Efficient use of a Log Burning Stove

There is a cosy warmth given off by a log burning stove that that central heating can never touch. It might be rooted to the idea that when warmth is mentioned, a wood fire is one of the images comes to mind. Whether your log-burning stove is brand new or you have been using it for decades, these basic efficiency ideas apply.

Use dry wood

It is important to use only properly dried wood in the stove. This includes the kindling, which should be from a light wood such as pine or cedar. Green wood is 50% water, which means for every kilogram of wood you use, there is a half litre of water in the stove. This moisture keeps the wood from burning properly and uses up a lot of the energy produced by the stove.

You can ensure that your wood is properly seasoned by drying it yourself. This is the cheapest option especially if you have space to store the wood. Drying the wood for one summer should be good enough, but if you can dry it for two summers that is even better. 

If you do not have the space to store green wood, you can source from a reputable supplier. Inspect the wood first if that is possible to ensure it is as dry as the seller claims it is

The other option is to buy kiln dried logs or briquettes. This option is the most expensive, but you are assured that the logs are completely dry.

Use wood with good burning properties

There are many woods to choose from, each with its own burning properties. Some woods produce more smoke than others do, and some have more heat output. Choose woods that have a steady flame, a good heat output and produce very little smoke. Some good examples of woods with these properties are ash Ash and Thorn.

Use air to your advantage

All the heat given off by a Log Burning stove comes from burning gases when the wood heats up air. The air above the wood is the most important in a stove. Therefore, never close the secondary air vent. Closing this air vent cause the glass on the window of your stove to turn black with soot. Also, never leave the stove door open. Leaving the stove door results in all the heat from the stove going up the chimney instead of in the room where it is needed. Only leave the door open if the manual specifically instructs you to do so.

Cautions when using a wood stove

It is wise to use only newspapers and kindling when lighting a wood fire. Using liquids such as paraffin, petrol or ethanol to light the fire can be disastrous. If you use dry kindling, lighting the fire is not hard at all. Do not mix wood and logs in a wood burning stove. Coal produces sulphuric acid when burning. If the acid combines with the moisture in wood, the combination can coat your chimney with sulphuric acid solution.