Maintaining your wood burning stove

With the burn season right around the corner it is a good idea to inspect your wood burning stove and ensure that it will operate safely and efficiently. Though there is very little that can go wrong with a wood burning stove there are a few items that if taken care of annually will extend the life and enjoyment of you stove exponentially.

Things to check

Check door seals to make sure that they seat properly, if they do not or if they seem worn the gasket can be replaced very inexpensively. Failure to replace a seal that is leaking air can very quickly cause the stove to over fire and cause damage.  Its worth mentioning that unless your stove is cast iron and approved for open door burning NEVER burn the stove with an open door. You might enjoy the snap, crackle and pop but you will overfire and shorten the lifespan of the stove significantly.

 

Check the fire bricks, If any are cracked or crumbling replace them. You don't need to replace all of them, just the ones that show signs of damage. With a few exceptions most stoves use a standard generic size of brick. We sell it as do most hearth retailers so you should never have a problem finding it (or a reason not replace it )

 

Most importantly either get your chimney cleaned or purchase correct chimney cleaning brushes and clean it yourself...top to bottom. Inside the home and outside.   It does not matter if you are an accomplished wood burner and burn the perfect wood at the perfect temperature or a novice still trying to figure out all of the ins and outs of burning wood.  Burning wood creates creosote, creosote causes house fires when it ignites.  Most of todays chimneys are rated to withstand temperatures of 2100 degrees so it is unlikely that a chimney fire would spread and cause a whole home fire...but it is possible and not work risking. In perfect burning conditions with recreational burning a once a year cleaning is all you will probably need. If you are burning constantly or using your fireplace as supplementary or main source heating you should consider cleaning it at least two to three times a year.  We do not offer chimney cleaning services however will be happy to recommend a selection of reliable chimney cleaning companies should you require.

Posted September 3, 2014