Having a wood burning stove has become increasingly popular in recent years. We are seeing a dramatic increase in stove installations and firewood orders not just in Bristol but all over the UK too. The popularity is due to log burners being an effective heating option and a cleaner more efficient alternative at that. They do however need a little care & maintenance to prolong their life and keep them running efficiently.
Firstly we would always recommend using only seasoned or kiln dried hardwood as this will impart less tar and corrosives into your flue. An easy way to check the moisture content of the wood you are using is a moisture meter.
Charnwood moitsture meter
Yearly chimney sweeping should eliminate excess soot and grime but you could also use a product like Stovax’s Flue and chimney protector to limit the build-up of tar by converting it into harmless clinker.
Most if not all stoves these days will have some kind of ‘air wash’ technology built in. This is the way the stove directs a flow of air against the glass window to keep it clear. This works by stopping the gasses from combustion settling on the glass as they are ‘washed’ away by this flow of air. This can be more effective in some stoves then others so you may occasionally need to aid this with a quick manual clean using a glass cleaner liquid, dry wipe or you can even use wet newspaper and some of the ash from the firebox. I’ve found recently the ‘dry wipes’ to be incredibly useful and easy to use as it is a chemical free ‘sponge’ consisting of a double layer of steel wool that doesn’t scratch the glass and is recommended by the ‘Guild of master sweeps’.
Stove glass cleaner 'dry wipe' sponge
In some wood burning stoves a bed of ash is required to keep the stove running at its best but others may need to be cleared regularly, especially if you are burning smokeless coal. Check with the manufacturer’s guidelines what is best for your stove. In the Embers showroom we have a STOVAX Vogue Midi that requires cleaning out about once a week and a Charnwood C5 that hasn’t needed cleaning out for the year it has been installed. The difference being the Vogue has a firebrick base that provides insulation whereas the Charnwood uses the ash in this way.
We recommend employing a stove pipe thermometer as a way of monitoring the stoves heat output. It will quickly tell you if you are over or under firing the stove which in turn will prompt you to adjust the air controls and load less / more wood. This will have a knock on effect with efficiency as you will know when more logs are required or not.
Charnwood stove pipe thermometer
For more advice about wood burning stove installation in Bristol or the surrounding areas please do not hesitate to contact us or use the online form to request a survey.
0117 925 1115
Visit our showroom:
117-119 St Georges Road,
Tues - Fri - 10.30 - 17.30
Sat - 10.00 - 15.00
[Closed for lunch between 12.30 - 13.00]
Sun - Mon - Closed
Please note that our annual summer shutdown will be from the 12 - 21 August.