James

On May 1st new government regulations came into force that restricts the types of fuel you can burn at home. We welcome DEFRA’s announcement, that going forward, only fuels that reduce air pollution can be burned in stoves and open fires in the domestic setting. That means coal and wet wood are no longer allowed to be used. Charnwood fully support this change and have long been producing exceptionally high-performance stoves already designed to run on approved wood-burning stove fuel.

 

The Best Wood-Burning Stove Fuel Options

Seasoned wood

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 around 60% 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 win-win.

How to season wood in 4 Steps

1/ Split wood into logs in a size to suit your stove no larger than 15cm (6”) in diameter.
2/ Stack the wood in a place that gets plenty of sun and allows the wind and air to circulate. To avoid injury from falling logs, never stack above head height.
3/ Cover the stack to protect it from rain and snow. Make sure to cover the top and if you cover the sides as well, make sure the air can get in and that moisture is not getting trapped.
4/ Store the wood for 18-24 months, until the moisture content is below 20%. Test this with a moisture metre.

Different species of wood have varying qualities that effect their wood burning capability. We have compiled a useful chart with more information.

Kiln dried wood

Another fuel that is DEFRA approved is kiln dried wood that is cut, split, and then dried in large ovens. This speeds up the drying process and means that there is always readily available fuel for your stove if your supply is short. Look out for the Woodsure Ready to Burn label which guarantees a moisture content of 20% or less.

 

Ecodesign Ready

 

 

While choosing the right wood to burn is important, having an efficient stove is also key. Most of the stoves we sell are Ecodesign Ready and our Island Stove is one of the very cleanest on the market.

Charnwood are 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 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.

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We hope you embrace these new regulations and continue to enjoy the wonderful wood-burning experience with the knowledge that you are helping reduce pollution levels. Additionally, due to the carbon-neutral benefits of wood-burning, you are helping to significantly reduce CO2 levels and contributing to the fight against global warming.

Find out more about Ecodesign ready stoves here.

James

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.

James

At Charnwood we feel strongly about caring for the environment. We consider design, packaging, transportation, the materials we use and how we handle them, all with a view to being as environmentally friendly as possible. With far better eco credentials than oil, coal or gas, a wood-burning stove is an opportunity to make a positive environmental impact. However, to maximise this, it’s important to use your stove the right way.

Whether you are a new owner or eagerly awaiting your new order’s arrival, it’s wise to do a little research before lighting your first fire – however tempting it may be to strike that first match! In this blog we will discuss the essential stove tips that will give you a significant head start on your journey into the wonderful world of wood-burning — enabling you to optimise your stove for both the environment and your personal satisfaction.

 

Choosing your wood

 

 

A key factor in creating that warm, cosy fire is the choice of wood you burn. Charnwood stoves are designed to run on seasoned or kiln-dried wood with a moisture content of less than 20%. This is important because it produces a significantly cleaner and more efficient burn.

Hardwoods such as ash, birch, beech, or oak are renowned for burning hot, clean and for longer periods. Softwoods such as fir, pine and sycamore can be used but will burn faster with moderate heat output. Freshly cut logs generally contain over 60% water and should be dried for 18-24 months before the wood is ready to burn. Here is a useful chart that gives more detail about different species and their various qualities.

 

There are four key stages to seasoning wood

 

 

SPLIT wood into logs in a size to suit your stove no larger than 15cm (6”) in diameter. Split some smaller pieces to use as kindling.

STACK the wood in a place that gets plenty of sun and wind. A pile of wood may rot before it has time to season, so make sure the logs are stacked in a way that allows air to circulate. Ideally, keep the stack off the ground and away from the house. Never stack logs above head height to prevent injury from falling logs.

COVER the stack to protect it from rain and snow. You can cover just the top, or the sides as well – just make sure the air can get in and that moisture isn’t getting trapped.

