A wood-burning stove is an efficient, affordable and aesthetically-pleasing way to heat a room. However, in order to keep your stove functioning effectively it is important to pay careful attention to maintenance. Following a few key pieces of advice will help keep it in good condition.
Cleaning is one of the simplest stove maintenance tactics, but also one of the most commonly neglected. Regularly sweeping out flue supplies can help them stay in good condition and avert potential safety hazards. Failing to do this can cause corrosion in your flue pipe and even create the risk of fire.
As well as regularly sweeping your stove yourself, you should have your chimney swept professionally and inspected at least once a year. This will help identify any problems before they become serious and ensure it stays in good working condition.
If fitting any new parts or optional extras such as flue liners, always use good-quality items. Cheaperflue supplies can be a false economy and need replacing regularly, while high-quality items can prolong the life of your stove significantly.
Always burn seasoned (dried) wood. Never burn fresh wood, especially if it is still green. Fresh and green wood has a lot of moisture, which can lead to excessive fumes and soot build-up. See our infographic about ”Guide for Buying Wood Fuel”
You should also avoid burning anything that is not made for burning in a wood-burning stove. A small number of wood burning stoves are suitable for other fuels such as coal, but the vast majority are not.
It is tempting to ignore issues with your stove if they only seem minor. However, doing so can cause them to worsen, requiring more troublesome and expensive repairs in the future. Have any issues seen to immediately to keep your stove in good condition.
As you may be aware, wood will burn best when it is on a bed of ash. For this reason, it is good to let a little ash build up, but don’t allow it to go too far. Only a thin layer is necessary, and excess can blacken your glass or even damage your stove.
From time to time, it is necessary not just to sweep out your stove but to give it a more thorough clean. This will not only make it look cosmetically nicer but help prevent problems developing due to grime building up. Damp newspaper is ideal for cleaning the glass, while a wire brush or scraper is good for the interior.
Even if you are familiar with wood burning stoves, each make and model is slightly different. Read the instruction manual and follow the maintenance recommendations that your manufacturer makes.
A thermometer will help you monitor the temperature of the smoke and gases in your flue pipe. Keeping them between roughly 150-200 degrees celcius (300-400 farenheit) will help keep your stove in good condition.
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