Q.Does the steel heat up faster for greater efficiency? Can I disengage my bypass sooner? A. Yes, this combustor "lights off" earlier than your ceramic combustor. When using a thermometer to monitor stove performance, you can disengage your bypass and start benefiting by heat recovery at 100 degrees lower stove temperature than before.
Q. Should I clean this steel combustor annually, like ceramic combustors? A. Yes. Clean it each summer the same way.
Be sure to avoid scraping the steel with any hard or abrasive object that would strip off the brown catalyst and reveal the shiny steel underneath.
Q.Why are the SteelCat cells smaller than the ceramic honeycomb cells? A. Because the steel cell walls can be thinner than ceramic walls, your performance is better, by exposing more catalyst to smoke coming up your chimney. And your stove naturally gets better air flow.
Q.What if I accidentally deform some steel cell walls, say during cleaning? A. That isn't a problem.
Q.Does the active catalyst last as long as this SteelCat? A. No. Like with ceramic combustors, the catalyst eventually wears out. After several years you'll notice gradually decreased heat from your woodstove, increasing chimney creosote, and dark smoke from your chimney.
STEELCAT is the exclusive trademark of Condar Company, Columbus, North Carolina USA for woodstove catalytic combustors. All rights reserved. This mark may not be reproduced without permission. The black wrap around Steelcat™ products is the exclusive trade dress of Condar steel catalytic combustors to identify the product; it may not be used to mark other woodstove combustors.
“After installing a new SteelCat Combustor in my Encore, I’ve noticed that my stove stabilizes at a lower temperature, so it’s no longer necessary to make the room too hot. Now I’m getting longer burn times, and using less wood!”