It’s wonderful the weather has turned towards spring and summer, but for wood-burning stove users there can be mixed emotions about saying goodbye to the regular warmth and light of their stove. A helpful ritual this time of year is giving your stove a well-deserved Spring clean, so you know that it is ready and in perfect condition for next winter!

Read on to learn how to keep your wood-burning stove in tip-top condition.


Wood burning stove spring cleaning tips and guidance

Cleaning your chimney

Chimneys need regular cleaning to prevent creosote buildup and to reduce the possibility of a chimney fire. How often you clean the chimney depends on the amount you use your stove, the type of wood you burn, the type of wood-burning unit you have and the way you operate the unit. We recommend cleaning your chimney on a yearly basis as a minimum, with springtime being the perfect opportunity after a long winter.

We recommend hiring a professional chimney sweeper for the first chimney cleaning and ‘health check’. Use this as an opportunity to learn and see if this is something you would be willing to do yourself moving forward. A Charnwood stove is fitted with a drop-down throat plate allowing you to sweep through the appliance with minimum mess.

Please note if a chimney fire does occur, follow these steps to reduce your losses:

Call your local fire department immediately and give them your name and address.

If there is a fire in the stove or fireplace box, extinguish it with a multipurpose dry-chemical extinguisher. As some of the chemical travels up the chimney, it may extinguish the chimney fire.

Also explore our top tips around how to have a wood-burning stove without a chimney.

Cleaning your stove’s surface

A wood-burning stove is a great aesthetic complement to your home even when not in use. To clean the exterior of your stove, all you need is a soft brush and a vacuum cleaner to wipe away and remove any soot or dust.

If you use a cooking plate and have made a little more mess, then a stove cleaning product and a lint-free cloth works well. All cleaning is best undertaken when your stove is unlit and cool.


Maintaining your stove’s glass

Burning well-seasoned, dry logs on your stove will help reduce the amount of soot build up that occurs on your stove’s glass. However, occasionally soot will accumulate, especially if you have been using firewood with a moisture content over 20%.

There are a few methods that can be used to wipe away soot listed below:

· Charnwood Schott dry wiper

· Fine wood ash and damp newspaper

· WD40 and a lint-free cloth

For more details read our in depth article on how to clean wood-burning stove glass

It’s important to clean your stove’s glass frequently to reduce the amount of dirt that builds up. If you do this regularly, you won’t have to attempt scrapping stubborn dirt and risk scratching and weakening the glass surface.


Empty your ash pan

When leaving your stove unused for extended periods it is worth emptying out the ash pan as well as the firebox completely. Removing the throat plate and opening the air inlets allows a flow of air through the stove that helps prevent any rust forming.

With some care, any dust escape into the air can be minimised during ash removal. We recommended opening your windows for a short period afterwards to allow the air in the room to circulate.


Inspect the door and flue seals

Take the opportunity when cleaning your wood burning stove to inspect the rope seals on the doors and flue. The seals can succumb to everyday wear and tear, so it’s important that these are checked frequently and changed if necessary.

If these or any other parts of your stove need replacing, Charnwood offers a range of spares for all current Charnwood stoves, as well as most legacy models, in our spares shop.


A fresh coat of stove paint

If after inspecting your stove closely you notice some scratches or general marks of wear and tear, it is worth considering some Charnwood stove paint. Whether it’s a quick touch up or a complete colour change, we offer cans of our heat resistant stove paint in the 8 Charnwood colour options. This is a simple yet brilliant way to give your stove a new lease of life.

Before painting your stove, you should make sure that the surface is dry, clean and free from any grease. Before spraying your stove we recommend masking off the glass and handles and gently rubbing down any areas to be retouched with a Scotchbrite pad.

You can purchase Charnwood heat resistant stove paint from your local Charnwood stockist.


Take care of your stove so it takes care of you

Regular maintenance in conjunction with a yearly deep spring clean is the best way to extend the life of your stove and make sure that performance remains at an optimum level. When you consider all the benefits a wood-burning stove brings to our lives, it’s a no-brainer to give it the TLC it deserves so that it’s ready to keep you warm through next winter and beyond.

Also explore our wellbeing benefits of log burners.


Why Choose Us?

At Charnwood Stoves, we take pride in offering more than just wood-burning stoves—our team provide a lifestyle. With our unwavering commitment to quality and innovation, we deliver stoves that not only warm your home efficiently but also add timeless elegance to your living space. Backed by decades of expertise, we understand the importance of easy maintenance and durability.

Our stoves are designed to withstand the test of time, ensuring hassle-free operation and peace of mind for years to come. Choose Charnwood Stoves for reliability, performance, and the assurance of a cleaner, greener future. Join countless satisfied customers who trust Charnwood for their heating needs.