STORE the wood for 18-24 months or until the moisture content is below 20% (you can test this with a moisture metre). It’s a good idea to bring wood inside two or three days before you intend to burn it to make sure it’s properly dried out and ready to use.

 

Kiln dried wood

This is another widely available alternative and an excellent choice! The wood is cut, split and dried in large ovens, which speeds up the seasoning process. Look out for the Woodsure Ready to Burn label which guarantees a moisture content of 20 % or less.

 

What not to burn

If you are a new owner, it’s tempting to burn almost anything you can get your hands on, however for environmental and health reasons we strongly recommended against this. What to avoid requires a certain amount of common sense as the list is long, but here are a few key ones to be mindful of.

-Plywood offcuts, chipboard and MDF are not advised due to the glues used to make them.

-Avoid old/recovered wood that has been treated or old painted wood as these can be toxic.

-Do not burn rubbish.

-Printed papers are coated with chemicals and can cause troublesome ash deposits.

-Natural or synthetic fibres, such as fabric, burn too fast and can be toxic.

-Any solvents or chemicals and substrates potentially exposed to them.

 

Lighting your fire
 

 

Now you have the right wood for your needs, there are several stages you should know to building and lighting a successful fire in your stove. Following our four simple steps when making your fire will allow your stove to run at maximum efficiency and with minimum emissions.

1/ Clear the grate of ash then place 2-3 smaller logs on the stove bed. On top of this build a ‘Jenga style’ stack of 6-8 kindling sticks and place a natural fire lighter inside.

2/ Fully open the air control for maximum air intake and a quick and easy ignition. Light the fire lighter.

3/ Close the door but leave it slightly ajar. This helps to heat the chimney flue for a clean burn. Once the fire is burning well close the door and reduce the air control.

4/ Every time a log is added open the air control again until the fire is burning well and then return the air control to normal. Re-fuel little and often.

 

Maintain your stove

 

 

The winter months are when your wood burning stove will see the most use. Regular maintenance will ensure your stove burns safely and efficiently while giving you many years of service.

CLEAN THE GLASS

If soot accumulates on the stove glass, we offer an effective Atmosfire dry wiper for cleaning. For any stubborn stains you can use a stove glass cleaner or ceramic hob cleaner but avoid using any abrasive cleaning products.

CLEAN THE SURFACE

When it comes to cleaning the exterior surface of your stove and the surrounding area, you can’t go far wrong with a soft brush and a damp, lint free cloth. It is important you only clean your stove when it is unlit and cool to the touch.

EMPTY THE ASH PAN

When burning wood, it is helpful and effective to start your fire on a bed of wood ash but avoid letting the ash build up too much. When your stove is not in use empty out the ash pan and firebox completely.

INSPECT DOOR SEALS

Take the opportunity to regularly check the rope seals on the doors and around the flue to ensure your fire box is airtight and the doors close firmly. A well-sealed stove will burn much more efficiently and effectively.

A FRESH COAT OF PAINT

For a quick touch-up or a complete colour change we offer cans of our high temperature stove paint in the 8 Charnwood colour options. This is a simple yet brilliant way to give your stove a new lease of life.

SWEEP FREQUENTLY

It’s important to keep your flue clear of blockages and soot and we recommend you have your chimney swept at least once a year. A Charnwood stove is fitted with a drop-down throat plate allowing you to sweep through the appliance with minimum mess.

 

Enhance your stove experience

 

 

Charnwood offer a wide range of accessories designed to optimise the performance of your stove and enhance your fireside experience.

COOKING PLATE

Available for most of our models this cast-iron plate replaces the blanking plate on a Charnwood stove where a rear outlet has been fitted to create a highly effective hot plate for cooking. It comes complete with 4 trivets.

TOASTING FORK

The perfect gift for any stove fanatic. Simply place the magnetic holder onto the stove top and suspend the fork in front of the glass. The fork and holder are made from stainless steel with a turned beech handle.

