Fire Building Tips for Your Wood Burning Insert

Your wood burning insert is the perfect addition to your home. It will make your holidays warmer, your favorite room cozier, and your heating bills less painful. Save money this winter by having the best fire possible in your wood-burning insert.

Burning the Right Wood

It doesn’t matter how well you build your fire, it won’t burn well if it isn’t appropriate for burning. You should only burn properly seasoned firewood in your wood burning insert. Wood that is too wet is called “green” and burns incompletely, producing more pollution, leaving more creosote in the flue, and bringing down the chimney’s efficiency in general.

Lighting the Fire

You should never use ignition fuels like gasoline in your wood-burning insert. It is not designed to withstand that kind of concentrated heat, nor has it been tested for safety for use in that way. The best way to light your fire every time is to keep kindling on hand as well as some small bits of paper or lint to light.

The Top-Down Method

The top-down method may be a new idea in America, but it has been used in Europe for hundreds of years in masonry heaters. It also works in stoves, fireplaces, and inserts and is a more efficient way to build and burn a fire. First, you place your largest pieces of wood on the bottom of the fireplace—ends at front and back. Next, place 4-5 smaller levels of wood on top until that stack fills about ½ the height of the fireplace. The kindling will be on top, and can begin as sticks, and end with wood shavings and crumbled bits of paper. The entire stack should stay below the fireplace opening so that air circulates properly. As the smaller fuel burns, it falls below, igniting the wood on the next level. Building your fire in this way allows for a cleaner, hotter burn that uses less fuel. In addition, the chimney that vents the smoke better than you’ve ever seen.

Keep it Clean

Your wood burning insert works as well as it’s cared for. Professionally instal and regularly service your insert to ensure the safety and efficiency of the system. The Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommend regular chimney maintenance in order to burn a safe and efficient fire this winter. Chimney sweeps keep the flue clear of debris, soot, and creosote. Chimney inspections assess the safety and function of the system so that your fire will be beautiful, warm, and easy on the environment.

The best way to build a fire in your wood burning insert is to consistently use the insert properly. Do not burn trash, clothes, or anything else that is not wood. Keep the doors closed when a fire is burning. Utilize the vents and flue damper to allow air to circulate your fire. While you’re at it, make sure you brush up on fireplace safety and discuss fireplace safety with your family. Find a trusted chimney sweep company for all of your comprehensive chimney needs, and call The Cozy Flame for all of your hearth needs.

Call The Cozy Flame at 203-283-4459 today!



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