Sulfur Smell from Alaska Channing 3 Stove With a Direct Vent

A Coal stoker furnace or stove controls most operations including automatically feeding the coal. They are quite similar to any conventional oil and gas units and easily operated for extended periods of time. They commonly use rice coal but may use larger sizes like buckwheat. They can be used as primary heat, supplementary heat or have a dual set up with your existing oil/gas furnace.
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traderfjp
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Stove/Furnace Make: Alaska
Stove/Furnace Model: Channing 3
Location: New York

Post Thu. Oct. 26, 2006 7:31 am

I have an Alaska Channing 3 stove with a direct vent. I lit the stove twice. The 2nd time I really let it run on about 3/4 high. Anyway, I got some smoke in the house from the paint curing ( natural occurunce) but I also had a slight sulfur smell. I noticed this too the first time I lit the stove. Should I call the dealer? Is this normal. Is there any easy fix?

Thanks in advance

red ash
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Post Thu. Oct. 26, 2006 3:59 pm

You should not smell sulfur/coal gas! As I have said in another post, direct vent coal stoves are more complex stoves. You are expelling all combustion bye products out a small diameter pipe. Where is it vented to? who installed it? Was it draft gauge tested(big one if you smell something)? These can all let gas into your home! There are lots of other sources for leaks as well (stove,vent pipe,doors,windows etc. ). Give more info :)
Keystoker 90

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traderfjp
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Stove/Furnace Make: Alaska
Stove/Furnace Model: Channing 3
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Post Thu. Oct. 26, 2006 9:15 pm

You are expelling all combustion bye products out a small diameter pipe.

The pipe is 6" stainless steel.

Where is it vented to?

The unit vents through the wall to the outside.

who installed it?

Me. I watched my dealer install one in his shop before attempting mine. It's not too complicated.

Was it draft gauge tested(big one if you smell something)?

No.

I run the stove without a window open. When I called the dealer he suggested that I had the door open too long when trying to light the stove and gases probably got into my house that way. I only ran the stove twice for about 3-4 hours each time. The second time the stove was run very hot and the paint started to burn off (cure) and it got smoky in the house. This is normal from what I was told. The dealer suggested that I wait and run the stove for several days before troubleshooting a problem that may be a simple product of leaving the door open too long. I used matchlight to light my stove and had the door open a good 20 minutes. What do you think. Although, the first time I lit the stove it was with a mouse and it stilled smelled of sulfur in the house.
Last edited by traderfjp on Thu. Oct. 26, 2006 10:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

blueduck
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Post Thu. Oct. 26, 2006 9:41 pm

traderfjp,
I just installed the same stove in my home. I had a strong smell of sulfur myself and the venter had a mounting hole that is not used so it needed to be sealed with high temp silicone. Its where the round flange is connected to the venter housing. Look on the bottom in the tight bend.
My leak was 80 ppm CO
or
You have have a different problem???

Hope that helps.


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traderfjp
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Stove/Furnace Make: Alaska
Stove/Furnace Model: Channing 3
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Post Thu. Oct. 26, 2006 10:25 pm

I had a strong smell of sulfur myself and the venter had a mounting hole that is not used so it needed to be sealed with high temp silicone. Its where the round flange is connected to the venter housing. Look on the bottom in the tight bend.

I think I found what you're talking about. It's where the stainless vent pipe attaches to the stove. There is an extra hole for a bolt. It looks like there is some silicone in there but I'll try to seal it up better. Is this what you mean. Also, I never used silicone to seal my vent pipe. Did you do this?

Thanks in advance. The stove works great except for the smell.

red ash
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Post Thu. Oct. 26, 2006 10:37 pm

Every interior seam on that direct vent needs to be sealed with hi temp silicone! What does your stove manual recommend for your draft setting? Your direct vent stove needs to be drafting under negative pressure or flu gas will leak out of the stove into your house vs. being exhausted to the exterior! When I asked where you vented, I knew it was outside! Often times the power vent is placed close to a window or door. These openings seem air tight, but coal gas has a nasty habit of proving they are not. You are right in saying they are not hard to install,however they require a lot of maintenance. This maintenance is much higher on power vented stoves. I use charcoal as well,but I do close the door and turn on the stove immediately after placing it on the coal covered grate!
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Berlin
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Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Will-Burt Combustioneer 77B
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Post Thu. Oct. 26, 2006 11:05 pm

"Every interior seam on that direct vent needs to be sealed with hi temp silicone!"

yup. every direct vent appliance needs to be sealed up very tight with silicone. the exhaust gases are under positive pressure.
Burning western Pennsylvania Bituminous in WNY using model 77 stoker furnace. BITUMINOUS equiptment: 2 hand fired stoves of my own design, Many Combustioneer Model 77 stokers, stokermatic furnace, Many Will-Burt stokers, & and Two Iron firemen.

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traderfjp
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Stove/Furnace Make: Alaska
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Post Thu. Oct. 26, 2006 11:10 pm

Every interior seam on that direct vent needs to be sealed with hi temp silicone!

I'll seal the Stainless pipes for the direct vent this weekend. The stove is of so no rush there.

What does your stove manual recommend for your draft setting?

There are no draft settings. It's all calculated at the factory. One setting fits all - I guess.

Your direct vent stove needs to be drafting under negative pressure or flu gas will leak out of the stove into your house vs. being exhausted to the exterior!

When you say negative pressure you mean that there shouldn't be any devices that will suck the exhaust's back into the home? I have a ceiling fan sending air down from the ceiling in the room and a 32" ceiling fan at the top of the steps (stove on main floor) sucking the heat up to the 2nd level of the house. Could this cause a problem?

Often times the power vent is placed close to a window or door. These openings seem air tight, but coal gas has a nasty habit of proving they are not.

The stove is in the corner of a house. Not near any doors but right next to a window. The window is fairly new and is a casement.

You are right in saying they are not hard to install,however they require a lot of maintenance. This maintenance is much higher on power vented stoves. I use charcoal as well,but I do close the door and turn on the stove immediately after placing it on the coal covered grate!

Yeah. I think I got the procedure down now for lighting a fire and won't have to play with it as much. I also read that an outside vent can help with a sulfur smell but I'm not sure why.
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red ash
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Post Fri. Oct. 27, 2006 1:17 am

It is highly unlikely that any household appliance would create enough negative pressure to suck exhaust out of that stove. Draft is a measurement of how hard that stove is venting to the outside. My stove is drafting at -.03 if I were to change my power vent settings and lower that to -.01 I would likely get exhaust seeping out of the stove and into the room where that stove sits. I am not implying that this is definitely happening to you,but with a private installation it can be a problem. Most homeowners don't have a draft gauge needed to accurately test the stove once it is up and running. The draft issue is one to keep on the back burner for now. Get that vent pipe sealed up and run the stove and see if that simple adjustment helps! :wink:
Keystoker 90

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traderfjp
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Stove/Furnace Make: Alaska
Stove/Furnace Model: Channing 3
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Post Mon. Oct. 30, 2006 10:39 pm

I ran the stove again and no smell. I think that it was smelling because I had a hard time lighting it and had the door open for a long time. Everything seems to be working great now. Thanks.

crmoores
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Post Tue. Nov. 07, 2006 10:09 pm

I have a direct vent also, have sealed all joints (even the elbow joints and screw holes) and these DV's do require more maintenance/cleaning.

I purchased a draft gage from Keystoker for about $80, works great. My boiler is at -.02 over fire, -.04 idling. Had a very slight odor but found the installer actually installed the flue incorrectly :evil: and I was probably getting a little exhause out of the upper elbow because of that. I will fix that this weekend and re-fire it.

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