What Piping Do I Need For A Wood Stove

Buying a wood stove for your home is a worthy investment. Not only will your home feel warmer and cozier, but heating with wood stoves is easier on your pocket. If this is your first time installing a wood-burning stove, chances are good that choosing the correct stove pipe and fittings could be daunting.

 

Use a 12-inch section of stove pipe to attach the stove to the chimney through the flue. Use a connector pipe if the stove can’t attach to the chimney. Connect the chimney to the stove or connector pipe using a chimney pipe. Use an elbow if the connector pipe needs to divert to reach the chimney.

 

The truth is that once you know how your stove works and how the stove and pipes fit together, it will be a breeze buying the correct piping and getting your stove fired up in no time.

 

You Need a Few Different Pipes for Your Wood Stove

To install your wood stove, you must buy two different pipes, one to connect to your stove through the flue, called the stove pipe, and one to connect to the chimney, the chimney pipe. These are differently gauged and constructed pipes.

 

You will likely need to purchase an additional connector pipe if you cannot join your stove pipe directly to your chimney pipe.

 

If you can’t make a straight line between the pipe connecting your stove to the chimney, you can add an elbow bend to slightly divert the connector pipe to the chimney. You should only use one elbow bend.

 

When too many bends exist, creosote builds up in the bends and moves back down the pipe. The stove could catch alight when it reaches the heat near your stove. The best bet is to consider this when deciding where to position your stove.

 

Pipes Come in Different Sizes and Thicknesses

There are different options when buying pipe for your wood-burning stove. You can choose between a single wall pipe or a double wall pipe. Both pipes work well, depending on where your stove is positioned.

wood stove
wood stove

A single pipe is thinner than a double pipe, and the advantage of this is that it emits more heat which will warm your home up quicker. The downside of single piping is that you cannot use it within 18 inches of anything combustible or the wall. Examples of combustible materials are drapes, bedding, linen, aerosols, fabric sofas, and soft furnishings.

 

Double-walled pipes, on the other hand, heat your room slowly because the heat from the wood stove runs through the inner pipe, which transfers heat to the outer pipe.

 

The advantage of double pipes is that they are less of a fire hazard and work well where heat could damage the surfaces in your home or for smaller rooms that don’t allow for an 18-inch gap. Double-walled pipes must be 6 inches away from flammable materials or walls.  

 

Single pipes can cause burns because the pipes get hot quickly. Double pipes, on the other hand, have an additional inner pipe and airspace in between the pipes, preventing the outer pipe from getting as hot. Double pipes are also better options for children.

 

That said, new wood stoves are way more efficient than older models, and double-walled pipes will heat your home just as quickly as single-walled pipes. So, if you buy a recent model, buy a double-walled pipe; it is safer.

 

To avoid frustration and extra work down the line, check your area, building, and insurance requirements for any regulations regarding wood stoves, piping, and chimneys before you buy them.

 

Most importantly, buy a stove pipe inside your home and a chimney pipe for any area above the ceiling. Chimney pipes and stove pipes are not interchangeable. The pipes are constructed differently, handle heat differently and serve different purposes. Using stove pipes above ceiling boards creates a fire hazard.

If you need to connect through a ceiling and into an attic, buy a collar to connect both pipes. The ceiling board burns easily, and attics are fire hazards if they aren’t well-ventilated.

 

Suppose your chimney is a masonry construction, buy enough chimney piping to reach the top of the chimney but not protrude beyond the chimney vent.

 

Take Measurements

The first and most important step in buying piping for a wood stove is to get the right size. Pipes for standard wood stoves generally come in a few sizes, but 6-inch and 8-inch are the most common.

 

For your stove to burn optimally and prevent smoke from escaping, you must check that the flange size matches the stove pipe size.

 

The flange is the vent attached to the back or top of a wood stove and the point at which the stove pipe will attach to your wood stove. Measure the diameter of the flange to give you the size of the stove pipe to buy. The pipe fits snugly inside the flange; if it is smaller than the flange, smoke will escape into your home.

 

If you can’t connect your stovepipe directly to the chimney, measure the distance between the flue and the chimney to determine how much extra piping is needed. Always read the manufacturer’s instructions, as there may be specific specifications and requirements for your wood stove.

 

Buy the Pipe

When you know the measurement, buy a 12-inch piece of single or double stove pipe. This section of pipe fits directly into the flange on your wood stove. In addition to buying the stove pipe, add the following to your shopping list:

 

  • Stove pipe sealant
  • Paintbrush
  • Elbows, connector pipes, chimney pipes, and any other fittings you need (this depends on your stove, where the warm air will leave your home, and the angle at which the pipe will enter the ceiling and roof.)

 

Some pipes are sold unattached; in other words, the seam still needs to be joined. To join the seam, you need to lock the two ridges on the edges of the pipe. Once you’ve attached the edges, give the pipe a good squeeze to ensure they are firmly clicked. Seams can burst open and present health and safety risks. It’s preferable to buy pipes that are already joined.

Connect the Pipes

Start by fitting the 12-inch piece of stove pipe into the flange. Stove pipes often have male and female ends. The male end is slightly crimped and may not be visible, so check carefully. The female section is completely open.

 

The male side goes into the flue. Insert the stove pipe into the flue and gently rotate it until the pipe disappears and is altogether inside the flue.

 

You need to use a connector pipe if you can’t connect your stove pipe directly to the chimney. The male part of connector pipes should have screw holes; attach pipes with screws. Once again, insert the male side into the stove pipe and ensure it is firmly fitted inside the stove pipe.

 

It’s best to confirm the types of screws required when buying your pipes. Some connector pipes have self-tapping screws, making the job much easier.

 

To ensure your connector pipes are perfectly in place and completely sealed, apply stove pipe sealant on the joint at least one inch wide. It would be best if you used stove pipe sealant. Any other sealant could be flammable.

 

Conclusion

To install a wood stove, you need a piece of stove pipe to connect the stove to the chimney. Make sure that the stove pipe’s diameter matches that of the flue. Depending on the positioning of your stove, you may need a connector pipe to attach the stove pipe to the chimney. You’ll need an elbow if there isn’t a straight line from the stove or connector pipe to the chimney

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