Hardwood forest

Stove Advice

Share your hot tips

Please share your experience of using WOOF! products. Our other customers are always interested to know what type of stove you have, how long you have had it, how often you use it and which types of WOOF! wood fuel you use. Any special tips and tricks you use to run your stove would be appreciated.


William Lloyd, WOOF! Wood Fuel
16 Sep 2009, 23:24
I have an Esse Ironheart and a Woodwarm stove. If the stoves have been out for a while or it has been raining and I know the chimney will be cold and damp I always try to warm the flue first by screwing up newspaper and burning it, usually a whole broadsheet. This helps the chimney to draw and makes lighting easier.

Before I open the stove door to reload with logs I always open the air controls to send any smoke up the chimney, then I always just open the door a jar for a second before fully opening it. Otherwise I get smoke in the room.

Last year I bought a flue pipe thermometer, its magnetised and sticks to the flue pipe. It shows the ideal temperature for the flue gasses. If your stove gasses are under about 200C then you are likely to make dangerous creosote in the chimney. Over 400C you are sending heat up the chimney and wasting fuel. A very useful device and slightly addictive.
E. Mallinson
22 Oct 2009, 19:45
Great website, will try some fuel at some point(fortunately have a huge stock at present)
We run a Moderator 10kw waste wood boiler which heats our home and hot water easily. it requires feeding about 3 times a day and generally will stay in through the night. Brilliant!
We burn a sawn up pallet a day.
Steve Power
16 Nov 2009, 22:46
We have had our Scan 4-5 multi fuel stove from Sandpits Heating Centre in Curry Rivel for just over a year now. At first we were burning nets of logs from garage forecourts (lack of storage space at home) until we discovered Woof! I'll never burn the 'wet' logs again that sooted up the glass and gave little heat in comparison to Woof!'s kiln dried logs. The other great thing about Woof! is the range of things to burn. We have tried Heat Logs, Heatabix, Leaf logs, Kiln Dried Logs, Bark Logs, Rastafire and Blazers. Next up is Straw Logs!

It's great fun burning all this stuff and trying different combinations to get the best fire. My personal favourite at the moment is a structured (ordered, criss-cross layers of kiln dried kindling, about 11 sticks) 2 Zip Natural Fire Lighters or 2 Flamers, 2 Heat Logs or Heatabix on top of the kindling and a good sized Kiln Dried Log on top of that. The Heat Logs/Heatabix provide a good, hot, slow burning base to the fire with good flame from the log. Very little smoke and a lot of heat! I keep this topped up with another Kiln Dried Log and then a Blazer or Bark Log for an overnight burn.

Alternatively if the fire has died down I might throw on a Leaf Log, which catches light really quickly.

Happy burning!
David Nightingale
22 Jan 2010, 20:08
Use a small wood burner. During the day, it is fed a diet of Blazers, with the burner air inlets throttled back, after intially getting them going. Blazers, the name says it all. Usually breaking a log in two. Just carefully drop one on another only from about half a metre hight, at the half way point. This is important because they expand inside the burner. With a small burner, depending upon how the log sits inside, it can expand into the flue pipe blocking the exit for the hot exhaust gases. As it says on the bag, little ash, and what is left over can be used on the garden, ash contains minerals.

Bark logs at night, again breaking the logs up into smaller lengths. They don't burn as hot, but they do keep the fire in overnight. It is rare to have to resort to starting the fire a fresh. Clean out the ash in the morning, which should be done with great care as it can still be very hot. Watch out for hot sparks and coals (fire hazard). Then leave it in the ash tray to cool down most of the day before emptying.

Wood burners are great because the fire is enclosed, and neither the Bark logs or the Blazers pop like ordinary logs can. However one spark, maybe when cleaning out the ash, could get out of control. Always have a fire extinguisher and fire blanket in the house.

On a lighter note: If you have a flat top on your wood burner. Might not work on all wood burners, but a baking cooling wire tray on top, makes a great baked potato stand. Turn the potatoes regularly, beware very hot, use oven gloves. It can take a bit of balancing, or put potatoes in a group, sort of like mobile phones or hand bags at a party! Propping each other up, so all sides have been browned, sometimes a bit carbonised (blackened). If you like spicy, a heaped teaspoon of paprika, about a third of ground chillies, add a drop of cold pressed organic oil, stir and then mix into the potato.

Again ontop of the baking cooling wire tray, it is possible if a bit slow, to heat water using a Crusader mess tin. This mess tin has quite a tight fitting lid so there is less chance of spilling hot boiling water. There may be some leakage onto the top of the burner, it will steam off but might leave a mark. You can also warm soup up in the winter, for a nice cozy fireside snack.

Usual quantites per year are a couple of pallets of blazers and a pallet of Bark logs.

Many thanks to Woof Wood Fuels for their excellent service.

18 Oct 2010, 11:25
Hi Will,

Thanks for this delivery and the pack of bark logs. I have to admit I had my doubts about the bark logs. Particularly as we don't run a stove overnight, I was not sure they would be any use to us. However, after starting our wood burning stove with kindling and burning a few blazers, which quickly heated up, I stuck a bark log on to try. To my astonishment this one log continued to kick out heat, maintaining a nice even warmth, for the rest of the evening. It was still going strong when I went to bed nearly three hours later. Admittedly it is not yet very cold, but I was very impressed. I can now see that the bark logs will work very well alongside the blazers, so I will be putting in another order for a batch of these. But I can see that they will save me money in the long run, because of the long slow burn, so thanks for giving me a chance to try them. One day we might even switch over to some form of wood-fired heating for the whole house, as we don't like having to use oil for the main heating, although I don't think we are quite ready just yet.

Best wishes

Natasha Gowdy
26 Jan 2011, 20:58
Dear Will

Can you give me any advice on pellet stoves (not boilers). We would like to put a small (5-7KW) pellet stove in our large hall to provide space heating.

We are a bit confused on the best stove - some people say buy Austrian, others Italian or Scandanavian

It needs to look fairly good - we like to look of the Ravelli Lisa plus, Extraflame Rosie or Rika como.

We also need a good installer in south west.

Kind regards

20 Feb 2011, 09:35
I have recently moved and the cottage has a Jotul 8 woodburner, unfortunately no manual or advice was left by the previous owner. Can you please tell me what the best wood is for me to burn.

Thank you
Susie Grainger
02 Mar 2011, 22:27
Hi, i have a rayburn nouvelle that heats my water, and 12 radiators throughout a large house. And does the cooking. At the moment i'm using phurnacite at a cost of about 40 a week. I'm starting to think burning banknotes would be a cheaper option. What product/s of yours would work in my system and save me money. I've tried using wood in the rayburn but it doesn.t seem to get as hot. I'm out at work all day so it needs to be something that will stay in all day. I also have an open fire and woodburning stove so if you had something that would work on all 3 that would be great. Any opinions would be greatly appreciated
many thanks
Will Lloyd
10 Mar 2011, 10:15
Hi Susie,
At WOOF!WOODFUEL We do have quite a few customers who have Rayburns and the clear favourite is our Heatabix product mainly I think because the rectangular shape suits the Rayburn firebox.With woodfuel you will be very impressed with heating up times and the kettle will boil really quickly after lighting up. A few years ago Rayburn did do a promotion with Blazers fuel logs (When you bought a new Rayburn you go a pallet of Blazers) Blazers are very good for rapid heat especially on boiler and central heating stoves and will suit your other fires.The National trust even use them to power the boiler of their steam boat,Gondala,on Coniston water. Many of our customers are now using these in combination with Bark logs, because the Bark logs will burn for a long time very slowly, and the Blazers or Heatabix for high heat. I think if you are spending 40.00 per week then our products would work out cheaper and you could use them on all multi fuel and wood burning stoves. Another advantage is the much lower and substantially cleaner ash content of our Fuel logs, and you can use it on the garden.
The most cost effective way to buy the Blazers, Heatabix or Bark logs is by the full pallet and I would be happy to supply mixed pallets. I would suggest starting with a sample order to find out which will work best for your Rayburn as all wood burning appliances have different charateristics,depending on geographical location,the height of the flue and prevailing winds.
I do think you will enjoy the Cleanliness and convinience compared to coal.

Regards Will, 01297 639288
Will Lloyd
10 Mar 2011, 13:24
Jotul is a really good quality stove and the 8 applies to the Kw output. You should be able to download the operating instructions from the Jotul UK website or ask a local stove centre as they will also be able to provide maintenance and spares. In particular I would check the door rope, as the way this seals makes a huge difference to the efficiency and safety of the stove.
In terms of the WOOF! WOODFUEL range, I would suggest Kiln Dried Logs (Hardwood) 35cm if it will take that size. I would also suggest for an 8 Kw stove the Blazers Fuel Logs for fantastic heat and flame. Not to mention ease of use and convenience. Once again if you are wanting to keep the stove in overnight you could use the Bark logs as they burn for up to 10 hours. Some of our customers find that the WOOFERS are a good halfway house and will stay in at night as well. With all Fuel logs or Briquettes you will find there is far less ash (around 1%) than with normal logs. As a guide Kiln Dried Logs at under 20% moisture give around 4.5kw,and most Briquettes will give around 4.8-5kw at less that 10% moisture content. Blazers however are rated at 5.5Kw and great when heating water in boiler models.
After making some cursory checks that the stove has been installed correctly and the chimney has been recently swept. I would suggest making a small fire with kindling and just letting the flue warm up and dry out in case the stove has not been used for a while. This will help with the draw when adding more fuel.

Will of the Woof.
16 Mar 2011, 16:22
I've just been browsing your website with interest.
For 2 years we've been running a big Morso woodburner using 12 and 18 inch logs. It's been a real struggle getting reliable seasoned wood and having just taken delivery of supposedly 18 month old hardwood which is still damp and not burning well I've decided to explore alternatives.
I'm interested in the kiln dried logs and eco fuel logs but can't decide which would be best.
Our aim has been to keen the woodburner ticking over 24 hrs a day during the winter as the main heat source for the home. This winter we'll have used about 4 tons of "seasoned" wood I reckon.
16 Mar 2011, 16:26
Thank you for your enquiry, yours is a familiar story,(You are not alone) and in many ways is also my personal experience of the firewood market.

The Joiners nuts and Heatabix will be too small for your stove (but you might like them for lighting) and it will gobble them up.The Verdo logs are good,and very good for your pocket.The Woofers are not quite as hot as Blazers but slightly out-last them in a medium sized stove, kiln dried logs are very good,and we do sell a 35cm and sometimes a 33cm one, BUT at the tail end of winter even the kiln dried wood is not as good as it can be and I think you might be disappointed.I would recommend waiting to get some kiln dried from August onwards when it will be excellent again,and you will notice the difference.

