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Wood-Burning Stove Maintenance: How to Make Sure Your Stove Lasts

Wood-Burning Stove Maintenance: How to Make Sure Your Stove Lasts

A wood-burning stove is like any piece of engineering: show it lots of TLC and you’ll get the most out of it.

While we might get lots of repeat custom if you decided to wreck your stove, we’d rather you looked after it and gave it a long and happy life.

With that in mind, here are a few tips to keep your stove in tip-top condition.

Empty the ashpan

If hot ashes start to pile up in the ashpan they come into contact with the lower side of the grate. Having the grate sitting in hot ashes can cause it to distort and lose shape.

Empty your ashes every day to avoid these problems.

Clean the glass

Most modern stoves are fitted with an airwash sytstem to keep the glass clean as a vent at the top of the stove glass allows air to flow an dcreated a layer between the glass and the gases prodduced by the stove. If yours isn’t, clean your glass daily with a specialist cleaning product made for use on stoves or by using newspaper dipped in malt vinegar.

Under no circumstances should you use an abrasive product to clean the glass. This will cause permanent damage.

Check for rust

Again, probably not a problem you will encounter with a modern stove, but it’s worth mentioning nonetheless. If you do spot any rust, it’s better to act sooner to nip the problem in the bud.

You can rub the rusted area with wire wool and then reapply stove paint to get your stove looking as good as new.

Clean the baffle / throat plate

The area on and around the baffle plate is a favourite spot for soot and other deposits to gather. This not only makes your stove less efficient by blocking the flue, it is also potentially dangerous. These are flammable materials, after all.

Stop this from happening by cleaning the throat plate once a week.

 Check rope seals

You’ll find your stove has specialist firerope around the door. This heat resistant rope forms a seal around the door to ensure it closes properly and to prevent excess air from getting into the stove.

Over time the rope can become worn or squashed, letting in air and making your stove inefficient. You can check this every month or so, both visually and by trapping a thin piece of paper in the door. If the paper can be pulled out easily, the rope needs to be replaced.

Get chimney swept

Calling upon the services of a chimney sweep at least twice-a-year is a vital part of your stove maintenance. Failing to do so can lead to a build-up of creosote throughout the system and a subsequent risk of chimney fires.

It also reduces the efficiency of your stove, which brings additional problems.

Leave the door ajar during extended periods of non-use

If you’re not planning to use the stove for the summer or it’s going to be out of use for longer than a few days for any other reason, leave the door slightly open. This allows a flow of air through the system, which helps to stop corrosion.

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