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Burn the Right Fuel

The type of firewood you burn has a lot to do with how efficient your fires are. There are many different types of trees that can be burned, each with their own unique attributes. When it comes to efficiency, the important thing to remember is the difference between seasoned wood & unseasoned wood.

No matter what type of wood you burn, it needs to be seasoned or properly dried. It typically takes about six to nine months for firewood to dry out when stacked properly. The wood should be off the ground, stacked neatly, and covered at the top, to keep rain off. Wood that is properly seasoned is darker in color than green logs, has cracks in the end grain, and has a hollow sound when tossed against another log.

The goal in drying out wood is to achieve a moisture content of less than 20%. Wood moisture meters are available that you can use to test your wood’s moisture content before you burn it.

Learn to Identify a Chimney Fire

There are two different types of chimney fires that are quite easy to tell apart, but both have the ability to cause substantial damage to your chimney and possibly your home.

Free Burning – These are the fires that sound like you have your own freight train or roaring airplane in your chimney. The blaze is loud and unmistakable. Oftentimes dramatic flames or billowing smoke may lap out of your chimney top. Your neighbors or people walking by may be alarmed by the noise and sites from this fire.

Slow Burning – This quieter version of a chimney fire is no less dangerous. You may not even know it has taken place. These undetected fires burn slowly and at high temperatures that can cause more than just structural damage to your chimney, they can easily catch flammable parts of your home on fire as well.

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