So at the moment I am suggesting Eco fuel logs,for a big stove like yours I would suggest you start with Blazers fuel Logs, pricewise the way I compare them is that a 1.2m3 bulk bag of Kiln Dried logs weights in at approx. 335kg at say 20% moisture content with a heat output of about 4.5 kw thats hours per Kg.The full pallet of Blazers weights 1080 kg, 5.5 kw and less than 10% moisture content.
I have a big Hunter Herald 14 kw central heating burner and I use blazers and bark logs to keep it going.I put two blazers and one bark log on at a time.
In terms of your other wood you might find that you can get the stove really hot with a few blazers and then get the other logs burning nicely because of the heat from the Blazers and get through the rest of the winter by mixing them.
My suggestion is to start with Blazers and Bark logs as samples,if you like them I think you will find the price on full pallets not too bad compared to Seasoned logs because of the heat benefits and you soon get to like the convenience and ease of use.
16 Mar 2011, 16:28
We've just had a wood burning pizza oven built in our garden and we are struggling to get good, enduring fires going - the newspaper burns out and the wood hardly catches. We've been told not to use firelighters or any other chemical product (since we'll be cooking in the oven). I think part of the problem is our kindling seems damp. Any advice on which of your products are appropriate for wood burning pizza oven? I'm hoping we'll get lots of use out of it so would love to find reliable delivery company
Reply from Will
16 Mar 2011, 16:32
The quick answer is use our kiln dried kindling,our natural fire lighting Tindersticks, and then Heatabix, and then Kiln dried logs and send me some Pizza round afterwards!

I love wood fired pizza ovens,and I think we can provide some help in getting the oven really nice and hot.Obviously I am not sure exactly how yours is designed but most are a refractory dome with an outlet for the chimney just above the door of the stove,some have actual chimneys and some not,I also assume you are lighting the fire in the oven as per normal wood fired ovens.
Being in North West London you might also encounter some smoke control issues but our products should keep you out of trouble.The main overriding principle is that you need ultra dry wood,apart from the fact that it will get hotter more quickly it will also give you a virtually smoke free fire within a few minuets of lighting up.The difference with getting a fire going in a Pizza oven as compared to a Wood burning stove or open fire in a house is that there tends to be very little draw from a chimney.So you need to start a very small fire and build it up as it burns,the hotter it gets the more efficient and hotter the fire will be,the hotter it is, the more it can burn and so on.If the fire is Smokey it tends to mean over fuelling in the early stages.

I would use some a Tinderstick to light a handfull of Kiln dried kindling to start with,once that is burning nicely I would add another handfull of kindling as required and even another one so it is burning nicely with a small bed of coals on the floor of the oven.I would then add some small kiln dried logs to the fire just one or two and make sure they are really burning before adding more.You could at this stage also use our Heatabix product as this is easy lighting just one or two at a time,then when nice and hot add the kiln dried logs.

During the lighting up process the inside of the dome will blacken but once up to temperature all the soot will burn off and it will be fantastically clean,as a rule of thumb you are then ready to cook.Just to slightly contradict myself,once up to temperature and you have pushed the fire back you could roll in some of our Joiners Nuts as they are pure Oak and will give a nice Smokey aroma to meat and fish dishes.

16 Mar 2011, 16:35
Thank you so much for your reply! I needed all of that advice. I would like to order everything you mentioned. We feel so pathetic not being able to light a proper fire!
09 May 2011, 21:38
we are about to have a norpias bergen fitted can you advise me on the best fuel to use. it is not our main source of heat but we intend to turn off the gas when ever possible in the winter, any advise would be gratefully received.
Will Lloyd
10 May 2011, 10:16
Hi Melvyn,
Norpeis is a Norwegian company and relatively new maker of stoves having been established in 1984. The Bergen is a 5 kw stove with nice big glass viewing area and is highly efficient with all the modern attributes required for a clean burning stove.
In terms of fuel it is a pure Wood Burner so will have a flat floor, no grate and only Burnswood. I think the Bergen is rated by DEFRA for use in smoke control areas.

I would suggest in the first instance some kiln dried logs; they should be all Hardwood, and perhaps a mix of Ash, Beech. I would also suggest a look at the WOOF! Eco Fuel logs range, perhaps starting off with Blazers Fuel logs, and some Joiners Nuts to get the fire going. The great advantage of Eco Fuels is consistency in that they are always less than 10% moisture content and give less ash and more heat. The higher burn leaves fewer residues in the chimney and you burn less wood for more heat.
As with any new stove you might find it takes a few small fires to burn of all the factory processes and that the room should be well ventilated as it can be a bit smelly.
I have found that many modern stoves with secondary burn need the fire box to get really hot before they start to operate correctly, as they are designed to inject hot air back into the fire box to re-burn the gases, and this is heated by the fire. There also seems to be a cultural difference between our attitude to wood burning and that of the Scandinavian countrys in that we traditionally expect to burn long and slow, but you might find it works better burning at a higher rate for shorter periods of time.
I hope this help and look forward to hearing from you soon.

Ivan Dawson
12 Sep 2011, 19:25
We have dunsley heat smokeles multi-fuel stove with back boiler which we have been burning kiln dried logs on but would like to change to the eco-logs, could you advise which would be the best and which would stay the night as at present we have to use smokeless coal at night as logs dont last Thanks Ivan
Jon Hindle
03 Oct 2011, 14:09
We do not have a central heating system but rely on 2 stoves:
(A) Jotul 3kw wood-burner; used occasionally spring and autumn as a 'top-up' heat source
(B) Villager 'Bayswater' 8kw multifuel burner. This stove is lit permanently November-March as primary heat source. We previously used high quality anthracite as fuel.

We're looking at alternative fuel sources and would be grateful if you could advise which of your products would be most suitable for each stove. Also, any approximate idea on 'consumption rate' for the Villager stove using the recommended product would be very helpful.

19 Oct 2011, 15:19
We have a cheap log burner that we brought back from Turkey complete wıth extra 5ın dıameter bends and straıght sectıons .We have set the burner up ın our lounge here ın Cornwall just the same as ıt was ın Turkey .We cant even try to lıght ıt wıthout fıllıng the house wıth smoke .Draught seems to be cımıng back down the flue pıpe .Any ıdeas .ps.we dont have any kınd of cowl
19 Oct 2011, 16:11
Hi Steve,
Firstly you must get your stove installed by a HETAS registered engineer or have the installation passed by your local building control officer. As it is with smoke coming in to the room this is highly dangerous, and you should cease to use it immediately.Once this is done,a simple tip is to make sure the flue is warm and dry otherwise it will not draw properly,I would suggest burning some small amounts of Kiln Dried Kindling for an hour or so then just a very small fire with some of our Hotties Heat Logs. The smoke is also caused by wet wood not combusting properly.Atmospheric weather conditions such as low pressure can also cause even the best fires to be problematic.
28 Oct 2011, 20:05
we have occasional problems getting the draw up the chimney before smoke starts pouring into the sitting room. is it the type of newspaper we use? once the draw is going its perfect. (we have an external metal chimney)
01 Nov 2011, 08:25
I would have thought it very unlikely that it is the type of newspaper you are using, although it is tempting to make a witty (not) comment about the political affiliations of said newspapers and their affect upon the chimney.
The most likely cause is that being and external chimney and I assume metal, that in common with all solid fuel flues, until it is sufficiently warm it will not draw properly. The smoke is probably worst when the fire creates a dew point in the flue and the warm gases rising from the fire condense on the metal and produce water vapour, this in effect causes a temporary blockage and the smoke comes back down in to the room.
There are a number of ways to combat this but the simplest is to just start a really small fire with just screwed up balls of news paper, then just one or two pieces of Kiln dried Kindling which will burn without smoking, then some very dry wood fuel ,like an Eco fuel log. Hotties Heat Logs would be good as they are very low in moisture at 5%.
The other way is to try and keep the chimney warm all the time, this is where our Shredded Heat Bark logs come in, they will gently glow away for up to 10 hours just keeping the stove and most importantly the flue warm.
It might be worth signing up to our free guide how to get more “Heat happiness comfort and joy from your stove” on the Woof wood fuel home page.
03 Nov 2011, 19:58
I have trouble with my multi-fuel Merlin stove as i cant seem to stop the glass going black. I am burning kiln dried wood specifically to stop this but it is still happening. I now think it must be the way i am setting the fire. Is there a sequence i could try to see if i can keep my glass clean? it does have an airwash system but in face the worst of the black on the glass is at the top!
many thanks for any help you can give
Will Lloyd
04 Nov 2011, 09:46
Hi Steve and Maxine,
I am not familiar with MERLIN stoves and I would suggest contacting them directly. It is also worth just checking how
dry the kiln dried logs are and that they are Hardwood Ash and Beech,as Oak can give problems when lighting.

The best tips I can give is to clean the glass so you can check the results and then try this. Most stove glass blackening is caused by the fuel (but
not in your case as you are using Kiln Dried Logs) or the stove not being sufficiently hot before reducing the air supply. Try a very low fire for
quite some time with balls of newspaper and small pieces of Kiln dried kindling,then add just one small kiln dried log,and do not add another one until it has at least half burned away.Just do this to slowly build up the fire without over loading the fire and keeping the air vents open.Once you have a nice even fire established with hot embers spread across the grate add
again only one or two logs and ensure they are burning well with flames
before attempting to reduce the air supply to control the rate of burn.

You may find that Wood briquettes give better results as they are even drier
at around 5-10% moisture content.

I would suggest trying to light the stove using our Certainly Wood Kiln Dried logs or Hotties Heat logs.We also have a new product called Firemagic (on the web site soon) that is a brilliant new fire starter without the need
for fire lighters or kindling.

I hope this helps,please let me know how you get on it helps with our
knowledge base.

I would also suggest signing up for our free guide "Get more heat happiness
comfort and joy from your stove" on the WOOF home page.

Best wishes Will.
Chris Caudwell
13 Nov 2011, 17:28

I was told by the guy who fitted my wood burning stove that I should not burn paper briquettes because the newsprint will damage the chimney liner.

Is there any truth in this?


13 Nov 2011, 19:17
Truth be told I have absolutely no idea. I have never really
thought about this before,I assume we are talking about the paper briquettes
you make by soaking the newspaper and then squashing in to blocks.It is hard
to imagine there is sufficient acid residue in the newsprint to damage a
good quality stainless steel chimney flue liner.Might be worth contacting
the flue supplier if your really concerned.
I should of course mention some of the many excellent wood based super dry
wood briquettes,heat logs and eco fuels we supply which are excellent in a
modern wood stove. Verdo logs for the budget conscious consumer, Hotties
heat logs for the smaller stove,Blazers fuel logs for the ultimate in
heat,great for large stoves and back boilers and finally our two own brand
products Heatabix and Shredded Heat the overnighter.There is as i understand it a theoretical possibility of damaging the stove and liner when burning wood and coal together,and I would advise avoiding that.

Thanks for the question. I would be interested to know what the supplier
says you could try Specflue
Robert Hobson
24 Nov 2011, 14:42
Hi we have a Lilyking Multifuel Iron Stove with back boiler and this will be our first winter using the stove. Could you recommend the fuel please? At the moment we are using the compressed paper (which is good), seasoned logs and wood cuts from my brother in laws factory but I would like to know which solution you sell/recommend?

