This is my first year burning anthricite. Overall I am quite pleased and am commited to using this fuel. The more I use this website, especially reading and learning from others experience, the more confident I become in my ability.
I have a dual fuel hot air furnace (Norseman 2500-Vogelzang)(very similar to HotBlast, etc.). It has a long narrow fire box: 26"l, 11"w, 12" deep, which I converted from the original dimensions which was V shaped......more condusive to cordwood. I have added an additional spin draft knob on the ash door, and also added a manual flue damper. Since the onset of heating weather I have learned how to start and maintain my fire. I understand issues such as draft, loading, poking, and shaking........although I suspect there might be some activity knowledge which is lacking.
OK, here it is: I can start, adjust fire & heat production, and keep it going for about 3 days, not much more. Why? The kinkers are killing me! And I am not referering to my neighbors who resemble the Flockers!
Seems that towards the end of the fires life, when it seems OK (top coals glowing and still throwing good heat) it is dying slowly. Now the fire box is about 85%-90% full, everything looks OK.....so I poke it ( which increases heat, at least momentarily) leave it for 10 mins, then add a thin layer of coal, wait another 10 or 15 minutes then shake. I shake until hot embers fall into ash pan. For a newbie like me this all seems to look fine, but the fire dies nevertheless. Until now, I would just clean it out and start over, knowing full well that something is lacking......but I need to heat my house so I do what must be done.
Well it has been a cozy weekend. 10 degrees outside, 72 degrees inside .....thanks to anthricite! I woke up and the house was down to 66. Checked the fire, same diagnosis. Rather than going thru all the expected effort just to throw good coal on a dying fire.....I just let it die. Then, I disassembled the remains very carefully......layer by layer. Top layer: glowing coals and partials. Next layer: dead burt coals. Bottom layer: ALL KINKERS! What's going on? I have been poking and shaking, monitoring draft, listening to this baby purr for 2 and 1/2 days.
Help me so I might have a continuous fire like everybody else. I am patient AND willing.