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  • Writer's pictureAlastair at amber chimney sweeps

Burnright campaign

Updated: Apr 6

by Alastair at amber chimney sweeps - click here to visit main website.

Real fireplaces are now incredibly popular in the UK. Many of homeowners enjoy the appeal and comfort of a wood burning stove or open fire, and for some people it has once again become an important part of home heating.

But if you don’t know how to use your fire correctly, you could not only be wasting money, but damaging your appliance, your chimney and polluting the environment.

The Burnright campaign produces information to the consumer on cleaner domestic burning to help reduce air pollutants by correct use of solid fuel appliances.

By following the few simple steps in the getting it right video you can

save money - reduce the risk of a chimney fire - help reduce air pollution.

Generally, seasoned wood is the most commonly used fuel and is widely available. However, it’s important to use only dry wood, which should contain 20% moisture or less.

Logs should not be too large – 5 inches wide (125mm) will give the best result. Using large logs to make the fire last longer will usually result in a lower burning temperature, more wasted fuel and more pollution.

If you are buying for immediate use then look out for the ‘Ready to Burn’ logo or buy from a trusted local source for reassurance that the logs are dry enough to burn.

A quick guide to measuring the moisture content of your wood can be found below.

Think of a piece of wood as a block of energy. In order for that energy to be turned into heat, it must be burned at the correct temperature. If it isn’t burned at the correct temperature, it will smoulder. This will result in very little/no heat being emitted. So it’s not only a waste of your money, but it also pollutes the environment.

A useful guide to help you get the best out of your wood burning stove.

In order to get the best out of your appliance, it should be swept and serviced regularly. There are a number of reasons for this:

  • Removes soot deposits and other obstructions to allow a safe passage for dangerous gases to leave your property safely and efficiently.

  • Advise on the condition of your chimney and any possible actions which need to be undertaken.

  • Ensures that everything on the appliance itself is in good order and nothing is inhibiting its performance.

Far from being a thing of the past, getting your chimney swept regularly is essential. Some believe that if you have a liner, your chimney does not need to be swept. That is incorrect. In fact, every chimney which is in use for solid fuel, gas or oil combustion should be swept regularly.


Likewise, almost every appliance will need servicing at some point. Failing to do this will inhibit your appliance’s capacity and could also see you wasting money.

For instance, replacing rope seals on the door of your stove will ensure that the fuel inside burns at the correct temperature. Damaged or missing rope seals will let in excess air, causing the fire to burn out of control. Not only is this inefficient, but it will end up costing you more as you will have to refuel more often.

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