Many thanks
julie fisher
06 Dec 2011, 14:02

Can you tell me the best over night burner.
You have 2 on line, which one burns longer.
Will Lloyd
07 Dec 2011, 10:46
I would say the Shredded Heat bark logs are the best quality and longest burning of the two.The aptly named "Wood Briquettes" are very good for full high heat and also can do some overnight burning if required.
The "wood briquettes" are also one of the few briquettes I have found that perform as well on an open fire as in a stove.
12 Dec 2011, 10:34
We have recently purchased a loveholme multi-stove 5kw and we burn well-seasoned wood, but we have to top it up every hour. The room for logs seems to be quite small, although I’m not sure as we never had a multi-stove before. The only way we can get a burn overnight is by using smokeless coal and that seems to generate too much ash for the pan. I do like to see a flame, but then on cold nights heat has to be more important.
I love the fact you offer sample bags, which products do you recommend that I should give a try?
Will o' the Woof
12 Dec 2011, 10:50
Hi Victoria,
Slender, sleek, with Danish styling: the Løvenholm makes a great centrepiece for any room. With it’s huge glass window, this stove provides a stunning display of dancing flames.Makes me sound like Bruno Tonioli!
As this is a DEFRA approved stove you wil have trouble keeping it going at night with wood.
I would reccomend you try our Shredded Heat Bark logs which will burn for up to ten hours in most stoves,and or you could try our "Wood Briquettes" product that are a slightly budget version of the Bark logs, they will leave more ash but are great in full multi fuel stover and open fires.
13 Dec 2011, 15:58
How do I keep my wood burner (Clearview Vision 500 with back boiler) from gobbling up the logs? I understand that you should keep the temperature around 400 F to ensure clean burning but this seems to use up about 1 or two logs every hour. If I slide in the airwash knob and close the damper then the temperature goes down to around 200F if I don't keep putting logs on. We need to use the burner as a heat source during the day/evening and eventually would like to run it overnight as we have a very cold kitchen. Can you help as, at the moment, the logs are costing almost as much as using the oil!!
Thanks for any advice.
15 Dec 2011, 20:52

Thank you for such a quick response. I ordered some of your sample packs late Monday night, because of your quick response to my post on here. I couldn’t believe it as they arrived on Wednesday. We put one blazer on and WOW what a lot of heat…it also burnt for two and half hours. One Verdo Wood Briquettes also burnt for around hour and half. They just seem so much easier to use and great to stack in the garage. Thank you for offering the sample packs it’s a great way to try what works for your fire. Using the different types also offers greater versatility when it comes to needing quick heat or long burn. …just come in from watching my son play football and stuck half of a blazer on (axed in half, because it got too hot in the room before)… we have all warmed up lovely…Looking forward to trying a Shredded Heat tonight as they have forecast snow .. I will be coming back when I’ve tried all my samples.
Thanks once again
Louise Jane
15 Dec 2011, 23:06
Hi, this is our first winter in our new home where we have inherited a Coalbrookdale Severn multi fuel stove as our only heat source for our water and 7 radiators. I like the idea of using wood and am currently using briquettes that I purchased elsewhere before finding your site. They are wonderfully convenient but do not burn particularly hot, and struggle to heat the radiators or water above warm. They also don't burn very long, which is a pain when I work shifts and hate the cold! Ideally, I would like hotter days and enough warmth for comfort at night. I am really hoping that you can suggest a solution!
Will from WOOF
15 Dec 2011, 23:55
This is a reply to Anne from 13th Dec,I should just add that any questions etc with out an obvoius answer have been replied to privately.
It is hard to comment on the Clearview 500 as I have never owened one,but I have many many customers with cleatrview's and they are clearly exellent. As a general comment boiler stoves do have their own advantages and equal draw backs and in many ways there are two main schools of thought.One is that they are a big nonsence,they rob the heat from the stove giving it to the water in the boiler and cause firing problems by reducing the temperature of the fire box to the extent of dis-allowing an effiecient burn causing flue and chimney problems. The other side of the coin is that they soak up excess heat in an efficient manner and translate it in to free hot water,making the solid fuel appliance very efficient indeed.I agree with the later provided they are installed and managed correctly.You need to have the flow and return water temperature managed correctly and with a big boiler stove consider a thermal store to balance the load during heavy demand.
For anyone wishing to heat water in ther boiler model stove I would always reccoment using BLAZERS fuel logs as they give huge amounts of heat and therefor masses of hot water. Try them and see the difference.
jennifer oldfield
15 Feb 2012, 20:45
is there anywhere I can try the 10 hour burning fuel on the Isle of man
zoe sandell
03 Mar 2012, 13:56
hi i have a hunter woodburner with back boiler and one with out,
the one with backboiler is running all the time as its the only heat we have and heats our rad's and hotwater at the mo i am buning logs and old pallets from my parents garden centre but they are finishing next year so my free heat will stop
i am looking for something cheap to burn durning the day and to give out pleaty of heat as picked wood burner to heat our house for cheaper opition than oil or gas
i would like something to keep it in all night as logs dont and getting up to cold house with 2 young children not good

on the other fire its just a top up that heats the play room and my bed room above

thanks for your help
John Hall
07 Mar 2012, 21:49
Hi there,

I received a pack of your heatabix & Bark Logs today (very speedy delivey). I started four Heatabix which were really hot then added two Bark Logs....I got around three hours burn out of the Bark logs, slowly turning the draught down. My stove is an Invicta 700 inset stove 14kw, have you any advice to get more burn time out of the logs please?

Regards, John
Will of Woof
08 Mar 2012, 10:06
Hi John, Thank you for your email and I am glad you liked the speedy service.

You will get much nearer to 10 hours burn time with the Shredded heat bark logs and my advice is to try this; when the stove has been lit for a number of hours and has a good bed of embers open the air vents to get them hot and put on a bark log,let it start to burn and flame for about 5 mins and then slowly reduce the air vent untill the flame just about dies down. It should then glow away burning from the inside for a very long time. I hope this helps.
12 Mar 2012, 22:44
Hi all
I've just had a clearview 750 installed and am loving it. There's just something really special about the flames and smell you get out of burning wood.
Interesting to read about different kinds of bricks will definately be looking at these in greater detail when our (rather large) supply of logs runs down a bit.
Was thinking about getting a kettle for it but unsure of the ins & outs would it be safe to use and would a kettle leave a mark on the top of the burner?
Thanks in advance for any help.
Have a nice day Amanda.
15 Mar 2012, 23:07
I have an old, small, Rayburn 4 room heater that I presently burn coal in. Would it be possible to burn wood - either on its own or with coal?
Will o' the Woof
27 Mar 2012, 14:26
Boiler stoves, For any one about to,or having problems with the running of a boiler stove I would seriously reccomend a Laddomat control.

This will save fuel and help to maintain the water temperature in the system.The biggest reason boiler stoves do not perform is because the return temperature of the water is too low. This reduces the heat out put of the fire reduces flue gas temperatures,and causes flue and chimney problems and reduces the life span of the boiler.
Will Lloyd
27 Mar 2012, 14:31
You can burn wood in a Rayburn,but I would be carefull of burning wood and coal together.

Sometimes in rayburn you might need to place a mesh on the grate to stop the ash falling through.

Any of our products such as Blazers fuel logs ,Hotties heat logs and Shredded heat long burning logs will work well.
Will Lloyd
27 Mar 2012, 14:37
Clearview 750,we supply many customers with fuel for Clearview stoves and they are certainly a very good quality stove.The golden rule with any stove is to burn dry wood and you will have no problems.The clearview's work very well with kiln dried logs and depending on the size of stove most briquettes. Hotties are great on the smaller kilowattage and Blazers on bigger stoves and especially boiler stoves. For overnight burning the Shredded Heat bark logs will burn all night long which is why we have nick named them Lionel's.
Will o' the Woof
27 Mar 2012, 14:41
Hunter with back boiler.

Almost any stove with a back boiler I would reccomend Blazers fuel logs for pure heat.

Once the water is up to temperature you can maintain it with long burning bark logs.

Boiler systems can be complex and you have to be aware that without proper controls they can take a large amount of energy (Wood) to get the water hot enough.
29 Mar 2012, 15:57
We we are one day from Ignition on our Charnwood Country 16b boiler stove. The HETAS engineer we were using proposed that we use a H2 Panel.

The panel allows you can run the boilers individually or linked to other sources. When linked the gas boiler will be used only to top up if the wood stove is not generating enough heat. This all happens through a series of valves etc that are connected on the board itself so no fancy plumbing to do.

Will give you a report when it is working

08 Apr 2012, 22:56
please help. We are replacing our old (23 yrs) coal fire with a new multifuel stove. We have a small living room so are there rules on the KW of stove we can fit? For example would it be against regs to install a 7KW? thanks.
09 Apr 2012, 12:56
Hi Helen,
I am not sure about rules but there will be some regulations to comply with when fitting your new stove.The best thing to do is contact a HETAS registered installer to check.

As a guide obviously you need to fit a stove that will comfortably heat the room without getting too hot, as a very basic guide I would say that you need around 1KW per 14 cubic metres, this would assume you can heat the room to a comfortable 21/22 degrees Centigrade with an outdoor temperature of 0 degrees C.

However it is worth then adjusting this depending on factors like how well put together your house is. Is it draughty? My cottage has damp cold walls and I leave the door to the room open so the heat drifts upstairs and dries the washing on the bannister.So technically our stove is slightly oversized. By far the largest market for Wood Burning and Multi- Fuel stoves is around the 5Kw output as this suits most rooms,it is also worth considering the physical size of the stove and the simple fact that a large stove will mean more heat but more fuel,you only get out what you put in!

It is worth checking as well the efficiency of the stove model you are looking at and considering fuel sources as well, as a guide a hardwood seasoned log will give around 3.5 Kw/h/Kg a Kiln Dried Log around 4.5 and a Heat log or Wood Briquette like HOTTIES or BLAZERS anything up to 5.5 Kw/h/Kg. So as well as the stove worth checking what you pay per Kw for the energy you will pay for the fuel rather than relying on volume or weight as a commparison.

And finally the single most important factor is that you need to have dry wood to burn, at best under 20% moisture content, this will make your stove operate efficiently and give less fuel and chimney problems.
At WOOF! we do not recommend mixed burning of Coal and WOOD.

I hope this helps.
09 Apr 2012, 17:15
Hi Will,

thank you for the advice it has been very helpful :)

09 Apr 2012, 20:41
I have a
Coalbrookdale little Wenlock Stove MK1 it's in good overall condition and I'm looking to install in the near future but wanted some advice on the following -
Internally it has no fire bricks or grate or ash pan, I am wanting to use the stove to burn wood so will this be possible to use the stove with the grate/pan and bricks.
I was Hoping to maintain a bed of ash 25-30mm on the floor of the stove ( the floor is formed from several grooved channels).
Will the stove operate if used as indicated above.
All advice welcome.
09 Apr 2012, 22:16
Just noticed my typo above -
It should read :
'will It be possible to use the stove to burn wood without the grate/pan and fire bricks'
Paul Holt
11 Apr 2012, 11:49
Dear Will,

We have recently acquired 2 wood burning stoves and have just ordered some log storage which is on its way to us.

