charnwoodstoves

We recently released the fascinating results of the Charnwood Wellbeing Study 2021 which revealed 93% of 1227 wood-burning stove users recognise their stove’s positive impact on wellbeing. A further 6% answered maybe with only 1% replying no. The study also gave additional detailed insight into how these wellbeing benefits are experienced and this blog will take a closer look at these findings.

Relaxation

Lighting your stove is the perfect way to draw a line in the sand from the stresses of the day. It can become almost a ritual that readies the body and mind for repose. There is documentation of the power of fire playing this roll since the dawn of time. 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.’

So, in short, science supports what our survey participants reported below.

“I find the process of building and lighting the fire therapeutic and sitting watching the flames is very relaxing.”

A fire promotes feelings of safety and security which helps relaxation. Tension is often held in the body and the warmth of the fire seems to have a physiological effect as well as a psychological one. The heat relaxes the muscles, and the mind follows.

“It helps me to switch off after work and also to consider things more clearly and calmly. It seems to warm my soul as well as my feet!”

“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.”

“It’s extremely relaxing to sit by the fire and watch the flames dance away. So much so in fact, that we opted to cancel our Netflix subscription and we simply don’t watch it any longer. We’d much rather sit and watch the fire instead!”

Stress release

With stress widely regarded as one of the unhealthiest components of our lives, it is encouraging to know that a fire can change these negative states of being.

“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.”

“Chopping wood is a great way to relieve stress! Everyone congregates around the fire and the children like to help with the kindling etc. It just creates a special atmosphere.”

“All my problems seem very manageable when I feel the fires warmth, realising that life is good and that I shouldn’t stress out about the small stuff.”

Improves mood

 

Mood and happiness are intertwined and while we all have strategies to improve our mood, some are better for us than others. Lighting your stove is arguably one of the better ways to improve your mood and one that can be depended upon time and time again.

“The world seems much better with a stove! It has huge mental health benefit, particularly during pandemic “
Again, whether that is improving from a negative state or enhancing an already wonderful occasion, it appears a significant proportion of participants recognise a strong effect from their wood-burning experience on their mood.

“Really effective on cold winter afternoons with few outdoor options.
Definitely a mood lifter.”

“My stove helps with relaxation & mood improvement. It helps to unwind after a day’s exertions at work.”

Promotes Family Bonding

With more of our lives being played out online, those of us who remember life before social media, recognise the negative impact on in-person interaction and connection. One can be in the same house, room or even at the same dinner table as others and still feel detached from the person gazing at their phone. As an antidote, a wood-burning stove can provide a focal point for the home, encouraging people to share space and spark conversation. Time shared in this way often leads to a deeper sense of connection and a tighter family unit.

“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.”

“Something the whole family enjoy doing together and it makes us all feel incredibly relaxed and happy.”

“After a day of sledging and building snowmen and having snowball fights with the family it was very relaxing and comforting for us all to warm up in front of the fire.”

“Having the fire going brings everyone to the same room. This helps with family bonding and discussions in general. With our digital lives, it is so easy to just stay in your room and get distracted. However, the fire brings us together and we can even share a warm drink together!”

Homely atmosphere

Now this one didn’t surprise us too much, gaining the most votes out of any of the options available. Relating to family bonding, the fireplace has long been the centre of the home and we are hardwired to respond positively to its influence.

“Winter evenings with friends. Whenever we have visitors during the winter, we always make sure the stove is running as this usually ensures nobody will request the television be turned on, leading to an altogether much nicer atmosphere with people actually chatting and engaging much more, rather than staring at the screen.”

“Chopping wood is a great way to relieve stress! Everyone congregates around the fire and the children like to help with the kindling etc. It just creates a special atmosphere.”

“Christmas especially. 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.”

Meditative

The recognition of meditation’s utility in our modern lives has grown exponentially over recent years. Online meditation apps, sound meditations as well as more traditional forms have all been widely adopted. Despite these great tools, it can still be very challenging to unlock the benefits of meditation through a strict dedicated practice.

Perhaps equally beneficial and certainly more accessible are those everyday acts/experiences that encourage something approaching a meditative state. Hobbies, music, walks in nature etc. can, from anecdotal evidence, bring about these states to greater or lesser degrees. Wood-burning is also certainly on that list. A full sensory experience that allows the mind to detach from thoughts more easily, replacing with a spaciousness that is restorative. Detaching from thoughts and stilling the mind is so much easier when one has a focus, be it the breath, a mantra, or a fire…

“It draws the family (and pets) into the room, warms the atmosphere and the space and watching the flames is meditative too. “

“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.”

“Mesmerising flame watching takes us away from our worries and concerns. The room has a focus that isn’t a screen and gives warmth with it.”

Escapism

The process of lighting a fire taps into the more primal part of our brain and somehow allows us to switch off from the everyday stresses and escape from worry. A warm fire signifies access to cooking, warmth, and shelter and when these primary needs are catered for, we instinctively feel better about life.

