Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: JohnnyV On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 9:49 am

Finally got a new computer and was having NEPA withdrawal. However, on to a problem that is driving me nuts.

After a few years of living with insulation showing on the walls in the garage/family room redo, I finally finished it off with drywall, plastered, painted etc. It seems that every improvement I make the colder it feels in here and the more problems I have with the heat. For example, with just the insulation showing it could be in the single digits outside, I have my stove burning at 425/450 and it would at least 70-72 in here (without the blower running, just radiant heat). Now, with the room done, it is upper teens outside and the stove is burning at 425/450 and it is 66 in here. For the last week even when the outside temp hit 35 I wasn't able to get the temp up to 70 in the house. Usually at 35 and the stove burning at 400 I achieve 74-76.

My pipes after the baro are not hot at all. I could keep my hand on it all day, so that leads me to believe the heat isn't going up the flue. I did the smoke test and no smoke is going through baro or around the pipe going into the thimble so I don't think I am losing heat there. I can stand by the stove about 5 feet away and feel the heat coming off of it. I have walked around with the incense and the heat is going up but I can't find where I would be losing heat.

I am out of ideas. Fire is burning great, good draft, etc. I know I could turn the blower on to get the heat better distributed and I tried that for a while. It worked the temperature in the room went up. But, never needed to before and don't see why I would now, unless it gets really cold outside. I have a ceiling fan on like always since the ceiling is a cathedral style I don't want the heat staying up there.

Any ideas? I can't think of anything else changing anywhere in the house other than finishing this room off. (it is at the far end of the house, an old garage, insulated, new windows, doors, etc. and about 450-500 square feet). There is a hallway with a laundry room that ties into the rest of the house. I am not trying to heat the whole house up to 70+ because with the way this old house is built there are to many separate areas, just a little extra heat helps in there. I know before I finished this room of 400-450 sq/ft it would be hot enough in here that occasionally I would have to crack open a window or the door. Not now.

The wife isn't complaining yet. Although I know she notices it is colder in here as the blanket has come out. I am going to do another smoke test in the room near the ceiling and try and follow the smoke around even if it leads me to the rest of the house and try and find where the heat is going. It is going somewhere.

Thanks.
JohnnyV
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: hitzer 254
Coal Size/Type: Nut
Other Heating: Pellet stove far end of house
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 254

Re: Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: freetown fred On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 9:58 am

Nothin much more then to keep headin in the direction you're already headed--seems strange though don't it? :(
freetown fred
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: HITZER 50-93
Coal Size/Type: BLASCHAK Nut/Stove mix

Re: Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: Den034071 On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 10:07 am

John check insul. around doors an windows .Also a big heat loser is wall receptacles do smoke test by each one .Loowes makes a gasket to fasten to rec . cover .Does your electric company do a blower door test .This will show you where heat loss is occuring .Good luck jack ex. builder an mason .
Den034071
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer, 3095

Visit Hitzer Stoves

Re: Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: michaelanthony On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 10:22 am

Good morning johnnyV, I am guessing in a remodeled garage/family room that a one point the floor was or is cement. If that is the case you have a huge heat sink and there are ways to fix that. You have been here a few years and you most likely know the ins and outs of a good fire i.e. stove filled to the top of the brick etc. Hitzer say's your stove is capable of 60,000 btu's is it hot, meaning your can walk up to it and feel the heat or do you need sun block at 2-3 ft. The stove in my living room is rated at 50,000 btu's and when I run it hard like today 15* out and 76 in here, 3 ft. and the heat will almost push me back :) Do you have a mpd as well as baro, and if so try covering the baro with a couple sheets of aluminum foil or a 6" cap if you have one and try running it with the mpd closed as much as possible to keep your draft. That brings me to my next question, do you have a manometer to measure your draft? How much coal are you burning and what type? The reason I ask is because I am running pea size coal and if I idle it at 400* it is "metza-metza", Italian for so-so, but when give it the air it likes I get 650* -700* everyone is happy. My stove is cast iron so I can do that. Some picks also would help sometimes folks will see something we overlook. Good luck and keep us updated that stove of yours is a winner!
michaelanthony
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vigilant 2310, gold marc box, vogelzang pot belly
Coal Size/Type: Pea, and a little nut
Other Heating: Very cold FHA oil furnace

Re: Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: fastcat On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 10:26 am

JohnnyV wrote:Finally got a new computer and was having NEPA withdrawal. However, on to a problem that is driving me nuts.

