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Have a pellet stove that has been working perfect for years, then last night it shut itself off and when I opened door there was this black tar on everything inside and the windows were also black. I had to use a razor blade to get it off. I have cleaned it and within a hour or so it starts to turn black. Any suggestions.?

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  • proton2390 Mar 28, 2011

    I have not changed brands of pellets and have cleaned the chimmney reagulary. I am starting ti think it might be the air intake as you suggested. I watch the flame go from big to almost out and then normal for a while

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Several of things come to mind: Have you changed the type (Brand) of pellets, recently?
Have you had your chimney (stack) cleaned in the past year? Is the fresh air intake functioning properly? Is the auger feeding to much or to little pellets?

Changing brand of pellets - Not all wood pellets are made the same. If you recently changed brands, you will need to tweak your stove to handle this new brand. This will affect how the auger feeds.

If you chimney (stack) hasn't been cleaned in the past 12 months, it may be partially clogged with creosote and not drawing properly and it is liquefying and running back down the chimney and not allowing for a clean burn. And could cause a chimney fire.

Fresh air intake: If that's not functioning properly, you're getting incomplete combustion. Which will cause the black tar looking substance you described. Couple that with changing brands of pellets and you have a problem.

The above are the first things that came to mind. I hope it steers you in the right direction to troubleshoot the problem. Please let me know.

Posted on Mar 28, 2011

  • Rich Landrum Mar 28, 2011

    Proton, I agree with you. You on the right track. If yours operates automatically, the sensor is failing. Also, check the gasket material on the front door. It may be severely worn and pulling air from the interior of the house, which would throw off the fresh air intake. If it needs replace, make sure you get the proper size.

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