“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.”

“I’ve long felt a disconnect between earning money in the corporate world and home life. Here is something with a direct connection – the family stay warm through my simple effort.”

“Helps to switch off from the technology that takes over our everyday lives. You feel a sense of achievement when the first sparks ignite.”

Other

There are too many incredible quotes to list them all. To give a feel for the full range of benefits that a log burner can bring to wellbeing, here’s a list of the most used words and phrases in the ‘Other’ category:

Safety, protection, memories, therapeutic, comforting, unwind, switch off, tradition, better than tv, mesmerising, warmth, warm my soul, nicer atmosphere, joyful experience, encourages chatting, stove is a catalyst, congregates, less vulnerable, natural, sense of achievement, hypnotic, cosy, ritual, magical, toasting marshmallows, contentment, building a memory…


The results of the Charnwood Wellbeing Survey are the first of its kind. Whilst offering many fascinating insights into life with a log burner, as with many things in life, seeing is believing. Perhaps we can modify this expression to ‘experiencing is believing’ as far more than one sense is stimulated when nestling down in front of a toasty fire on a cold winters evening.

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Wood Burning Stoves – Wellbeing Benefits

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This blog is a review and closer look at the results of the Charnwood Wellbeing Survey 2021. A survey of over 1200 wood-burning stove users and the impact of stoves on their wellbeing. The vast majority of stoves owned by participants utilise Charnwood’s modern clean-burn technology and are EcoDesign ready.

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In recent years we have seen a move towards a greater understanding in society of mental health and the need for self-care. The lockdowns only brought this more into focus and it was no coincidence that stove sales rose steeply during this time. It was clear from our conversations with customers that there was a strong relationship between owning a stove and a happier home.

We recently conducted a survey of stove users to better understand the significant and unique benefits that wood-burning stoves provide their owners and family’s wellbeing. The response was phenomenal with 1227 users (we thank you all) providing deep insight into the wider benefits of owning and using a stove.
 
A whopping 93% replied, definitively, that their stove has a positive impact on their wellbeing, while the bar graph below shows the range of ways these benefits manifest.
 

Participants were then asked to elaborate on their choices, and we were overwhelmed with the response. You can view the Charnwood Wellbeing Survey Results here.

Here are some of the best responses that provide some wonderfully deep insight into life with a stove.

The benefits of a wood-burning stove to wellbeing

“The wrap round warmth the fire provides improves the feeling of well-being that no other heating system seems to provide.”

“The world seems much better with a stove! It has huge mental health benefit, particularly during pandemic “

“I live alone and work a very stressful and emotionally draining job. Coming home to my stove provides so much comfort, even in the absence of having someone to come home to. Literally couldn’t live without it.”

“I find the process of building and lighting the fire therapeutic and sitting watching the flames is very relaxing.”

“It helps me to switch off after work and also to consider things more clearly and calmly. It seems to warm my soul as well as my feet!”

Increases bonding and improves relationships

“My grandchildren ask for the fire to be on when they are having a hot chocolate on a frosty day.”

“Winter evenings with friends. Whenever we have visitors during the winter, we always make sure the stove is running as this usually ensures nobody will request the television be turned on, leading to an altogether much nicer atmosphere with people actually chatting and engaging much more, rather than staring at the screen.”

“After a day of sledging and building snowmen and having snowball fights with the family it was very relaxing and comforting for us all to warm up in front of the fire.”

“Chopping wood is a great way to relieve stress! Everyone congregates around the fire and the children like to help with the kindling etc. It just creates a special atmosphere.”

“The stove is the catalyst for family bonding, which helps with relaxation & mood improvement. It helps to unwind after a days exertions at work.”

“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.”

Digital detox – an antidote to the digital age

“Helps to switch off from the technology that takes over our everyday lives. You feel a sense of achievement when the first sparks ignite.”

“It’s extremely relaxing to sit by the fire and watch the flames dance away. So much so in fact, that we opted to cancel our Netflix subscription and we simply don’t watch it any longer. We’d much rather sit and watch the fire instead!”

“Sitting round the fire has become a special tradition. We’ve removed our technology from the living room and now have the fire and bookcase”

“We watch the flames not the TV (even the dog likes to sit and stare)”

“I sit on the sofa watching the flames. It’s better than watching tv”

“Mesmerising flame watching takes us away from our worries and concerns. The room has a focus that isn’t a screen and gives warmth with it.”
 

Stoves provide a real sense of 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.”

They cultivate a deeper connection to nature

“Worked in forestry for 36 years, just a natural thing to do, can’t beat a real fire.”

“Chopping and stacking wood is very calming and lets my mind focus on that one task. Building, lighting and getting the fire to the perfect temperature does the same and gives a real sense of achievement. It all makes me feel closer to nature.”

