Thursday, September 4, 2014

Installing the wood burning stove

The other day - Monday, to be exact - not long after we created the Fall To-Do list we conquered one of the items on the list. And by "we" I, of course, mean Keith and my dad-in-law.
The sweet, adorable, windowed wood stove that we brought home last November is now hooked up and functioning!!!! Eep!!!

When we called the chimney inspector, Keith and I were more than a little nervous about the report we would get back. We had prepared our hearts for a super expensive, time-intensive repair list, especially since we already knew the top, exterior part of the chimney needed work. What we got back was a report worthy of a gold star sticker. Seriously. The inspector said it was super clean and that the tile was in fantastic shape. Basically, that report meant that we were in the clear to hook up our precious wood burning stove and doing so would be cheaper than anticipated. I'll let you imagine the happy dance I did.

This is looking up the flue. I am literally laying with my head in the fireplace while Keith holds a flash light so I can take a sorta lit, sorta focused picture. If you look carefully you can see the damper chain running all 40 ft up. Apparently it is semi-unusual for dampers to be at the top. Who knew?
I know you're wondering how we hooked it up so here is the summary:

First, Keith and John had to figure out the angle of elbow joints that would need to be attached to the flue collar to route the flue to the right. Figure it out in the great expanse of the room and then set it aside so that you aren't cursing yourself later.

Second, they stuck steel pipe up the chimney a section at a time, screwing it together as they went. Because I'm a terrible person I can't tell you the exactly what length of pipe went up. I was just there to take pictures.

Third, wrap unfaced (paperless) insulation around the pipe liner. This prevents draft and helps with condensation. You can see the insulation down in the corner 2 pictures up.

Fourth, stick the earlier assembled elbow on the end of the liner and push the stove back in place and figure out how to connect every thing.

Fifth, line the stove with bricks.
So that's how we did it. Since it's still crazy hot (hurry up, fall!) we got just enough of a fire going to make sure all was venting like it should.
If you are thinking about trying this yourself, call a chimney inspector and get their thoughts. We grilled our chimney inspector with questions to get his opinion and insights. Since the chimney was in such good shape and didn't need any repairs or crazy pipe-snaking he just told us how he would do it. Off the record, of course. Also, my dad-in-law has had many years experience using wood to heat a house so we trust his expertise in this (and every other) house related project quite a bit.

PS - I am now taking December appointments for hot cocoa by the fire. Shall I put you down?


  1. Yes! Put me down! (If, you know, I had endless traveling resources or lived in Indiana...)
    PS - Now that I've been following your blog for a little while, I am mentally kicking myself for not having befriended you when you lived in Texas. I mean, what was I thinking?

    1. Well if you're ever in the territory I will have an appointment on reserve for you ;) we can talk about all things bloggy and texas-y