Monday, September 10, 2012

Prepping for Winter

Last Saturday I cleaned the stove pipes to get ready for the wood-burning seasons. I had already cleaned the chimney and the stove and pipe were the last things that needed to be cleaned. Last winter I made the mistake of burning some spruce (maybe two or three pieces while getting the fire going in the morning) and it left a ton of creosote-like deposits (more like clinkers they were so big) in the pipes and chimney. Last spring I noticed I was having a problem with smoke coming in the house whenever I opened the door on the stove. Took the plate off the bottom of the metal chimney outside and found it almost totally blocked at the transition point from horizontal to vertical. Pulled what I could out by hand and that improved the situation for the time being. Later I bought a brush for cleaning the chimney. At the time I bought the brush they didn't have the extension rods that screw onto the brush, but after looking at it and the 1/4 pipe threads on the brush, I figured if I got a 1/4 pipe tap I could cut some threads in a 1/2" CPVC pipe and use that. Which is what I did ('cause I'm a cheap old fart, if you don't believe me, ask The Old Lady) and for about the price of one extension rod I got a tap and a couple of fittings to screw the two CPVC pipes together which allows me to reach up in the chimney all the way to the top while standing on the ground. I would have had to buy 4 or 5 extension rods to do the same.


  1. The first fire in the morning should run hot for a while, no matter what kind of wood you are using. Run the stack temp right up to 400/500 degrees for a half hour.

  2. Not sure what the stack temp was. The stove would run 300-500 degrees on the upper chamber. I'll try running it hotter before I shut down the air.

  3. Spruce will mess you up. Been there done that.
    Like your picture - a good reminder that winter is always coming at the wall.
    Having my chimney cleaned next month - too fucking old to be balancing up on the roof...and I don't like heights.
    the Ol'Buzzard


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