“For me, sitting around a real fire has a deep connection to something ancient.”

“There’s something deeply Primeval about lighting a fire and benefiting from its heat. Every time you light it there is a deep sense of satisfaction”

“Splitting logs gets me outside and keeps me active, which is good for my body and mind. There’s also a great sense of satisfaction in getting the wood pile ready for winter, and I’ve also learned a lot about different types of wood and how to manage trees sustainably.”

“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.”

Making special occasions even more special

“Christmas Day spent with all the family and grandchildren gathered around our stove brings happy memories all year round.”

“Christmas especially. The stove just provides a much-needed atmosphere on a cold winters 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.”

“It’s a ritual on Christmas morning to rekindle the stove, and to unwrap the presents without a fire is unthinkable. There’s something magical about children in their pyjamas sitting on the rug in the cosy space in front of a blazing stove.”

“My young nephew visited at Christmas & we built the fire together. It was the first time he had ever lit a real fire. We celebrated with toasting marshmallows! It wasn’t just building a fire – it was building a memory.”

Conclusion

This survey is the first of its kind (that we know of at least) and brings real weight to the argument in favour of wood-burning stoves beyond their already strong heating and environmental credentials. When having the debate on the viability of various home heating solutions, we should recognise the powerful effects that wood-burning stoves have on wellbeing – effects that no other heat source can replicate.

If mental health and wellbeing are, as we believe, important considerations that are rightfully getting more attention, then it is vital that this is properly considered when arguing for and against all types of energy solutions. Let’s be clear, the experiences discussed above are nothing short of what makes life worth living – we shouldn’t downplay or underestimate the important role wood-burning stoves play in people’s lives and the positive knock-on effect to society.

 

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The Truth About Wood Burning Stoves and Air Quality

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As we head into the cooler months many of us are preparing to light the log burner or, if we don’t already have one, considering installing one. Wood burning has been around since the dawn of civilisation and there is undoubtedly a primal connection with fire within us as humans. At Charnwood, we have 50 years of expertise in wood burning technology and the stoves we sell across the globe today are among the cleanest, greenest appliances available on the market.

However recently there have been a number of reports circulating within the media that suggest stoves may be polluting our environment and are bad for our health. What is the truth about wood-burning stoves and air quality? In this article, we delve into the real facts and why many of these reports are very misleading and damaging to an industry that is a part of the solution to clean, sustainable, low carbon energy.

Is particulate matter (PM 2.5) from wood-burning stoves damaging our health?

The term particulate matter, also known as fine particles or PM 2.5 refers to tiny particles or droplets in the air. They are about thirty times smaller than the width of a human hair.

The World Health Organisation’s (WHO) safe level for PM 2.5 particulates in the air is a daily average of ≤ 10 µg/m3 (1). For reference, air outside in Central London averages 18-25 µg/m3.

A US study in 2019 of 137 homes published in the Journal of Exposure Science & Environmental Epidemiology, found that the average daily level of PM 2.5 particulates in homes (2):
– with a wood stove measured at 6-8 µg/m3
no wood stove measured only a fraction less at 6-7 µg/m3

So, we’re really talking about a minuscule difference that is well within the WHO safe level. Hard to believe? It really shouldn’t be because a correctly functioning wood stove draws air, smoke and particulates out of a room and up the chimney.

In contrast, the UK media bases its negative assertions on a study of just 19 homes that took measurements using, as they admit, “low-cost air quality monitors” (3).

It is impossible to remove PM 2.5 completely from our lives and some measured thinking on this subject is required. When you consider that brakes from an electric car and even a burnt piece of toast (as well as a host of other everyday items) produce significant amounts of PM 2.5 particles, it helps put things in perspective!

However, we welcome regulation and continue to innovate to reach even greater levels of efficiency and emission reduction. We are proud that we are now creating stoves that are 90% more efficient than open fires and new innovations are forthcoming.

We welcome more studies being undertaken, but what is clear is that the most comprehensive data available to date indicate that the dangers presented from wood-burning stoves are exaggerated, to say the least.

Are wood-burning stoves environmentally friendly?

In most cases yes they are. But it is worth noting that not all wood-burning stoves are the same. At Charnwood, we only produce stoves that meet the criteria for EcoDesign 2022 which significantly reduces particle emissions while ensuring very high efficiencies.

The Stove Industry Alliance (SIA) have produced this short film to help dispel some of the myths around wood-burning stoves with the real facts.

It’s worth considering that as wood burning stove sales have increased in record numbers during the recent lockdowns, with more opportunity for their use, measurements for 2.5 µg/m3 actually decreased. Coincidence? No, it’s because modern wood-burning stoves are not the problem.