You can find our full range of accessories along with spare stove parts on our website charnwood.com.

 

Bodj Fireside

 

 

Our sister company Bodj offer a beautiful range of fireside accessories which are a perfect complement to any fireplace. From elegant log baskets to the fireside tools needed to help maintain the daily glow and warmth emanating from you stove. It’s award winning design, handmade by experienced craftspeople, using sustainable and locally sourced materials.

 

View the whole range at Bodj.co.uk

 

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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 modern wood burning stoves of today ensure low emission and low carbon heating for our homes. However there have been a number of misleading reports circulating in the news recently suggesting stoves are responsible for contributing far more particulate emissions than they actually do.

It is important to say that some of the air pollution statistics that are quoted are not only incorrect but they lump modern, clean burning stoves together with all sorts of domestic fuels, older appliances and open fires.

The Stove Industry Alliance (SIA) have produced this short film to help dispel these reported myths around wood burning stoves with the real facts and address three of the major misconceptions that are being mis-quoted by the media.

1)‘Wood burning stoves are the biggest contributor in the UK of small particulate matter’.

This is not true. At the root of this myth is a statement from Defra’s Clean Air Strategy claiming that domestic combustion accounts for 38% of fine particulate matter. This number was based on a survey carried out by the government in 2015  which wrongly over-estimated the amount of wood being burnt in the UK on stoves and fireplaces. (1)

A much bigger survey carried out in 2019 by the SIA (2) showed the actual figure was less than a third of what the government quoted, making the percentage of PM.2.5 that could be attributed to domestic combustion closer to 13% and NOT 38%.

Subsequent figures recently published by Defra (3) corollate with the SIA’s findings and if their new wood fuel volume figures were combined with the correct emission factors, the real percentage of PM2.5 attributable to domestic wood burning would be less than 10%.

In addition to this the 38% figure was based on emissions from older stoves and open fires. It is proven that modern Ecodesign compliant wood burning stoves (which the majority of our Charnwood models conform to) produce 66% LESS emissions than these outdated appliances. Other sources of PM2.5 were also included in its overall estimation, including wildfires, bonfires, and incinerators which are unregulated sources of particulate matter and certainly not insignificant.

2) ‘Wood burning stoves create the same emissions as 18 diesel cars’.

This comes from test results interpreted by the Air Quality Expert Group (AQEG) but their comparison is extremely misleading and, as the SIA film points out, it is like comparing apples with oranges.

Firstly the comparison is between the appliances running at significantly different efficiency levels, by measuring a car exhaust emissions at an efficient run rate of 21mph and comparing them to all of the emissions at a full run rate for a stove. This completely ignores all the small particle emissions from the car’s brakes and tyres, when frequently the emissions from a car’s brakes and tyres are actually greater than the emissions from the exhaust pipe!

Finally the difference in the dispersal point of particulate matter from wood burning stoves to cars is ignored completely. A car outputs its emissions at face level for a child and therefore there is very little dispersal before it is breathed in, whereas a woodburning stove sends its emissions out of the top of the chimney and there is considerable dispersal of emissions before they even reach human height.

3) ‘Wood burning stoves and fireplaces are harmful’.

Chair of the Stove Industry Alliance, Morley Sage, explains why this is one of the more concerning misconceptions:

“This view fails to take into account the huge advances that have been made by the woodburning stove industry in recent years. Many critics of woodburning stoves base their assumptions on data linked to open fires, older stoves and poor-quality wood fuel. The SIA would be one of the first organisations to point out that burning wet wood on an open fire, a practice that is still very common today, is one of the least efficient and most highly polluting ways to heat your home. By stark contrast, a modern wood burning stove emits up to 90% less emissions than an open fire and up to 80% less than a stove that is 10 or more years old.”