Get in touch with our team today.



There is a misconception among some in the media that people are installing wood-burning stoves purely for aesthetic appeal. However, the reality is there are many reasons including energy independence and security, significant well-benefits, supplementing other renewables, off grid living etc. The fact a wood-burning stove looks nice and makes a home feel like a home is usually just a bonus.


Well-being benefits  

When people do talk about ‘aesthetics’, however, they are often underestimating just how sizable this benefit can be. The Charnwood Wellbeing Survey 2021 showed wood-burning stove owners enjoyed significant well-being benefits. While this is connected to how a stove ‘looks and feels’ the effects on the people and families are far from superficial. 

Studies have shown how hearth and campfires can influence arterial blood pressure and defray the costs of the social brain through fireside relaxation. Here is a section from the study: 

‘Results indicated consistent blood pressure decreases in the fire-with-sound condition, particularly with a longer duration of stimulus, and enhancing effects of absorption and prosociality. Findings confirm that hearth and campfires induce relaxation as part of a multisensory, absorptive, and social experience.’ 

Here are some quotes from Charnwood customers discussing the well-being benefits of their stoves. 

“You can just gaze into the fire and be taken away from the stresses of work. It gives opportunity for the family to come together and talk. Talking just seems to come easier when siting around the stove.” 

“Watching the stove in full display is almost hypnotic and has great relaxing properties. It also has a back to nature feel and without any electrical devices in the room is perfect for de-stressing.” 

“Fire is deep within the human psyche and sits in a happy place in our limbic brain. You get lost from the day to day in a fire – it’s a little bit of wilderness in the order of the day to day.” 

“The stove just provides a much-needed atmosphere on a cold winter’s night. You feel relaxed, cosy and there is something about it that just welcomes you into the living room. I couldn’t live without it.” 

Find out more about the wellbeing benefits of log burners.

Energy Security (Stoves provide a real sense of security) 

There are many other wellbeing benefits that come from owning a stove including the peace of mind people get from feeling they have proper energy security. 

“We love our log burner. It makes us feel warm, safe and secure. It helps heat the whole house, which has proved an asset in power cuts. Nothing beats sitting in the living room with the warmth of the fire in the depths of winter.” 

 “Lighting the stove after a walk by the sea during winter is a joyful experience. Has helped to alleviate the worry of power failures as we live in an area prone to electricity outage during bad weather. Just knowing that we have our lovely stove for independent heat and low light is fab.” 

 “Back up for central heating given no of power outages,” 

 “As an electric-only house, we wanted a plan b during a power cut to heat the home” 

 “more efficient than previous coal fire and, in extremis, if gas supply fails or is too expensive, will provide warmth.” 

 “Having a wood burner means I am less vulnerable in power cuts. I can still have heating, boil a kettle, cook food if I need to.” 

As you can see, even when considering just the aesthetic appeal of wood-burning stoves, this isn’t purely a superficial quality as some with agendas would like you to believe. The well-being benefits associated with wood burning, even infrequently, are significant and provide people with an important tool for dealing with stress and extracting greater joy from daily life. 

Also explore how a wood-burning stove can help reduce your energy bills.

People install a wood-burning stove for the multiple benefits outlined below. The fact there are so many is the REAL reason people choose to install a wood-burning stove. 

-Renewable source of energy  

-Local fuel 

-Lower start-up costs 

-Independent of weather variability 

-Supports other renewables 

-Promotes sustainable living practices 

-Provides energy independence & security 

-Significant well-being benefits 

-AND YES, they look great too! 

We understand the well-publicised desire to improve PM 2.5 emissions from all areas of society, including wood burning. However, modern wood-burning stoves are part of the solution, and it would be far more productive to acknowledge ALL their benefits and not look to invent narratives to manipulate public discourse. 

There’s no denying that a wood-burning stove looks great, but it is far more important to acknowledge how it makes you feel. 


Why Choose Us?

At Charnwood Stoves, we understand the allure of a wood-burning stove extends far beyond mere functionality. Our commitment to quality craftsmanship and timeless design ensures that each stove we produce not only provides efficient heating but also becomes a centerpiece of warmth and comfort in your home. With decades of experience in the industry, we pride ourselves on delivering stoves that blend tradition with innovation, offering sustainable heating solutions that stand the test of time.

Choose Charnwood for unparalleled reliability, exceptional performance, and the assurance that your investment will enhance your living space for years to come. Join countless homeowners who have made the decision to elevate their lifestyle with a Charnwood wood-burning stove.



