Can you expect more comfort than relaxing around a warm and bright fire on a cold winter with your family around? Wood burning fireplaces are excellent sources of heat and keep your household warm without those staggering heating bills? Wood fireplace can add value to the house and help them sell faster by fetching higher revenue. The following tips will help you derive prolonged pleasure and to get the maximum out of your wood fireplace.
1. Professional Installation
When buying a new stove, never attempt to self-install. Wood fireplaces have to be installed by professionals well versed in their functioning. Proper initial installation is crucial not just for problem free working but also to prevent accidents, fires and waste of time, energy and money. Professional installation ensures that you adhere to all those local and federal laws regarding emission, safety and maintenance norms.
2. Frequent Inspection & Maintenance
Wood burning leaves fumes, ash and creosote accumulation. The chimney needs to be cleaned at least once a year for such accumulation, bird droppings and nests. Chimney also needs to be carefully inspected for any cracks. Creosote accumulation is one of the common causes of fire hazard in wood stoves and therefore proper and professional inspection is mandatory. Ideally thorough maintenance schedule can be planned just before the onset of winter.
3. Ventilation and Heat Shield
Wood burning stoves have the ability to dissipate heat on all sides and are more effective to warm larger areas. To prevent items like curtains, carpet and clothing from get heated up posing fire hazard, proper ventilation should be provided. The stoves need to be placed near non-combustible surface like tiled floor, walls that are properly guarded with heat shield. Inadequate ventilation could result in carbon monoxide buildup which can be poisonous. Carbon monoxide detectors are available in the market to detect and alert about the buildup of the poisonous gas.
4. Monitoring children and pets
It makes a lot of sense not to meddle with the wood fire when you are under the influence of alcohol. Also the fire should not be left unattended for long or during nap. Kids and pets should not be allowed near the fire. Children are curious enough and out of their zeal may like to play with the fire or put their hands to test the heat and may get injured in the process.
5. Before starting Fire
Never use highly inflammable material like kerosene, petrol or any such fuel to start or kindle a fire. Ensure that there is proper air flow and that the damper is open wide enough. Keep the damper open till the fire is ‘ON’ and the ashes are completely cooled. Accumulated fly, ash and creosote etc are still combustible at higher temperatures and may cause unexpected fireballs or bouts of fire, if left to build over in the chimney.
6. Stages of burning
Feeding or arranging logs in the wood fireplace has some science behind it. There are three stages of fire in a wood fireplace. The temperature is gradually raised according to each stage. The wood logs have to be arranged and fed into the system as per the stage of burning. Adding too much wood at a given time may lead to faster burning without generating adequate heat. It also leads to creosote buildup. For the wood to burn correctly, adequate oxygen supply (air circulation) has to be maintained through proper ventilation.
7. Fire Prevention
To guard against fire hazard and to ensure safety of the house and equipment’s, always have a fire extinguisher handy and at a conspicuous place known to family members. Smoke detectors that can detect smoke or heat early and raise an alarm can also be installed. More importantly, these equipment’s should be monitored regularly to ensure their good working condition. The family members should also be trained or taught on how to operate those fire extinguishers in case of emergency.
At Master Fireplaces (http://masterfireplaces.in) we have an array of products that are manufactured to global standards for Indian customer. As we move into winter, let the fireplace light up your life for the better.