Members of the SIA (including us at Charnwood) were among the first manufacturers to develop ultra clean burn technology within our appliances to achieve the forthcoming 2022 Ecodesign Regulations (SIA Ecodesign Ready). More recently the SIA has supported and initiated the launch of clearSkies, an independent emissions and energy performance certification scheme for solid fuel stoves and fireplaces. Appliances that are certified under clearSkies will not only meet the performance levels set out under Ecodesign, but also many go a significant way beyond. The majority of our Charnwood stoves achieve highest clearSkies certification: Level 5.

Far from being the problem, modern wood burning stoves are actually the solution to a low carbon, sustainable future domestic heating strategy.

The REAL facts about modern woodburning stoves are that they are a future proof, highly efficient, very low carbon and sustainable way of heating our homes and keeping our families warm, and that is something to be truly proud of.

For further information visit www.stoveindustryalliance.com

 

1) The BEIS Domestic Wood Survey using a sample size of 1,206

2) SIA independently verified research carried out in 2019 using sample size of 10,620 using same questions as BEIS survey

3) The Emission of Air Pollutants in the UK 1970 to 2019 and Defra Research Burning in UK Homes & Gardens Report  

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If you are already the proud owner of a wood burner, or are considering making a purchase, you will not be disappointed. A wood burner is a superb addition to the home and an impressive focal point.

As winter approaches and the nights begin to draw in, what better way to spend chilly evenings than being nestled up next to your wood burning stove?

Before you fire up your wood burner and use it more regularly though, the Charnwood experts have compiled their tips on how to light a wood burner alongside other top tips, so you can get the absolute most out of your wood burner.

How to use a wood burner

If you are considering a wood burner purchase, it is crucial to ensure your desired stove is suitable for your home. We strongly recommend that a site survey is carried out by an experienced stove installer in the first instance before you make a purchase. Use our stove calculator to find out if your room is suitable.

How to make a fire in a wood burner

There are several stages to making a successful fire in a wood burner. If a fire is built and lit incorrectly, it can prevent the stove from getting hot. Follow these steps to make a successful wood burner fire:

Firstly you will need to ensure your wood is well seasoned and dry with a moisture content of less than 20% – if buying wood in smaller volumes look out for the Woodsure ‘Ready to Burn label’ which guarantees this.

When lighting your stove we recommend the top down method.

1) Leave some ash – the most efficient way to light a wood burning stove is to leave a little bit of ash from previous fires. However, you should still ensure the majority of the ash is cleaned out to avoid blocking air circulation.
2) Place 2-3 smaller logs on the stove bed
3) On top of this build a stack of 6-8 softwood kindling sticks
4) Then place a natural fire lighter inside
5) Fully open the air control as this will maximise the supply of oxygen in the wood burner needed to get the fire going.
6) Light the fire lighter and close the door but leave it slightly a jar
7) This helps to heat the chimney flue and burn hot and clean
8) Once the fire is burning well close the door and reduce the air intake
9) Re-fuel little and often
10) Every time a log is added open the air control again until the fire is burning well and then return the control to normal

By running your stove in this way you will achieve maximum efficiency with minimum emissions

How hot does a wood burner get?

Most wood burners range in temperature and can reach 190 – 343 degrees Celsius (375 – 650 degrees Fahrenheit). However, how hot a wood burner gets can depend on several factors including poor draft on the stove, air vents left closed or not open enough, incorrectly built/lit fire and use of wet wood.

How many logs do I need to put in a wood burner?

It is important not to overload your wood burner with logs, as this will mean the fire does not have enough oxygen to burn effectively. For a constant heat, have one or two logs in your wood burner at once.

How to get maximum heat from wood burner

There are several factors that could prevent your wood burner from achieving maximum heat, including:
The type of wood that is being burnt.
The moisture content of the wood.
How effectively the air supply to the fire is controlled.
How well the fire is maintained.

