How To Maintain A Wood Stove

Wood stoves are an alternative type of heaters that make use of wood as a fuel source. This provides a wonderful smoky smell within your home, and ensures you a sense of heat even in the event of blackout or another emergency. However, as they are burning large amounts of organic matter directly inside of themselves, wood stoves require a great deal of maintenance and heating repair to ensure that they continue working efficiently.

Choosing the Right Fuel Source

Firewood, when burnt, creates ash, soot and creosote, which over time will need to be cleaned out of the stove and chimney (see below). However, burning other substances, such as artificially treated logs, trash, organic matter that isn't wood and driftwood, just to name a few, can release other substances that can cause all sorts of problems for your stove in terms of creosote buildup and even release gases which can be a serious health hazard. In order to ensure that your wood stove is operating at peak efficiency, you should only use mature, dried out logs and firewood as a fuel source. Green and wet wood will give up a great deal of moisture and reduce your overall heat levels in your home, while non-wood fuels can pose a serious safety risk.

General Cleaning and Maintenance

You should take care to clean the ashes out of your fireplace every few days, depending on how often and how much you use your stove. Shoveling the ash out of your stove and using it in a compost pile or as fertilizer for your garden once the warm weather rolls back around is a good way to be sustainable about your wood use. You'll also want to regularly check the air intake vents of your stove, and keep them clear of any dust and other debris which may clog them up. This ensures that the maximum amount of air is reaching your stove, increasing the efficiency at which it burns wood and throws heat.


Finally, the most important thing that you can do to keep your wood stove in good working order is to regularly contact a professional chimney sweep to examine your stove and chimney. The aforementioned creosote that results from burning a large amount of wood can build up in your chimney and stove. Large amounts of creosote pose a safety hazard, as they can ignite and cause a fire within your chimney which can quickly spread to the rest of your home. A professional contractor will be able to safely clear out any built up creosote in your system so that your wood stove can continue working as intended.