1. Stockton Milner Inset (Cast Iron)

We were give a starter pack with the stove but it seems difficult to get up to temperature. There is no great problem getting the fire started but it is very slow to build up heat; indeed we had two attempts which failed even after persevering for 2 hours!
Our installer came round and, eventually, did manage to get it going well and he was confident that there was nothing wrong with the flue or stove just that the wood, although dry, was not good. It took an hour to get it up to 130C.

This stove is in the breakfast room in our B&B and we wanted to have a good fire going by 8am for our guests to enjoy in the winter.It is therefore important to us that we get the fire going quickly but I'm slightly wary of burning eco logs which may be too hot and damage our stove.

Do you have any recommendations regarding getting the stove up to temperature quickly and also with regard what wood products to burn ?

2. Jotul F3

This is in our lounge and we would expect to use it for several hours during the depths of the winter. This stove lights and warms up reasonably quickly but seems to get through logs at a great rate. This is according to my partner and I don't know whether she is using the controls correctly!

What wood products would you recommend we burn ? Again, we're also concerned about over-heating and damaging the stove.

Many thanks,

11 Apr 2012, 23:58
Hi Paul, I think the first thing to say is that wood briquettes,heat logs or eco fuel logs as they are sometimes called are all safe to use in your stoves. Some like Blazers fuel logs are approved by HETAS the body that regulates the use of all solid fuel appliances.Your concern is quite ironic to me as I spend half my time trying to convince customers that heat logs will burn at all! let alone get to0 hot!
As for your stoves my thoughts are,the Stovax Milner is an exellent product in terms of quality and ease of opperation but it is an inset stove so will not give out heat in quite the same way as a free standing model.
The Jotul is a true classic,you might need to experiment with shutting down the air controls but at the same time it is (I think) a nine Kw stove and you only get out what you put in,so it will consume a fair amount of wood.
I would use Hotties heat logs in the Milner,and light them with fire magic at 7am to be warm by 8am.The Jotul I would use Blazers fuel logs but learn to throttle back the air supply to the stove (not your wife) to conserve fuel once it is all warmed up and been alight for about an hour.
It is worth adding that at this time of year it is worth checking your chimneys for jackdaw activety,as they can quickly block a chimney by droping sticks down it.

I hope this helps Will.
12 Apr 2012, 00:05
Hi Gavin,
Probably not recommended to adapt or modify your stove without consulting a suitably qualified person,but stoves designed specifically to burn wood do just have a flat floor,and you would be quite right to burn on a bed of ash,when burning wood only you should only use the secondary air supply that comes over the top of the fire and not the lower primary air.
I have lined the floor of one of my stoves with some mica board to protect the steel floor.
It also helps to keep the fire in as it insulates the ash bed.
I would reccomend Hotties heat logs for this stove in terms of its physical size and heat out- put.


12 Apr 2012, 08:25
Hi Will
Many thanks for your reply, I'll do a search on the web to find if it's possible to purchase some 'mica' board to protect the floor of the stove. Does this type of material need to be cut to size by the supplier or can I buy an section and cut it my self.
Thanks in advance if you can advise

Will of Woof
12 Apr 2012, 11:08
You can easily cut the board with a panel saw,there are probably other brand names but I have always used "Skamolex" the main distriutor is Opies UK Ltd.

The board is important as it will insulate the firing chamber making a hotter fire and thus making the stove work more efficiently,that is provided you use dry wood based fuels such as Kiln Dried Logs at under 20% moisture content or Heat Logs or Fuel logs such as Blazers Fuel Logs or Hotties Heat logs.
14 Apr 2012, 18:42
Hi Will
Thanks again fo your help/advice, would I require any fire bricks for the internal sides and rear of the stove or would reduce the internal space required too much.
I may also look at pricing a bottom grate but think the mica board on the base of the stove is my best bet.
Thanks if you can advise
16 Apr 2012, 20:53
I have a Rayburn Supreme wood burner with a back boiler connected to a hot water immersion boiler upstairs. When it gets very hot,,, black powdery oily material comes off of the back boiler and contaminates the hot water supply. Any ideas on what is causing this?


01 May 2012, 10:10
Thanks very much for your reply from 11th April. I'll have to get busy ordering a few samples and see how we get on.
03 May 2012, 12:55
It has been a number of weeks but at last we have got there! We did have a problem with the installation of the H2 Panel due to incorrect placement of one of the two components. This led to radiators not warming up for over an hour and a half! For a few days I had a white elephant. We spoke to the suppliers, diagnosed the problem over the phone and now it is sorted. Hot water, hot rads the system works well running only off the wood stove and also in combination with the gas boiler and I have tested it in gas boiler only mode.

The designer of the unit also corrected my thinking on how to maximise the stove so really happy. We use pallets to heat the stove (oh. here's a tip.. if you use pallets, I bought a strong maganet with a small handle - in the morning run the magnet over the ash and you will end up seeing an upside down porcupine lifting out of the ashes! Makes it great to prevent the grate from getting blocked with small nails!) as they are very quick. When we go out we use a blazer which keeps the fire nicely turning over until we get back in. Will try out the hotties to see how quicker they can get to temperature compared to other sources.

It has taken a while to get to understand how the stove works best with pallets, blazers and hotties as well as seasoned wood, bit of trial and error but now feel that we have gone over the learning curve.

Feel almost sad to HAVE to fly out to Orlando tomorrow, as do not need stove when the temperature is in the 30's!

So cant wait for a cold spell next winter and the daughter has decided that she wants to be a cat and loves curling up in front of the fire, wife is over the moon too. And she loves the blazers as has this thing about having extra creepy crawlies in the house! So what can I say, resounding success!
Will Lloyd
03 May 2012, 15:07
It sounds to me like Blazers fuel logs are the
winners, and this is what I would normally recommend for any stove with a
boiler. I am so glad to hear that it is all now working and that you are
still married.
A word about burning pallet wood, it is not always dry and most of the time
resinous soft woods so do be aware of potential chimney and flue problems,
some pallets are chemically treated for pest control and some are painted
which could cause pollution and or dangerous fumes. You may need to consider
the requirement for a waste management license, and some pallets are wholly
owned by companies such as GKN and the taking of them could be considered as
theft. Some pallets from the building trade are worth £17.00! so worth
taking back to collect the deposit.
The nails will eventually wreck any riddling system in the stove (if any) and you
could get more fumes from burning of any galvanizing and so on.
The cynics amongst you will say that I would say that so as to sell more
fuel, but in our over regulated society I can see that case coming up
against someone.
You read it hear first don't say I didn't warn you!
Graham Read
07 Jul 2012, 11:31
What would recommended for an open fire?

Would you be prepared to provide a mixed half pallet to allow me to compare several different fuel types?
Gary Culverhouse
13 Jul 2012, 09:17
Hi Will,
May I say how informative your website is and the info you give out, wish I had come across it sooner.
For the last 25 yrs we have used our faithful Gas Novell Rayburn 24/7 only switching off when summer arrives in May – September if possible, “not this year though.” It services our large 3 storey end of terrace property with 3 outside walls, 11 rooms, 11 double radiators one very large and endless hot water, cooking was also mastered. A few months ago we decided to install a multi fuel wood burner in our lounge, to give a little warmth on cold summer days / evenings, we are so impressed, we are thinking of replacing our old Rayburn with a Wood-Burning-Multifuel-Stove-Range-Oven-Cooker-Back-Boiler-Hot-Water.
Any suggestions would be appreciated as to what we should be looking at; not going to the expense of a Rayburn wood burner though. I believe the existing water and central heating system will remain, after a HETAS system inspection.
Our present utility bill for Gas & Electricity is up to £257 per month. Electricity works out about £300 per quarter, Gas £500 and an annual service of £200. So even if we have a good summer and the Rayburn off, our domestic bill is rather on the high side.
With the domestic bills going up and up we are looking at ways of holding our costs or even reducing them if possible. As the property is 3 storey we would be looking at your products which will be far easier than wood.
Hope you can send me in the right direction?
Many Thanks
Gary Culverhouse.
27 Aug 2012, 15:18
Can any sort of briquette be used in any kind of wood-burning stove? I have a vague recollection of being told that briquettes made for barbecues could produce too much heat, and damage the stove. Is that true?

Thank you.
10 Sep 2012, 12:47
I've recently had a Contura 650 (with soapstone top & baking oven) installed. It has an output of 3-9kw (nominal 6kw)

My first ever wood burning stove, or "real fire" for that matter.

So it is all new to me, this wood chopping and learning how it works.

I'd like to be able to leave the stove burning to keep house warm when I'm out at work, rather than being reliant on the oil central heating kicking in. Is this sensible/advisable.

Likewise I like the idea of the all night long warmth from the bark logs and the wood coal looks interesting.

as others have said i assume I can't make the stove too hot and damage flue?

I have a delivery of kiln dried logs coming and I'm keen to supplement them with something that needs less tending.

I live in rural scotland and the 2009 & 2010 winters it got as low as -20. These temperatures and the cost of heating oil, the lack of heating in a power cut are the main reasons I got a stove installed.

Advice welcomed!
16 Sep 2012, 08:53
I notice there is a comment about the H2 panel here; any update, is it any good ?
Will Lloyd
16 Sep 2012, 10:47
Hi Neil,
For those not familiar with such a thing this is a device with a
series of controls (pumps,thermostats and motorised vales etc.) that both
make any solid fuel heating device such as a boiler model of wood burning
stove, Esse and Rayburns etc. work to their maximum efficiency without any
of the common problems associated with boiler stoves. The H2 panel is the
brand name from a particular manufacturer and was developed so that a solid
fuel appliance could be efficiently linked into a central heating system
with an automatic boiler, enabling both to contribute energy to heat the hot
water, radiators and even under floor heating.

From memory I think it was Kaz who contributed regarding an H2 panel he had
installed so lets hope he can update us.

I should also mention that when it comes to boiler stoves we tend to
recommend Blazers Fuel logs as they give great heat to the water.They are
also an approved fuel by Hetas under their Biomass assurance scheme so you
can burn with confidence without invalidating the warranty on a new wood
burning stove or cooker.

16 Sep 2012, 11:44
Thanks Will. Basically I've inherited a Stanley superstar range cooker (now called the Donard I believe). The previous owners converted it to run off oil. I want to convert it back to burn wood (as I have Sycamore coming out of my ears) and link it to a new automatic boiler (woodpellet or Oil). Talking to Stanley it has to be linked to the heating system (not just Hot water) and im looking for the cheapest and least space intensive method of doing this.
17 Sep 2012, 10:10
Neil drew my attention to the fact that someone had asked a question about H2 Panel. I am happy to give a fuller response later. But in summary the H2 Panel 1) "does what it says on the tin" - even though it did not come in a tin, but you know what I mean amd 2) the after sales is second to non with the designed coming out to see me after the hetas engineer who installed it made one fundamental error in not following the clear instructions provided. All sorted now.

