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Wood-burning stove safety tips

If you’ve got a wood-burning stove, or you’re considering getting one, we highly advise brushing up on the relevant safety tips.

Some of these things will feel obvious, especially if you’ve got a fireplace or a firepit. But when it comes to fire safety, you can never be too careful. There’s no harm in giving yourself a refresher.

Below is a list of 12 wood-burning stove fire safety tips. Bookmark it for future reference, or print out a copy to keep near your stove as a reminder.

  1. Familiarise yourself with the safety tips. Take the time to read and engage with these rather than just skimming over them!
  2. Make sure anyone using the stove is familiar, too. If you’re the person who’s generally responsible for the stove in your home, make sure anyone else who’s using it is familiar with these tips, too.
  3. Install the stove on a non-combustible, heatproof base. You should never install a wood-burning stove over carpet. They should be placed on a special, heatproof base to protect against fire.
  4. Inspect your chimney regularly and keep it clean. A blocked chimney can lead to smoke and carbon monoxide being unable to escape, which presents a significant health risk. Get your chimney checked before installing your wood-burning stove, and at regular intervals thereafter.
  5. Get a carbon monoxide detector. Even with a clean chimney you want peace of mind that your stove isn’t giving off carbon monoxide emissions in your home. Detectors are available to buy online and we highly recommend keeping one in the room where your stove is.
  6. Keep the area around the stove free of combustible materials. This includes fire-making materials like logs, kindling and paper, as well as things like carpet, furniture, walls, and so on.
  7. Ensure the door is shut when the fire is burning. In the same way you’d use a fireguard to prevent sparks jumping out of a fireplace, keeping the stove door shut minimises the risk of sparks igniting anything nearby.
  8. Only burn quality, seasoned wood. Burning wood with a low moisture content gives a safer, more efficient burn. All of our wood is Ready To Burn certified (meaning 20% moisture content or lower), and our kiln dried logs are particularly well-suited to wood-burning stoves.
  9. Wait for your stove to cool down before cleaning it. This may sound obvious but it’s worth saying: wait until the stove is cool before cleaning, otherwise you risk burning yourself! Remember that the inside of an ash pile can be much hotter than the outside, so use a tool to turn the pile over before reaching in with your hands (ideally you’d use tools for the whole cleaning process).
  10. Get rid of ashes safely. When cleaning your stove, put ashes in a dedicated container made of a fireproof material. You should never dump hot ashes into a plastic wheelie bin, for examle, as there’s a high risk of fire.
  11. Never burn rubbish. Resist the temptation to burn tissues, wrappers, etc in your stove. This risks a chimney fire.
  12. Never use gasoline or other flammable liquids to start a fire. This is also a significant fire risk. Instead use kindling and firelighters, and learn how to start a fire properly.

Thanks for taking the time to read these tips, and remember: you can never be too careful when it comes to fire.

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