GLOSSARY – STOVES
  Air wash – An arrangement whereby the flow of secondary air into the firebox is direct...

GLOSSARY – STOVES

 

Air wash – An arrangement whereby the flow of secondary air into the firebox is directed down the glass with the intention of creating a laminar flow to reduce combustion residues depositing on the glass panel itself. The result is a clearer view of the fire and significantly reduced requirement to clean the glass panel.

Ash pan, ash box – Common in multi fuel and coal stoves is the ashpan for collection of ash fuel residues during and after burning. Manufactured from corrosion resistant steel or stainless steel and often incorporating an adaptor for handling with a tool or other means of lifting out of the stove. Sometimes provided in better specification wood burners.

Air control, air spinner, air slider, air lever – A control device regulating the intake of air into the combustion chamber of the stove. An air control is used for primary, secondary and tertiary air or a single control can be used for all air flows depending upon the sophistication of the stove design. It may be provided by a slider, rotary knob or lever or a combination of several different principles. 

Baffle plate, throat plate, firebox top plate, deflector plate – A very important part of firebox shaping and elongating flame and gas flow path in order to improve combustion efficiency is the baffle plate that usually forms the roof of the burn chamber. It is most commonly made from steel or stainless steel with refractory materials such as vermiculite board also being used. Better designed stoves have easily removable baffles that allow easy soot removal and sweeping of the flue through the stove firebox. A baffle plate is sacrificial in that it will erode over time

Burn chamber, combustion chamber – the area within the stove firebox usually defined by the grate or fire base, side and rear firebox liners or firebricks and a baffle plate above. A fuel retainer of some kind is usually provided at the front. The fire itself is situated here. Modern stoves typically have a large glass panelled door in the front of the burn chamber to allow viewing of the fire.

Briquetted smokeless fuels, briquettes, ovals – Typical forms of manufactured mineral fuel that are often suitable for use in multi-fuel appliances. The fuel manufacturer will specify whether the fuel is for use in closed appliances or only open fires. Never use open fire fuel in multifuel stoves as significant damage can occur. 

Convector Stove – A stove that typically incorporates a double skin to circulate hot air around the room by heating it in the conduit thus formed. Thermal lift will circulate the air naturally but fans can sometimes be used to mechanically assist the air movements. The reduction in radiation by the use of an outer skin is very significant and this allows convector stoves to be placed closed to combustible materials without overheating them than pure radiant stoves.

Chimney – a vertical construction that ducts waste heat upwards and safely into the atmosphere above the living space. Woks on the principle of hot, less dense gases rising which causes the entire motive power for most solid fuel stoves to work.

Cooktop – A specially adapted top plate for cooking purposes, sometimes facilitating direct food contact with the plate. Usually made from iron, steel or soapstone materials.

Circulator fan, convection fan, air blower – A mechanical means of assisting natural thermal air circulation from a stove is by adding an electrical fan to blow air around the living space. Not popular at all in the UK due to noise and added electrical connection required but common in North America and Europe. 

Door – The stove is normally provided with a frontal door to load and view the fire through. They are most commonly made of cast iron or steel. It is vitally important that the door seals very well when closed and resilient woven glass fibre rope seals are the most common method of achieving this. A multitude of different locking and handle mechanisms are used to secure the door closed.

External Air Connection, Dedicated External Air Supply, DEAS, Outside Air Kit – A set of components supplied to connect a stove to the external air outside the property in which it is fitted. Often used in modern homes where the fabric of the dwelling is very tightly sealed, preventing easy air entry to supply the combustion of a stove and its essential flue flow. The stove must be purpose designed to accept an air supply connection and it is not something that can easily be fitted to all stove designs as a single air entry point is required.

Flue collar, flue spigot, flue connector – The ring shaped connector that allows a standard flue pipe to connect to the stoves firebox at the top or rear. Often manufactured from cast iron or steel and thick in cross section to ensure that its lifetime is adequate in the presence of corrosive combustion residues. Commonly bolted in place on the stove body to be easily replaceable.

Freestanding stove – A stove that can stand on its own and does not require building in to a wall, chimney breast or fireplace construction.

Firebox – The main body construction of the stove that incorporates the actual burning chamber within it. Materials employed are usually steel or cast iron.

Flue Pipe – The pipe that takes the flue gases away from the stove and into the atmosphere at a high level. Usually refers to manufactured components rather than brick built chimneys where the flue way is inside the chimney stack.

