Hi Jamie,, the easiest way to start an efm is to use barbeque charcoal,, break it up to small pieces about the size of an olive or the end of your thhumb,, use a piece of crumpled paper under the pieces.. I usually dig out a few handfulls of coal to make a depression to make the fire in. Light the paper, start the fan and let the air blow on the pieces till they are red, the add a handfull of coal on top, then another one and the fire will be going.. I have done the sam thing with smallpieces of wood, about the size of your index finger,, you need to get a HOT fire going, then add the coal in small quantities and let it catch fire before adding more coal..
The boiler or furnace? Needs a timer that runs the stoker every hour or half hour for about a minute or so. this 'keep fire' timer is critical to keep a fire fed and burning untill hot water is needed..
You may want to post the same question further down the home page [board index] on the Manufacterers site for EFM.. and get some additional help there.
You are lucky to have bought a home with an EFM !! Even if it needs some work and a 'tune-up' by an EFM tech.. it is one of the best boilers/furnaces available.