We light up the stove every morning for an hour or so ( I usually get up early at 5am so not a problem) to get hot water all day with three adults having power showers.

We had the energy company come round on last week because they would not believe that we were using so little gas. My daily charge exceeds my usage charges.

The H2 Panel allows a) heat and water from stove only b) heat and water from GCH and c) joined up Gas and Stove.
17 Sep 2012, 10:17
Thanks. If you dont mind me asking, what sort of price did your installer quote to install it ?
17 Sep 2012, 16:22
My installation cost a bit more as I had to buy larger cylinder, move it as well.. Also replaced a lot of copper piping The panel cost £600.
17 Sep 2012, 19:09
Ok the H2 panel is simply a panel with a series of motorised valves which allows for individual or combined use of heat sources. It operates in GCh only mode, solid fuel mode or a combination. The panel utilises the use of a number of censors ( on the cylinder, on the pipe coming from the solid fuel stove and on the solid fuel stove itself to regualate the opening and closing of the various valves. In the event of power failure, the failsafe kicks in and releases water to both the hot water cylinder and radiators.

In gas only mode, you use the normal timer and room thermostat as before. The panel recognises when the hot water is coming only from the gas boiler.

In wood only mode, the panel initially allows the water to heat up, it is not pumped but moves by gravity so as to minimise the time taken to heat up the water. In this mode, priority is always given to the hot water. When this has been satisfied, hot water is gradually realeased to the radiators. as soon as the water temperature drops, the system recognises that colder water has entered the system and will revert to its initial state and will fluctuate a number of times as the water is brought up to temperature through out the whole system in an orderly manner.

In combined mode ( know as link up) the hot water from the stove is pumped directly to the gas boiler. Gas boilers operate at a higher temperature than optimum wood stoves. I use the stove to get water at a reasonable temperature before going into link up mode. Again rules apply on when water is released to the radiators.

The panel has many features, one of which is to vary the temperature at which water is released to the radiators. So in summer time, I set this at a higher temperature so that the hot water is used to feed the hot water cylinder only. Once that is satisfied it will release to the radiators - not really required in summer time but a good safety feature. Of course, it makes sense to heat up the water quickly.

Hope that helps
20 Sep 2012, 12:17
Oh by the way, in my experience I agree with Will in that the Blazers were the best logs to use in a boiler stove. In my experience, I get the stove pretty hot fairly quickly by burning dry pallet wood which are perfect for that job as most people want to have the Central Heating working or hot water available quickly - and I prefer not to use any Gas where ever possible. This first stage is where I use most fuel. So once the fire blazing nicely AND I have a nice amber burning base that is ideal time to use the Blazer logs making sure that the airflow is reduced from below (my biggest mistake in keeping it open following some bad advice) and reducing the airwash.

Once the water gets hot enough to satisfy the radiators, the amount of fuel needed is vastly reduced and I have a nice warm house.

This time last year, in order to keep costs down we were using halogen heaters etc in individual rooms, now the whole house is nice and warm and the stove a wonderful focal point.
20 Sep 2012, 16:34
We have a multifuel fire with back boiler, and have mainly burned solid fuel until now, which sits on fire bars above ash pans. The fire model is no longer produced (Coalbrookdale Severn) so I have been able to find very little information about it, but it appears to have not been made with any conversion for burning wood. It only has one controllable air inlet (bottom left). Could you please advise me of the best way to burn briquettes as it is very difficult to build up a bed of ash on bars! Regards, Fern
20 Sep 2012, 20:12
Hi Fern,
I am not overly familiar with the Coalbrookdale Severn, but your basic problem is that being a Multi fuel stove the ash and the fire falls through the fire bars,the second is that every one will tell you that wood needs to have the air supply coming over the top of the fire to make it burn properly - which is true, but some wood briquettes are so dense that they behave a little more like Coal than normal logs so it is worth a try.

There is a product on the market called a "Coal Miser" this is basically a wire mesh of Nicrome wire that physically stops the ash falling through the fire bars,and despite it's name will work for wood as well.

The other way would be to use a thin sheet of Mica board such as "Shamolex" to burn the fire on.

I hope this helps

20 Sep 2012, 20:19
Hi Kaz,
Another valuable contribution - Its a fantastic point to make sure that once the fire is established in a multi - fuel stove that the air flow is reduced from below,although as we have found lately in fact wood briquettes actually have some similarity to coal in burning characteristics so a little primary air can be a good thing.This is particularly relevant with Blazers Fuel logs as they are so densely packed with heat energy.

Regards Will.
23 Sep 2012, 20:21
Hello, can you tell me what you think of the contura 586 stove as we are thinking of buying one. We will have a new free standing (on top the stove) ss flue put in as we have no chimney at all presently.

Also, any idea how close to the side of the stove we could place a LED TV? Contura brochure suggests min 750mm to any 'combustible material'. But will the heat be too great for the plastic case of a TV at 750mm? TV will be to the side of the stove.

24 Sep 2012, 20:58
The Contura stove brand is an unashamedly “Made in Sweden” stove and part of the massive Nive group. It will have the heritage and build quality of many a Scandinavian stove with many years of good service.
I don’t really have any idea about your telly except in my experience electronics do not like getting too hot or dusty, so putting one near a stove would be a bad idea. The stove does have side glass panels so will radiate more heat from its sides than a more conventional wood burning stove.
I do also seem to recall Laurence Llewellyn Bowen saying that the best way to arrange a room is to have the fire opposite the telly with sofa’s in between so you can either look at the fire or the television.However I appreciate that this is not always possible for practical reasons.
If I had to choose I would have the stove it will have a better picture and no ad breaks.
Ron Jones
25 Sep 2012, 17:14
Hi, I am looking for a small heater with boiler (to heat water for a radiator. The fuel will be paper logs(brickettes) If anyone has any Ideas I would be grateful to hear from them. Thanks
25 Sep 2012, 23:48
There is a wealth of boiler stoves on the market,we can supply Esse stoves if required.
Paper log briquettes, I assume you mean the ones you make yourself. The main thing is to make them 12 months before use as they need to be really dry to burn well.
It goes with out saying that we would reccomend a wood briquette.

02 Oct 2012, 12:53
Paper briquettes from the various reviews require a lot of effort for small return. Remember, as you are looking for a boiler stove( I have one) the water takes a lot of the heat away from the stove hence you do need to maintain the temperature in the stove. This in turn (I suspect) requires feeding it more wood/energy than a non boiler stove would need. As Will says, you really need make sure they burn well and even then I am not sure whether there will be enough constant energy given off to heat water.
05 Oct 2012, 16:44
Hi Will
We have had a Stockton Stovax No 3 multifuel stove installed, with the DEFRA approved fitting.
The second time we used it, we put a Hottie heat log on, which we let burn right down. However, when we added another one, the flames were really fierce and the temperature on our stove pipe thermometer shot up to 500 deg. The thermometer is only 10cm above the stove as we only have a shot flue pipe.

My husband can't remember what he did, but he fiddled with the top airwash valve, because the flames suddenly completely died down and the stove eventually cooled down. We didn't dare put any more logs on after that.

We've only used the stove twice and we know we're supposed to warm it up gradually. We've read the instructions so we don't know where we've gone wrong?


Will of WOOF!
05 Oct 2012, 22:08
Hi Christine,
Your not really doing anything wrong, but I would suggest putting less on next time,say just half or less of one hottie. The Stovax Stockton 3 is a 3.75 Kw rated stove and a single Hottie Heat Log has a calorific value of 4.9 kw and thats why it got so hot.Testament to how good they really are.
Interestingly I have found that when the flue pipe gets over 500 degrees the flue pipe thermometre falls off the pipe. I assume that the magnatism is lost at that temparature.

I hope that helps
08 Oct 2012, 13:41
I managed to get 700 degrees on my flue and rising - was not planned I hasten to add, just added load of wood onto the stove, came back 10 minutes later to a very hot stove! Panicked a little, as I had forgotten about switching off the primary air supply. Turned that off as well as the secondary and prayed that had not broken anything!Not going to do that again in a hurry.. but did heat up the central heating quickly!! Not too sure what would have happened if it was not a boiler stove to keep the temperature down!

Oh, my thermometer did not fall off!
Andy Carroll
15 Oct 2012, 19:04
Hi Will,
Just had a Broseley Serrano 5 multi fuel stove fitted and was wondering what you recommend fuel wise as there is that much choice on your web site.Only using it as a supplementary room heater for when it gets really cold.Tried kiln dried logs for the first time this weekend but could'nt keep pace with them....cheers
16 Oct 2012, 12:46
I have just had a Contura 556 fitted - There is so much choice in terms of what fuel to use and I am at a loss as to what will work best. We are currently using logs but find we are having to feed the stove every hour. This stove is fitted in a conservatory which is open plan to the house so we need fuel that will give off good heat without the need to keep reloading ! what would you suggest ?
16 Oct 2012, 21:22
Hi Andy,
I would suggest trying the Hotties heat logs for your Broseley Serrano 5 Multi fuel stove.They will last longer than kiln dried logs,but if you were using hard wood kiln dried logs and they are burning too quickly it might be worth checking if the air controls and door seals are working properly as you should be able to slow down the burn.It is best if you break a few up to start with and once the fire established put one or two whole ones on.

16 Oct 2012, 21:31
Hi Geoff,
Your contura 556 would work very well with Blazerss fuel logs.As the contura has side glass panels to view the fire. Blazers will give a great flame pattern and fantastic heat. Blazers fuel logs are also HETAS approved as a bio mass solid fuel,so you can burn them with confidence.
To get the best from your stove I would suggest initially burning a small fire with plenty of air supply and good ventilation to burn off the factory processes.
18 Oct 2012, 12:57

I agree with Will about the air controls, that was my first reaction. I had similar concerns when I first started, my Charnwood Country 16b had an automatic thermostat adjusting the primary air supply. Maybe I had it set too high. Now I have it on full for maybe 10 mins max until fire is well established and the heat is at least 300 degrees Fahrenheit - although prefer to get to 400. Once the bed of ash/charcoal is established the burn rate reduces quite substantially I found. And as for temperature guide, i would recommend anyone to buy a flue thermometer has saved me lots of money knowing how the stove is performing. Also has prevented with blackening of glass. Hope that helps.
Lynne White
19 Oct 2012, 14:46
I live in Bath in a smokeless zone.
I have an Aga Little Wenlock Classic SE (Smoke Exempt) wood burning stove.
Could you please advise if it is OK to burn Hotties, Blazers and Bark logs in it?
I don't mean all at once!
Tammy Willson
25 Oct 2012, 21:08
Hello, we have just had a 4.7kW Carron multifuel burner installed and neither of us have the first clue about how to keep it burning! We used firelighters and some dry kindling to start the first fire and then added a dry log with both air vents open. It burnt well but then went out quite quickly... Any tips? I really don't want our gorgeous new burner to become an unused, expensive mistake! Thanks...
27 Oct 2012, 18:58

That is very strange, with both air vents open dry wood should normally fire up a dry log. I am guessing but maybe the fire was not sufficient to burning hot enough to get the fire burning - kindle will burn very quickly and get a temperature but Maybe try adding smaller pieces of wood to get up a larger flame, before adding the log. Or perhaps the log was not as dry as you thought - a wood moisture meter is useful.