Firebox liners, firebricks, firebox cheeks – These items are commonly made from vermiculite board, refractory firebrick or castable refractory ceramic depending on the model. They are provided to contain the burning materials and protect the metal construction of the firebox itself from decay and damage. They are sacrificial in that they will wear, crack and erode over time but are repairable with fire cement and replaceable when worn out. The lifetime of firebox linings is very much dependent upon fuels and burning technique and rate. The materials employed are often insulating in their characteristics and reflect heat back into the fire bed to improve combustion conditions and can be replaced, the lifetime of a baffle plate is very much dependent upon fuels used, burning technique and rate.

Fuel retainer, log guard, coal catcher – A device fitted at the front of the burn chamber to retain the burning fuel and char ember bed in place when the door is opened for re-fuelling.

Gas stove, gas burning stove – A version of the original solid fuel burning stove arranged to burn natural gas or LPG.

Grate, firebars – The set of cast iron bars provided on which to build the fire. Air spaces are allowed through the grate to admit primary air into the base of the fuel if required. Dedicated wood burners usually don’t have a conventional grate but multifuel stoves do. The grate is sometimes provided with moveable sections to help drop ash from the fuel bed into the ash pan. The grate is sacrificial in that it will erode over time and can be replaced, the lifetime of a grate is very much dependent upon fuels and burning technique and rate.

Glass Panel – The glass fire viewing panel provided most often in the door of the stove is not in fact common glass but a translucent ceramic. Standard or even heat resisting glass is unable to cope with the thermal expansion stresses created by a solid fuel of gas firebox and would break. Only when transparent ceramic panels became available (developed from ceramic hob glass materials) did large glass viewing panels become practical for domestic wood burning stoves. The thermal expansion of glass ceramic is incredibly small so thermal stresses become almost negligible. Ceramic glass is susceptible to some etching from acid or alkali attack during use with some solid fuels and it is not safety glass, tempered or toughenable in that it will relatively easily shatter into shards when broken by impact or stress. It is therefore limited in lifetime and will need to be replaced due to wear and tear dependent upon fuels, firing rate and technique but it is more than adequate for the role it performs.

Gasket – A sealing device, usually made from ceramic or glass fibre in stoves for heat resistance and typically flat in appearance such as 3mm thick gasket paper. Compresses between bolted or clamped components to give an air tight seal in areas like glass frames, doors and air intake boxes.

Heat exchanger – An additional component or module with enhanced surface area to transfer more heat from the products of combustion into the room air.

House coal – a very smoky, dirty coal fuel that must NEVER be used in multifuel stoves other wise damage can occur.

Inset stove, Insert stove – As the name suggests inset or insert stoves are fitted into a close fitting cut-out in the wall. Sub-classifications are cassette which include a convector or outer box forming an air jacket and those standard inset stoves that require a ventilated air apace to be left around the outside to allow heat to escape. 

Iron – a metal refined from Iron Ore by smelting out of rocks. It is very good for casting into moulds to form complex shapes and is relatively cheap as a raw material. More corrosion resistant and heat retaining than sheet steel but not as tough or resistant to cracking. Must be jointed by bolting and sealing with compounds and gaskets as welding is not an option. Very good for stove doors.

Leg adjusters, adjustable feet – Threaded adjustable fittings in the base of each stove leg or stand base that allow adjustment for uneven hearth surfaces.

Log store, log stand, log box – Similar to a stand in that it usually raises the height of the stove to allow storage of logs under the firebox itself.

Multifuel Stove, Multifuel burner, Multi-Fuel Stove – A solid fuel burning stove equipped to burn both mineral type fuels and wood type fuels. Stoves thus equipped used to be a compromise in performance but modern high specification stoves burn both types of efficiently and cleanly. Normally equipped with primary, secondary and tertiary air supplies for staged combustion.

Operating tool – A device, usually manufactured from steel or stainless steel to help the user operate their stove. Typically used for lifting the ash pan, operating the grate shaker and sometimes for opening the loading door. 

Petroleum Coke, pet coke – A cheap residual product of the petrochemical industry, this is a fuel that must NOT be used in its pure raw form on a multi-fuel stove. On its own it burns incredibly hot and causes severe oxidation corrosion of grates, firebox liners and baffle plates and can cause extensive overheating of multifuel stoves. The main reason for this hot burning is largely the lack of ash within the fuel which means that combustion continues very fast because ash does not reduce the rate that oxygen can react with the fuel as much as other mineral fuels and blends. It is crushed, blended with other mineral fuels and used in the manufacture of briquetted smokeless fuels where its properties can be balanced well with other less volatile fuels – it is best used in this form.

Primary air – A flow of air into the fuel bed itself usually from underneath. Essential for coal and briquetted smokeless fuels, usually unnecessary for wood burning when it can remain fully closed.

Pot belly stove, bellied stove – An old narrow, tall, waisted shape stove design for burning coal, there is usually no window or any kind of sophistication to these basic fireboxes. Not really suitable for wood burning and will usually produce a lot of smoke doing so.