Much of the confusion has come from DEFRA lumping in wood-burning stoves with open fires and bonfires and then presenting a grouped figure for emissions – this totally distorts the data (4). An EcoDesign Ready stove produces 90% fewer emissions than an open fire and 80% less than older designed stoves. Despite this fact, modern wood-burning stoves continue to get tarnished in the press for the faults of open fires and the like and continue to get attributed to an unrepresentative figure. It is open fires that need to be scrutinised and those who have made the switch to an EcoDesign Ready wood-burning stove should be commended for doing so and more people should be encouraged!
 

At Charnwood, we recently released the Cranmore, which is the perfect open fire replacement. Super-efficient, clean and with an EcoDesign score of 5 (the highest possible), its dimensions and aesthetic are perfectly suited to an open fireplace. If you have an open fire, we encourage you to make the switch!

Wood burning stoves are part of our home heating solution

At Charnwood we are big fans of wind and solar energy – indeed our factory roof on the Isle of Wight is covered with panels and many of us have installed solar on our roofs at home. They are a big part of the solution, but it’s important to remember that even these much-lauded technologies have some downsides. Firstly, they don’t offer a constant supply and then there are environmental costs, although relatively low, involved in their production. However, overall, the net benefit for the world is clear and demonstrable.

Fossil fuels on the other hand are non-renewable and as we all know, polluting. The main advantage is the ability to provide power 24/7 – but they’re not a sustainable part of the world’s future.

These are just a few examples, but they highlight that no energy source can be 100% perfect. It’s about finding energy sources that are, on balance, positive for society and wood-burning stoves fall into this category as a very viable solution.

Wood burning stoves

Wood is a renewable energy source, sucking carbon out of the atmosphere as trees grow. Of course, there are best practices that need to be followed and selecting the right type of wood from the right sources is key.

Wood burning stoves have numerous benefits:
– They can produce heat for long periods.
– Allowing them to work in conjunction with wind, solar and other energies helps make these great technologies more viable – They are not in competition with each other.
– An ideal emergency/low-frequency heat source.
– Wood is a carbon-neutral fuel as it gives off the same amount of carbon whether it is burnt or decays naturally. The carbon released from burning wood is balanced out by the carbon absorbed by the tree during its lifetime.
– Ability to source fuel locally and without fracking and deep-sea oil drilling.
– A good quality stove can last many decades and provide an affordable source of heat for low-income households.
– The right to repair. The majority of components used within a Charnwood stove are modular and can be replaced when or if they wear out further extending the life of your stove.
– Charnwood stoves and packaging are fully recyclable.

Wood Burning Stoves: An antidote to the digital age

In addition, the mental health benefits absolutely shouldn’t be overlooked. It’s no coincidence sales of stoves rocketed during the hardships of the last couple of years. People recognised the need to make their homes as comfortable and stress-free as possible. Restorative spaces that help us face the trials and tribulations. This isn’t trivial in the slightest. This is a benefit that no other energy source we’ve talked about can provide. You don’t get a visceral connection to nature by flicking on a switch. Fire affords a primal connection that genuinely helps people unwind and reconnect.

We’ve spoken to many customers about their stove and the responses are strikingly similar. Their stove provides much more than just heat. It’s clear from our conversations that burning wood provides enormous well-being and associated mental and physical health benefits. People report it helps them “switch off” and “after a day in front of a screen, chopping wood [and] preparing the fire really helps me to reconnect to the real world”, “brings the family together”, “helps me sleep better”, “almost like a meditation”. You simply don’t get this from another heat source.

To the individual and family, this is clearly hugely beneficial. Now consider this extrapolated across a population and the effect multiples – it becomes powerful. Improving people’s wellbeing and reducing stress allows people to take more actions/decisions from a healthier state of mind. This in turn can only contribute positively to society.

It is widely accepted that few things are as unhealthy as chronic stress and from our personal experience as well as our customers few things can relieve it as consistently well as the process of wood-burning.
– The pleasure of foraging (optional)
– Exercise/stress relief from chopping wood (optional)
– Feeling connected to a historical and natural process
– Lighting a fire – satisfaction of a job well done.
– Enjoying the long-lasting and penetrating warmth
– Deep relaxation with the crackle and flicker of fire
– A focal point for friends and family

So in conclusion an EcoDesign Ready wood burning stove is a clean and environmentally sound choice for heating your home. It is of course important that it is used correctly and the fuel burnt is properly seasoned but this is a source of energy that provides not only warmth but can be key to our wellbeing.

Golden rules. 3 steps to burning wood on your stove efficiently

1/ Good fuel – This is wood that has been stored and allowed to dry until the moisture content has reduced to 20% or less. Freshly cut or ‘green wood’ holds up to 70% water which causes far more smoke to be produced. It is for this reason we have long stressed the importance of using seasoned wood because it produces a significantly cleaner burn – reducing emissions by up to 50%. Additionally, improved efficiency equals cheaper running costs, while a cleaner fuel means your stove and chimney will require less maintenance. It’s a win-win.