I started by getting a few samples from Will, at least you know you have really dry burning material.

There are many sites with advice on how to best burn wood suggest you do some research.

You could try an "upside down fire" - google that to find out more! When I first heard about this I had a Victor Mildrew moment saying "I don't believe it" but I do now!

One thing that I have learnt talking to many people is that learning how best to make your stove work does take some trial and error. For example I could never manage to keep the glass clean on my stove, now having figured out how it works it is not a problem. It is a bit like driving a new car, they all work roughly the same but all have their different ways of doing things.

Or of course, there could be something wrong with the installation so that you don't get enough "draw." But that would be the a last resort thing.

Yes your stove is gorgeous, and you will love it. Our daughter comes to visit is more often and always ends up sitting next to the fire, I think she must be a latent "cat woman!"

I could never live without one now:)

best of luck sorting it out, let us know how you get on


28 Oct 2012, 02:32
I have a question about multi fuel stoves. We will be fitting a Charnwood stove which can take wood or smokeless fuels.

If I want to use heat logs should I set the grate for wood (flat) or coal (open) to get the most efficient burn?
28 Oct 2012, 06:57

I have a charnwood country b. I did some research to
figure out the difference between the two. As far as I was concerned there seemed to be very little difference between the two. So I phoned up customer services. They confirmed that for my model there is no difference except for the retaining grate.

You are right in saying that for wood the grate needs to be shut. However, for optimum wood performance you should build up a layer of ash - i have read read on average 2-3 cms. When I first used, I cleaned it out every day! Bad move. Now it burns wonderfully well

It is important not to mix the two fuel sources. Wood burns best with air coming from the top, coal and its derivatives needs air from below as well.

Will has written that in an earlier mail, that some of the products that he sells have properties similar to wood and benefit from the primary source as well.

Hope that helps
06 Nov 2012, 11:51
Hello. We have just got a 5kw Woodwarm multi fuel stove and can't seem to get it to 'optimum' temperature. As a result, we seem to be going through a lot of logs. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.
will lloyd
06 Nov 2012, 12:23
Hi Sandra,
Woodwarm's are most excellent stoves and operated correctly
should give you lots of great heat. Is it a pure wood burner or Multi Fuel
with a grate?

I had one many years ago and it had a side air control that always reminded
me of the nuclear radiation symbol.

I would suggest once the fire is going well after 15 mins or so to shut down
the primary air vent, the lower air, and only use the air from the top
(Secondary air) in the wood warm this travels along way around the stove to
pre heat it before it arrives in the fire chamber. The hotter the stove gets
the better it will work and the more you can reduce the air the less fuel
you use and the more efficient it will become.

I would recommend a trial pack of Hotties heat logs and some Fire Magic to
test your wood burner to the full.

Please see the video on our web site.


I hope this will help Will.

06 Nov 2012, 14:06
Thanks for the quick response Will. It's a multi fuel stove with a grate, which we have in the 'wood' position. Using scrunched up paper, kindling and dry hard wood, we can't seem to get the temp over 200. Perhaps we are closing the bottom air vent too early? We will try 15 minutes as suggested and see if that helps.
Michael Blake
06 Nov 2012, 20:10
Well, what a find! I'm currently sat in front of my Esse Furnesse inset stove, and its working better than in all the 10 years I have had it. I've usually burned coal, softwood off cuts or 'seasoned' hardwood logs and never really got the best from it, although enjoyed it nonetheless. I even tried some hotmax but they were so-so.

Well after a google search and finding this website last night and looking at all the comments here and the range of fuels I had to get some! I met Will and took away with me a selection of different logs- blazers, hotties and bark logs. Right now I have a couple of blazers and a hottie on and it's brilliant! So quick to light, fast to heat up and great flame - I never thought the fire would be this good.

I'm looking forward to trying the bark logs later to see how well it goes overnight....I shall report back.

Oh and Will the Mister Chef matches are the best I've used, much bigger flame ideal for getting under the grate.

Highly recommended!
07 Nov 2012, 09:37

Not too sure how you running your stove, but one of the things I learnt is to always make sure you have a good 1 cm of ash on the base. This is particularity relevant when using multi-fuel stoves - I have one too. Initially I cleaned out every time I used it.

I am assuming of course that the dry logs really are dry - maybe its just me but I don't trust people delivering wood - which is why Wills products are 100% reliable.

Sometimes mixing hard and soft wood helps too.

The following is some advice I found which was very helpful for me. I refer you to the last paragraph

if you keep the air supply fully open some heat is lost up the flue, once all the wood is well alight close the air supply down in stages keeping visible flames, this will raise the temperature in the firebox and stop heat being wasted up the flue, after 1/2 an hour or so you should be able to get slow licking flames for maximum heat and a longer burn.

When reloading wait until all flames have gone and glowing embers in the firebox, these embers can be left just glowing for quite some time before reload.

When reloading, open the air again fully, rake the embers forward and put a big log at the back of the firebox, smaller logs at the front, let the logs catch light before closing the door starting the process again.

Most important is the wood is well seasoned and dry, most bought logs are not properly seasoned,
get a moisture meter, split a big piece and test the fresh exposed split side, should be less than 20%.
Will o' the Woof
08 Nov 2012, 16:18
I can't tell you how chuffed I am to have recieved the comments posted below - for those of you not in the industry and although he would be too modest to admit it Mark was formerly the main force behind HETAS the body officially recognised by the Govenment to oversea the regulation of all solid fuel appliances and Bio - mass assurance.

Hi William

I am dead chuffed how I have stored enough heating for a whole year
into such a small space. The Blazers briquette is so well compacted
and the 10kg packs stack so well that I now feel safe in the knowledge
that we can have a freaky cold winter without needing to get any more
fuel in. I am getting a quick boost of heat from these briquettes,
that is very dependable. As used on a 'woody only', Vermont stove.

Many thanks,

Mark Russell
08 Nov 2012, 17:15
Will, Kaz,
Thank you both for your excellent advice. Following your guidance and using the Hotties - that were delivered super fast - we've started great fires that get the temp to over 250 very quickly. A bit more practice controlling the air and we'll get long lasting warmth with less wood. Cheers!
10 Nov 2012, 17:08
Flue Pipe Thermometers
I think it is worth saying that (assuming Sandra is talking about the flue pipe thermometer) lately a number of modern very good quality stoves do not send that many hot flue gasses up the chimney because they are so efficient, this is the cause of some debate amongst the stove installing fraternity as there are of course knock on effects of not getting the flue hot enough such as a dew point in the chimney.
I personally find a flue pipe thermometer invaluable but would suggest just using it as a guide for efficient burning rather than an exact measurement of stove performance i.e temperature.. Clearview stoves recommend a thermometer on the stove body not the flue pipe. This may be to protect the casing from overheating but would solve the problem being very efficient stoves.Stove body thermometer's are slightly different from flue pipe ones.
10 Nov 2012, 17:32
Heat Logs, Eco Logs, Wood Briquettes, Eco Fuel logs with their various brand names such as Blazers fuel logs, Heatabix, Shredded heat etc all have different uses and burning characteristics but they also have one main similarity. They are all different forms of extremely dry high energy solid bio - mass fuel. They come in different forms depending on the method of manufacture but are all types of Fluidised and agglomerated dense-ified wood fuel. It is because they are very dry typically under 7% moisture content and so tightly compressed that they have such high energy values.
Over the past 6 years or so that I have been studying and marketing these products I have come to realise that they have a more closely connected to Coal in terms of heat output and burning characteristics than any typical traditional logs. The only real similarity is that they are made of wood. Customers are sometimes concerned about the use of softwoods in Heat logs, and whilst we don’t sell any using pure Pine I would say that most of the feed stock of Spruce works very well and that once it is dried and compressed the briquetting process is a form of alchemy that turns it in to a wood with a cubic density far greater than the mighty Oak.

All of this makes fuels that are so good to burn in a wood burning stove,they give high heat and a super clean burn, they are all natural no chemicals and using up aclean waste product.
12 Nov 2012, 10:51
I am sure this is a question asked time and time again, heat logs vs coal in a Parker Stove for both output and cost?

Also we have not found a way to keep the house warm at night and always wake up to a very cold house any tips or products that could be recommended.

Many Thanks
13 Nov 2012, 13:01
Hi Scott,
I have replied behind the scenes but also ned to clarify what the make and model is.

Scott needs to first check there is nothing wrong with the basic heating system and water, there could be stck valves or the system might need a flush.

The main problems with heating water in a back boiler is the return temperature of the water, see Kaz's enteries about H2 panels, and also that itis hard to "keep up" with water heating with a small boiler - the plumbing soulution is to install a large hot water tank 1500/2000 litres, known as a buffer tank. All the domestic hot water and heating is then sent through this tank just like a normal indirect system.

In terms of burning wood as a fuel it will heat the water very well but you do need an awfull lot of logs. This is where Fuel logs come in with a higher energy rating. I woiuld suggest trying Blazers fuel logs or Hotties Heat Logs. Blazers fuel logs are used on the National trusts steam vessle that they run on Coniston water.

The cost per kg per KW against Coal is difficult to estimate as the wood will give a far greater heat lift at the beginning of burning whereas coal is a longer slower burn.( I will consult and have a go at this in another post.
15 Nov 2012, 13:07
And of course will the problem with having a 1500 ltr tank is size. Mine is 180 ltrs and works just fine. If I am using the wood stove in standalone it does take over an hour to warm up the whole house - although the room where the stove is in place is very comfortable much earlier. Part of the delay is that the H2 Panel aims at satisfying water first before dispersing to radiators ( have 9 of them although 3 are small). And of course the gas boiler runs at 24kwh which is available almost from scratch, my stove generates 8kwh to water and central heating so obviously takes longer.

I agree with Will that high energy logs are very useful. Having used wood, pallets and eco logs I can confirm that the eco logs "do what they say on the tin" - although Will does not send out in tins!

The H2 Panel solution - and no I am not on commission - allows the gas central heating system to be used in conjunction with the stove so no need ever to wake up cold morning.
16 Nov 2012, 22:54
Hey.. I just acquired an old cast iron stove.. It's from the Atlanta stove works... I am just curious On how hot The flue pipe will get On a single Wall pipe....
20 Nov 2012, 12:23

That will depend on how much fuel you use, how much air you are using and the type of fuel - the dryer the better of course.

The Atlanta Stove works went out of buisness some time ago, so you may have an antique there
20 Nov 2012, 16:41

Thank you so much for the post on stove thermometers.....I bought a Morso Squirrel (Defra approved) in October and have been tearing my hair out trying to work out why it's so difficult to get over 300 degrees and then, why I can't get anything to burn for longer than hour before the temp starts falling. Morso suggest refueling after 35-45 minutes but comments about Blazers burning for 2 hours left me baffled.

