Wood Burning Stoves Wood Heating Tips

Wood Burning Stove Information
Wood Heating Tips

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Wood Burning Stoves & Wood Heating Tips

  • Number 1 Tip - Use properly dried and seasoned wood!  This will minimize creosote build up (and resulting chimney fires!) and result in a cleaner burning fire. Many modern high-efficiency stoves are designed to only operate properly if the wood is sufficiently dried. Cut and split wood 1 year in advance of use. Fresh cut logs can have as much as 50% water!

  • Vent your wood stove out a separate chimney. Most insurance companies will not cover you if your wood stove shares a chimney with another appliance since a blockage in the chimney will result in emissions to vent out through the second appliance.

  • If using a stainless steel double-walled chimney that runs on the exterior of the house, box in the chimney with an insulated box. If the chimney is not protected from extreme cold, back drafting can occur during extremely cold weather.

  • Use less dense woods during the day when you are available to stoke the fire and have a supply of denser slower burning wood with higher BTU value for over night burning. For a table of values of BTU's by species, click here.

  • Keep your wood stove clean; especially the chimney. Clean once per year.

  • Keep your chimney stack installation as straight as possible, and keep it within the interior walls to provide for maximum draft.

  • Purchase an EPA-certified wood stove to ensure it meets standards and the benefits are that it will use less wood, circulate more heat efficiently, and less creosote buildup.

  • Purchase the right size stove for the space to be heated; better to buy a smaller stove and burn it hotter.

  • Burn only seasoned wood; no garbage of any type.

  • Cut logs to fit your burner; split logs to 3-6 inches in diameter.

  • When storing your logs, stack wood loosely; Cover your wood pile, but leave the sides open to the air.

  • If space is available, purchase and store the following year's wood in advance.

  • Replace catalytic combustor and baffles every 1-4 years.

  • Replace gaskets on airtight stove doors every year. On modern damper-less stoves, a leaking gasket will not allow you to damper the fire properly.

  • Replace broken firebricks.

  • When starting a fire, keep the damper and air inlets open for at least 15 minutes to allow for a hot bed of coals prior to burning large logs.

  • When loading your stove, open the door just a crack a minute or two and allow the fresh air to cause higher draft and reduce back drafting smoke.  Then load your stove.

  • A good fire should give off a small amount of white steam; the darker the smoke, the more pollutants and creosote are produced.

  • If possible, locate your stove near an exterior basement door to minimize the mess in the rest of the house when bringing in wood!

For other chainsaw related information go to:


Chainsaw Safety

Wood Heat Values

Log Splitters

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