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Water and debris in flue liner of Jotul Stove

We have a Jotul Woodburning stove on which we burn dry, well seasoned wood. Gases go up through a stainless steel flexible chimney liner and the stove draws well and burns well. The chimney is capped with a metal cowl to keep birds out and prevent rain pouring down.We find that bits of black debris drop down the steel liner and need emptying frequently from the base of the liner. This is easy to do, but the big problem is that sometimes if the stove has not been lit for a few days there is also an accumulation of black liquid at the base of the liner which smells of tar. The house smells dreadful. This happenend recently when we were away, and neighbours tell us there was no rain during our absence.The chimney through which the liner passes is built of thick stone. We have tried three different designs of cowl covers in the belief that driving rain may have been the problem. None have fixed the problem. Gases exit the burner at the rear and then pass through a right angled bend to rise vertically through the liner. Water and debris collect in the sump at the base of this right angled connection. Can anyone suggest what is wrong?

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Hi,
You should have a swept T connector at the base, with the sweep going from the stove upwards, but the other end of the T going into a removable cap - or very short length of pipe. If you only have a standard bend - replace it with the T.

This is actually normal for wood burners. In an unlined chimney, the lighter "tar" fractions from the wood would soak into the brickwork, and show through the wall in a few years. In a lined system - they have to go somewhere, and usually condense inside the flue - running back down to the base.
The "chinese hat" style cap is actually very good for everything except sideways hail.

Sorry - but it's the nature of the fuel. It is possible to use a clay based absorbent at the base - Cat litter is actually fine.

Posted on Jan 03, 2009

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