Determine your Fuel Type
Determine whether you use natural gas, wood/corn pellets, oil, coal, or wood to produce heat.
Reference your owners manual
Useful information can be found within your manual. The manufacturer of your appliance will specifically recommend a type of pipe required for venting.
Do not ignore recommendations
The different types of pipe are specifically manufacturers for different applications such as wood, oil, coal, gas, etc.
If you were to select the improper type of pipe, you could possibly start a chimney fire, or worse. Please make sure to follow all recommendations specified within your owner’s manual.
For additional information on the fuels and the different categories of pipe required please see our article on the different types available here.
Appliance Types and Terminology
When most people think of a heating appliance, the first word to come to mind is usually “stove.” Although this is enough for most of us to get by, the industry breaks up the stove types into different categories based on how they integrate with your home.
Below you will find the different types of appliances as referred to by their proper name. This should help in selecting the correct product for you.
An open recess within any given wall that a fire can be built within, including the mantel and damper. Normally fabricated from non-combustible materials such as steel or stone.
- This type of application normally requires a relining pipe.
- Brick/Masonry Chimneys are normally built directly above a fireplace.
The actual box within a fireplace where the fire is built.
An appliance that is not recessed within a wall or concealed in any manner.
- These appliances are available in many different versions to accommodate the large variety of fuel types.
Also referred to as a fireplace insert, this appliance takes up the entire area of the firebox. Normally used to upgrade from the traditional inefficient complete masonry fireplace/chimney system.
- Please note that most local codes require inserts to be completely relined with a pre-fabricated metal liner.
With well over a 500 different stove brands to choose from, one might wonder why brand even matters.
Although most appliances can accept at least one of the 10 major pipe manufacturers out there, some appliances are the exception.
Appliance brands such as Lennox, Majestic, and Security all manufacture their own exclusive pipe line. As they also manufacturer the stove, they have complete control over the physical connection to the stove.
By creating a unique connection on the stove, they can ensure that only their pipe will work with their stove. Unfortunately no other brand of pipe may be used in these situations.
Pipe diameter may also be of a unique diameter/dimension.
Local Code Restrictions
In most cases local code requires that you use the specific pipe manufacturer specified within your owner’s manual. If you do not follow these instructions, your project may fail final inspection, or even worse; in the case of a chimney fire and major damage to the home your insurance claim may be denied.
Reference your owners’ manual
Your owners’ manual will contain useful information on what brand of pipe you are allowed to use, as well as what diameter. In some cases they even specify specific part numbers and installation diagrams for your chimney system.
How to determine your size:
Size is an important factor when selecting the pipe for your appliance. To select the proper size, take the Inside Diameter measurement from your flue outlet on the stove itself.
Never decrease the size of your flue pipe due to dimensional restrictions.
For more information please view our article on common Draft Problems.
How it connects
All the different manufacturers of chimney pipe have different physical connections; however they all have very similar connection methods.
At the stove:
In most cases an adapter is required for the pipe to connect directly to the stove. This piece is called a stove-top adapter.
Single-Wall Pipe: A tapered cone allows for a friction-fit connection. One piece slides within the other, and fixed or secured with small sheet-metal screws.
Double / Triple Wall Pipe: The insulated construction requires an actual twist-lock connection for a secure fit. No screws can be used to secure the connection. Normally a locking band or some type of support bracket is required for extra support.
When passing through the wall or ceiling, an adapter is sometimes needed to connect directly to your support box or wall-thimble.
If your installation requires the same type of pipe for your entire installation (you do not need to change over to a different type) then you should not need an adapter.
For additional information on the pieces required and their uses, please view the manufacturers’ installation instructions. You can view our article on selecting the components.