A wood-burning stove is a great way to add more heat to your home and cut your heating costs.
In order to get the best of both of those aspects, you will need to learn how to get the best burn from your woodburner.
Get to know your air vents
Experiment with your stove’s air vents to find out how to operate it for maximum efficiency. Once the stove is lit and burning well, you are aiming to let as little oxygen in as possible without causing the fire to smoke and smoulder. This will usually involve closing the primary (bottom) vent, then seeing how far you can get away with closing the secondary (top) vent.
Use dry kindling
Use kindling to start the fire. Using dry sticks or off-cuts of wood to get the fire going will increase the temperature in your stove and make it easier for the logs to set alight.
Burn the right fuel
Consult your stove manual to see which fuels are best-suited to your woodburner. If you’re burning logs, hardwood is better than softwood. Hardwood is denser and gives more bang for your buck because it provides a slower burn.
Little fires inside big stoves are not a good idea. You want to burn your stove as hot as possible in order to achieve the best burn.
Use only seasoned wood
Only used seasoned logs on your woodburner. Reduce the moisture levels in your fuel by chopping, splitting and stacking it to dry for a year or more. You can check the water content of fuel before you burn it with the aid of a moisture meter.
Don’t reload too often
As long as the fuel is burning, it will be heating the metal stove body, which will be heating your room. Don’t reload with more logs just because the flames aren’t so spectacular. You’ll save money by waiting for the fuel to burn down before adding more.
Insulate your home
Woodburners are romantic. Insulation is not. But by insulating your home properly, you will get more from the woodburner by keeping more of the heat it generates inside your home.
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