2/ Efficient stove – Charnwood is proud to have stoves certified in the inaugural clearSkies listing, an independent emissions and energy performance certification mark for stoves. Many Charnwood products carry a level 5 certification (the highest available rating) which guarantees performance levels and exceed the minimum EcoDesign criteria by a sizable 30%. This is only awarded to stoves that significantly reduce particle emissions while ensuring high efficiencies and a superior flame picture.

3/ Correct use – this is a variable that has until now been dependant on the experience and diligence of the end-user, providing mixed results. That is why Charnwood are developing new technology that will give the user the option of automating this process. This will mean the stove will burn at the most efficient rate possible, further improving its green credentials. Watch this space!

1/ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_quality_guideline
2/ https://www.nature.com/articles/s41370-019-0151-4
3/ https://www.mdpi.com/2073-4433/11/12/1326/htm
4/ https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/summary-results-of-the-domestic-wood-use-survey

Other useful sources of information:
5/ https://stoveindustryalliance.com/
6/ https://www.readytoburn.org/

 

charnwoodstoves

A primary consideration when getting a wood-burning stove will be making sure it is installed and situated safely. If you have limited room, a heat shield can play an important role in protecting your surrounding space. Furthermore, a wood stove heat shield offers a great opportunity to elevate the visual appeal of your fireplace to even greater heights.

 

The importance of a wood stove heat shield

Without adequate clearance from your stove, a combustible wall or object can overheat, dry out and present a fire hazard. The Fire Protection Association recommends that in general the common radiant-type stove maintain 900mm of space from a combustible surface. When this is not possible a heat shield is your only option. Situated between your stove and the exposed surface, a heat shield can reduce the required distance for safety. For more information on the minimum standards for heat shields and their installation, HETAS provides a comprehensive guide.

 

VLAZE Heat Shields

 

3-images-of-wood-stove-heat-shields
3 stunning heat shield options from VLAZE

VLAZE, our sister company, fabricate heat shields from vitreous enamel, a superior material known for its many outstanding properties. It is heat-resistant up to 650°C, which allows you to reduce the distance between your stove and another surface to 95mm. For Charnwood stoves that reduces even further, to just 75mm – a vast improvement on HETAS regulations. This allows you to maximise space, providing greater flexibility when configuring your room layout. VLAZE’s heat shields are easy to install and available in 3 sizes and 30 luxurious glazes – ample options to match your fireplace dimensions and your style.

 

Design

The images above show the potential of heat shields to add a splash of colour, texture, and designer flair to your fireplace surround. VLAZE have developed a wide range of styles drawing on both historical and contemporary references.

Heat shields are available in a wide range of flat colours, subtle textures or with screen-printed graphics. Once fired in the furnace, the surface is colour-fast, meaning the colours and artwork will never fade. Working alongside several designers, they have created many beautiful options catering for both modern and classic tastes. From statement patterns to minimalist hues, there are plenty of options available to accent or blend with your existing colour scheme.

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A wood-burning stove, whether alight or not, is something that draws the eyes of whoever is in the room. With such a beautiful piece of craftsmanship providing the focal point of your home, it makes sense to give equal consideration to the other elements that will complement it.

For more information on VLAZE Heat Shields click here. To keep up to date with the latest news follow us @charwoodstoves.

charnwoodstoves

Increasingly people are turning to wood-burning stoves to create warm, comforting, and restorative spaces — hugely beneficial at the best of times, but particularly during this period. A wood-burning stove can be the beating heart of a happy household, a focal point to gather round and converse or sit silently while absorbing the hypnotic and healing power of glowing flames. In this blog we will look at how carefully considered fireside accessories can be wonderful furnishings in their own right and enhance the fireside experience even further.

 

A Fresh Coat of Paint

 

Whether you want to match your stove’s colour to your latest renovation project or simply give your stove a touch up, we offer cans of our high temperature stove paint in the 8 Charnwood colour options. Designed for easy application, they are a simple yet brilliant way to give your stove and space a new lease of life.

 

Vlaze Panels

Vlaze is a unique material, both in its capacity to resist heat and protect, but also with the aesthetic potential it offers. It is well proven as a fireside accessory, with exceptional durability and thermal resistant properties. Vlaze is colour-fast, allows for printed graphics and offers limitless scope for design. With unrivalled heat resistant and anti-static properties, a Vlaze panelled surface will stay looking clean and sharp.
 

From left to right: Vlaze Heat Shield, Insert Surround, Hearth and Chamber Plate Forest Design

Heat Shields

The design of this heat shield is one of 30 finishes that allows you to add real character and satisfy your aesthetic impulses.

The vitreous enamel panel features a dual skin that provides thermal protection and an effective convection system that distributes heat back into the room.

Our rail mounted system included allows for quick and easy installation and when installed the shield reduces the stoves distance to the face of the panel to 95mm. In the case of a Charnwood stove this is reduced to just 75mm which is a vast improvement on HETAS regulations and really allows you to maximise the size of your space.

