Adjusting the damper helps you burn a fire safely and efficiently. Wood stoves are simple: air in and air out. I only activate the cat maybe once a day to extend the burn while I’m out or at night. Guaranteed! Typically, if you are installing a new wood burning stove inside your existing chimney, you'll want to remove the entire damper assembly and bracket when you install a new chimney liner and attach it to your wood stove. It’s not unusual to find that the handle that opens and closes the damper is stuck. Crack the door before opening: When you first crack the door of your stove, the airflow inside your stove changes. Edward Bulmer, a Herefordshire-based interior designer with his own range of paints, is currently replacing an old boiler in the office and replacing it with a wood-burning stove. The flow of air through the stove regulates heat. Generally the appliance consists of a solid metal (usually cast iron or steel) closed firebox, often lined by fire brick, and one or more air controls (which can be manually or automatically operated depending upon the stove). The confusion probably stems from people who are used to that instant blast of heat that comes from lighting an open fire. The damper is a door of sorts, that when closed, separates the firebox from the chimney. You can open or close the damper using the controls in your fireplace. If necessary to keep the fire burning well and smoke-free, you may adjust the damper into a semi-open position. If you are unsure of the position, it will be clear after a fire is lit. A damper should always be fully opened when starting a fire or adding wood to the stove, allowing the firebox to draw the most air. A flashlight should illuminate a throat damper well enough to see if it’s open or closed. Unless you have a vent-free fireplace, the first step you should take before lighting a fire in a wood-burning fireplace or gas fireplace is to open the damper. Once temp gets to above 400 I close it to activate the cat in the secondary chamber. 1. If you can pull on the chain before it jumps back up, the damper is open. So, you always want to check to make sure the damper is fully open when a new fire is built. How to Know Whether the Damper is open or closed? Broken Dampers Need Fixing or Replacement Open it whenever I add wood so I don't get smoke in the house. That means ashes are cool to the touch even when stirred. How to open and close a damper: The handle, lever, or chain, is usually located in the firebox. It allows this heat to dissipate into the area being heated by the woodstove. Home » Blog » How to Open a Damper. Let the fire burn for a few minutes then adjust the damper so that it is partially closed (about half way) to see how it affects the fire. If you leave the damper closed while you're burning wood in the fireplace, your home can quickly fill up with smoke. Poker Damper. Disconnected or loose wood stove damper linkage. The damper is a metal sheet that blocks some air from going up the chimney. ‘Stoves burn more efficiently than open fires, but neither is, frankly, eco … When the by-pass damper is open, smoke and gasses by-pass the normal exit route (hence the name) moving directly out of the stove into the stovepipe and chimney. Feed more dry wood kindling before closing down the stove. He wants both hot air blowers on at all times. When starting a fire, this needs to be fully open for the best air flow. You can check the manufacturer provided a guide to check where the damper is located and how to find out if it is closed or open. My friend who his father always had wood stoves told me when I first set it up, to start a fire, then once its going hot. The brackets are sometimes bolted, welded or mortared into the chimney. The single most important piece of advice on burning wood on a wood burning stove is to ensure that the wood is well seasoned, with a moisture content of below 30%. The wood is not properly seasoned or too big to create the heat necessary to produce draft. But when you have a fire going in your fireplace, you want the damper open to let in extra oxygen, which helps the fire burn better. If you start a fire when the damper is closed, you’ll realize the mistake quickly when the room fills up with smoke. 6. A sawzall with a good metal cutting blade or a small grinder can be used to remove the bracket. If the smoke builds up in the room instead of getting out of the chimney, it means the damper of the wood stove is closed. The chimney draft is weak due to too many restrictions; chimney height below the minimum; draft is diluted due to poor gasket connection(s); loose clean out door. If you light a fire, smoke will flow out of the fireplace into the room, if the damper is closed. Burning wood that is not properly seasoned, not only provides an inefficient fuel source for your burner, but also produces resinous fumes that will soon build up deposits in your flue. A wood-burning stove (or wood burner or log burner in the UK) is a heating appliance capable of burning wood fuel and wood-derived biomass fuel, such as sawdust bricks. Open or Closed? Next, use a lighter to ignite the newspaper, and leave the stove door open to give the fire air. A traditional wood stove usually has a throat damper at the base of the chimney flue. During the part of the year you are using your wood-burning fireplace, open the damper before you light the fire. The wood-burning fireplace has a damper right above the firebox that can be opened/closed with a metal lever and another damper at the top of the chimney with a long cable that you pull and latch to close it. 5. 