Woodstove #101: Wood Burning Stove

Here are some characteristics of wood stoves, so you don’t confuse them with gas, ¬†pellet, or other kinds of stoves:

  • They are free standing units with a tube chimney attached to the back or side.
  • There is a door on the front of the firebox that you can open to put logs into.
  • Some models have a blower unit that pushed heated air into the room.
  • In the Spring and Summer chimney odor is often an issue with wood stoves.

The variety of sizes, shapes and efficiency of wood stoves is endless. I can’t possibly show them all, so lets look at the common ones.

Look For the Chimney Pipe Connection

Open up the door to your firebox and look around in there. See if you can identify a damper (image 101-2), or see if you can identify where the flue pipe is connecting with the firebox (image 101-6).

If you can see where the pipe connects to the firebox that is a perfect location to install a Chimney Balloon or a round Flueblocker. Use a ruler to make a quick diameter measurement of the entry point so you know what size plug to get. The Flueblocker is a more durable plug, but if you need a plug that has an auto-release feature if someone accidentally starts a fire without removing the plug first, then go with the Chimney Balloon.

There is Something Blocking My Access to the Flue Pipe

Sometimes there is a damper (image 101-2) or baffles that are in the way of giving you access to the flue pipe. If this is the case, see if there is a way around it. Sometimes firebrick baffles can be moved (image 101-4) to give you access to the area behind it. In the Avalon stove (image 101-3) there are firebrick baffles on the top of the burn chamber, but they are loose and can be lifted and removed. Getting them out of the way gives you access to the chimney pipe connection.

In many wood stoves there is simply no access to the chimney pipe through the burn chamber. It may be possible to access the chimney though an ash clean-out port, but this gets a little complicated. Contact us through phone or email, and we will see if there is a solution.