I was about to refuel for the hundreth (felt like) time when I saw your post and decided to move the thermometer to the body of the stove (which also has a tertiary air wash) instead of continuing to fall past 300 degrees, the needle shot up to over 400 degrees..where it has stayed! I have used so much fuel trying to stay out of the 'danger zone' not realising that I was over heating the body of the stove. Thanks again for this forum, you've saved me from bankruptcy and certain baldness!
20 Nov 2012, 17:32
Hi Karen,

Well thank you for thanking me, the only thing I would just double check if
I were you, is whether your Flue pipe thermometer is ok on the stove
body.There did used to be two types - I suspect that the stove body will be
hotter than the flue pipe so it is probably just that the body ones are a
bit more robust.

So glad to have saved you baldness, now you can have a tertiary hair wash!

20 Nov 2012, 17:34
On a sinle wall pipe it will get really really hot if you let it. Ideally with dry wood you should opperate the stove with the flue pipe temp aroung 2/300 degrees.

20 Nov 2012, 19:15
Hi Will,

It's a Stovax stovepipe thermometer, the packaging says to attach to the stove or the pipe..so I'm ok.

Thanks again.

20 Nov 2012, 20:21
Gavin (re Coalbrookdale Little Wenlock): My Little Wenlock is also missing a grate and fire bricks! Having investigated and done a lot of searching, it seems that if burning wood you do not need the grate, and also I have found comments that state that with this stove you should also remove the firebricks when burning wood.
It's an old stove, so can't find the original manual online to confirm this
I am quite tempted to put a firebrick at the back - to stop heat being wasted into the wall?
20 Nov 2012, 21:57

I have recently bought a 5kw FG14 multistove burner. I bought a delivery of beech but doesn't seem to be totally dry which is disappointed as I asked for seasoned. The glass goes black and it is hard to keep the fire alight, at times goes out once it burns through to the centre of the log, and the heat from it is poor. I have tried heat logs from the local garage which helps and it does burn better but would it like better heat. I have a burner fan and tried smokeless coal, which again has improved heat circulation but wondering if you can advise on how we can heat up a room of around 22ft long by 14ft wide to a comfortable temperature as we are struggling at the moment.

Also we have an open fire in another room. We ordered coppice for this, but again the heat isnt great! Any ideas. It's not a huge fireplace but the room is only 14x14ft

Any advice would be appreciated as I thought between the burner and their open fire we would heat the whole of downstairs but we're not.

Thanks in advance.

Will o' the Woof
21 Nov 2012, 16:37
Hi Ryan,
I am not overly familiar with this stove, but in general I would say there is a possibility it is just a little small for the area you are trying to heat. I did a quick bit of what my children call "research" on the internet and found what might have been your stove calibrated at 4.9 Kw with an efficiency rating of 76.6%.

I would suggest you try Blazers fuel logs, as they are the hottest fuel we have and are Hetas approved, if it's not hoot enough with them then it never will be.

I would also suggest checking it is not to far inside the chimney opening and my personal preference is to flue out of the back of the stove not the top as the flame will have a longer path and stay in the stove longer. I would also check that when burning wood after the fire is established you shut down the primary air (lower air intake ) and use the secondary air (upper air supply)

Once the stove is hot and the flues are hot, this can take quite some time an hour or two, start to control the fire by reducing this air. If your chimney has been unused for sometime it might be damp and not draw too well until dried out.

Conversely the chimney could be drawing too well, ask your installer to check the flue draught in Pascals and adjust with a limiter if required. You could also try a Flue thermometer, we do have some but not on the site.

I think Tim, who will see this post might have a similar stove and might to contribute, as he has just has a load of very dry logs from us. Ultimately it is probably just a case of not having dry wood and you might be very surprised how transformed the stove is with Blazers fuel logs or some Kiln dried logs.

I hope this helps a bit.

21 Nov 2012, 16:43
I cannot recomend that you make any modifications to your stove. However it is true that wood burns best on a good bed of ashes with an air supply coming over the top.

If you look at a modern stove they do not use firebrick but a mica board, it looks like fire brick.

This insulates the sides to stop the stove body getting to hot two quickly and insulates the firebox, raising the combustion temperature and making a more efficient burn.

We do sell Mica board but not online.

21 Nov 2012, 19:57
Not modifying the stove, supposedly the instructions suggest removing grate and firebricks.
Thanks for the mica suggestion though.
22 Nov 2012, 11:59
I can echo Wills comment about having a good bed of ash. This has been an amazing discovery for me. I have up to over 2cm of ash and the difference is amazing! the blackening of the windows has decreased substantially, the ability to build a solid red glowing base is also much better. On my stove, I realized that I was also blocking the air inlets at the sides of the firebox so that there was no air coming in from primary air source. Once note that has made it work even better. Having that hot amber base really is key for me

My only comment would be that as Will has said in some of his posts, some of the eco logs do have burning properties similar to coal hence primary source may be more important.

Basically you need to learn a) how your stove works best - trial and error in my case and b) how to adjust the stove defendant on the type of wood and c) make adjustments to what you using for. I, for example, have boiler stove so I try to get the water hot asap so run stove slightly higher, then once hot water satisfied simply maintain at lower temperature.
22 Nov 2012, 12:23

I have read that there is a difference of about 150 degrees between the temperature of the stove and the flue. My understanding is that for the vast majority of stoves, it is the flue temp that is being used to determine whether the stove is under or over heating.

I refer back to my earlier mail about ash bed and a nice bed of ambers as the key. Until you get both of those, my experience is that it is much more difficult to maintain an appropriate temperature level with temp going up and down a lot more. Hotties, blazers, seasoned wood and dare I mention pallets, all have different burning features so you need to understand how your stove works with each.

That is dependent on your fuel supply of course, many of the products Will is selling burn at a consistent rate which is extremely useful.

And of course with Wills eco logs, you dont bring spiders and other creepy crawlies into the house!
22 Nov 2012, 20:14
Hi Kaz,

Thanks for your input. I think that there was at least a difference of 100 degrees when I moved the thermometer to the stove. The temperature is much more stable using the body and blazers are still intact after an hour and a half, it used to be 45 minutes max (with a thick bed of ash..granted, I was the stove owner version of a 'boy racer' all air washes at full throttle trying to get a flue temp of 300 degrees!)

I'm refuelling at 300 degrees as this is also the minimum operating temperature for the stirling stove fan ..but wondering if this is too late since the flue temp would be about 200 degrees....I'm now confused.
22 Nov 2012, 22:47
The flue temperature is a guide only a and not meant to be hard and fast rule. I have seen in a number of places people have recommended letting the fire burn down till there is only a bed of amber before re fuelling.

You do need to keep the air washes open fully initially - again each stove is different, but you do need that red amber base asap as that will provide a lot of stability

Like you when i first tried blazers I also had everything open full so was a little surprised that they burnt so quickly! Lesson learnt!

I think the reason (and if anyone knows differently please comment) why thermostat on stove fluctuates less is that once heated up it will retain its heat for a while before dropping its temperature. The flues of course is much thinner hence does not have the ability to store heat as much hence will respond quicker.

I must admit that I am finding it a little strange that you can not achieve 300 degrees easily.. oh just a thought.. you are measuring Fahrenheit and not centigrade???

Hope this helps
23 Nov 2012, 19:50
Hi Will. I wrote to you last year regarding what was the best fuel to burn in a Rayburn Nouvelle solid fuel and wood burning cooker. I will be using it for hot water cooking and running 6 radiators. I have lost your reply and wondered if you could again recommend what you think would be best. we live in Norfolk near Swaffham PE37 8BD would you deliver out here and what would the delivery charge be please. thinking of a mixed pallet to test out first. thank you
28 Nov 2012, 09:40
Hi Kaz

My problem, I think was that I viewed the whole stove and chimney as a passive system i.e stove plus fuel equals roaring fire!! I didn't know about the effect of a windy day or that my chimney in general has a strong 'draw' or about the different stages of a fire. I would have the air washes fully open and close the door after the fire seemed to be ok only for it to literally be sucked up the chimney leaving me with smoking fuel! Hence my difficulty in getting to 300 degrees. After MUCH trial and error I seem to be improving or should I say that the fires are? Thanks for your help along my very steep learning curve!

28 Nov 2012, 12:48
Well done Karen, a lesson for everyone which I am sure Will will agree with and that is "Get to know your stove." No short cuts. Some people are more fortunate than others. There are many factors affecting optimum burning conditions and each stove will be different, as will be different flues/chimneys, fuel that you are using etc. But take it from me, when you learn how to maintain a fire with minimal blackening and have all your radiators hot it is so wonderful!
28 Nov 2012, 15:06
i have an older model woodstove that burns too hot, up to 900 degrees, the damper and ash door are closed and i have replaced the gaskets, why does it still burn so hot?
28 Nov 2012, 20:38
well that is different Mike. A fire will only burn as hot as the amount of fuel you put in and the air supply and i guess the fuel would be my first guess
08 Dec 2012, 19:44
I have been avidly reading through all these posts as we are going to install a multi-fuel burner. We have not yet chosen the model, but have calculated we need a 4kw. However, we think we should go for a model which will be a bit bigger as we don't want it to 'struggle'.
Any suggestions for a particular make or model would be gratefully accepted.
My main question is: should we go for just heating our sitting room as we have a fairly efficient gas central heating system or should we go for the boiler to add to the whole house and water heating? We think it may be too expensive although I have a very capable hubby to put it in. Its been hard to find real advice on putting this in. We have an open fire with good chimney.
Again, suggestions or advive would be welcome. Thank you. So looking forward to having a burner!
09 Dec 2012, 19:34

I'm considering replacing my fireplace with a woodburning stove to supplement the GCH in my living room. The chimney is on the outside of the house and whenever I've tried to keep an open fire going, its been extremely difficult as the draw is poor.

Would a woodburning stove be susceptible to this poor draw or will it work regardless of how well the chimney performs with an open fire?

If anyone is able to advise, I'd be grateful.

10 Dec 2012, 13:02

A couple of points for you to consider. First of all it would be very useful to talk to someone who has a smaller stove installed. I have a friend at work who has a 5kw stove and that really does appear to belt the heat out! Remember with a stove, you want it to operate at optimum temperature, buy one too big and you will be roasting yourselves not your turkey this Christmas - if you could get it in on time. And use more fuel than you need to.

My daughter just had an Aga Wenlock installed. There are a number of sites with reviews which I personally found very helpful as you get the "good, the bad and the ugly," although i suspect sometimes people do not take time to learn how their stoves works.

It is not essential to have a HETAS engineer install a solution BUT if you do not use one, you still need your installation approved by Buildings Regs - they charge a fee of course. By using a HETAS engineer price will be more, but he will issue you with a certificate to validate the installation.

As for boiler stove, yes it will cost you more as you will need additional plumbing and some form of solution to allow the Wood stove and the Gas Central Heating work together or separately - see some of my earlier posts.

Larger stove will mean more fuel so you need to remember that as well.

And just to share a little info for you.. this year, we have been using the stove for Hot Water and GCH, last month the Gas USAGE costs ROCKETED up by 70% over October. The total USAGE costs have come to a total of just under £3. YES THREE POUNDS for 3 months of hot water and GCH - wonderful over the last few weeks!

