How to use your wood burning stove safely
There's nothing better than warming your room with a wood burning stove. If you want that unique, homely, old-fashioned feel there's no better way to get it than with a classic wood burner!
However, there are some hazards that can come with having and using a wood burning stove in your home, and therefore it is important to use them as safely as possible to minimize any risk and get the maximum benefit from them! Here's what you need to know.
Installation and inspection
Before you even start using your wood burning stove, it needs to have been installed by a qualified professional and properly tested. You should never use a wood burning stove without knowing when it was last inspected. If you moved into a property and have no information about when the stove was last inspected, it's a wise idea to get it inspected yourself, just for your own peace of mind.
Of course, wood burning stoves present a fire hazard so it's important to be sure it's installed in a suitable location. Sensible precautions include placing it on a fire-resistant surface like tiles, and ensuring a heat shield is installed behind or beside the stove as necessary. Remember the heat can be quite ferocious, and everything from curtains to your clothes can be at risk.
Ensure proper ventilation
A somewhat hidden danger of wood burning stoves is carbon monoxide. As the wood burns, it releases carbon monoxide, which can cause carbon monoxide poisoning if inhaled. This is, obviously, a very serious consideration when you're installing and using your wood burner. Be sure there is proper ventilation, such as a chimney or flue, to allow the carbon monoxide to flow out safely.
Carbon monoxide detectors should be installed throughout your property, as carbon monoxide is tasteless, colourless, and odourless so you won't notice it yourself.
Proper protective equipment
Appropriate safety equipment should be on hand at all times, just in case. When you're fuelling the fire of the stove it's best to have a pair of high-grade heat resistant gloves and be in the habit of using them. Even things in proximity to your stove, such as ornaments and fire utensils, can become hot enough to burn you. So be very careful to keep space around your stove clear.
You should also make sure you have access to a fire extinguisher, smoke detectors, and fire blankets. The odds of you needing these are very slim, but if you do one day you'll be glad you have them. It's also good practice to understand how you should cope with a burn - it's very easy to unintentionally aggravate a burn, so make sure you understand the steps required for treatment.
And finally… The most important tip of all!
The most important tip when using a wood burning stove is to pay attention to it. If children are around make sure they don't come near, be sure you always use heat-resistant protection for your hands, and have a clear plan on what to do if the fire gets out of control!
- Stovesupermarket Admin