 

Vlaze Insert Surrounds

The designer finish of this stunning insert surround adds so much to the look and feel of the space. A beautiful backdrop to your wood-burning stove, whether the flames are flickering or not. Made to measure in one piece to fit around any insert stove, preventing cracking and discolouration on the chimney breast. They feature a slim 9mm radius edge insulated with fire rated fibre board, minimising intrusion into your space, supplying a neat and elegant finish.

 

Vlaze Hearth and Chamber Plates

We love this Forest Design hearth and chamber plate. This contemporary design offers a clean, modern platform on which to stand your stove. An excellent alternative to glass or polished stone they can be used on their own or alongside our heat shields and insert surrounds for a seamless floor to wall solution.

The smooth gloss surface finish is heat resistant, easy to clean and is available in over 30 colours & designer finishes. Each hearth features a smooth radius edge and is insulated with fire rated fibre board to take the heat and weight of the stove.

Our hearth plates are available in 5 sizes which is suitable for most stoves and are constructed to a solid 12mm depth which conforms to UK building regulations for non constructional hearths.

 

Bodj Accessories

 

The beautiful range of Bodj fireside accessories above are a perfect complement to your fireplace. The minimalist, elegant lines married to high-quality natural materials, create fireplace furnishings that add style and sophistication.

Bodj is a fair-trade initiative that aims to develop local Cambodian businesses in order to relieve poverty and improve social and environmental conditions for the future. They produce a range of sustainably sourced, beautifully designed fireside accessories for the ethical and style-conscious home.

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Having the perfect fireplace at the heart of the home involves careful consideration of all aspects of the process. A beautiful stove is unquestionably the most crucial element, however choosing the right accessories can have a significant impact on performance and your personal satisfaction.

 

For frequent fireside inspiration, we encourage you to follow along with our Instagram accounts @charnwoodstoves and @vlazesurface.

charnwoodstoves

Woodburning stoves make for a great addition to any home and can completely change the atmosphere and ambiance of a room. As well as an efficient and clean source of heat, a wood-burning stove should also be a focal point within a room and compliment the overall aesthetic.
Whether you want a cosy homely feel, or something more dramatic and contemporary, we’ve put together some wood-burning stove design ideas for inspiration.

How do you decorate a room with a wood-burning stove?

How you choose to decorate your room with the addition of a wood-burning stove will depend on several factors, including the style of your home, where the stove will be positioned and whether you want to achieve a modern or traditional aesthetic.

What do you put behind a wood-burning stove?

Stone and brick are popular materials to use behind a wood-burning stove if you want to achieve a rustic, natural look. However, you may wish to use patterned tiles, stone veneer or specialist fireplace chamber lining panels such as vitreous enamel. Again, what you put behind your wood-burning stove will depend on its position in the room.

How far off the wall should a wood-burning stove be?

Generally, a wood-burning stove will need at least 100mm clearance from the wall, however, it may vary depending on the stove you choose. It is worth considering a wall mounted heat shield if you are tight on space. This will allow you to safely place your stove upto 95mm from the wall even if it is made from a combustible material. When you purchase a stove from one of our recommended Charnwood Stockists, they will be able to provide the exact information for the stove you choose. They will also tell you all you need to know about finding a qualified installer.

Woodburning stove design ideas

Classic stove

If you have an alcove or fire chamber in which to place your stove, opt for exposed brick with a wooden mantel above for classic charm.

Corner stove

Wood burning stoves placed in the corner of a room with an exposed flue look great in modern homes. They also come in a variety of unique shapes and colours for you to choose from.

Make it a centrepiece

Stoves don’t always need to be against a wall. If you have a larger room and are able to run a chimney up to the roof, consider making it a centrepiece and choose something tall and dramatic with a large picture window.

Add colour or pattern

Stoves come in a range of beautiful colours. If you choose black, you can still have fun with colour and pattern by tiling the hearth or surrounding area, or even by painting the brickwork a bold colour.

Go minimal

If you prefer a more minimalist approach, choose a black or white stove against a plain neutral coloured wall.

Stone veneer

Stone veneer is an affordable way of creating a traditional and luxe-looking fireplace that works in both contemporary and rustic homes.

Industrial look

Use a metal backdrop to create an industrial, modern look that gives the feel of a New York loft. You could also create a custom structure with metal or vitreous enamel panels for something truly unique.

Contact Charnwood today

Are you ready to transform your space with a woodburning stove? Please get in touch with Charnwood today. Our experts are on hand and ready to answer any queries you might have. Alternatively get some inspiration from our Instagram page or explore our range here.

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The Charnwood Cooking plate is a highly durable and versatile addition to your stove. It can be fitted to the top of a standard stove, in place of the blanking plate, to create a hot plate that’s perfect for cooking a range of tasty dishes*

The key to cooking on your stove top is in the preparation, ensuring your wood stove is hot enough and burning away nicely before you start.

