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Advice on using an EPA stove?

Discussion in 'Firewood, Heating and Wood Burning Equipment' started by Mustang71, Feb 21, 2019.

  1. Mustang71

    Mustang71 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    My EPA furnace is on the way and the daka is going in the garbage. I'm finishing out the season with the new furnace.

    I'm assuming I shouldn't burn pallets anymore? My wood is all been cut for 2 years and split and stacked in the shed for at least 6 months. So is that seasoned? I'll have to figure out kindling too.

    Do I get it going and when it's hot shut down the primary burn and let secondary burn take over? Also should I hook up the outdoor air intake to the outside or does it hurt secondary burn?

    I've used an EPA stove once so I'm a bit new so I'm just looking for tips.
     
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  2. sixonetonoffun

    sixonetonoffun Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Which furnace?

    Congrats for sure.
     
  3. Mustang71

    Mustang71 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Englander 28-4000. I always wanted a stove, since I grew up with a wood fireplace, so I like that it's like a stove and I didnt want any computer controlled stuff like the drolet has. I read all positive things about the 28-3500 and the 28-4000 has been out for a few years and I read mostly good things but no info on this forum.
     
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  4. U&A

    U&A Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I know nothing about wood burning furnaces but i burn pallet wood in my stove all the time. Unless it’s heavy stained with who knows what. And obviously nothing treated.


    It burns very hot. Measure 5% or even 0% frequently. I leave it outside with my cordwood and it actually gains a bit of moisture to around 10% and burns not so violently hot.


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  5. Mustang71

    Mustang71 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I always used it to start my fires and keep them going since the furnace had a hard time making heat from the wood. I have a lot of hard wood pallet wood at the moment but I dont want to be collecting pallets anymore.

    The englander furnace is the same as the stove I believe and I read the manual online last night and it said only burn cord wood so I wasnt sure how critical that was.
     
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  6. Del_

    Del_ Get outside.

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    I've been running Jotul EPA stoves since 1994.

    The Jotuls like wood that's spent 2 years in the woodshed.

    You can use pallet wood, it should work fine. It would be good to start fires, for quick fires or fires that you would be attending every few hours. Be careful though because pallet wood can lead to an over fired woodstove. Overfired woodstoves warp.

    You will get to know that stove well as far as what size and length pieces it takes, how to keep the longest coals going how to 'fire it up', etc.

    Don't worry about the outside air stuff. There is a good bit of evidence that says it's just not needed.

    I use the 'Top down' method of fire starting.

    Best of luck with your 'woodfired economizer'.
     
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  7. Del_

    Del_ Get outside.

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    Two methods of 'sterilizing' pallets.

    1) In a kiln. This is what you want.

    2) Chemical fumigation. This is what you don't want.

    There are markings on the pallets as to which method is used. You'll have to google them.
     
  8. Mustang71

    Mustang71 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    The outside air is confusing because you want hot air to be heated for the secondary burn but I'd think you want less air being pulled out of the house but my house was build in 75 and it's a raised ranch so half my basement is my garage so I'm sure it's not that tight. As an hvac guy we bring cold "dry" air into furnaces all the time. There's a lot of humidity here.

    I'd prefer to get a lot more out of the wood I cut but I always found that the pine pallets start fires easily. I'll have to see how it burns because I have a lot of ash trees and I chuck the small top parts that would be great kindling if split. I hate collecting pallets and im turning 30 this year, with 6 years of wood heating down, and can't see myself collecting pallets for the next 30 years. My one neighbor is 70+ and only burns pallets and I dont want to be that guy.
     
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  9. Streblerm

    Streblerm Addicted to ArboristSite

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    My Englander 30-NC stove which I think is the same firebox requires no real special treatment. It does take dry wood to get the secondaries to light. But it will burn anything that isn’t soaking wet. Sort of dry wood takes a little longer to come up to temp but once the moisture is boiled off the secondaries will light. If the secondaries won’t stay lit the wood is too wet. 2yr split/stacked wood can be dampered down almost all the way within 15-20 minutes of lighting and makes little or no smoke. If it smokes a lot or the glass gets sooty black then the wood is too wet.

    The longest burning fires happen when you can get the damper closed down before the temp comes all the way up. If the wood is dry and the secondaries light you’ll get no smoke and the stove temp will hover around 500 degrees. If the wood is wet then it’s really no different from a smoke dragon as far as I’m concerned and you’ll struggle to get up to 500 and when you finally do the wood will be mostly burned up. If the wood is sort of wet then you lose some burn time getting hot enough to burn off the moisture. If you try to close the damper down too early it will drop down to 350 degrees or so and smoke like crazy.

    I’ve never put anything in that wouldn’t burn. I’ve put some pieces in that I wish I hadn’t and I’ve rearranged and added but it burns whatever I put in.

    Wood seems to burn best stacked N/S although that’s more of a guideline than a rule.

    I rake all the coals to the front near the air intake. They like to hide near the back and sides. It works best to let the fire burn most of the way down before reloading. Trying to keep a roaring fire going usually results in a stove full of coals. I’ve relaxed on trying to keep the house roasting and I think we’re more comfortable and burn less wood by burning complete batches rather than constantly loading.

    I find my stove will make solid heat for 6hrs on a decent load, pretty good heat for another 2 and hold enough coals for an easy re- light for 12.

