Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Catalytic wood stove - Operation Don'ts

Don't burn trash, treated wood, particle board, plywood, or other fuels (such as coal, kerosene, or lighter fluid) unless they are listed on your stove's permanent label. Trash produces fly ash. Treated wood, particle board, and plywood contain chemicals that, when burned and inhaled, are hazardous. Burning other fuels may poison your catalyst or damage your stove. Cardboard, foil, and plastic may block exhaust flow through the catalyst, causing smoke to spill into your room. Don't operate your stove in the catalyst bypass mode after the catalyst has reached the recommended temperature (350 to 600°F). At this point, your catalyst should be working for you (to produce more heat using less firewood) and for the environment (destroying smoke and the cancer-causing pollution in the smoke).

Don't over fire your stove, especially when the catalyst is engaged. Avoid catalyst temperatures near or above 1600°F. This is another reason to use a catalyst temperature monitor. Catalysts can be damaged or destroyed by prolonged high heat. If temperatures are above 1600°F, switch to bypass mode and allow the catalyst to cool down to about 1000°F before resuming normal catalytic operation. Don't open the ash pan while catalyst is engaged because this will lead to overheating.

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