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  1. #1

    HELP! Son-in-law installed HVAC intakes inches from wood stove firebox

    My son-in-law designs and builds custom stairs and can figure just about anything out, but he has mistakenly assumed that is true about a wood stove installation. He put a large soapstone stove in the basement of a 3 story (open ceiling on top floor), and ran a triple wall pipe out a window. (The pipe is lower than the main roof peak.) Then to move the heat around he had a friend who works in HVAC run huge intake pipes from the sides of the stove into the 2 lower HVAC units. (Photo attached).
    He keeps smoldering fires going, frequently uses unseasoned or wet wood, and leaves the HVAC fan running continuously. I'm sure the only reason the CO2 monitors aren't triggered is the open design of the house and they are near the ceiling in the 2nd story. (They don't pick up low level CO2 anyway.)
    I have had damage to my heart and lungs, one of the dogs they keep in the basement has a loss of lung function and one of my granddaughters is starting to have asthma symptoms. He can't hear me when I try to talk to him about it. I am willing to call the county building inspector or fire marshal before he lights up again this year, but I would rather find some way to get him to understand this is not an acceptable installation.
    (I have tried finding info to share from the wood burning sites but this kind of problem is barely spoken about.)

    Can someone please, please write out an explanation I can show him so he can understand how serious and dangerous this is.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    N. Idaho
    Posts
    586
    If your son-in-law wont listen to you, what makes you think he'll read a forum but then again everything on the Internet is true!

    You need to get a professional out there to remedy the situation, if they'll even take the job.
    "I've got my Gas Mechanics license"
    "Yea, well my 16yr old daughter has her drivers license, doesn't mean she knows how to drive"

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    171
    He keeps smoldering fires going, frequently uses unseasoned or wet wood, and leaves the HVAC fan running continuously
    he can figure just about anything out

    U sure about this? The word 'wacko' comes to mind

  4. #4

    Confused DANGER

    This is the Ask Our Pro's forum. In order to post a response here, you must have verified qualifications and have been approved by the AOP Committee. You may ask a question by starting a new thread.

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    Last edited by jpsmith1cm; 09-14-2012 at 06:07 AM. Reason: non AOP member

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Seattle WA
    Posts
    1,225
    A Mod needs to move this thread to the "Wall Of Shame" LOL
    America; first we fight for our freedom,
    then we make laws to take it away.

    -Alfred E Newman

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    tallahassee,fl
    Posts
    380
    DO NOT light that stove. They are all lucky they are not dead. Do whatever u have to do to save there lives, this is stupid. CO= carbon monoxide, odorless colorless silent killer, not to mention the other air pollutants being introduce to the home.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Western PA
    Posts
    25,386
    RRobinson

    This is the Ask Our Pro's forum. In order to post a response here, you must have verified qualifications and have been approved by the AOP Committee. You may ask a question by starting a new thread.

    You can find the rules for posting and qualifications here.

    Additional infractions may result in loss of posting privileges.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Western PA
    Posts
    25,386

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Fort Worth, TX
    Posts
    11,286
    Shaking. My. Head.

    Some people in this world are incredibly foolish. Even MacGyver would utter a few expletives of disbelief.

    Get a carbon MONOXIDE detector from Co Experts and get it into that house. It will alarm at a low level, much lower than the junk sold retail. If it goes off or even shows a trace of CO while the stove is burning wood and the HVAC blower is running, give your son-in-law verbal hell until he removes that crazy installation. It's not just high levels of carbon MONOXIDE that can adversely affect health. Sustained low levels of exposure is also no good.

    For more information, go to the Carbon Monoxide Safety Association (COSA) web site at www.cosafety.org and read up on the dangers of carbon monoxide.
    • Electricity makes refrigeration happen.
    • Refrigeration makes the HVAC psychrometric process happen.
    • HVAC pyschrometrics is what makes indoor human comfort happen...IF the ducts AND the building envelope cooperate.


    A building is NOT beautiful unless it is also comfortable.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Jacksonville,Fl
    Posts
    123
    Quote Originally Posted by Kate's gwama View Post
    My son-in-law designs and builds custom stairs and can figure just about anything out, but he has mistakenly assumed that is true about a wood stove installation. He put a large soapstone stove in the basement of a 3 story (open ceiling on top floor), and ran a triple wall pipe out a window. (The pipe is lower than the main roof peak.) Then to move the heat around he had a friend who works in HVAC run huge intake pipes from the sides of the stove into the 2 lower HVAC units. (Photo attached).
    He keeps smoldering fires going, frequently uses unseasoned or wet wood, and leaves the HVAC fan running continuously. I'm sure the only reason the CO2 monitors aren't triggered is the open design of the house and they are near the ceiling in the 2nd story. (They don't pick up low level CO2 anyway.)
    I have had damage to my heart and lungs, one of the dogs they keep in the basement has a loss of lung function and one of my granddaughters is starting to have asthma symptoms. He can't hear me when I try to talk to him about it. I am willing to call the county building inspector or fire marshal before he lights up again this year, but I would rather find some way to get him to understand this is not an acceptable installation.
    (I have tried finding info to share from the wood burning sites but this kind of problem is barely spoken about.)

    Can someone please, please write out an explanation I can show him so he can understand how serious and dangerous this is.
    Name:  IMG_3178.jpg
Views: 430
Size:  38.1 KB
    Name:  IMG_3179.jpg
Views: 405
Size:  37.7 KB
    Here is your explanation: Ask your son-in-law to stick his head in the oven until he passes out. That should do it.

  11. #11
    Thanks for all the "serious" answers to my deadly serious problem.

    Yes, he can usually figure anything out but he is a little arrogant and still has some streaks of rebelliousness and adolescent omnipotence.
    This is obvious to you because you are trained and to me because I have done so much research, but it is not obvious to people who know nothing about the aerodynamics of flues or combustion emissions. We are in Georgia where the public isn't educated about things like wood smoke and people here still think it is "natural and harmless". I have been labeled a crackpot (my daughter even suggested I needed therapy) because I have tried to educate my family and friends about the health impacts of wood smoke and believe building codes are in place to protect people not to find ways to skirt around ("everyone does it" :P).

    HE IS NOT GOING TO LIGHT THAT STOVE AGAIN. I will do anything and everything to stop it.

    I had just hoped some information from professionals about why this is a "no-no" might be an easier step than calling in the county or a stove installer.

    I'm taking the pictures to a local store that has professional installers and hiring them to come talk to him.

    Wasted your time and mine.

  12. #12
    You have my permission to post the images on any wall of shame or anywhere else that would help prevent someone else from doing this. Had I seen something like this on a wall of shame, I would have been able to show him.

  13. #13
    He is a helicopter pilot so has had lots of training about CO2. I am not going to let him light another fire so there won't be a need to test for CO2. And it isn't just the CO2, it is all the components of flue gases that are being sucked back into that house by stack effect and HVAC.

    Thanks for repy

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