Barmometric damper when using bituminous coal?

Barmometric damper when using bituminous coal?

PostBy: bverwolf On: Fri Jul 23, 2010 7:30 pm

Hey everyone. I have a question regarding the use of a barometric damper. I burn bituminous coal from Decker, MT/Sheridan, WY. I have been doing some maintenace and tinkering with my stove and chimney. I just cleaned the chimney today and was surprised at the amount of creosote buildup. It wasn't horrible, but it was there. I cleaned the chimney out really well before starting to burn coal and have burned coal only. I only used a little wood to restart which was only about 4 or 5 times last winter. I didn't think coal produced creosote. I did a little research and found out that bituminous coal can produce creosote. Actually good old post treat is coal creosote, "coal tar". I have a fairly strong draft when it gets cold or the wind blows. I have a barometric draft regulator I was going to install, but now I'm a little gunshy. I really don't want a "coal tar" chimney fire with a barometric damper. Whats everyones opinion?? I think there was someone on here that burns Decker coal besides me. I can't recall the name, but remember reading something that they burned coal from Decker.

Stove/Furnace Make: Vogelzang
Stove/Furnace Model: Norseman 2500

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Re: Barmometric damper when using bituminous coal?

PostBy: robb On: Fri Jul 23, 2010 7:56 pm

I am new to burning coal...BUT my dad had coal contracts with his trucks growing up...and I learned that Bituminous has a tar substance called bitumen which from what I was told from the coal mines and miners it is the worst to burn because that Bitumen acts much like creosote and will soot up a chimney and needs scrubbing.....The miners used to tell me that the lower the sulfur the better the bituminous coal for burning for heat...As for the dampener I am not sure...I have talked to a few guys on here and they recommend them because the stove gets very cool faster than without...not sure if that would translate to the bitumen cooling and becoming sticky faster.
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 608 stoker

Re: Barmometric damper when using bituminous coal?

PostBy: lowfog01 On: Fri Jul 23, 2010 9:17 pm

Hi Guys,

Things are quiet on the forum right now but hang around a couple of days and the bit burners will drop by and answer your question. If you can't wait sleep for want of the answer, you may want to drop BigBarney or Berlin a Private Message. You do that through the user control panel at the top of the page. Good luck, Lisa
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Mark II & Mark I
Coal Size/Type: nut/pea

Re: Barmometric damper when using bituminous coal?

PostBy: DOUG On: Fri Jul 23, 2010 9:35 pm

Yes use a barometric draft regulator when burning bituminous coal. Correctly setting the barometric draft will help to control the draft through the fire and keep it consistent.

The soot build up you are experiencing is caused from improper firing of the coal. Bituminous coal needs much more secondary over the fire air during the recharge than anthracite because of the high amount of volatile gases produced. I would try adding bituminous coal in smaller batches so as not to create a situation where the fire is unable to consume the volatile gases. This may take a little more time to get the firebox full, but should help with your soot build up problem. You also have to keep an area of hot coals exposed to help ignite the gases being mixed with the extra amount of secondary air. Each stove and furnace design is different so you may have to experiment with where to bank the coal in the firebox to get the best results in regard to the positioning of the air intakes and proper mixing of the gases during recharging. Take a look again at the owners manual of your furnace, this may give you a good starting point on how to properly fire bituminous coal in your unit. :idea: :)
Stove/Furnace Model: CLAYTON 1600

Re: Barmometric damper when using bituminous coal?

PostBy: rockwood On: Sat Jul 24, 2010 3:20 pm

I agree with Doug's comments.

Coal burning doesn't produce creosote. Creosote is formed from burning wood.
I use a baro damper on an older cast iron hand fed stove burning soft coal with great success. The stove is much easier to control with the baro damper and I've never had issues with soot buildup on/in the damper.
BTW, I've never seen coal soot that is "sticky".
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Stokermatic coal furnace
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Rockwood Stoveworks Circulator
Baseburners & Antiques: Malleable/Monarch Range
Coal Size/Type: Soft coal: Lump and stoker (slack coal)

Re: Barmometric damper when using bituminous coal?

PostBy: Tamecrow On: Sat Jul 24, 2010 4:17 pm

I use a barometric damper burning bituminous coal. No problem. As stated above it gives you better control over your fire. Soot is a powdery substance. The only time it will appear "sticky" is when left in an uncleaned chimney with the appliance shut down for a while and rain and moisture turn it into a sticky substance. I've never seen this with the stove running.
Stove/Furnace Make: Warden King Ltd.
Stove/Furnace Model: Viking Jr. Boiler/Will-Burt 30

Re: Barmometric damper when using bituminous coal?

PostBy: BigBarney On: Mon Jul 26, 2010 11:40 am

Bituminous coal does not create creosote, but as others have said when

burned without enough secondary air forms a coal tar substance which

at room temperature is a solid but when heated is sticky. In my boiler

it forms in the upper area and will burn off with a hot fire,in the summer

usually the fire is not hot enough to burn it up. This coating (I Believe)

actually protects the steel of the boiler from the air that causes the

rusting of the steel.

This coal tar is actually a condensate of the bituminous coal smoke

when it contacts a cooler surface in the heating unit. In my boiler the

smoke is pulled down through the hottest part of the fire where it burns

up and produces heat. A great deal of heat is contained in the smoke

which are the volatile gases driven from the coal, and are wasted as

objectionable smoke if not consumed in the fire,thereby sending some

of the heat value up the flue, wasted.

These gases will not burn in the flue and have to be burned,with extra air,

in the hottest part of the fire.They will condense on the flue if exhausted

before complete combustion has taken place,but are hard to ignite in the

flue (low heat and oxygen) when only coal is burned.


Re: Barmometric damper when using bituminous coal?

PostBy: bverwolf On: Tue Jul 27, 2010 9:07 am

Thanks everyone for your input. I have decided to go ahead and install the barometric damper. I think I might need to open up a little more secondary air when reloading my stove from what you guys are saying. I may even have to burn the stove a little hotter. My stove is a Volgelzang Norseman stove and it is very similiar to a Clayton or Hotblast. It shares the "fragile grates" that so many of us U.S. stove owners love. The stove has some large cast pieces at the front and back of the firebox that protect the steel of the stove from direct contact with the burning coal. These cast pieces have some small holes that allow secondary air above the fire at all times. I may have to reduce the size of the firebox to burn it hotter as the stove already wil roast us out of the house. "I'm not complaining. We used to freeze all the time when heating with LP. Its nice to have a nice warm house." :D

Thanks everyone!
Stove/Furnace Make: Vogelzang
Stove/Furnace Model: Norseman 2500

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