About our Catalysts‣ How They Work
‣ Operation and Maintenance
‣ Gasket Info and Ordering
‣ Why Use A Catalyst?
‣ When to Replace
About Us‣ Fast, Easy Shipping
‣ Catalyst Warranty
‣ How They're Made
‣ Designing New
‣ Other Condar Products
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How Catalysts Work
How does a Catalyst Work?
A woodstove catalyst isn't a filter. Instead of physically capturing particles, the combustor deploys chemical catalysis to break apart the molecular structures of unburned particles. Platinum and/or palladium atoms loaded in the honeycomb cells trigger the chemical reaction. Your catalyst converts smoke into water vapor, carbon dioxide, and HEAT.
Catalysis is used in other catalytic converters, such as automobiles, but woodstoves are virtually unique in benefiting from the HEAT that takes place from the catalytic reaction. Your Condar catalyst is engineered to maximize HEAT. Emissions from the chimney become invisible carbon dioxide and white water vapor. Chimney emissions from inferior or worn-out catalysts are dark.
What does light-off temperature mean?
Chemical catalysis doesn't take place at room temperature, or any temperature lower than light-off temperature. That's the reason for your stove bypass, diverting around the catalyst, during warm-up.
For ceramic-honeycomb catalysts light-off occurs when your woodstove reaches about 500° Fahrenheit (260° Celsius),
For Condar steel-honeycomb catalysts, light-off temperature is reached faster, at approximately 400° Fahrenheit (204° Celsius).
Use a woodstove thermometer or the new Watchman electronic catalyst monitor to monitor temperature of the catalyst, to achieve maximum catalytic reaction during your burn.
Catalytic reaction maxes out at about 1300° Fahrenheit through any combustor. Exceeding this temperature is destructive to the combustor and to the components of your stove.