My Plan for the Winter, Please Critique...

Modern and vintage hand fired coal stove are similar to a wood stove and in some cases can burn either. They need to be regulated and fed by hand usually every 12 to 24 hours depending on your usage. They require no power to operate making them ideal for rural settings with long power outages.
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New Member
Posts: 10
Joined: Mon. Dec. 31, 2007 1:33 am
Stove/Furnace Make: Hearth Mate

Post Wed. Sep. 10, 2008 7:51 am

Hi everyone,

First let me thank you all for a great site. It was very helpful last winter when I decided to try out the coal burning part of my combo stove. I'd just like to check my facts before the season starts so I don't make any stupid mistakes.

I have a Hearthmate wood/coal stove with a internal damper. Last year I had a new stainless stove pipe put in with a barometric damper that can be capped. I have a workshop in the basement so I mostly use this stove to keep the damp down and to heat the first floor. I have gas heat otherwise.

Here's my plan;

For the Fall and Spring, when it's chilly but not too cold I want to burn wood. I was thinking of capping off the stove pipe and using the damper that's built into the stove. I'll be completely closing off the draft under the fire and using the draft ports in the door.

For the winter when it's consistantly cold (every day all day under 50* f) I'll install the barometric damper in the stove pipe, keep the damper inside the stove wide open, and use the draft under the fire and close off the ones in the door fully.

Is there anything else I need to know, and is all that correct? I have a thermostat inside the stove pipe that's marked off for wood...what temperature should it be for coal?

New Member
Posts: 10
Joined: Mon. Dec. 31, 2007 1:33 am
Stove/Furnace Make: Hearth Mate

Post Sun. Sep. 14, 2008 12:39 am

I guess I must have done my research well...almost 100 views and nobody is telling me I'm going to burn my house down. :D

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Richard S.
Posts: 12707
Joined: Fri. Oct. 01, 2004 8:35 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite
Location: NEPA

Post Sun. Sep. 14, 2008 1:10 am

This was brought to my attention by someone else so I don't know how great the risk is. Barometric dampers are never used on wood stoves from my understanding because they provide the ultimate source of oxygen to feed a chimney fire. I see you stated you'll be installing it for the coal stove.

Even though you're burning coal at this point the concern there is if any creosote build up from the wood catches you're going to have one hell of a problem on your hands. ;) Now I haven't heard of this actually happening but I'd imagine its certainly possible.

Having said that chances are you're going to give up on the wood idea pretty quick. Most people do after the first season. ;)
"The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits."

- Albert Einstein

User avatar
Posts: 165
Joined: Tue. Oct. 16, 2007 8:52 pm
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hearthmate
Stove/Furnace Make: Hearthmate
Stove/Furnace Model: combo
Location: Seekonk MA

Post Sun. Sep. 14, 2008 6:51 pm

I have the same stove in my living room, it sits on the hearth in front of the FP. I also burn wood in the early and late seasons and coal when it cold. The damper in the FP was set open before the install and I use the stove damper only.

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