6 simple steps to a safe wood stove

July 27, 2015

Wood burning stoves have come a long way in the past few decades. They burn hotter, longer and with a lot less pollution than before. To keep your wood stove burning efficiently try these basic steps.

6 simple steps to a safe wood stove

1. Cleanliness is next to godliness

Clean out those ashes regularly.  Excessive ash buildup reduces the quality of the burn. Every few days put on your fireproof gloves and use a long-handled scoop. Place the cool ashes in a fireproof container with a tight lid and dispose of properly.

2. Don't ignore the the catalytic converter

Regular inspection of the catalytic converter is a high priority. If it appears worn or damaged, replace it. This tip is for older models as many newer models burn efficiently enough they don't need a catalytic converter.

3. A clean stove is a happy stove

Keep the stove's surface clean after every use. You can find stove polish or stove paint at your local hardware store to touch up and restore its shine.  Make sure you use only products intended for wood stoves though.

4. Gasket inspections

Replace worn gaskets promptly. Most wood stoves have gaskets around the doors and other moving parts. As the gaskets wear, they reduce the efficiency of the stove. A wood stove dealer can order replacements for you.

5. Up the flue

This one should be left to the professionals. Have a chimney pro examine and clean the flue at least once a year. The pro should also disassemble, inspect and clean the stove pipe.  If you are using the stove every day you may want to make these inspections more frequent.

6. Do it yourself stovepipe cleaning

  • Cover your floor and furniture with plastic, because this will get messy.
  • Remove all the screws and set them aside. Put on heavy gloves, and pull the pieces of pipe apart.
  • Keep the pieces in order.
  • Clean the insides of the pipe with a pipe brush made for your pipe size.
  • If you need to replace any pipe pieces, use stovepipe recommended by the manufacturer of your wood stove and follow manufacturer directions.

A wood stove can save you money and improve your home's efficiency. Taking these steps now to ensure it's working properly will cause you less headaches later.

The material on this website is provided for entertainment, informational and educational purposes only and should never act as a substitute to the advice of an applicable professional. Use of this website is subject to our terms of use and privacy policy.
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