After a few years of living with insulation showing on the walls in the garage/family room redo, I finally finished it off with drywall, plastered, painted etc. It seems that every improvement I make the colder it feels in here and the more problems I have with the heat. For example, with just the insulation showing it could be in the single digits outside, I have my stove burning at 425/450 and it would at least 70-72 in here (without the blower running, just radiant heat). Now, with the room done, it is upper teens outside and the stove is burning at 425/450 and it is 66 in here. For the last week even when the outside temp hit 35 I wasn't able to get the temp up to 70 in the house. Usually at 35 and the stove burning at 400 I achieve 74-76.

My pipes after the baro are not hot at all. I could keep my hand on it all day, so that leads me to believe the heat isn't going up the flue. I did the smoke test and no smoke is going through baro or around the pipe going into the thimble so I don't think I am losing heat there. I can stand by the stove about 5 feet away and feel the heat coming off of it. I have walked around with the incense and the heat is going up but I can't find where I would be losing heat.

I am out of ideas. Fire is burning great, good draft, etc. I know I could turn the blower on to get the heat better distributed and I tried that for a while. It worked the temperature in the room went up. But, never needed to before and don't see why I would now, unless it gets really cold outside. I have a ceiling fan on like always since the ceiling is a cathedral style I don't want the heat staying up there.

Any ideas? I can't think of anything else changing anywhere in the house other than finishing this room off. (it is at the far end of the house, an old garage, insulated, new windows, doors, etc. and about 450-500 square feet). There is a hallway with a laundry room that ties into the rest of the house. I am not trying to heat the whole house up to 70+ because with the way this old house is built there are to many separate areas, just a little extra heat helps in there. I know before I finished this room of 400-450 sq/ft it would be hot enough in here that occasionally I would have to crack open a window or the door. Not now.

The wife isn't complaining yet. Although I know she notices it is colder in here as the blanket has come out. I am going to do another smoke test in the room near the ceiling and try and follow the smoke around even if it leads me to the rest of the house and try and find where the heat is going. It is going somewhere.

Thanks.


Sounds to me you have the problem I had, every time you seal something up you are reducing air flow. I ended up having to cup cold air registers in the floor upstairs and my heat started to come back, then I put a door corner fan under one of the registers to pull the colder air from the floor upstairs and send it down to the stove and now everything is back to normal. I'm just using gravity to move hot air up the stairs to my living area and that is the only place I get my hot air from.
fastcat
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: Blaschak Nut/Stove Mix

Re: Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: Lightning On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 10:34 am

fastcat wrote:Sounds to me you have the problem I had, every time you seal something up you are reducing air flow. I ended up having to cup cold air registers in the floor upstairs and my heat started to come back, then I put a door corner fan under one of the registers to pull the colder air from the floor upstairs and send it down to the stove and now everything is back to normal. I'm just using gravity to move hot air up the stairs to my living area and that is the only place I get my hot air from.


Until more information makes me think otherwise.. Similar to what fastcat is saying. It sounds to me that since you made improvements its redirected cold air infiltration that is cooling the room where it didn't before..
Lightning
 
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Clayton 1537G
Coal Size/Type: Nut Size / White Ash

Re: Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: JohnnyV On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 10:52 am

Den034071 wrote:John check insul. around doors an windows .Also a big heat loser is wall receptacles do smoke test by each one .Loowes makes a gasket to fasten to rec . cover .Does your electric company do a blower door test .This will show you where heat loss is occuring .Good luck jack ex. builder an mason .

