Kamloops Chimney Services Page 4
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                                          BURN IT SMART WOOD BURNING TIPS

    Wood is generally one of the safest and cleanest fuels for the environment,although if it is abused or installed incorrectly       problems will result in nasty chimney fires or large amount of tar drooling down the chimney.

                                                                  HOW TO BURN EFFECIENTLY:
     It is important to burn at a moderate Temperature to create a efficient burn, to cold of fire makes the wood not able to fully       burn resulting in heavy smelly deposits.At the other end of the scale it can also burn to hot, resulting in melting of the             appliance. It is good to start with a hot fire, leave the door open a crack {1/4in} for the first fifteen minutes but do not leave       unattended. Then once the fire is going strong and hot, leave the damper wide open for about an hour, after that adjust              damper according to heat needed. Every time wood is loaded open the damper for a few minutes till core Temperature is         achieved and clean efficient burn will be achieved. Different wood will require different amounts of time to come up to             Temperature. Highly recommended is a stove thermometer to indicate the "clean burn zone", find the hottest part on the          stove(usually by the exit point to chim) to get best indication.

                        - Temperatures constantly  below 200Fdegree clogs the chim, & above 400F degree damages the stove 
                        - Once  a day bring the Temperature up to 400F+  for a hour to maintain a clean chimney. Don't do on dirty 
                        - During warmer weather in spring and fall do not smolder appliance all day, fire up appliance once at 
                          moderate/high temp then let it go out when warm enough using alternate heat to maintain temp.
                        - If the glass is dirty your not burning hot enough!!   Remember to burn it very hot at the beginning.
                        - During warmer temperatures above freezing some chimneys may not draw properly due to design/ location 

Moisture,think of wood like a rag, when it is put in water it soaks up water even when it is dead, in the fall, winter, spring there is heavy rain and snow melting. Ever dump a bunch of water in your gas tank??Doesn't  burn well because the water is actually trying to put out the fire.Take notice to the color of the smoke filling the province and cities, in the fall is is quite light and gray, as more moister is soaked into the wood  and temperatures drop the smoke gets thicker and darker, till spring when all the snow melts, the moisture content is at it's highest and temperatures are still low you will notice the smoke is a dark blue, this is at it's worst point, spewing tons of half burnt wood in it's chemical form into the air. Wood in it's chemical form is made up of poisonous chemicals similar to tobacco, yet try lighting a little cigarette in a public building. 

   Temperature is also a determining factor  as the wood drops in Temperature the less efficient burn that occurs. the below zero freezes the water that is soaked up making the process even worse. the combustion process of any fuel is effected by Temperature, if you burn wood, try the difference of wood that has been sitting in the house for a day to wood that is brought in from out side and burnt directly. Amount of heat and smoke produced vary's quite a bit,,,,just look at the smoke difference exiting your chimney.

     Very important to have a properly matched appliance and chimney, the inside diameter plus length of the chimney will              directly result in the performance and efficiency of the appliance.  Calculations: diameter X length +/- airpresure +       
     appliance=   required

  ~~ Loose fit pipes is the most common reason for chimney fires, any place air can enter into the chimney it creates a hot           spot. Single wall stove pipe poorly manufactured and installed result in fire after fire. Foil tape is available to seal seams 
    on poorly manufactured or installed pipes and is highly recommended. If you have repeated chimney fires look for hot  
    spots or where air can enter either the door gasket or stove pipes.
  ~~ Air supply is key in wood burning and is often supplied from the sides and front of the ash box. It is important to clean              ashes out of the appliance weekly to ensure a proper and efficient burn. To much air causes "overfireing",damaging
        the appliance and cause chimney fires if door/window gasket is damaged/leaking.

                                                                                          TYPES OF WOOD:
     All wood is NOT created equal,some wood is suited better than others for burning in my experience.

       BEST:           fir        - burns hot and complete very little ash                    apple   - very hard wood burns clean and long
                            birch   - hard wood burns clean and long,*remove bark*     oak    - very  very clean burning

       OK  :            jackpine             - cross between fur and pine                   spruce   - buns hot and  clean but to fast
                            lodgepole pine  - burns good BUT allot of tar, MUST use  "creosote conditioner" almost daily
                            beetlekill pine - beetle sucks the sap of tree leaving a dry husk, no more heavy tar build up, great for burning

     WORST:     cedar   - terrible tar build up, never use,burns to fast    birtchbark  -worse tar than cedar, not even for kindling
                           garbage - should be a law against it, bad for environment,  plastic and glossy papers release PCB's &heavy                                               metals into the atmosphere and sticking to the chimney after it cools a down draft may result bring
                                           arm full fumes back in the home. Put the dam garbage in the landfill, It's much safer in one spot as 
                                          a solid rather than releasing it into atmosphere in chemical form contaminating all living organism. 

                                                                                 CREASOOTE CONDITIONER:
    A product when put on the "hot coals"of a fire will convert the tar buildup stuck in the chimney to a "crispy critter creosote"   that will clean out with the next sweep. Use daily if  tar build up is high, and bi-weekly to maintain a clean chimney in non-EPA appliances. The "chimney cleaning log" dose not clean, but rather converts tar to crispy critters as it is a high concentration of conditioner and works well on heavy tar deposits.A must for older appliances and depending on wood type & burning  temperatures, may be required on newer  EPA appliances. Available in forms of  powder, liquid, & also  in the form of chimney cleaning log, all at local hardware stores. Very important to use on hot coals/ambers only, do not use in the beginning, or when the fire is blazing as it will not work. Wait until the fire burns down to hot coals, then let it fester for a while to penetrate the sticky tar. To fast a burn, it will be shot out the chimney, to cold results in the tar is no being soft enough to activate the chemical reaction.