Achieve the maximum heat from your wood burner by:

Using softwoods to quickly get the fire started.
Using harder woods once the fire has started to produce more heat for longer periods.
Ensuring all wood burned is dry and doesn’t contain large amounts of moisture (as mentioned earlier we recommend a 20 per cent or lower moisture content threshold for firewood).
Periodically adding a few pieces of wood, rather than waiting for the flame to die down or adding large amounts of wood in one go.
Using air vents correctly to control airflow to the fire.
Having your flue cleaned and maintained regularly.
Cleaning and maintaining your wood burner stove regularly.
Ensuring your room has adequate ventilation to give the fire an oxygen supply.

How to keep a wood burner going

The below tips will help make a wood stove burn for longer:
Avoid using wet wood in your wood burning stove.
Reduce the air coming through the air vents to make the fire last longer.
A stove that contains cast iron elements are better for heat efficiency and will keep a fire going.
If you would like to find out more about wood burning stove cleaning tips and tricks in our blog, read: How to clean your wood burning stove.

What trees are the best to burn on a wood burner?

The best wood for burning on a wood burner are:
• Ash
• Oak
• Birch
• Beech
• Cherry
• Sycamore

How to put out a wood burner

Safely put out your wood burner by following these steps:
Starve the flames of oxygen by ensuring the stove door is completely closed.
Close all air vents and wait until the flames have died down to embers.
Wearing heat-resistant gloves, open the door and spread the remaining embers/pieces of wood using a fire poker.
Once the stove is cooled, sweep away any remaining ashes. An ash carrier can be a useful piece of equipment to assist in this.

Discover further cleaning and maintenance tips in our blog: How to clean wood burner glass.

Contact Charnwood today

To find out more about how to light your wood burner and keeping it well maintained, contact Charnwood today. Our friendly, expert team are on hand and more than happy to answer any queries you may have.

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Nothing quite compares to the roaring flames of a wood burner in the comfort of your own home.

A wood burner not only creates the perfect ambience on a cold winters day, but is also a superb focal point in the home.

However, before making this long-term investment and enjoying its many benefits, there are several factors to explore which will determine whether a wood burner is suitable for your home. From installation to size and fitting, we’ve compiled our top tips.

Can you install a wood burner if you have no chimney?

It is possible to have a wood burner installed in your home without a chimney. To achieve this, the wood burner must have a twin skin insulated flue system installed.

Before buying your wood burner, we would recommend a visit from an HETAS qualified heating engineer. They will visit your home and inspect the area where you would like your wood burner installed. They will offer expert advice on many elements, including building regulations, required flue systems and insulation.

Can I install a wood burner myself?

The installation of a wood burner is a highly specialised job and should be carried out by a trained professional. It is by no means a project to take on yourself, as if it is done incorrectly, it could be very dangerous.

If the stove and flue are not connected properly, or if the flue isn’t installed correctly, it can lead to harmful fumes entering the room, which can pose a significant safety risk to yourself and your family.

We recommend a visit from an HETAS qualified installer, who will be able to safely install your flue system. By using a registered installer, you have the confidence that you are receiving expert, trustworthy advice and your flue will be installed properly. A correctly installed wood burner will be safe, efficient and long-lasting.

Here at Charnwood, we work with a network of specialist installers, so you can be safe in the knowledge that your wood burner will not only be fitted correctly, but will be installed to last long-term.

How to line a chimney for a wood burner

A chimney liner is a stainless-steel tube that connects the top of the pipe that protrudes from a wood burner to the chimney pot. While there are several ways to line a chimney, fitting a chimney liner is the most common and cost-effective.

Lining a chimney for a wood burner is a two-person job, involving working at height and several steps:

Before fitting the liner, ensure you first sweep the chimney.

Remove the chimney pot.

Go to the roof and take a length of rope measuring five metres longer than your chimney height with a weight on the end and carefully drop this down your chimney.

A substantial amount of dust may fall down the chimney at this point, so ensure a dust mask, goggles and protective clothing are worn.

Once the rope is down the chimney, tie off the rope to prevent losing it down the chimney.

