Maximise The Potential of Your Stove This Winter
If you’ve been following our blog and social media for a while, you’ll have heard us talk about Ecodesign Ready stoves. They have been designed to make sure they are incredibly efficient. An open fire has an efficiency level of around 20%. In comparison, an Ecodesign Ready stove has an efficiency level of around 80%. We need to be doing everything we can to lower our carbon footprint and increasing appliance efficiency is a great way to help.
The diagram below explains the efficiency of an Ecodesign Ready stove vs an open fire.
While an Ecodesign Ready stove is designed for maximum efficiency, there are things you need to be aware of, to make sure you are maximising the potential of your stove. Here are a few pointers to help you:
REFUELING YOUR FIRE
Place the logs into the centre of the fire, away from the rear, sides and glass. By doing this you are helping keep the glass and the liners clean. Make sure you use stove gloves or an oven mitt when opening the door, adding wood or adjusting the controls.
BURN THE RIGHT STUFF
Hardwood logs are undoubtedly the most healthy choice for your fire. Moisture content is critical too; the moisture levels in any burning wood should be no more than 20%. Too higher moisture (know as wet wood) will create an inefficient burn and increase the levels of tar in a flue, which in turn can increase the risks of a chimney fire and carbon monoxide poisoning. Look for Woodsure “Ready to Burn” quality assured wood. This assurance scheme brought in from May this year (2021) is to help unsuspecting buyers avoid purchasing “wet” wood.
WHAT NOT TO BURN:
The sale of traditional house coal (also known as bituminous coal) is being phased out in Scotland and is no longer easily obtained.
Over time the chemicals in the smokeless coal and briquettes can discolour the fire and can cause a range of other problems, as a result, it is recommended that you avoid these fuel sources. Want to know more click here.
PAINTED OR PRESERVED WOODS
Burning such wood can release very toxic chemicals into the atmosphere, which are a direct threat to air quality. Also, the chemicals can also damage and discolour the inside of your fireplace. Avoid at all costs.
NEWSPAPER AND CARD
A traditional fire starter but a major fire risk. Paper and card burn very quickly and can easily float up the chimney (when lit) and ignite creosote/tar currently residing in a flue, possibly causing a fire. Burning both should be avoided.
You should store firewood in well vented dry areas, that is well away from the rain. Stacking firewood is good because it helps promote air circulation. The last thing you want is to buy correctly seasoned wood only to trap in dampness!