Wood stoves are a great way to heat your home. They're inexpensive and environmentally friendly, and they can save you money on your energy bills. But if you don't know how to use a wood stove properly, it can be dangerous and even deadly. Follow these tips for safe stove use:
Always follow manufacturer's instructions.
Read the manual before using your wood stove.
Don't try to do anything that isn't in the manual.
Don't use your wood stove if you don't know how to use it.
Be sure you've installed the stove properly and that it's certified to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency standards for emissions.
Be sure you've installed the stove properly and that it's certified to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency standards for emissions. Installation instructions are in the owner's manual and should be followed carefully. If you're not comfortable with installing your wood-burning stove, then have it installed by a professional who is experienced in doing so. Also, check to make sure that the stove has been certified for use by an independent agency like UL or Intertek; these certifications ensure that it meets EPA emission standards for particulate matter (PM) and carbon monoxide (CO). Finally, have a professional inspect your chimney before going ahead with installation of your new wood-burning appliance: they'll ensure there are no obstructions within its flue pipe that could prevent proper venting of smoke from being vented outside via this channel.
Have your chimney inspected and, if necessary, cleaned by a professional chimney sweep annually.
The wood stove is a great way to heat your home, but you'll want to make sure that the chimney is in good working order before you start using it. If you don't have the chimney inspected and cleaned on a regular basis by an expert, you could risk serious health hazards and other problems.
Having your chimney cleaned annually by a professional will help ensure that fuel isn't blocked from entering or exiting through it. Cleaning also removes creosote buildup as well as any insects that may have gotten trapped inside. You'll also be able to enjoy cleaner-burning fires since excess debris won't get caught in your flue liner or damper assembly when they're cleaned out!
Chimneys should be inspected after each season regardless of whether they've been used during that time period; ideally once every year (or more often if needed).
Don't burn driftwood, trash or treated woods in your stove - that can cause dangerous buildup inside the chimney and damage to the wood stove.
Don't burn any kind of treated wood, trash or driftwood in your stove.
Treated woods contain chemicals that can cause a buildup in the chimney and damage to your stove. Driftwood contains salt and other minerals that can corrode metal parts of the unit. Also avoid burning trash; it tends to produce more ash than clean fuel like logs, which clogs up your flue pipe and may cause dangerous backdrafting into your house or cabin.
Keep combustible materials at least 36 inches away from a wood-burning stove or fireplace.
The National Fire Protection Association recommends that you keep combustible materials at least 36 inches away from a wood-burning stove or fireplace. This includes sheets, clothing and curtains. If you have flammable liquids stored near your wood stove or fireplace, they should be stored in a metal cabinet with doors on them. The reason is that if the container were to catch fire while it's still full of liquid, it could explode.
Always open the damper before you light your fire.
Always open the damper before you light your fire.
Once you've opened the damper, it's time to light the fire. The first step is to add some kindling to help get your blaze started. Add about three layers of dry twigs or small branches onto the top of your stove, but not so much that they touch each other when compressed. Then kindle, which is like a bunch of little logs stacked together—I use hardwood splits from my own trees because they're all roughly the same size and have lots of knots in them (which burn slower).
Next comes newspaper; crumple up a few pages into balls and then put them on top of what you've already built so far—some people say that this helps get things going faster but I'm not sure why since it won't burn very well until it gets hot enough anyway!
Now move over toward where your wood supply sits next to the stove and grab some small pieces (about 1-2" long) from there so that they'll fit inside those holes we saw earlier near where we were putting paper; these will act as kindling after our big stuff catches fire!
Use seasoned hardwoods - they burn cleaner and produce less creosote buildup in your chimney.
You should always use seasoned wood. This is wood that has been stored for a year or more, and it burns cleaner and produces less creosote buildup in your chimney. Softwoods—such as pine, spruce, and fir—should never be burned because they produce tar when burned. You also shouldn’t burn treated lumber or any other type of chemically treated wood (such as railroad ties).
Never burn green or freshly cut firewood. These pieces are high in moisture content, which means they will smoke heavily during the drying process and may even catch on fire before they are dry enough to burn properly (which would mean you have an even bigger problem on your hands). If possible, let your firewood sit outside for at least a month before you start burning it!
If it's safe to do so, check on the fire during the night to make sure that it's still burning safely and hot enough to keep producing heat throughout the night.
While you are sleeping, it's totally fine to check on your fire. If the stove has been burning well and hot enough, you can leave it alone for most of the time. If it is dying down or getting too hot, open the door to let some heat out and increase oxygen supply for combustion.
A wood stove is useful year round, but you need to know how to use it properly
A wood stove is useful year round, but you need to know how to use it properly.
If you don't, it can be dangerous and cause damage to the stove and your home.
We hope that this blog post has made you more comfortable with the idea of using a wood stove. We know how daunting it can be to think about taking on such a project, but if you follow our tips and keep an eye out for any dangerous situations, we think you'll be just fine!