Odor Control >> Smoke Damage

The fire combustion process when wood is burned is never quite complete and the Smoke Damage from a wood burnt fire usually will contain a dark brown or black substance which has a very unpleasant odor. This tar looking substance is called creosote and is found almost anywhere in a wood house fire. At temperatures below 250 degrees F creosote will begin to condense on the surfaces of your stove pipes or the chimney flues.

  1. When the ambient temperature gets below 150 degrees F the creosote deposit may be thick, sticky and similar to tar. This tends to trap the carbon from any Smoke Damage which dries and bakes inside pipes and the flue, this powdery substance is extremely flammable. Creosote is much more of a problem with the wood stoves than fireplaces since the exhaust gases from wood stoves are cooler than those from your fireplace. The amount of creosote that is in condensing on the surfaces of the heating system varies according to the density of the Smoke Damage and the vapor from the fire, so less smoke means less creosote's and the temperature of the surface on which it is condensing, so the higher temperatures will reduce the chance of creosote condensation and the type and dryness of the wood being burned.
  2.  Creosote could build up to a dangerous thickness on the interior surface of the chimney and the draft opening might subsequently be reduced. A serious fire damage may be ignited if the creosote is allowed to build up. Most Smoke Damage problems with creosote are due to poorly constructed chimneys with a low draft and cold walls. You could reduce the amount of creosote problems in several ways. The smoke density could be lowered somewhat in an airtight stove by using smaller amounts of wood and stoking more often or by using larger pieces of dried wood. Creosote formation could be limited by leaving the air inlet or stove door slightly ajar after adding your wood to promote more rapid burning until the burnt wood is mostly reduced to charcoal, then close the inlet as needed.
  3. Allowing this extra amount of air causes more complete combustion and that lowers the potential Smoke Damage creosote-forming gases and generates additional heat to the surrounding space. Vapor in the flue pipe gases may be controlled by using the driest wood possible and also using only small pieces of wood during the mild weather when combustion is still relatively slow.
  4. The open stack temperature could be raised by insulating the vertical stove pipe connection so that it will cool as little as possible before reaching the upper chimney. Also using an insulated pipe will aid in increasing the overall stack temperature. Draft could be increased by having as few angles as possible between the heating appliance and the chimney, having the proper height and diameter and keeping the chimney in good condition and by having a separate flue pipe for each appliance. Also Smoke Damage use the proper sized stove flue pipe, in a larger chimney, the draft could be increased by decreasing the flue pipe size.

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