Bring the chimney liner to the roof and check the arrows to ensure it is the right way up.

Take care when holding the chimney liner and cover the ends of the liner with gaffer tape for added protection.

Attach the flex adapter, then fix three sets of wires to the liner adapter which enable you to attach the length of rope.

Put the closing plate over the top end of the liner and clamp the top fixing clamp.

Gently feed the liner into the chimney and straighten it to avoid any curls inside the flue.

Once the liner is in place, move the fixing clamp down the liner until it is resting on top of the chimney and supports the weight of the liner at the necessary height.

Cut any excess liner using a hacksaw so that around half the height of the chimney pot remains.

Make the area waterproof by making a mix of sand, cement and integral waterproofer.

Wet down the chimney, chimney pot, closing plate and end of the liner, before applying the cement mixture.

Wipe down and add a cowl to the chimney.

Connect the stove to the chimney liner adaptor with some rigid flue and allow 24 hours before lighting your stove.

Alternatively, a local registered installer will be able to fit the chimney liner for you. Contact us for further information.

How much should I pay for a wood burner to be fitted?

While each wood burner and its requirements are unique, you can expect to pay from £700 upwards for your wood burner to be fitted.

What size wood burner should I get?

It is essential that you measure the size of the room where you’d like your wood burner ahead of making a purchase. This will ensure that you buy the correct sized stove with the right amount of heat for the room where it will be installed.

If the wood burner gives off too much heat for the room, the space will become unpleasantly hot and the plaster around the stove may crack. Too low and you will not get the desired warmth needed within your chosen space.

As a rough guide, we recommend 1kW of heat output will heat 14 cubic metres.

How close can my TV be to my wood burner?

If you are considering placing your TV on the wall above your wood burner, we would strongly recommend contacting your TV manufacturer to determine how much heat your TV is able to withstand. You may also want to consult the operating manual for further information.

Contact Charnwood today

To find out more about your next wood burner and for advice around suitability for your home, contact Charnwood today. Our friendly, expert team are on hand and more than happy to answer any queries you may have.

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With the sudden drop in temperature and an autumn chill in the air, nothing beats a cosy evening nestled by your wood burning stove.

But as we head towards the winter months, your wood burner could need some TLC before its ready to be used more regularly.

To help keep your wood burner well maintained in readiness for those long winter nights, we’ve compiled our tips on how to clean wood burner glass alongside other upkeep advice.

How to keep wood burner glass clean

Your wood burner is not only a source of warmth, it is also a focal point within your home. Many modern generally feature clean-burn air wash which naturally keep the glass clean. However when used regularly, soot may build up on the glass door, which can drastically reduce the view of the fire. The most common cause of this is when wood with a moisture content higher than 20% is burnt or if a burning log is touching the glass.

Here are some do’s and don’ts on how to keep wood burner glass clean.

Do…

Use a damp crumpled paper towel or newspaper, dip it in fine wood ash and use this to rub the stove glass clean.

If there is substantial build up on the glass, burn a high temperature fire in the wood burning stove before you try to clean the glass. Ensure you have plenty of well-seasoned wood in your wood burner to create a fire of a high temperature.

Make sure you use a wood stove glass cleaner, or a ceramic stove top cleaner.

Ensure you wait until the wood burner glass is cool before you attempt to clean it.

Clean your wood burner glass on a regular basis to prevent a build-up of soot.

Don’t…

Never attempt to clean your wood burner glass when there is a fire burning inside the stove or the surface is hot.

Avoid spraying water on hot wood burner glass – this could cause the glass to crack or shatter.

Never use sharp objects or abrasive cleaners to clean your wood burner glass – these could damage and scratch the surface of the glass.

How to clean a wood burner

When it comes to cleaning your wood burner, there are many interior and exterior elements to consider.

Ensure exterior surfaces are cleaned with a soft brush, damp cloth or a vacuum cleaner. These will effectively remove any soot and dirt when the stove is cool.

