June 01, 2014

Gauge Your Stove Voltages & Currents: Understand How it Functions.Test How it Operates


Remember when you used to have to install gauges in your car before they became standard? Pellet stove voltages and currents can be displayed in a similar manner, which helps you better understand how it functions and know what parts may need replacement. Why not use one for a pellet stove?
Though some new touch pads come with monitors that indicate voltage and current, few control panels do. Even if they do, you have to press a lot of buttons to get these readings. It makes it more complicated than it needs to be.This gauge works great, and it can always bee seen.

There are many benefits to being able to gauge your stove's voltages and currents. One such benefit is operational testing for proper function. For example, you may find that a certain voltage level corresponds with how much air your room blowers distributes. A low voltage may indicate it is not blowing out enough air to make the room warm and it may need to be replaced. 

You will see in my photos that I hooked one up to the room blower. You may also use this gauge to measure the exhaust blower, auger motor, and ignitor. 115 VAC + or - 5 VAC means an exhaust blowing is running at full speed and is drawing less current. At low speeds, the exhaust blower draws more current (4 or 5 amp). Current that is much higher may be the sign the windings are shorting out.In the case of this Breckwell Big E, the normal voltage for the room blower on heat levels one and 2 measured 43 VAC, which means it is running 37% of full speed indicated by its fraction over 118 VAC.


Another issue is that your power company may not be supplying proper voltage. Look for 115 VAC + or - 5 VAC. If you are getting less than 110 VAC on a full setting, it is recommended to contact your power company. Your stove will not run properly if the supply voltage is too low.

Installation and operation:

After squeezing on the quick disconnect clips, installation is simple!
You should use wire ties to bundle up the wires. Keep the wires away from the hot spots, and it looks neater too. Initially, after starting up the stove, the gauge panel on a room blower will be blank. However, once the room fan starts, voila! You will see the panel background light up and the voltage and current numbers will appear.

After going through the room blower speeds, I discovered heat levels 1&2 have the same room blower speed and 4&5 have the same room blower speed on a Breckwell control board. You can learn a lot from using this component gauge.


Pellet stove component gauges can be found and purchased here, click here.


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