3. I have the intrepid II and I keep the damper open most of the time. The damper retains heat that escapes up the chimney or flue. Shut the damper when the fire is completely, absolutely out. A pivot damper operates on a long, jointed handle. How to use the fireplace damper to control the fire. Besides that, the damper stays open but I make sure to keep the temp below 600 for fear of damaging the cat. To open or close it, move or pull the device into the open position. For this reason a yearly chimney sweep and inspection is necessary. A wood stove damper is a plate that is inside of a wood stove's flue.By opening the wood stove damper, it allows air to get into the chimney so the fire can start.If you keep the damper open, the fire will build and the smoke and soot will vent through your chimney. For a damper at the top of the chimney, you’ll have a chain that controls the device. So I now will have confidence to let my wife put wood in the stove and crank the timer to let it fire for awhile if she gets cold. Wood loaded in the back of the stove is more likely to stop smoke coming out of the wood burning stove when the door is open. If a damper is not opened when a fire is built, smoke will back up quickly and fill the room. How to Open Your Chimney Damper. • Pivot damper. Check out our beautiful, modern, and easy to use wood stoves! Some dampers have adjustable devices such as snap-locks that hold the damper in the closed or open position to help prevent accidental movement of the damper, or tabs on the back of the damper blade that engage the damper linkage. Then, put some crumpled newspaper in the middle of the firebox, followed by 15 pieces of small, dry kindling on top. Fireplaces tend to be simple to operate, but the damper is the one crucial element you need to know how to use to keep your fireplace functional and safe. My flue method: exhaust damper fully open when starting a fire and until I have a decent bed of coals, then fully closed. These dampers are open by lifting the handle up, pushing the damper upwards, and pinning the damper in the upward position by setting one of the notches on the handle onto the mounted ratchet on the frame of the fireplace. That means more heat in the room and less expense for you. Nevertheless, you can tell whether your damper is open or closed based on the position of the controls. At a basic level, dampers are simply metal pieces that fit either inside the pipe or the stove itself. How to Open a Damper. When the fire is going well, an open damper will send most of the heat up and out of the house, even if the stove door is closed. To be able to tell if your damper is in a closed or open position, you need to find the damper controls. Shut the flu down tight. This kind damper, Poker dampers, we commonly refer to as a banana handles.This is because of the banana shape arch in the handle. Damper Fails to Open. Use a pair of pliers or an oven mitt if it’s hot to the touch to change the position. ... is the one time to partially close the damper to limit airflow through the stove. Wood Stove Efficiency: Using a high-efficiency stove, using dry wood, keeping the fire hot, and not starving the fire. Many issues with lighting and smoky fires can be attributed to the damper. I built my own outdoor wood furnace with forced air heating. The damper must be in the fully open position when using a wood burning fireplace. With a wood burner, you’re not supposed to feel the heat from the flames. Closing the damper restricts the airflow, releasing exhaust smoke and heat. I closed the air intake and the barometric damper shut itself as soon as the fire died down just a bit. To use a wood stove, start by opening the damper valve underneath the grate so that the fire gets enough oxygen. 2. In other words, closing the damper too early can smolder your fire. We have a wood-burning fireplace but never use it due to the hassle(s) that come along with it. With the door closed, your stove is up to 60% more efficient than if you have the door open. 6. You lift the handle, push open the damper, and prop the damper open by setting the handle into a groove. The wood stove damper is a critical piece to consider and is often a point of failure. (If the damper handle is not stuck, but you just aren’t sure how to open or close the damper, click here for directions.) Air shutter was not open enough. These are the parts that control the air flow up the pipe. Partially closing the flue (chimney) damper can cause smoke to spill into the room when burning wood, or cause carbon monoxide (CO) to come into the room when using gas logs. Put on goggles and a dust mask. Knowing how to tell if the flue is open in your wood stove or fireplace can help retain the heat needed in your home. If you have a wood-burning fireplace, you have a damper that controls how much air goes out the chimney during a fire. The open damper also lets the smoke go up and out the chimney. It can also save you from air pollution arising from smoke and other gases – unless you want to install a kitchen exhaust fan. I just made a metal shed insualted it and installed duct work to the home and put an older scandia cast iron wood stove inside. Ok heres the background. A damper on a wood stove is either mounted in the chimney or in the stove itself, and it is used to block off the air flow going out. Open the fireplace damper all the way when starting a fire. If these are too tight, the damper could be stuck open or closed. Try to find the damper handle. 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