Take the time to empty out the ash pan and firebox completely when your wood burner is not being used. Inspect the rope seals on the doors and flue, as it is not uncommon for these to become damaged through everyday wear and tear.

Find out more wood burning stove cleaning tips and tricks in our blog: How to clean your wood burning stove.

Why is my wood burner smoking?

If your wood burner is smoking, there could be several reasons, including:

A blocked chimney

The wrong fuel is being used

An issue with the air pressure in the room

A problem with the draw of your chimney

A cold weather snap

To stop your wood burner from smoking, you need to ensure you have the correct air pressure, no chimney blockages and are burning the correct fuel. If you have any further questions about your smoking wood burner, contact us today.

Why does my wood burner smell?

If your wood burner is emitting an unpleasant smell, it is unlikely that this is coming from the wood burner or stove itself. The smell is more likely being caused by other factors, including:

The stove is new and requires a ‘break in’ period

The fire is releasing too much smoke

Burning damp wood which contains too much moisture

Burning polluted wood

The fire isn’t hot enough

Blocked chimney or flue

Insufficient chimney size which cannot easily remove waste smoke and gases

Wet weather

If the weather is much lower than usual and smoke and gases cannot leave the home properly

Reduced airflow

 

Why is my wood burner not getting hot?

If your wood burner is not getting hot, this could be due to a variety of reasons:

• The draft on the stove is poor – draft on the stove is needed to suck air from the stove out of your home. If the waste gas is unable to escape, fresh air won’t be getting to the fire and this will prevent the stove from heating. Test the draft by lighting a piece of paper on one end and placing it under the flue outlet inside your stove. If the smoke disappears, the draft should work effectively when the fire starts.

• The air vents need opening – if the air vents aren’t open enough, it will prevent oxygen getting to the fire. Open up the air vents and create a larger supply of oxygen to enable to the fire to burn through the wood more quickly.

• The air vents are open too much – if the air vents are opened too much, the stove may not get hot. While the air vents should be opened fully when the fire is being lit to maximise oxygen levels, these can be gradually closed down as the fire gets hotter to ensure too much air isn’t getting to the fire.

• Lack of secondary combustion – this process involves maximising heat from burning wood by burning off waste gases from the fire. Secondary combustion will only occur when a higher temperature is reached.

• Fire incorrectly lit/built – if a fire is built and lit incorrectly, it will prevent the stove from getting hot. Lay crumpled pieces of paper on the bed of the stove to help encourage the fire to spread to the wood. Softwood kindling can then be placed on top of the newspaper, followed by smaller logs once the fire has caught.

• Wet wood – if your wood is too wet, the excess moisture will prevent your wood burner from getting hot. We recommend a 20 per cent or lower moisture content threshold for firewood. If your wood contains more moisture than this, it will need to be dried out for a further season before if can be used.

Find out more in our blog: How to use a wood burning stove.

How often should I sweep my wood burner chimney?

We recommend that wood burner chimneys are cleaned at least once a year. This should take place when the temperature drops in the cooler months before the wood burner is used more regularly.

Contact Charnwood today

To find out more about keeping your wood burner well maintained, contact Charnwood today. Our friendly, expert team are on hand and more than happy to answer any queries you may have.

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If you are already the proud owner of a wood burner, or are considering making a purchase, you will not be disappointed. A wood burner is a superb addition to the home and an impressive focal point.

As winter approaches and the nights begin to draw in, what better way to spend chilly evenings than being nestled up next to your wood burning stove?

Before you fire up your wood burner and use it more regularly though, the Charnwood experts have compiled their tips on how to light a wood burner alongside other top tips, so you can get the absolute most out of your wood burner.

How to use a wood burner

If you are considering a wood burner purchase, it is crucial to ensure your desired stove is suitable for your home. We strongly recommend that a site survey is carried out by an experienced stove installer in the first instance before you make a purchase. Use our stove calculator to find out if your room is suitable.