    I don’t see any reason to stop burning pallet scraps. I burn pine and construction cut offs in mine all the time.

    I don’t have the outside air intake hooked up with mine and unless your house is really tight I don’t think it’s necessary. Even if you do it gets preheated in the firebox before it hits the secondary tubes.
     
  10. U&A

    U&A Addicted to ArboristSite

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    [​IMG]


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  11. Mustang71

    Mustang71 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Thank you for the help. And this is the reason I bought the furnace because it's the same as the stove and not some high tech thing that requires specific wood and can't be adjusted. I used a lopi and the wood was sitting under a tarp in the snow and we gots lots of secondary burn and heat in a mobil home.
     
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  12. Streblerm

    Streblerm Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Mine has been going strong for ten years and most of them it was my primary source of heat. I have done NOTHING to it other than a couple (literally, roast me if you want) chimney sweeps and shoveling the ash out here and there. Really the only difference between this type of stove and the old smoke dragons is design. The stainless secondary tubes and baffle board aren’t really what I would consider to be high tech.

    I thought the baffle boards were going to be a weak link but so far so good. I try to be careful but inevitably you hit the tubes or baffle with the odd piece of wood. It seems to be holding up fine.

    I do find the ash drawer to be pretty useless. I think it’s for the people who burn occasionally and want the firebox to be spotless between burns. I find it holds coals a lot better if you leave a good ash bed.
     
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  13. Mustang71

    Mustang71 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I'm coming from a wood coal furnace so there was a grate in the bottom. I empty it every day because its always full. My furnace is not so much a "smoke" dragon but just a dragon. It burns a firebox of wood in 2 hours and does not smoke or make much heat inside. I'm hoping for a completely different result from this new furnace.
     
  14. NSMaple1

    NSMaple1 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Generally speaking you'd need drier wood than what the old Daka could chew up & spit out.
     
  15. U&A

    U&A Addicted to ArboristSite

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    In my P.E. Summit if i leave like 2” of ash and burn cherry or oak on it the stove will have coals hidden in there for well beyond 12 hours.

    Last night i cleaned it our real well ( dont know why really), loaded it up before bed at around 8:30 and at 5:00 there was only a little coal left.

    Ash makes a big difference


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  16. Streblerm

    Streblerm Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I keep my wood outside and top cover only what I’m burning for the current season. I bring about a month’s worth into my garage for easier access and drying surface moisture. This year I’ve been burning 3yr C/S/S mix of oak, maple locust, and mulberry with a little pine mixed in here and there. It’s definitely the most premium mix, longest seasoned wood I’ve ever burned. I’ve burned less wood this year than I ever have before by a large amount, like 25%. It burns just like I said. 3 logs reach 4-500 degree temps in 15 minutes, close the draft, no smoke plenty heat.

    Just for experiment’s sake I brought in a cartload of 1yr C/S/S wood. It is uncovered but I brought it into the garage a month ago. It’s mostly maple and tulip with a little hardwood thrown in. It had all been cut for a year before being CSS. It lights easy enough and burns completely but I loaded the stove an hour ago, the draft is fully open, and I’m barely at 300 degrees. Im not smoking out the neighborhood but there’s more smoke than I like to see.

    Many years I burned the 1yr stuff and it heated my house, it just took more wood instead of three pieces it took 4 or 5. I’m not saying the 3yr stuff is necessary but oh what a difference.
     
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  17. Streblerm

    Streblerm Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Ok, after 90 minutes the surface temp is up to 500 and I shut the draft down, no smoke.

    I think that hour with the draft fully open is probably equal to two or three with the draft closed.
     
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  18. Mustang71

    Mustang71 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    After 90 minutes I'm usually ready to reload...I wish this thing would get here I want to put it in. It takes me a half an hour to get the fire going because the thing wont burn wood then once it's going it cooks the wood. Tonight I heard the blower shut off 20 min after it had been running. I went down and the set of logs were just sitting there smoldering with the air intake full open. This thing likes to test my sanity and now it's really warm in here.
     
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  19. Ryan'smilling

    Ryan'smilling Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Perhaps people get tired of Lamppa owners saying this stuff, but reading this thread really makes me appreciate how my furnace runs. I've lived with all sorts of stoves, Lopi, Jotuls, boxwood, Fisher, been around a couple of Ashley's, and so on. We also had a Yukon Klondike furnace. The EPA stoves are a huge step forward compared to the fishers etc. They won't throw BTUs the same way, but as far as making even heat for many hours and burning efficiently, they're great. But seriously, I know the Lamppa is a lot of coin, and more than many people want to spend, but I can literally fill the firebox, set the computer to match the weather and walk away for 8-14 hours depending on the setting. No thinking about dampers, looking at what's coming out of the chimney, or checking to see if the secondaries are lighting.

    I put 5 pieces of wood and 1 incredibly annoying children's book in my furnace at 7 am. Set the dial on low because it was in the 20s and sunny today. Loaded it halfway at 4:00 with slabwood and bumped the dial up a little. That'll keep me until 10 when I load it before bed and I can start the cycle again tomorrow. 2-4 times per day I mess with it so far. No making kindling since it doesn't go out. And it provides 100% of our heat. The weather station a few miles from here showed -39F one morning this winter.
     
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  20. U&A

    U&A Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Shame in you!!

    You kid probably loved that book.




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