Three Tips for Outdoor Wood Furnace Maintenance It’s a fact: an outdoor wood furnace is pricey. But don’t worry. It’s a long term investment that could last even longer with the right care. The following are essential tips for outdoor wood furnace maintenance: Regular Cleaning
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Depending on the amount of wood you are burning, the unit normally needs to be cleaned out once a month at least, sometimes more frequently. Some units have a built in auger system that makes use of an auger to eliminate the ashes. But auger usually just removes the ashes around it and not those that are stuck to the sides.
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When it’s time for cleaning, allow the fire to burn down and reduce to a few hot coals. All the hot coals have to be moved to one side of the firebox with the use of a shovel. Scoop the ashes out and into a metal garbage bin. When you have cleaned one side of the firebox, get the hot coals, pushing them to the opposite side of the firebox and removing all ashes remaining. When done, you can have an ash-free firebox with some remaining hot coals you can use to easily restart your fire. The metal garbage container will cool the ashes safely, and in a matter of days, you can spread in other places, such as your garden. Water Treatment The water inside the unit has to be treated so that corrosion can be prevented. Untreated water can substantially diminish your unit’s longevity. There are various companies offering water treatment services nowadays. Tinted water treatment is preferred by a lot of people. The tinted treatment is added until the water in the unit gets a similar tint. As soon as this happens, the process is done. You only need to keep an eye on the water’s color and add more treatment if necessary. Other treatments work as well, such as those where you use a test kit to make sure the water is treated properly. It is all a question of preference, so the decision on which treatment to use, is entirely in your hands. Just make sure the water is properly treated, whatever treatment you choose. There should also be enough water inside your unit to prevent damage. You want the furnace to have a gauge so that it’s easy for you to check the water level. Corrosion Prevention Units mostly have an anode rod accessible above the furnace. Because it is the target of rust and corrosion, the water jacket is spared. Anode rods are generally used in water heaters and have the same purpose – to increase the unit’s lifespan. The anode rod must be checked at least once a year to make sure it is still in great shape. If not, replacement is easy.