If you’re looking to test out your cooking skills on your stove top, you have certainly landed in the right place. We’ve gathered some of our favourite one-pot, stove top cooking recipes that are sure to go down a treat and transform you into a culinary expert.

Here are 4 things to cook on a stove top:

1. One-skillet healthy paella

Bring the taste of Spain into your home with this delicious cuisine. Paella is a superb, social dish to cook on a stove top.

Using a single pan, you can cook a healthy paella on your stovetop, achieving a crispy finish on the bottom and a soft top, which is exactly what you want when cooking this classic Spanish dish. Start by browning off your chicken, and then add your onions, garlic and preferred vegetables. Once this is done, add rice and combine with the other ingredients. Give it a good stir and it’s good to go.

2. One-pot beef stew

The perfect winter warmer, this one-pot beef stew can easily be cooked on top of your log burner.

Add olive oil to a pan and heat. Cut the beef into bitesize chunks and sear in batches, ensure the meat has developed a nice brown crust. Set the meat aside and add onions, garlic and balsamic vinegar to the pan, then add tomato paste and the beef. Add red wine, beef broth, water, bay, thyme and sugar and stir well. Cover and leave to cook slowly for two hours. Add carrots, mushrooms, and potatoes, and leave to cook for another hour. Enjoy.

3. Stove-top lasagne

A family favourite, this stove top lasagne is super easy and incredibly tasty.

In a large skillet pan, cook mince and onion until the mince is brown. Add in onion, tinned tomatoes, sliced mushrooms, green peppers, mini lasagne sheets (or you can simply tear up standard ones), water and Italian seasoning. Stir and leave to simmer until the pasta is tender. Sprinkle cheese over the top and serve.

4. Stove-top pizza

Another Italian favourite – gather round the wood burner and prepare this tasty treat and enjoy all-year-round.

You’ll need to prep the pizza dough in advance. Cook the pizza base in a skillet pan, flipping it over so that it is golden and toasted on both sides, but not burned. Now it’s time to add the toppings – add your sauce, cheese and desired toppings before covering the pan with a lid. This step is key if you want the cheese to melt! Once the cheese is melted and bubbly, your pizza is ready to eat. Serve and watch your families’ faces light up.

Contact Charnwood today

Feeling inspired to get cooking on your wood burner or stove? Please get in touch with Charnwood today. Our experts are on hand and ready to answer any queries you might have.

*Please note the stove must be fitted with a vertical rear flue adaptor in order to accommodate a cooking plate.

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At Charnwood we are always interested in the latest trend reports for the home and with 2020’s lockdown forcing Brits to spend more time indoors than ever before, an interesting new survey from Tiles Direct reveals how homeowners got creative with their interiors (and gardens) this year.

The online tile retailer quizzed over 400 Brits* if and where they’d donned their overalls and whipped out their paint rollers this year.

Of those surveyed, just 7.8% hadn’t redecorated or renovated any room of their home – suggesting that homeowners have been unable to endure lockdown in outdated or off-trend interiors.

The great outdoors

Accounting for 29.2% of the overall vote, the garden came out on top as the most popular spot for home renovations this year. Here at Charnwood we certainly found this to be true with our new outdoor Charnwood Fire Balls selling incredibly well.

With the UK’s nationwide lockdown lasting from 16th March to 1st June, this data comes as little surprise – with the sunny weather leaving cooped-up homeowners desperate for a taste of the great outdoors. Our sister company had great success with their newly launched Adapt Outdoor Kitchen units.

Garden renovations were most popular among 25-34 and 35-44 year olds – the demographics most likely to have younger children – and with some schools being shut for as long as 7 months throughout 2020, who can blame them?

No place like home

Stepping through the front door of Brits’ homes, the living room was the next most popular spot for a little interior design TLC, with 28.4% of respondents revitalising their living room in 2020. We saw a sharp increase in sales of our wood burning stoves and accessories such as toasting forks and basketware. Our fireplace products such as our Vlaze heat shields and hearth plates also faired well.

Homeowners weren’t struck with inspiration from the off, though – instead turning to the internet, with living room related searches being among the most commonly searched interior-based keywords in Google this year.

Taking the third and fourth spots were kitchens and bedrooms, accounting for 19.5% and 19.8% of the vote respectively. With a mammoth 46.6% of the UK workforce working from home in April, and current government advice continuing to encourage flexible home working wherever possible, we’ve seen these rooms serve as part-time living spaces and part-time office spaces.

With this in mind, it’s little surprise that home workers have chosen to transform these interiors into something a little more inspiring.

Towards the end of 2020 we launched our stove pods: a quick-to-fit instant fireplace incorporating a chamber and hearth. We were taken by surprise at the popularity but are subsequently discovering that many of these sales are for home offices and sheds and cabins situated in the garden.