Charmain Ponnuthurai’s next essay in ther series explores Imagination, Play and Materiality.

“And they rose up early the next day and offered burnt offerings and brought peace offerings. And the people sat down to eat and drink and rose to play” Exodus 32:6

What if, contrary to Charles Bradley’s song, ‘No Time for Dreaming,’ we do need to spend more time dreaming? Author Rob Hopkins of ‘From What is to What If’: Unleashing the power of imagination to create the future we want’ and founder of Transition Towns, says that the decreasing trend in the use of our imagination is having a detrimental effect on our lives. It prevents, for instance, the ability to solve social inequality and address issues such as the climate crisis in any meaningful way. We have replaced idle time, a visit to the library, lighting a campfire, talking to a stranger, spending creative time in the kitchen or going for a walk with a constant plug to the device in our hands. The time lost in connecting to our imagination and ‘playing’ not only affects the future ahead of us, but is also contributing to the pandemic of loneliness and a feeling of disconnection between each other. Our access to finding an answer online, seems to be perpetuating a potential pandemic of ‘What is the meaning?’

So what can we do to reignite our imagination deficit? One possibility is through unstructured play. We all have memories of childhood games, but new research by The School of Life shows that they are an indication of what intrinsically holds interest for us as we grow into adulthood. We maintain that sense of play as we become adults, and researchers argue that it is this that makes us individual as a species. Our ability to be creative and come up with new innovations is what sets us apart from the animal world.

Is it just in the Western world that we have lost our sense of playfulness? Within the Thai language, a happy heart is described with an innate connection to playfulness. Translations include, literally, to be of a, ‘ blooming heart’, ‘being full in the food sense – in the heart’, ‘and invoke a sense of delight, joy and being lighthearted. How can we too reintroduce play into our otherwise so uncertain and responsibility laden adult lives?

One of the simplest ways is by looking around us at nature. There is, of course, an innate playfulness throughout the animal kingdom, you just have to throw a ball to a dog, to see the eager anticipation and the endless joy of the ball going back and forth. There is a playfulness to the way a squirrel stops in its tracks, looking around furtively as if we might think it invisible before darting off. On a brief lunchtime walk, I was pulled out of my thoughts by a child in a primary school, leaning through the gate and asking me my preferred footballer from a choice he gave me. This playful exchange conjured my imagination, and pulled my mind away from the thoughts and concerns of that day. This is an everyday occurrence for animals and children, who are so ready to play, not constricted by time or place. There is a kind of openness against the burden of efficiency to creating new pathways to think about something and maybe just smile!

Of course, as adults, we may receive some strange looks, if we engage in such acts as dancing down the street, or playing catch with dogs! But there are many other ways we can engage with our playfulness. One simple way is through food and cooking for others. If we aren’t regular cooks, this can seem like a task that we have to gear ourselves towards, but we can take some inspiration from Mary McCartney’s book ‘Feeding Creativity.’ In this book, she cooks with her interviewees and recounts playful, rather than perfectly choreographed, food scenes. In one particular example, with David and Catherine Bailey, she says “using Catherine’s electric hand whisk to whip the cream, it soon became a chaotic scene, I managed to flick cream all over myself and kitchen. So instead I resorted to my backup squirt can of whipped cream. The trifle looked perfect. We sat together, spoons in hand, and tucked in. It had been a while since we had spent time together, and it was a reminder of how much I enjoyed making this book. It’s been an opportunity to catch up with loved ones, even the grumpy ones I adore!”

Part of our ability to be playful is stored within objects that we might normally view as inanimate. Studies by psychologists say that, whilst objects are not human, they are part of a representation of the dialogue within the environments we inhabit. They contribute to our cognitive function. We might be able to consider this idea on a simpler level with the Thomas Heatherwick campaign on observing ‘How buildings make us feel’. Taking this to our interior environments, we can gauge a change in mood from the way a room is lit, or the glowing warmth of a fire after a long day, giving us, through the dancing flames, an opportunity to reflect, pause and simply be in the moment. In that moment, we are allowed to engage with our imagination and feel the playful joy of what surrounds us.

Another way of finding our imagination is through colour. Design Studio Raw Netherlands hosts the podcast ‘Conversations in Colour’, which always begins with the question, “If you were a colour, what colour would you be?’ Most answers relate to emotion, season, lighting, personal energy and geography. Undeniably the common thread is that colour brings you into a focussed moment, where the mind can be quieted for a moment. Through our Vlaze worktops and kitchen surfaces, we offer both a textural and colour palette that invites you to use the surfaces for simple acts such as kneading dough or chopping vegetables. We hope to bring a warmth of joy to your culinary adventures and inspire some time for everyday dreaming.