The Correct Direction to Install Wood Stove Pipe
July 19, 2023
Wood burning is a great way to save some money on your heating bills and also is enjoyable to sit around and watch the fire. Freestanding wood stoves require double wall or single wall stove pipe to connect the stove to the chimney or chimney pipe. Failure to properly install the stove pipe can cause creosote to leak out of the pipe and can be a very unpleasant experience.
The male end of the stove pipe for wood burning should always point down and/or pointing at the stove. Also, the wood stove pipe should always be inserted into the collar of the wood stove outlet.
This may sound backwards considering the direction in which the flue gas is traveling. Some are concerned that the smoke can leak out of the pipe seams - however it will not. The pressure of the draft will be moving too fast for smoke to work through the seam.
The greater concern is creosote leakage through the wood stove pipe connection points. Creosote can often be in liquid form when the stove pipe is cooling and the fire is dying down. The lower temperature condensation will drip creosote down the pipe. If the male end is incorrectly pointing upwards, liquid formed by condensation will always travel down the path of least resistance, and will eventually drip outside of the pipe just like in this picture. By having the male end pointing down, any drips will fall into the female end of the pipe below and back into the stove to be burned.
Now, you may look at your stove pipe setup and say, "The male ends of my pipes are pointing up and I don't have any problems and it's been working like that for years". If it hasn't happened to leak "yet", it's only a matter of time until it does. Changing the pipe configuration will take the "yet" out of the equation and prevent it from happening entirely.
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