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Old and traditional wood-burning appliances are amongst the leading indoor pollutants that can cause asthma attacks, cancers, or other respiratory diseases. However, new alternatives have been developed to make wood burning appliances more eco-friendly. Through those efforts, multiple alternatives have been created to allow homeowners to take control of their indoor air quality.

Efficient Alternatives  

Stoves, heaters, dryers, and fireplaces all play a significant role in the air quality in your home. Old wood burning appliances are inefficient and burn off carbon monoxide. But current models have been able to significantly reduce emissions while doing an even better job at warming you and your home. Older wood burning appliances can produce up to 30 grams of smoke per hour, with the EPA’s performance standard being 4.5 grams per hour. Electric appliances also offer eco-friendly benefits with traditional satisfaction. These appliances are easily installed and do not need a gas or vent line to work, while gel and biofuel stoves add another environmentally conscious option that also provide eco-benefits. From current efficient wood burning models to electric and biofuels, there are several alternatives to tackle your indoor air pollution.

Keep It Simple, Use Water

The presence of water can have a significant impact on the quality of air in your home. While humidity might not be the first guess for cutting into the presence of indoor pollutants, it might be the smartest. It is common for indoor air pollutants to hold a slight electric charge. A water source in the home such as a pond or fountain can trap these allergens and improve the air quality. These water sources can also humidify the room and change the air. Humidity levels play a large part in the air quality in your home with the ideal level staying around 45 percent. If this level rises above 60 percent, it can run the risk of forming mold or mildew in your home causing major health problems. If these levels dip under 30 percent, anything from skin irritation to a respiratory infection is possible. Simply taking care of your indoor humidity levels can go a long way.

Take Matters Into Your Own Hands

Maintaining a high standard indoor air quality is important to the health of any homeowner. With efficient wood burning appliances, you can enjoy their traditional benefits while working to reduce the pollutants in your home. Electric, gel, and biofuel appliances provide alternatives with the same comfort of traditional models. By enjoying these appliances responsibly as well as maintaining an acceptable humidity level, your indoor air quality will improve drastically.

Cassandra Pearson

Laura Streitman says deciding to install three wood-burning fireplace inserts in her Butler County home was not a tough decision.

“It was the cost,” she says about heating the all-electric home. “The first bill we got, I think, was about $650.”

The closed circuit test will tell you the voltage drop across the main operator coil. With the switch or thermostat closed, place your meter leads on the TH and TP terminals and measure your drop in mVDC.

To ensure a smooth ignition, when the valve first opens after turning on the main burner, no more than four (4) seconds should expire before the burner has completely lit off. Although problems with delayed ignition are most likely to occur with propane (because it is heavier than air), it can still affect natural gas appliances.

Trouble Shooting Main Burner Outage on a Gas Fireplace or Stove

1. Ensure that main burner goes out on its own and pilot light remains lit. If pilot goes out as well, refer to 'Pilot Flame Outage'.

1. Check if pilot flame goes out on its own or when main burner is on.

When checking inlet and manifold pressure, there are many different tools that will do the job. The manometer is one of the least expensive and also one of the best because it allows you to calibrate it every time you use it, ensuring an accurate reading. The manometer is a U shaped tube filled with liquid which has a valve or stopper at the top of each riser. In between these risers is an adjustable scale that is measured in inches which allows calibration of the manometer.

Another quick check you can carry out is the system resistance check. This will verify whether your control circuit has too much resistance in it. 

There are two instances where you will measure resistance when checking a valve for faulty main burner operation.

On natural vent appliances incorporating a vent safety switch (VSS) as part of the thermocouple circuit, you can use the ECO (energy cut off) or terminal block on the thermocouple as a test point for gathering information. By removing the VSS wire on the pilot assembly side of the terminal block and then touching your meter probe to this point, and with your other on the thermocouple casing, you can obtain the open circuit reading.

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