Useful Information about Wood Burners, Chimney Safety, and the Environment

Wood Burners

You might be wondering what all the fuss is about - why are so many people installing wood and multi-fuel stoves? A recent report from Zoopla tried to explain why so many people are installing wood burners. It noted that the environmental benefits are quite clear, but they are not the only reasons for installing a stove:

  • Estate agents have noticed the increased popularity of wood-burning stoves when conducting viewings, "People love them. They make a nice homely feel, and buyers are often aware that they’re cost effective and better for the environment. They probably don’t add anything to the value of a property, but they make it more desirable and saleable."
  • Efficiency – Compared to an open fire, which operates at 20-25% efficiency, a stove burns at more than 80% efficiency. Unlike an open fire, a stove does not suck the warm air out of a room.
  • Carbon Neutral – Wood is the original carbon-neutral fuel. The carbon dioxide that it produces is absorbed by the trees as they grow.
  • Clean Burners – In terms of smoke and ash stoves, wood burners are very clean and require a vastly reduced amount of cleaning compared to open hearth fires.

Chimney Safety

Premier Stove Installations emphasises the importance of regular maintenance of your chimney and burning equipment. A recent report in Lincolnshire Today points out that chimney fires in the region are on the increase. The report goes on to say that Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue are urging people to have their chimneys swept by a registered sweep in order to reduce or remove the build-up of flammable creosote.

Debbie Robinson, Deputy Community Fire Safety Manager, explains, “Open fires and log burners are widely used in Lincolnshire, but without proper maintenance, a chimney can become dangerous.” You should ensure you have your chimney swept at these intervals, depending on the fuel that you burn:

  • Smokeless Coals – At Least Once a Year
  • Wood – Once a Season When in Use
  • Bituminous Coal – Twice a Year
  • Oil – Once a Year
  • Gas – Once a Year

Of course, there is more to chimney safety than simply chimney fires, as pointed out by the National Association of Chimney Engineers. Where a chimney is defective, or has been installed incorrectly, carbon monoxide poisoning can be an issue. The NACE says, “It is imperative that your chimney is in optimal working order at all times". It is vital that a carbon monoxide detector is fitted to the room where the stove is located and that you have the chimney and burning equipment inspected and maintained at regular intervals.

The Environment

Premier Stove Installations is conscious of the need to provide environmentally sustainable heating. We strive to provide the necessary information to allow our customers to make informed decisions on the best stove for their needs while considering the environmental impact at all times.

DEFRA and the Forestry Commission have provided information on the use of wood fuel in a report named "Woodfuel Meets the Challenge", which was published in 2006.

Download Full Report

The main points of the report include:

  • Lower carbon emissions produced by wood fuel over fossil fuels.
  • Wood is a sustainable fuel if purchased from reputable suppliers.
  • Despite the initial higher installation cost of wood burners over fossil fuel alternatives, they have a faster payback and lower running costs than other fuels.

For information purposes, we have provided a link to the Scunthorpe Smoke Control Map, which is available in .pdf format.

Contact us now, in Scunthorpe, Lincolnshire, for more useful information about wood-burning stoves, chimneys, and the environment.