With proper care, a new catalyst will give years of fuel savings, lowered emissions, and increased heating. By following a few simple guidelines, you can ensure yourself maximum catalyst performance and longevity.
Burn only natural, dry wood
Burning any materials other than natural, dry wood can shorten the catalyst's life or render it inoperative.
Avoid the use of:
- treated, painted, and laminated wood
- high salt content wood
- wet and unseason wood
- garbage or petroleum based fire starters
Keep the catalyst within safe operating temperatures remember:
- catalysts can begin to work at 500°F (260°C)
- catalysts best operating temperatures are between 600° and 1500°F (316°-816°C)
- Monitor catalytic temperatures with a Condar Catalytic Thermometer
- Surface thermometers are inaccurate and readings vary widely with placement; they should not be used to monitor catalytic temperatures
Inspect the catalyst regularly
View or Print our free Catalytic Combustor Care Guide (PDF). It'll tell you how to care for a catalyst and how to recognize signs of catalyst failure.
Steps to engaging the catalyst
- Leave the bypass damper in the open position until the flue gasses reach 500°F (260°C)
- Close the damper and continue to observe the temperature for a few minutes to be sure the temperature remains at or above 500°F (260°C)
- Recheck the temperature when loading stove. It may be necessary to reopen the bypass damper depending on how much the temperature decreases
Replace your catalyst when you notice a significant loss in heating efficiency
See our When to Replace page for more information about when you need to replace a catalyst.
Consider an Aluminum Humidifier to help keep moisture in the air
See our Aluminum Humidifier page for more information about Condar's durable aluminum half kettles designed to propel steam outward.