The Cozy Flame's Blog

Firewood Storing and Burning Tips

It’s almost October, and that means it’s nearly time for a crackling fire in the fireplace. Ideally, you have a nice supply of firewood ready for the first fire of the season, but if you’re like manyFirewood homeowners, you put it off until the last minute. When it comes to chimney and fireplace maintenance and preparation, procrastination can be dangerous. You may be left out in the cold, and you may waste time and money trying to light improper firewood.

Seasoned Firewood

Your firewood should be properly seasoned before it’s burned in the fireplace (or anywhere else). When the tree is cut down, it’s filled with water that was keeping it alive. When it’s cut, it must be set aside for 3-6 months to dry–maybe longer for extremely hard woods. Selecting the correct firewood is the best way to have an efficient fireplace, a warm fire, and a safe burn all season long. Seasoned firewood produces less creosote, burns hotter with less fuel, and is easier to light. If you don’t take the time to cut and store firewood, you risk depending on green or “wet” wood to heat your home, and you’ll be sorely disappointed.

Green Wood

Burning green wood has too much water content. When it’s burned it takes more wood to reach the desired temperature, the wood burns incompletely, and it even produces more particulate pollution that affects the environment and more soot and creosote that affects your chimney. In order to get the most out of your firewood, especially if you’re cutting from your own property, is to select wood species that will work best for your needs and to cut and store it properly so that it burns better and lasts longer.

Storing Firewood

There are many ways to properly store firewood while it dries, and many of them can be cheap, and some can even be fun.

  1. Woodshed – You can build a woodshed for your firewood that keeps it out of the elements, while still allowing airflow. If you stack your firewood tightly inside a closed shed or building, it may take longer to dry because there won’t be any air flowing around and between the wood. A popular option is a lean-to because it allows sunlight and air to dry the wood, while keeping it covered from rain and snow.
  2. Woodpile – If you don’t have the time or materials to build a woodshed, you may choose to stack the wood in your yard. This is a fine way to allow it to dry, and it can still dry while exposed to the elements. Simply stack it bark-side-up so that water runs off. The bottom layer can be stacked bark-side-down to keep from absorbing standing water. However, you can prevent standing water by putting your stack of firewood on a bed of sand or gravel. Regardless, you can ensure the wood is ready by stacking loosely and by letting it sit for 3-6 months. Don’t rush it.

If you’re not sure what kind of firewood to use or what the big deal is, you can call and talk to a fire expert at The Cozy Flame. We’re always willing to answer your questions because our customers are first priority. We want you to be safe and warm this fall and winter, and your fire starts with your firewood. Call us at 203-283-4459.

By Steve Sobczak | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

It’s Time for Service!

It’s finally September. Maybe you’re looking forward to harvest parties and Halloween, or maybe you’re already looking for a Christmas tree. For those homeowners who love fall and the holiday season for all the family gatherings and fun decorations, we may be able to help. For those who depend on the fireplace and chimney system as a heat source, we can help you too! At The Cozy Flame, fires are our specialty, and we can’t stress enough the importance of professional services and routine preventative appointments to maintain safety and efficiency throughout the season.

Repairs and Installations

If your fireplace needs a bit of a facelift in order to look it’s best in your family photos this season, you should call on the professionals. The Cozy Flame partners with sister company, Total Chimney Care, to bring professional installations and repairs to our customers. The experts at Total Chimney Care are certified, licensed, and insured. They can beautify any old fireplace, or neglected chimney. Now is the time for these types of services, however.

If you want to make changes to the system, schedule now and avoid the fall rush. The fall rush is the time between October and January in which chimney professionals are busy. If you wait until October to schedule your appointment, you may spend some cold nights waiting for an appointment time. Also, when you wait to schedule until fall, you may not get to schedule with the sweep you want, and may be tempted to light a fire in an unsafe fireplace.