There is a little air coming from the one door. It is very, very minimal; a lot more minimal than from the dog door that is installed. The dog door has been open when it was single digits out before and it was still in the 70's in here. It is closed now and is 69 in here and 17 out. I am getting the foam strips to put around the door today. I am going to check the outlets; thanks for that idea, I didn't think about that.


michaelanthony wrote:Good morning johnnyV, I am guessing in a remodeled garage/family room that a one point the floor was or is cement. If that is the case you have a huge heat sink and there are ways to fix that. You have been here a few years and you most likely know the ins and outs of a good fire i.e. stove filled to the top of the brick etc. Hitzer say's your stove is capable of 60,000 btu's is it hot, meaning your can walk up to it and feel the heat or do you need sun block at 2-3 ft. The stove in my living room is rated at 50,000 btu's and when I run it hard like today 15* out and 76 in here, 3 ft. and the heat will almost push me back :) Do you have a mpd as well as baro, and if so try covering the baro with a couple sheets of aluminum foil or a 6" cap if you have one and try running it with the mpd closed as much as possible to keep your draft. That brings me to my next question, do you have a manometer to measure your draft? How much coal are you burning and what type? The reason I ask is because I am running pea size coal and if I idle it at 400* it is "metza-metza", Italian for so-so, but when give it the air it likes I get 650* -700* everyone is happy. My stove is cast iron so I can do that. Some picks also would help sometimes folks will see something we overlook. Good luck and keep us updated that stove of yours is a winner![/quote
Yes the floor is concrete for now. That is one constant that hasn't changed (lol) in this whole scenario. Stove is full, good fire. I can walk right up to the stove. I just checked the temp 5 ft from stove is 75, 10 ft 72. The mpd is almost always closed. I dare not cover the baro. The fire will go nuts. Very breezy and fire will almost go out of control. But, I can try it when I get home later. I don't have a manometer, but the draft is good. I burn nut coal and usually burn a 5 gallon bucket a day. Maybe I need to try pea? I know I can turn the stove up to get it to burn hotter. My problem, and sometimes this gets me into trouble, is I want to know
fastcat wrote:know
why I am not getting the same results or better results at the same stove temp, when I made these improvements to the room. I would have thought I could have the stove burn a little lower or the same and have it warmer in here. Thanks for the ideas.

Yes, Fred it does seem strange.

Fastcat: There is a draft coming through the room at floor level from the basement and the other section of the house. I know I am getting airflow, I just don't know if it is the good kind (lol)
JohnnyV
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: hitzer 254
Coal Size/Type: Nut
Other Heating: Pellet stove far end of house
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 254

Re: Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: JohnnyV On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 11:00 am

Lightning wrote:
fastcat wrote:Sounds to me you have the problem I had, every time you seal something up you are reducing air flow. I ended up having to cup cold air registers in the floor upstairs and my heat started to come back, then I put a door corner fan under one of the registers to pull the colder air from the floor upstairs and send it down to the stove and now everything is back to normal. I'm just using gravity to move hot air up the stairs to my living area and that is the only place I get my hot air from.


Until more information makes me think otherwise.. Similar to what fastcat is saying. It sounds to me that since you made improvements its redirected cold air infiltration that is cooling the room where it didn't before..


That is a very good point. Maybe now it is pulling cold air from the rest of the house where it wasn't before. The air flow got redirected.

For the first year and a half I could have it 75 out here, it would be 70 in kitchen and 63 at the far end of the house. I could not get the air flow to warm everything up to a consistent temp. I tried putting registers above doors, pipe with a blower to force air into rest of house, etc, but nothing worked. We eventually got a pellet stove to put at the far end of the house to supplement. The wife takes care of it, and likes it so I am okay with it. We leave it at the lowest heat setting.

I am wondering if now the flow is different, if the stove is finally trying to heat the rest of the house and now I have to burn it hotter or just turn the pellet stove up a setting. Hmmm. I think I will try the pellet stove option first, seems like that would be the easiest thing to check.

