For over 30 years Energy House has sold and serviced wood burning stoves. From this experience we have identified the main areas that cause the stove to not draft properly, therefore causing smoke to escape into the home.
Questions to consider when you run into this problem. Has the stove ever worked well and is it only when starting the fire? If it did work well, what has changed? We like to remind our customers that the fireplace or stove does not have a brain. This simply means that wood burning stoves work well when operated properly.
Negative Pressure – Turn off your heaters, exhaust fans and anything else that could be causing negative pressure in your house. The negative pressure pulls smoke into the room instead of allowing it to go up your chimney. To read more about negative pressure, refer to page 5 of the owner’s manual
Chimney Cap – Your fireplace should not be used when the chimney cap is closed. The chimney cap can get plugged when using wood with more oil than others, such as eucalyptus or olive wood. Make sure the cap is open when starting a fire or smoke will come directly into the room.
Air Space Between Wood – When setting up your firewood, make sure you create space for air to flow between the wood. This is why many people use the teepee setup when starting a fire. Here are some examples:
Wood – One of the most important pieces to starting a fire is the kind of wood you are using. We recommend you use split, seasoned wood or small kindling pieces to start the fire. Do not use bark, wet wood or large round pieces to start the fire. You can use these pieces later once the fire is started. Using them to start the fire will cause a lot of smoke. For more information on types of wood, refer to page 6 of the owner’s manual.
Air Space Outside of Stove/Fireplace – Along with air space between your wood, you will want to make sure there is room around the fireplace or stove. Leave the door ajar, move furniture away from the area and make sure your extra wood is not stacked in front of the door.
Air Control Vent – The Air Control Vent allows you to control how much air goes in and out of your fireplace. It should be open when starting a fire. This vent can be closed (not completely) after the fire is started to keep your wood from burning too quickly. Refer to page 5 of your owner’s manual to understand venting regulations.
Baffle Blanket – Make sure your baffle blanket is not protruding beyond the front baffle. Refer to page 7 in your owner’s manual.