Routine Maintenance

Both the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) agree that it takes routine chimney sweeps and annual chimney inspections for a chimney system to be as safe and efficient as it can be. These important services should be completed by a professional, and should be completed before burn season. Once your chimney is clean and inspected, you can rest assured that it’s ready for the first fire of the season, AND it will not need another inspection for twelve months.
Chimney Sweep – When you schedule your chimney sweep with Total Chimney Care, a professional will come into your home and use special tools to sweep the system clean of soot, creosote, and any other debris. When the system is clean, it will work more efficiently, will be clean of hazards, and will have optimum airflow.
Chimney Inspection – A CSIA chimney inspection is a thorough assessment of the chimney system from top to bottom, including the inside. Hazards will be identified and a repair plan will be suggested by your chimney sweep. When you schedule your chimney inspection now, it leaves you time for necessary repairs before temperatures drop. Ask a technician about chimney inspections, procedures, and repair plans when you call to schedule.

Call The Cozy Flame and you’ll find that we’re committed to professional excellence and safety. You can have your dream hearth (and in time for fall!) when you call today. Dial 203-283-4459.

Ensure Your Fireplace is Ready for Fall

If you have a fireplace in your home, we bet you can’t wait for those cool nights coming up. Homeowners love having fireplaces in their house, as they bring life and beauty to any home when properly installed and properly maintained. It’s also very important to choose the right fireplace for your space, and the professionals at The Cozy Flame in Milford, Connecticut is here to help you pick the perfect one for you!

Types of Fireplaces at The Cozy Flame

Whether you’re looking for an EPA-certified wood or gas-burning fireplace, we have what you’re looking for. At The Cozy Flame, we only carry the top brands for our customers, friends, and neighbors. We carry Regency Fireplace Products, known for beauty and efficiency and Superior Fireplaces with a variety of beautiful styles and sizes.

Comprehensive Fireplace and Chimney Care

Ensure Your Fireplace is Ready for Fall - Milford CT - The Cozy FlameWhether you have a high-efficiency fireplace, an older model insert or stove, or even an open masonry fireplace, we have what you need to help get your fireplace ready for fall. Our sister company, Total Chimney Care offers the best comprehensive chimney care in the area including installations, repairs, preventative maintenance, and diagnostics. Some of the services we offer are following:

  • Regular Chimney Sweeps – When a chimney professional cleans your chimney, you don’t have to worry about odors, obstruction, and creosote in the flue. During the sweep, the technicians use special brushes and a vacuuming system to remove all the soot, creosote, and debris from the system safely and quickly. He’ll also assess the system for hazards, leaks, and other damage.
  • Annual Chimney Inspections – An annual chimney inspection identify hazards and weaknesses in the system so that it’s safe and efficient for fall and winter. Homeowners need to schedule an inspection annually, before transfer of property, after a fire, tornado, tropical storm, earthquake, and when changes have been made to the system.
  • Repairs and Installations – If your chimney needs repairs, it is best to have get the repairs sooner rather than later. Repairing damaged masonry will keep your chimney from winter damage and prevent water leaks.

Make sure your fireplace and home is ready for fall by scheduling your chimney and fireplace services now. Call or stop by The Cozy Flame to speak with a fireplace expert today! For all of your total chimney needs, we’ll help you get in touch with the experts at Total Chimney Care. Call us at 203-283-4459 now!

How Do I Choose a Gas Fireplace?

When it comes to your hearth, deciding on the best appliance and the look you want is the hardest part. The type of appliance you choose can determine the life of your fireplace. How often it need maintenance? How safe it is? How convenient it is? All of these factors and more will play into your decision, and now is the time to start thinking about it.

The Purpose of Your Fireplace

How Do I Choose a Gas Fireplace - Milford CT - The Cozy FlameIs your fireplace the main focal point of your living space? What do you really want out of your fireplace? Does it need to be more beautiful than functional? If you’re looking for a fireplace that helps with zone heating and help bring down your utility bill, then you should choose a direct vent insert.

Vented and vent free gas log sets do not provide the heat necessary to properly zone heat. Zone heating allows the homeowner to lower the thermostat temperature in the house, and use the fireplace to heat certain areas of the home. Do you have limited space for your appliance? Depending on the size of your space and the shape, we can help you determine the kind of gas fireplace that is right for you.