Thanks for the idea.
JohnnyV
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: hitzer 254
Coal Size/Type: Nut
Other Heating: Pellet stove far end of house
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 254

Re: Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: buck24 On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 11:04 am

Sometimes you can get a batch of coal that burns not so hot or not what you are used to. I would give the stove more air and would try so set the burn at 450*- 475* and see what happens.
buck24
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: New Buck Corp. / MODEL 24 COAL
Coal Size/Type: Pea, Nut / Anthracite

Re: Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: michaelanthony On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 11:12 am

Gee 2 stoves and the house is tighter? I sense dueling stoves fighting for oxygen, may sound odd but some fresh air may be needed. Try cracking a window where the pellet stove is and see if the coal stove area warms up. Then try the opposite. Yeah, I think fastcat is real close in regards to the air movement and or lack of :?:
michaelanthony
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vigilant 2310, gold marc box, vogelzang pot belly
Coal Size/Type: Pea, and a little nut
Other Heating: Very cold FHA oil furnace

Re: Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: coalcracker On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 11:14 am

JohnnyV wrote:Any ideas? I can't think of anything else changing anywhere in the house other than finishing this room off. Thanks.




sounds to me that with bare insulation, it was holding the heat well, and the insulation was acting like a barrier. But when you put the sheetrock or wallboard or whatever you finished it with, now that is absorbing the heat, and taking it away by conduction, like a heat sink, and carrying it out of the rooms. It will also conduct the heat into wiring, water pipes, fixtures, ducting, etc. in the wall.

you'd be surprised

the best insulation is looking at just insulation on the walls. Insulation doesn't absorb the heat or conduct it away, like a metal would.

for instance, if you have a lot of stainless steel, aluminum, metalware, etc. in a room or kitchen, that will be a giant heat sink drawing up all the heat in the room.

the only solution would be, burn the stove harder, and put more heat into the house.
coalcracker
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Standard sealed hot water boiler, hand fed
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Mark I Magnafire
Baseburners & Antiques: Lehigh Oak 18, Washington potbelly, Sears Roebuck parlor cabinet, PIttston 6 lid cook stove, vintage combo gas/coal cook stove 4 lid
Coal Size/Type: nut
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: Mark I Magnafire

Re: Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: Lightning On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 11:32 am

coalcracker wrote:But when you put the sheetrock or wallboard or whatever you finished it with, now that is absorbing the heat, and taking it away by conduction, like a heat sink, and carrying it out of the rooms. It will also conduct the heat into wiring, water pipes, fixtures, ducting, etc. in the wall


I disagree.. Eventually the sheet rock will reach room temperature and the insulation behind it will keep it from cooling. At that point the sheet rock won't act as a heat conductor.. :|
Lightning
 
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Clayton 1537G
Coal Size/Type: Nut Size / White Ash

Re: Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: waldo lemieux On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 3:19 pm

Lightning wrote:I disagree.. Eventually the sheet rock will reach room temperature and the insulation behind it will keep it from cooling. At that point the sheet rock won't act as a heat conductor.. :|


True except, now you have a radiant mass in contact with a cold surface (insulation and cold air trapped in the ins.) and that cold will wick heat from that greater mass essentially conducting heat out of the building. Sheetrock and ins used to come with foil face on one side to eliminate this tendency. Now you have to buy a foil barrier to stick over the ins before you rock. Too, Im sure your airflow pattern changed so it might be adding to the problem.

waldo
waldo lemieux
 
Stove/Furnace Make: efm
Stove/Furnace Model: s-20

Re: Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: fastcat On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 4:27 pm

Just for giggles when was the last time you really cleaned out the ash from under your coal bed?
fastcat
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: Blaschak Nut/Stove Mix

Re: Troubleshooting is driving me nuts

PostBy: McGiever On: Wed Dec 11, 2013 4:38 pm

Nobody think the stovepipe being cooler is a clue to stoves performance? He said he can hold his hand on pipe indefinitly. :roll:
Might be some flyash accumulated and restricting exhaust flow in a horizonital pipe section. :?:

First there needs to be more heat produced before wondering how to move too little heat around. ;)
McGiever
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AXEMAN-ANDERSON 130 "1959"
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: HARMAN MAGNUM
Hand Fed Coal Stove: RADIANT HOME AIR BLAST
Baseburners & Antiques: OUR GLENWOOD 111 BASEBURNER "1908"
Coal Size/Type: PEA / ANTHRACITE, NUT-STOVE / ANTHRACITE
Other Heating: Ground Source Heat Pump
Stove/Furnace Make: Hydro Heat /Mega Tek

Visit Hitzer Stoves