How to make a fire in a wood burner

There are several stages to making a successful fire in a wood burner. If a fire is built and lit incorrectly, it can prevent the stove from getting hot. Follow these steps to make a successful wood burner fire:

Firstly you will need to ensure your wood is well seasoned and dry with a moisture content of less than 20% – if buying wood in smaller volumes look out for the Woodsure ‘Ready to Burn label’ which guarantees this.

When lighting your stove we recommend the top down method.

1) Leave some ash – the most efficient way to light a wood burning stove is to leave a little bit of ash from previous fires. However, you should still ensure the majority of the ash is cleaned out to avoid blocking air circulation.
2) Place 2-3 smaller logs on the stove bed
3) On top of this build a stack of 6-8 softwood kindling sticks
4) Then place a natural fire lighter inside
5) Fully open the air control as this will maximise the supply of oxygen in the wood burner needed to get the fire going.
6) Light the fire lighter and close the door but leave it slightly a jar
7) This helps to heat the chimney flue and burn hot and clean
8) Once the fire is burning well close the door and reduce the air intake
9) Re-fuel little and often
10) Every time a log is added open the air control again until the fire is burning well and then return the control to normal

By running your stove in this way you will achieve maximum efficiency with minimum emissions

How hot does a wood burner get?

Most wood burners range in temperature and can reach 190 – 343 degrees Celsius (375 – 650 degrees Fahrenheit). However, how hot a wood burner gets can depend on several factors including poor draft on the stove, air vents left closed or not open enough, incorrectly built/lit fire and use of wet wood.

How many logs do I need to put in a wood burner?

It is important not to overload your wood burner with logs, as this will mean the fire does not have enough oxygen to burn effectively. For a constant heat, have one or two logs in your wood burner at once.

How to get maximum heat from wood burner

There are several factors that could prevent your wood burner from achieving maximum heat, including:
The type of wood that is being burnt.
The moisture content of the wood.
How effectively the air supply to the fire is controlled.
How well the fire is maintained.

Achieve the maximum heat from your wood burner by:

Using softwoods to quickly get the fire started.
Using harder woods once the fire has started to produce more heat for longer periods.
Ensuring all wood burned is dry and doesn’t contain large amounts of moisture (as mentioned earlier we recommend a 20 per cent or lower moisture content threshold for firewood).
Periodically adding a few pieces of wood, rather than waiting for the flame to die down or adding large amounts of wood in one go.
Using air vents correctly to control airflow to the fire.
Having your flue cleaned and maintained regularly.
Cleaning and maintaining your wood burner stove regularly.
Ensuring your room has adequate ventilation to give the fire an oxygen supply.

How to keep a wood burner going

The below tips will help make a wood stove burn for longer:
Avoid using wet wood in your wood burning stove.
Reduce the air coming through the air vents to make the fire last longer.
A stove that contains cast iron elements are better for heat efficiency and will keep a fire going.
If you would like to find out more about wood burning stove cleaning tips and tricks in our blog, read: How to clean your wood burning stove.

What trees are the best to burn on a wood burner?

The best wood for burning on a wood burner are:
• Ash
• Oak
• Birch
• Beech
• Cherry
• Sycamore

How to put out a wood burner

Safely put out your wood burner by following these steps:
Starve the flames of oxygen by ensuring the stove door is completely closed.
Close all air vents and wait until the flames have died down to embers.
Wearing heat-resistant gloves, open the door and spread the remaining embers/pieces of wood using a fire poker.
Once the stove is cooled, sweep away any remaining ashes. An ash carrier can be a useful piece of equipment to assist in this.

Discover further cleaning and maintenance tips in our blog: How to clean wood burner glass.

Contact Charnwood today

To find out more about how to light your wood burner and keeping it well maintained, contact Charnwood today. Our friendly, expert team are on hand and more than happy to answer any queries you may have.

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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!