Vent and Vent-Free Gas Logs

Gas logs are becoming popular among homeowners, and they are more realistic and beautiful than ever. Many gas logs feature realistic details down to the knots and checks in the logs. The log sets with yellow flames are the most realistic option, and these need to be vented due to the release of harmful gases. Vent-free log sets have a blue flame that isn’t as realistic as the yellow flame, but it still produces a good amount of heat and safe for indoor use. These log sets are also easier to install, since they don’t require a vent or chimney to burn. Many homeowners are upgrading to log sets, and if the chimney is in disrepair, a vent-free log set is perfect.

Direct Vent Insert

Whether your chimney is in good shape or not, or even if you don’t have one, a direct vent insert is the best option. Direct-Vent inserts are a completely closed unit that can be installed anywhere in your home. The intake and the vent for the unit can be through a wall, ceiling, or floor, which means it can go anywhere. Your can choose a direct vent fireplace that is contemporary, traditional, or anything in between.

A Cozy (Gas) Flame

When you work with The Cozy Flame to choose your new gas fireplace appliance, you have the benefit of professional experience. One of our associates can help you pick out the best appliance for your needs. Gas fireplaces are such a wonderful investment.  They’re convenient, affordable, environmentally-friendly, safe and beautiful!

The Cozy Flame also sells wood-burning and pellet stoves in addition to our gas fireplaces. Stop by our showroom at 116-Q Research Dr. or give us a call at 203-283-4459 to learn more.

Vented or Vent-Free Gas Logs

Homeowners looking for a great zone heating option, a little ambiance, and minimal cost can look to a gas log set. Gas logs are growing in popularity among homeowners, business owners, and they’re even making their way into B and Bs across the country. Gas log sets offer convenience and beauty that can be realistic and affordable.

Why Choose Gas

Gas heat is growing in popularity due to the many benefits. They are great for zone heating or for a little ambiance–perfect for minimalist heating in the spring and fall or adding to the spirit of holidays and family gatherings. You can choose gas and avoid the work and mess that comes with cutting, hauling, and lighting wood, and still have the look of a wood fire. Gas log sets even offer the same convenience of gas fireplaces. They are easy to light, offer precise heat control, are safer and cool faster than wood fires, and are cheaper and easier to maintain. If you’re considering adding a gas log set to your living space, it can be installed and ready for fall when you start now. Do not leave it up to an online catalog. Speak with a professional. These products, though more affordable, lighter, and easier to install must be installed by a professional. Only a licensed dealer can guarantee their products, and only a certified chimney sweep can guarantee their work is up to code and safe for use.

Vented Gas Logs

The most realistic gas log sets available must be vented. The realistic yellow flames are the most similar to that of a real wood flame. The only drawback to the yellow flame logs is that they must be vented. Vented gas logs produce soot, smoke, and carbon monoxide. These yellow flame log sets will release hazardous gases into the living space that are harmful to your family and pets. These cannot be installed without proper ventilation. They are a popular installation when converting from wood to gas and the chimney is intact. However, the chimney flue cannot be lined with clay tile and should be appropriate for use with gas. When you use a vented gas log set, your system still needs routine maintenance. The soot and carbon produced by your new gas logs will need to be cleaned from the flue regularly.

Vent-Free Gas Logs

Vent-free gas logs are a popular option when the chimney is in disrepair or has been closed off. These gas logs have blue flames that are less realistic but still heat a space. These logs are approved for indoor installations without a chimney or vent and will not produce harmful gases even when used for extended periods of time.

The Coziest Option

At The Cozy Flame, we’re proud to offer the best gas log sets on the market. Our Hargrove gas logs offer the best price and performance possible. They are beautiful , efficient, and realistic looking with the finest detail right down to the wood and embers.

Learn more about gas log sets here or ask a Comfort Consultant today.

By Steve Sobczak | Tagged with: Tags: , , , | Leave a Comment

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The Cozy Flame | 116 Research Dr. Suite Q, Milford, Connecticut 06460