Coal Not Burning Hot Enough

Coal Not Burning Hot Enough

PostBy: NHGirl On: Sun. Nov. 23, 2008 4:23 pm

We have a wood/coal furance. The furance should be do 1500 sqft and we have an old 1200sqft home which all the reviews say this thing should be heating our home no problem and getting up into the 70's. However, we can barely get to 60 and the furance is just not getting hot.
We are using coal right now, the furance has a draft kit which is suggested for coal. We are using anthracite coal, got it going really well we started this attempt again over 24 hours ago. We just can not seem to get to stay hot and going to keep the blowering going, which at this point we have the blower set to kick in at 130 degrees to keep circulating air into the pipes to keep them warm. The dampers are fully open and it just isn't getting hot. Any suggestions?
Please help it is so cold in NH right now! :)
Stove/Furnace Make: Vogelzang 1500 Wood/Coal Furn

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Re: Coal Not Burning Hot Enough

PostBy: NHGirl On: Sun. Nov. 23, 2008 5:35 pm

Anyone else having this problem?
Stove/Furnace Make: Vogelzang 1500 Wood/Coal Furn

Re: Coal Not Burning Hot Enough

PostBy: LsFarm On: Sun. Nov. 23, 2008 5:46 pm

Hello NHGirl, how long is your full firebox of coal lasting?? 10-12 hours? or less? Are you filling the firebox all the way up to the top of the firebrick?

The main cause of not enough heat is either the design of the furnace/boiler, or lack of a barometric damper, or draft control.. Do you have a barometric damper installed in the chimney flue?? How tall is your chimney?

And, this is important,, every house is different. Poor insulation, poor windows and lots of wind with lots of cracks, crevases and drafts will make your heat needs equivalent to a house 2x or 3x as large..

A heater that says it will heat a 1500 sq ft house is not a very big heater.. you may be asking too much of it..

Greg L

Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland

Re: Coal Not Burning Hot Enough

PostBy: LsFarm On: Sun. Nov. 23, 2008 5:59 pm

OK, I went to Google and did a search for your furnace.. since you are having problems with getting your plenum temperatures up high enough to keep the blower running,, you are probably trying to heat ice cold air off the basement floor.. ?? do you have a cold air return setup on the boiler?? or are you pulling cold air off the basement floor, and trying to heat it to warm the house??

A furnace needs to reheat once heated air, and reheat it again.. it needs a recirculation loop that pulls cold air from the house, reheats it, and then sends it back to the house to warm it.. A furnace is NOT rated to heat 45-50* air from the basement floor to 150* and send it upstairs.. a furnace is designed and rated to heat 65* air from upstairs, ducted to the inlet of the distribution fan, reheated and sent upstairs.. this circulation loop is what all gas, oil, propane or coal furnaces are designed to do and must be installed this way if the heating performance is to be up to expectations..

Please describe the ducting you have on your furnace at this time,, where in the house the furnace is located, and the available ducting in the house..

Hope this helps.. Greg L

Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland

Re: Coal Not Burning Hot Enough

PostBy: franco b On: Sun. Nov. 23, 2008 6:40 pm

It sounds like poor draft to me.

If you are venting a small stove into a large chimney it will be incapable of maintaining draft, especially if the chimney is on an outside wall. Might need to reduce the chimney size with smaller pipe liner.

You mention dampers. Only the opening that is under the grate should be open. Hold a lighted match there and see if it sucks in the flame strongly.

Stoves that are represented to burn both wood and coal usually have a firebox big enough for large pieces of wood which is too long and shallow for coal. Many have add on pieces that make the firebox smaller and deeper. Coal likes a compact and deep bed with good draft. Picture the old potbelly stoves which could run red hot (not that you would want to).

If you ever have started a fire in a fireplace or a campfire you will have noticed that if you fan the fire it burns better until it gets hot enough to maintain a strong draft by itself. The same thing applies to a stove whether wood or coal. Give it enough air in the right place and it will burn hot.

franco b
Hand Fed Coal Stove: V ermont Castings 2310, Franco Belge 262
Baseburners & Antiques: Glenwood Modern Oak 114
Coal Size/Type: nut and pea

Re: Coal Not Burning Hot Enough

PostBy: North Candlewood On: Sun. Nov. 23, 2008 7:27 pm

This looks like a sister to the hotblast family. At least it looks like a 1557/1500 series and the Clayton 1600 blower set up from what I saw on the website. You can read Clayton posts on here.
I sent you a PM
North Candlewood
Stoker Coal Boiler: Eshland S-130
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Keystoker A 120
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Chubby
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Clayton 1602
Baseburners & Antiques: Princess Atlantic Cookstove
Coal Size/Type: Nut Rice

Re: Coal Not Burning Hot Enough

PostBy: RAYJAY On: Sun. Nov. 23, 2008 7:44 pm

Ok I'm confused is this the stove you have / also what size coal are you burning ?
**Broken Link(s) Removed**if it is then why does it state this in the ad

Wood Stove WarmthMODEL 1500

The NORSEMAN� 1500 Warm Air Add-on Furnace works as a primary or supplementary source of heat for your entire home or workshop area.

