Coleman catalytic heaters like the BlackCat and Sport PerfecTemp models … (After all, the going rate for chimney sweeping alone is $40 or more.) Well, we're glad to say the latest wood stove catalytic converters and secondary-combustion stoves do seem to fill the bill. During the hours immediately after loading, the catalyst will be very active, handling the volatile hydrocarbons being released from the wood. The improvement is not an incremental gain in the stove's total efficiency. And if you don't feel up to building your own package (although the actual metalworking skills involved really aren't all that difficult), you might think about buying a retrofit unit or even a complete stove. Even with the unit installed in a small cast-iron heater (one which holds only 20 pounds of wood per load), this loss of firebox space hasn't been a problem. That bit of background should make the advantages offered by a catalytic converter pretty obvious. If you do have a shutoff valve installed, press and release the button to start the flow of fuel gas to the heater to start the catalytic reaction. You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.95 for 6 issues. $710.87 $ 710. A package similar to the one we're detailing in this article has proved itself able to increase a stove's heat output (which is a result of both combustion and heat-transfer efficiency) by better than 15%, and has reduced creosote accumulation in a stovepipe connector by more than 80%. Ideal For Burn Ban Locations, Try the RV LIFE Pro Bundle FREE for 7 days, RV Mods – RV Guides – RV Tips | DoItYourselfRV, What Is An RV Propane Regulator? Catalytic heaters require no electricity to operate. Usually I would have to make another fire about that time or a little earlier to keep things warm even on a good solar day. Now, however, there are two sources of supply open to MOTHER EARTH NEWS-readers who wish to build a retrofit unit like ours. The crew's experience indicates, however, that the basic concept can be applied to just about any roughly cubic metal (steel or iron) woodburner. If you need a quick turnaround or only want to rebuild a few heaters at a time, then our shop service would be the better option for you. Sign in with your online account. Thus, the amount of material available to stick to stovepipe walls will be less (and pollution will be reduced). If you are not using a shutoff valve, simply opening the fuel gas line will start the catalytic reaction. Since the converter must reach a temperature of at least 500°F before it "lights off," a location close to the fire will insure that the unit starts working as soon as possible and continues to do so throughout the burn. Catalytic heater maintenance and operational guidelines. It takes NO power and a minimal amount of propane to run meaning it saves us lots while providing plenty of warmth on even the coldest days and nights. The overall weight of the creosote in the catalytic mode was about 20% of that found in the conventional mode. After it's "lit," the converter will produce enough heat to maintain ignition, even though the temperature of the incoming "wood gas" may drop slightly below 500°F. First, the stove was run for approximately 150 hours with the package in place. Also, NuTech, Inc., a firm which the research team dealt with extensively during development and which makes a retrofit package of its own, has a similar offer. June 28, 2008: (Note: see my comments below about this heater) I'm preparing for the purchase of an Olympian Wave 6, a catalytic heater. [RIGHT] The creosote left when using the converter is dry and flaky and often falls away of its own accord. Many of us have eyed them longingly, wishing that we could justify replacing our old metal boxes with state-of-the-art heaters. If the fan had been operated on automatic, it's very possible that the efficiency would have been higher still with the catalysts in place. 87. The single runs in each mode didn't provide a great quantity of data to work with, but they did show a reduction of creosote of a little more than 80%. Under all burn conditions, there was always an adequate air supply remaining at the converters. And if you read about the stack temperature thermostat, you already know that members of our staff had been working on woodburning-related projects with independent researcher B.V. Alvarez for some time. That way, any mechanical or operator problem will err on the side of safety. Hi, thanks for stopping by. (And Why You Need One), Go Off-Grid In The New GoSun Solar-Powered Tiny Home, 10 RV Kitchen Accessories That Save Time & Space, 10 Winter Camping Items You Shouldn’t Travel Without, 7 Best YouTube Channels For New RV Owners, Camp Among Giant Redwoods In Northern California, RV Industry News: What RV Owners Really Want To Know. Make sure the match you use to light the heater is completely out. First, Buck Stove has offered to sell pairs of rectangular converters to readers through its dealer network for less than $100. When you stop and add up the time and money you expend cutting wood and cleaning your chimney, we're pretty sure that — no matter who you are — you'll find a do-it-yourself catalyst conversion will pay you back for its cost in two years or less. Until recently, it hasn't been easy for an individual to acquire catalytic converters for a do-it-yourself design. After a little reading I have found that the Wave-3 Wave-3 Catalytic Heater is a better heater than the much loved Mr. Heater Buddy. Collectively, Alvarez and our staffers spent thousands of hours — many of them during the hot, humid days of summer — cuddled up in a non-air-conditioned room at MOTHER EARTH NEWS' research center with the stove that Buck provided for testing. As soon as the burn is established to the point where you would normally shut down the draft control to get the output you desire, the bypass can be closed slowly. In addition, testing has shown that the ends of the box at the base should be closed and sealed to prevent an air- and/or smoke-flow pattern that would run against the walls of the heater, where the gases would be cooled. Furthermore, that same valve will have to be open while you're getting a fire going. For similar reasons, we also think that it's a good idea to arrange the valve so that it falls open under the influence of gravity. A catalytic heater is a flameless heat source that uses chemical reactions to break down molecules and produce heat. Therefore, the most important information we can provide you will be the fundamentals of good design rather than a single, rigidly limited set of instructions. Ceramic honeycombs coated with platinum and/or palladium and/or rhodium have filled this role in cleaning up automobile exhaust emissions since the early 1970's. Once you get the hang of it, operating a stove equipped with catalytic converters is only a little more difficult than managing a heater without them. By the time you read this, Buck will be well on its way to introducing a retrofit package (patent pending), similar to the one shown here, for its line of products. We have no way of knowing whether this variation is due to experimental error or an actual change in the stove's operating efficiency, but it could easily be either or a combination of the two. 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