With 16.5% of the vote, the bathroom was still a relatively popular spot for home renovations in 2020, with concerns surrounding hygiene racing up the list of Brits’ DIY priorities.This is an area that again our sister company Vlaze have seen an increase in with their shower and wetroom panelling

The dining room was the least popular room for redecoration this year, accounting for just 12.4% of the total vote. With social distancing guidelines still in place and household mixing continuing to be discouraged or banned, one of the home’s main social hubs was unsurprisingly shown little love this year.

The lockdown lowdown  

Tiles Direct also analysed their top 500 site searches in 2020 to identify the most in-demand tile types of the last year and pinpoint common themes surrounding users’ choice of shape, colour and material or finish. We always like to keep on top of fire surround trends so these results throw up some interesting data which is reflected in many of the Charnwood installations we have seen shared on our social channels.

When it came to tile shapes, some of the latest interior fads came out on top:

1. Herringbone
2. Hexagon
3. Metro
4. Mosaic
5. Chevron

Colours threw up some surprises, with homeowners opting for bright and vibrant over timeless and traditional.:

1. Pink
2. Green
3. Blue
4. White
5. Gold

While our stoves colour range is relatively subtle we do offer a green and blue that are becoming increasingly popular with customers

Luxurious longevity was the name of the game when it came to materials and finishes:

1. Marble
2. Terrazzo
3. Quarry
4. Slate
5. Wood

*This data was gathered in December 2020 and includes responses from 409 people in the UK.

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The importance of wall protection when installing a freestanding stove

As the cold season is fast approaching, many homeowners are rushing to prepare for the winter, and one effective way is to get your fireplace ready. As you will be aware, the fireplace serves to keep you and your family warm and comfortable during the winter months. Whether it’s a wood-burning or multi-fuel burner, it produces controlled heat that can warm your home’s space.

However, did you know that a vital part of the overall equation in your wood-burning stove is the heat shield? As the name suggests, it is typically installed behind a freestanding stove and it is designed to protect your wall from heat damage. However, while most wood stoves come with heat shields, some don’t have one.

In this article, we’ll specifically cover how to set clearances and install heat shields for wood stoves:

Have adequate clearances

When it comes to a wood stove, there are two key safety features you must keep in mind – sufficient clearance and wall material behind. A properly installed and maintained wood stove can ensure the safety of your appliance. Yet, inadequate clearances can be extremely dangerous for your home.

The Fire Protection Association recommends that the common radiant-type stove must be spaced out at least 900mm (36 inches) from a combustible wall although different wood burning stove manufacturers will offer their own tested safe distances. This is extremely important as your wood stove can get very hot when in operation. As a result, combustible materials too close to the stove can catch fire. By cheating on your wood stove’s clearances, you can potentially create a fire hazard.

Reduce wood stove clearances

On the other hand, know that you can reduce the clearance of your wood stove without compromising your home safety. Although you cannot completely eliminate the clearance, you can significantly reduce it. There’s only one solution to this, and that is to install a properly constructed heat shield.

For your reference, there are various types of heat shields you may want to consider for your wood stove. Be sure to follow the guidelines set forth by the HETAS for the heat shielding requirements, from the appliance selection down to its actual installation.

Vitreous Enamel heat shields

When it comes to wood stoves, installing a wall mounted heat shield is an excellent way to reduce clearance and promote home safety. A vitreous enamel heat shield is a great solution.

Vlaze Heat Shields are designed to protect and enhance the wall behind a wood burning stove creating a modern fireplace.

The vitreous enamel panel features a dual skin that provides thermal protection and an effective convection system that distributes heat back into the room. Using their rail mounted system the heat shield is quick and easy to install and is available in 3 sizes and over 30 luxurious glazed finishes. When installed on a wall the shield reduces the stoves distance to the face of the panel to 95mm and in the case of a Charnwood stove to just 75mm – a vast improvement on HETAS regulations.

Conclusion

At this point, you now know several valuable tips for your wood stove. As mentioned above, be sure to have adequate clearance or reduce wood stove clearances by installing heat shields. Furthermore, it’s best to deal with a reliable manufacturer when purchasing and installing a heat shield for your wood-burning stove. Doing so will help you make the most of your stove, protect your home, and keep you warm during the cold season!

 

 

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Charnwood stoves specified for Danh Vo's Chicxulub show

We were recently asked to supply six Ecodesign Ready wood burning stoves for a show at The White Cube Gallery in Bermondsey, London. The work ‘Live Free or Die’ is part of artist Danh Vo’s exhibition, Chicxulub. Stacks of firewood are used to fuel six Charnwood Skye 7 stoves installed throughout the gallery, in return giving off heat and an atmospheric light which illuminates the space.

The stoves are placed on gloss black vitreous enamel Vlaze hearth plates

The show runs from 11 September – 2 November 2020 Click here for further details 

Stoves were installed by London stove specialists Stoake