Rope seal – Typically made from glass fibres woven into a sleeve around a stranded fibre packing core. May also be made from ceramic fibres for very high heat tolerance. Cemented or clipped into position in a groove where it can create a seal between two components like a door and stove body.

Radiant stove – A stove that has just one thickness of body wall skin and produces a lot of heat by direct radiation from this surface. There is also a degree of convection circulation from these stoves that is often not mentioned but convection still forms a significant heat transfer mechanism with a radiant stove. 

Riddler, riddling grate, grate shaker – Often present in the form of a moveable section of grate either bars that rock, slide relative to each other or a rotating section in order to assist in de-ashing the fuel bed. Commonly connected to a rod and operating knob on the outside of the stove so that ash remains within the stove when the fuel bed is de-ashed. Whilst these are somewhat useful for smokeless briquetted fuels, they are not as much use for wood burning and stoves without this feature are entirely useful and practical.

Rope seal glue, rope seal cement, rope seal adhesive – A high temperature engineering adhesive used to retain rope seals in place on doors and stove bodies generally. Modern adhesives are usually silicone rubber room temperature vulcanising (RTV) formulations and ceramic body silica based adhesives are also very common.

Stove – In this context the word stove is used to describe a heating appliance used for domestic heating within the United Kingdom. Also means a cooker, hob burner or cooking range in other parts of the world, most notably USA and North America – don’t get confused by this. Fuels can vary and include; wood, peat, log, coal, briquetted fuels, smokeless, lignite, pellets, gas, LPG, biomass and more.

Solid fuel stove – A closed firebox domestic heating appliance designed to burn solid fuels i.e. wood logs, natural and manufactured mineral coals, peat briquettes and other solid fuels. Notable in being much higher efficiency than open fires due to convection of heat around the dwelling and prevention of excess air being drawn away up the flue or chimney. Broadly these fall into two categories, freestanding stoves and inset stoves.

Secondary air – This is the flow of air into the firebox above the fuel bed, usually employed to keep the glass panel clean as an air wash and allow continued combustion above the layer of burning fuel. Essential for wood burning to clean up combustion to current clean air act levels and helpful for Ecodesign compliance to further complete combustion with coal type fuels. 

Stand – A component that supports the stove to increase height. Available in a number of different configurations including log stores, pedestals, low, medium and high in height.

Steel – A very tough, strong, extremely versatile metal produced by removing excess carbon from iron in a converter blast furnace. Usually supplied to manufacturers in sheet format in a huge variety of thicknesses. Can easily be cut by press, guillotine, punch or laser, formed into shapes and welded into airtight fireboxes for stoves. Very resistant to cracking and reasonably corrosion resistant by using sufficient thickness. Excellent for stove fireboxes, log stores, stands and accessories etc.

Stainless steel – A blend of steel with chromium to produce a steel that is resistant to corrosion. Properties are good but it is much more expensive and difficult to work than mild steel. An excellent material for decorative finished parts such as handles and trims and items in highly corrosive environments such as advanced baffle systems. 

Tar – a condensed partial combustion residue found in flues where high moisture content wood logs are used. Dangerous in terms of heightened chimney fire risk.

Top plate, hot plate – Typically a stove with a flat top can be used for heating items such as kettles and pans for cooking using the heat produced directly thorough the flat top plate.

Tertiary air – A flow of air injected into the hot burning zone above the actual fire, commonly at the rear of the firebox to combine with the secondary air to ensure combustion is as complete as possible. Tertiary air is really secondary air by another route. Often a fixed aperture controls the admission of tertiary air although some stoves also have an air control for this feature.

Tertiary air profiling –  An innovation invented by Peter Mintoft and exclusive to Charlton & Jenrick, this system of increasing the cross-sectional area of the tertiary air inlets within the firebox allows much improved turbulent mixing of the fresh oxygen rich incoming air and gases produced by the fuel pieces rising up within the hot upper firebox zone. Patented in most of the world, including Europe and China.

Wood burner, Woodburner, Wood burning stove – A stove dedicated to burning wood only. Usually equipped with a flat base to build the wood fire upon. More sophisticated units may have a grate or hollow base section incorporated and with that an easy to remove ash pan to be used for simple ash removal and disposal.

Wood logs, wood fuel, seasoned logs, kiln dried logs – The preferred choice of renewable fuel for the vast majority of stove users. Always make sure that the moisture contents is below 20% for good burning performance, seasoned logs are fine as long as they are dry enough.

Zero clearance – The term applied to a stove product that can be installed with no safety clearance i.e. touching combustible materials. Commonly provided with an outer jacket which has the appropriate stand-off delineating where combustible materials may be situated. Not common in the UK.

 

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