THE DANGERS OF BURNING UNSEASONED WOOD
Unseasoned wood contains a high percentage of water. Usually a moisture content of 25% and...

THE DANGERS OF BURNING UNSEASONED WOOD

Unseasoned wood contains a high percentage of water. Usually a moisture content of 25% and above is considered unseasoned. When a tree is cut the wood contains water. Overtime the wood that once had a high moisture content dries, this can take up to two years, and this process is called seasoning. Seasoning is essential for wood to burn effectively on a fire.

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There can be significant dangers from burning  unseasoned wood on a fire.
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If you burn unseasoned wood the water vapour, when combined with other gases and particles go up  the chimney, and unless the chimney is kept warm, the condensation creates a  creosote substance, which when hardens forms tar in the chimney.

This  tar can also seep into the brickwork if a chimney is unlined.
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A chimney fire can be a real risk if excessive tar forms in a chimney. The fire can start due to the accumulation of residue, which can restrict the flow of gases trying to escape up to the outside atmosphere.
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If you have a metal liner in your chimney the excessive condensation can also cause corrosion, which can cause liner failure.


Chimney Sweeping:

Having your chimney swept at least twice a year is essential to ensure it stays clean, and the chances of a chimney fire are reduced. Burning seasoned wood will not stop a chimney from collecting residue. However, it will certainly reduce congestion, which will provide peace of mind between chimney sweeps, and also make a lot less mess when sweeping time arrives.

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The Rules of Burning Solid Fuel:
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1. Allow adequate ventilation – Check the stove requirements and ensure existing vents are not covered or blocked.
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2. Sweeping and cleaning – The ash pan on a multi-fuel stove should be cleaned each day of use. Boiler flues once a week. The throat plate of a fire should be removed and cleaned fully every month when in use. As mentioned the chimney should be swept at least twice a year.
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3. The right fuel – Only use well seasoned wood with a moisture content below 25%. If you are using coal ensure the coal is from an approved coal merchant. You will be able to find an approved coal merchant from the Coal Merchants Federation.
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You can learn more about the types of wood to burn on your stove here.

 

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