Conserve dollars spent on conventional heating methods using this solid fuel efficient wood/coal furnace.

This add-on furnace comfortably heats most small to medium homes with an output of 30,000 to 90,000 BTU's.

In the event of a power failure, the Norseman will continue to provide heat on a low setting.

Norseman furnaces are designed for INDOOR installation only.

(Not Applicable for Anthracite Coal Firing)

Coal Burning Tips

The size of coal fuel is critical - too large and it won�t burn well, too small and it will smother the fire creating excessive smoke and gases. Purchase Bituminous coal �nuggets� that are 1-3/4� to 4� diameter and that have been �cleaned� to remove rocks and other minerals.

Bituminous coal is recommended for ease of use but produces a greater amount of volatile gases so it is important to build and refresh coal fires properly. Extra maintenance will also be required to remove accumulated
soot on heating surfaces and pipes.

All fires should be initially started using wood kindling. Hardwood is best as it creates a hotter bed of coals that is necessary to ignite the coal.

Once a hot bed of wood coals has been established an initial layer of coal may be placed in the firebox. Due to the high amount of volatile gas produced by coal, the initial flames will be long and of an orange or yellow color accompanied by quite a bit of smoke. As the gas is burned off the flames will become shorter, the color will change and less smoke will be produced.

Once the fire is well established, add coal to the center of the firebox in a conical arrangement. The highest
part of the fuel should be in the center of the fire box. This allows the heat to drive off the volatile gases and the turbulence created causes a more efficient burn.

Remember to allow enough secondary air to enter the fire box and keep the stove pipe damper open to properly burn off the volatile gases. You will have to experiment with your particular setup (fire construction,
fuel load, spin draft control, damper and automatic settings) as no two arrangements of furnace/chimney are the same.

When refueling a coal fire, use a poker to break up any crust that may have formed being careful not to mix the coal which may increase the chance of forming �clinkers.�

Banking a Coal Fire

A fire should be banked for extended operation without tending, such as overnight. This is accomplished by heaping the fuel along the sides and back of the fire box so that the fire gradually burns through the fuel. This reduces the intensity of the fire without letting it go out.

Use the same procedures as in refueling but without shaking the grates. The layer of ash will help to reduce the intensity of the fire. After loading the fuel in this manner, let the fire establish itself for about 30 minutes then close the damper and adjust the automatic control to a point so that the house does not get too cold. Make sure you leave yourself enough time to bank the fire before leaving or retiring so you can make the necessary adjustments after the fire has become well established.

Reviving a Fire

To revive a fire that has almost gone out, increase the draft through the grates by opening the ash door and stove pipe damper and closing the door spin draft control(s). Place a thin layer of new coal over the entire fire but DO NOT SHAKE the fire grates. Doing so may cause the live coals to drop through the grates. Once the fresh layer of coal has ignited you may shake the grates (slightly) and refuel as usual.
Stoker Coal Boiler: VAN WERT - 600 VA HOT WATER
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: HARMAN- MAGUM STOKER
Other Heating: NG BOILER

Re: Coal Not Burning Hot Enough

PostBy: deacon3j On: Sun. Nov. 23, 2008 8:13 pm

I had some problems with my 2500 when I first got it going. I had to make a couple of small modifications but now is doing better, other than a choking problem that I think we figured out this morning.

Your stove like mine only has 1 draft inlet. I used a 1" hole saw and put 3 holes on the right side of the door in a triangular pattern about 3" across the points. Then I made an aluminum cover, mounted it and backdrilled through the holes giving me a 2nd draft opening. I've also built a 'forced draft' fixture using 1/8" metal and 2 computer cooling fans. Using that just the way I put it together reminds me of my Great Grandpa's forge! I really get a fire. I picked up a couple of rheostats so I can adjust the fan speed depending on the amount of heat I need. It gets plum cold here in my part of NY so I think I'm now ready for anything that gets thrown at us. I've seen it as cold as -45 here so it's good to be prepared!
Stove/Furnace Make: Vogelzang
Stove/Furnace Model: 2500

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