It is imperative when designing a fireplace that the ratio between the size of the fireplace opening and that of the flue are in relation to each other. We can carry out fireplace sizing and smoke testing as required.
Best Practices for Optimum Fireplace Performance
While your fireplace is supposed to offer you comfort and be a thing of beauty in your home, it can become a nuisance if issues arise with the chimney or any other part of it. What’s more, many people fear that the cost of making repairs can be quite expensive. However, this is often not the case. There are a number of good ways in which your chimney’s performance can be enhanced and improved without it costing you an excessive amount of money.
Tips For Great Fireplaces
The following is a list of few tips for different common issues that continue to be a pain to home owners as far as their chimneys are concerned.
Burn seasoned firewood
Don’t burn water! More heat will be generated if the wood is drier. It is advisable that any wood logs you burn have been left to dry out for not less than a year. Water burns off first whenever you burn wood, so it is important you have logs dry for them to give off more heat and take longer to burn.
This will also leave less residue in your fireplace and create less smoke. A residue buildup is likely to raise the chances of fires in the flue.
Even if you’re optimising your efficiency by using high quality seasoned wood, we highly recommend that you have your flue swept regularly. We will be happy to advise you on what burn and what not to burn in your fire to ensure that your fireplace is in perfect performance.
Finding The Right Firewood
The cheapest way to find the right firewood is to find and dry it yourself. One summer is essential and two is preferable. If that’s not possible, or if you’d just prefer not to, then you need to find a good supplier. Accreditation schemes like Woodsure can be of great help here.
Alternatively, you can buy kiln dried logs. This is the most expensive, but easiest route, though there are issues around sustainability that you may want to check out.
Clean your chimney regularly
It is the job of your flue to leave as much warm air in your house as possible and suck the smoke out. However, a flue which does not draw efficiently and leaves some smoke to dawdle in the room is a very common problem.
There are even some cases whereby smoke is locked into a room completely, but in either case it’s worth contacting an expert to inspect, as smoke in the house is a risk to your health.
Whether severe or not, a problem of this nature could mean you have a blockage. If you are using your fireplace after a very long dormant period, then you may find debris has fallen into your chimney or animals taken their nests inside. As such it is important to make sure you get your chimney regularly swept, to leave you with a smoke-free room.
Fireplace design matters
Fireplace design plays an important role in how efficiently your fire burns. Today, many fireplaces and wood burning stoves are designed with efficiency in mind and it is advisable people to make use of these modern designs. People don’t always think about fresh air when they think about keeping warm.
Whether it is because your fireplace is too large or because your room is too small, the smoke can end up collecting in your room if you don’t have enough ventilation. A simple floor or wall vent can help do away with smoke collection in your house, in order to safeguard both your health and fire quality. We would also advise people to open their windows they first light their fire as that helps eliminate initial smoke and smog.
Guard your chimney from debris
The UK is famous for its unpredictable weather patterns. Powerful winds can cause draught problems. If it’s becoming a recurring problem it can help by fitting an anti-down draft terminal or a guard to the chimney pot. These help in restricting the draughts and birds and keep rain out to help prevent falling debris.
Whatever the reason you’ll want to put a stop to the chills and drafts – it can put you in great discomfort and cost you more in energy bills at a moment’s notice hence is worth solving.
It is always advisable to call in the professionals if you are not sure what the problem or you have any further questions about your chimney.