Just think if you spent less time tending your fire you could actually do some more reading and up your IQ... "
And Jordan fades.... and swoosh 3-pointer! Nice.
The reason dave_c keeps posting is because he knows forums like this one (heck there's only two *major* heating forums on the internet), are read by thousands and thousands of people across the world. If he keeps bashing pellet stoves, *someone* out there in internet world just might be convinced to buy something different than pellet. I can't blame the guy, if I sold heating appliances, and I knew I could sell just one more of my products each week becasue I was posting on an internet forum and pushing my type of product, I'd do it. Afterall, it's bread on the table. And in such a competetive area like the heating appliance market, every little effort makes a difference for your sales.
It is funny though to see the dealers in action.
Good Point fscott55
I tried to stay away & not post a reply, but it's not easy reading such idiot posts by "dave_c". Heating is all about choices and grandpa has decided to stop dealing with the daily chores of a wood stove, his choice. So why is it such a bad choice to heat with pellets? Pellet stoves provide a controlled heat output with very minimal maintenance, it's the most user friendly solid fuel available for a stove. Very few people have the time in their daily schedules to deal with wood or coal in todays fast paced enviroment. Both wood & coal are great fuels, but it's all about choices and what fuel works for you may not work for another person. The P38 is a great little stove for the price and I'm sure grandpa & grandma will both enjoy the heat the stove provides.
Please stop hating "dave_c" and enjoy the forum, your personal attacks toward fscott get old.
For what its worth I have a harmon p-68. I direct vented mine so I could keep the woodstove that vents into a center chimney. direct venting is easy and uses little pipe. You may want to run some pipe vertically on the outside to create a draft in case of a power failure. I lost power last year and the stove did smoke a little. I took a piece of pvc pipe and cobbed a chimney on the outside and it took care of the problem. I think you enjoy the pellet stove. I can burn a ton before I have to clean it. cleaning is pretty easy. I have burned wood in the past and it is much more work and more mess. I talk to a lot of people with pellet stoves and every single person swears by them.
Dave C... your used car salesmanship stinks of ulterior motives. Granpda, stick with the pellet stove if you want to live. Follow Dave C if you want to die.