Oh both wife and daughter love to sit in front of the stove! I stay a little further away, getting too close will warm up the chablis too quickly!
22 Dec 2012, 20:15

I like the idea of the 10hour burn bark logs for my Stovax woodburner but also worried as have read that you shouldn't run your fire on a low heat as it could cause tar build-up! Any advice please?
25 Dec 2012, 07:21

The point to remember is that a fire burns in a few stages. In simplified language, first of all the wood moisture content evaporates. Then the oils in the wood vaporize and become gases. Black carbon and other particles mix with the gases in smoke and rise up chimney. In the final phase the logs become a glowing mass of charcoal.

The problem is when there is a fire which is smouldering i.e. smoking and not so much the low heat. Note that you can have lower heat from well burnt wood when ambers remain that will not create excessive levels of creosote.This has a greater chance of happening when using unseasoned wood. The products that Will is selling all have very low moisture content so you have less chance of that happening.

Real logs once they burn will also produce a bed of hot ambers. I have found that having this bed of ambers is one of the keys to getting a stove working correctly and efficiently. Also, always make sure that you have a layer of ash, this single fact alone has dramatically change the efficiency of my wood burning.

As I have said on earlier posts, you really need to learn how your stove works best.

Hope this helps and a very Merry and WARM Christmas
16 Jan 2013, 00:08
Does anyone have a Rais 700 inset burner, if so have you experienced any water coming in trough the liner because of rain and condensation?

Any advice please?
Allison Hainsworth
18 Jan 2013, 23:45
Hi Will, i have read through the previous emails and am now hopeful i have found someone to give us the answer to our woodburning quandry.We have recently had a contura/ handol 51l wood burner installed into our living room which is approx five x six m., and will be using itmainly in the evenings so we can turn our ever more expensive gch off for a couple of hours in particular when the kids have gone up the wooden hill to Bedfordshire. Please recommend the best, most efficient and cost effective way to get several hours of lovely warmth. We are complete log burner novices .
19 Jan 2013, 18:34
Just moved into a house with wood burner but not having much success with it. I think I may have turned the turbo boiler open/shut. I cannot understand how this works, should it be open or closed. Please help
20 Jan 2013, 16:05

Firstly congratulations on buying a wood burning stove, one of the best investments you could make.

I have mentioned before in posts, every stove is a little different so you will have to do a bit of trial and error. But to give you some general tips

Quality of wood is important, dry is good, wet/damp is bad! Ecologs best.

Ensure that you have a bed of at least 1cm in the firebox, wood burns so much more efficiently on ash bed.

Buy an stove flue thermometer (and Will is just selling one), it is important that the flue temperatures are within the ideal range. Too low and there is possibility of excess creosote being created. Too high and you will be burn too much fuel and risk possible damage to stove

When starting fire keep the primary and secondary airways open. After a while (will be once fire established and ambers visible) turn off primary and control fire with secondary.

And most importantly, enjoy your stove, nothing quite beats once temperature has risen, to switch off the lights and sip a cool glass of Chablis (or maybe champagne!) watching the flames. Quality time


20 Jan 2013, 17:17
please excuse my ignorance but which are the primary/secondary controls ? I am just considering whether to light the fire again for the third time today
21 Jan 2013, 09:34
Ah, Eve I had a look on the web site for your stove and fouind that you only have one control. On the site it says the following:

The combustion damper must be completely open for 3-5 minutes until the logs turn black and catch fire. If you wish for slower combustion, the supply of combustion air can now be reduced. The conditions for controlling combustion vary depending on the temperature in the stove and the draft in the chimney.

Does this help?

21 Jan 2013, 09:37
Eve/Alison sorry replied to Alison but read Alisons mail!! What is your model Eve? Normally the primary deals with air coming from below, secondary from the top and deals with keeping glass clean

21 Jan 2013, 10:20
These instructions are for a Little Thurlow 5 Kw Mulit fuel stove from British manufacturer Town and Country Fires.

When ready to light the stove for the first time, make sure that everything is removed from the ashpan, and open the spin wheels at the bottom and top of the stove to let air in under the grate. First burn some newspaper in the stove, with the door closed, to warm the flue, as there may be down draught initially. The temperature in the flue has to be increased to change the down draught to up draught. If down draught persists, try burning a blow torch in the stove, facing the flue for a minute or two. If there is a soot door fitted, try warming the flue through the soot door. If this does not work, call in your installer. If the stove has not been lit for a while, the chimney should be checked for blockages before lighting.
When ready to light the stove, put a small piece of fire lighter, about 25mm square is big enough, and then add small sticks, taking care not to smother the flames. When the sticks are well alight add small logs, gradually increasing the size. Once the fire is well
Established and hot the bottom spin wheels can be closed, and the fire can be controlled from the top air controls, without having to bend down. The spin wheels do become hot, so use a glove or the tool provided to open or close the air vents, they only need moving slightly to open or close the air gap. When burning solid fuel, it may be necessary to leave the bottom air vents slightly open.

The appliance will give more heat output with increased air supply, so the controls can be adjusted to increase or decrease the burning rate of the fuel, as desired.
This appliance is hot whilst in operation. Keep children and furniture a safe distance away.

To close the stove down, close the bottom spin wheels and the top spin wheels. Depending on the fuel and the amount of draught in the chimney, it may be necessary to leave the top vents open slightly to allow the glass to burn clean, and it may be necessary to leave a small amount of air through the bottom air vents when burning certain solid fuels. DO NOT OPEN THE BOTTOM SPIN WHEELS WITH THE TOP ONES CLOSED, THIS WILL DAMAGE THE GLASS. When all the spin wheels are closed, the glass may become black because the clean burn will be shut off. To burn the glass clean, make a good fire to get the stove hot, close the bottom vents and leave the top spin wheels open.

The appliance is designed to operate efficiently with the fire door closed. The door should be kept closed at all times, except when refuelling or removing ashes.

There is a turbo burner which brings in air (not pre-heated) ,allowing plenty of oxygen into the rear and top of the stove, thus burning off gases which normally do not ignite. This gives the stove more efficiency and better combustion, less pollution. The vent for the Turbo Burner is positioned on the left hand side of the stove, near the back.

Open all air vents and then open the stove door gently, using the stove gloves. Put more logs or solid fuel on the stove and close the door. Do not over fill the firebox, maximum filling height 100mm. Allow the fire to burn through before closing the bottom spin wheels and then close the top spin wheels as much as required.


This appliance has been tested using seasoned wood logs and manufactured briquetted smokeless fuel (Ancit) for closed appliances, sized between 20g and 140g. Other fuels are commercially available and may give similar results. Do not use household coal. It is a good idea to try small quantities of different fuels until you find one that suits your chimney. Petrocoke or any petroleum based fuel must NOT be used, they burn excessively hot and will destroy parts of the stove in a very short time. If using logs, the logs need to be dry, seasoned logs, ie. no more than 20% moisture content, maximum log length up to 350mm. Small pieces of kiln dried timber can burn very hot, take care that the fire does not get out of control. The stove is designed to burn wood or solid fuel, DO NOT BURN ANY LIQUID FUEL. DO NOT BURN WOOD PELLETS. DO NOT BURN WOOD CHIPS. DO NOT BURN ANY RUBBISH ON THE STOVE.

The riddling knob to shake the ashes through is on the front of the stove, left hand side near the bottom corner of the door. Using the tool, or a stove glove, pull the lever in and out to rotate the grate and shake the ashes into the ashpan. It is important to remove the ashes regularly, if the ash builds up through the grate, the grate could overheat and distort.
Open the fire door with the stove glove provided, and, using the tool, gently pull out the ashpan a little way. Then remove the tool and slot it in from the top of the slot in the middle of the ashpan. The tool will then have a firm grip on the ashpan . Carefully carry the ashes out to dispose of them, or use a ‘Tippy’ or similar ash carrier.
31 Jan 2013, 17:50
I know this may sound like a stupid question we have just moved into a house with a woodburner which i am told works along side the oil central heating and hot water. My question is that the woodburner as two water pipes going into it one at the top and another near the bottom i perhaps stupidly thought thatone would be colder than the other but it seems they are both hot to touch is this correct. The stove is a yeoman with stovax system.
01 Feb 2013, 15:47
Just came across this blog about woodburners - very interesting. We have had an 'Aukland' which has been one of the family since 1998.
We soon found out the difference between dry seasoned logs and those which may look seasoned but hiss miserably in the stove! Find a good supplier and stick to seasoned wood.
A word of warning!!! Years ago, we moved into a delightful cottage on a freezing night. The only heat was from the small Rayburn, used for cooking on top and a small oven. We had no logs so bought a bag of coal from the nearby garage. HUGE MISTAKE! We were very tired and went off to bed and were soon asleep. The next thing we knew was we were really ill staggering around suffering from Carbon Monoxide - a killer like car exhaust gas. We were so lucky we woke up. We now have Carbon Monoxide sensors in our house.
08 Feb 2013, 13:21
Hi Lee

I have a wood burning boiler stove as well a Charnwood. First of all, once everything is up and runing and has reached the right temperature the water temperature will be similar.

The question is how the wolid fuel and the oil central heating system is combined. I use a H2 panel which is "intelligent£ enough NOT to release water to the water cylinder or to the Central heating system until it reaches the preset temperature and then releases.

The idea is to maintain the temperature of the stove as close as optimum as possible so it introduces cold water to the system gradually. What this means in practice is that before the whole thing is up and running the H2 Panel regulates how much water is sent to the stove.

There are other ways of linking up the two heat sources of course, your s may be working on a similar principle

Hope this helps
13 Feb 2013, 11:25
I have a Mulberry Joyce 5kw multifuel stove installed in a room 14ft x 13ft. The house is a turn of the century through cottage with the fireplace knocked out to create an alcove where my stove sits looking very pretty! The chimney is not steel lined but the draw appears impressive when one first lights the fire with kindling and indeed, with the single air control open at any time one can hear the roar of the air being sucked through.

Nevertheless, I'm disappointed with the heat output. In a room that size I expected to be down to my t-shirt and shreddies! I have some very well seasoned logs (several years) and these burn well and give off the best heat, but even on a slow burn are depleted relatively quickly. During the day I use Superwarm or Taybrite smokeless fuel (although I'm not in a smokless zone) because I read that they burn long and hot. Well you can get them to burn long, but heat output is unimpressive and they all (I've tried quite a few) seem hard to light and none of them seem to flame, they just glow. They also soot up the window somewhat - the logs don't do this at all.

Am I expecting too much of my stove? I was round at a friend's house with a similar size but different make of stove and you had to back off a couple of metres or get burnt! You don't really feel great radiance from my Mulberry unless you're within a couple of feet of it. Sure, it's wafting a general warmth around, and I can even open the living room door and the heat will circulate to upstairs rooms, but I don't feel that 'belting' heat that's always attracted me to these stoves.

Wrong stove, poor stove? Maybe. Just wondered if anyone had any observations? Also would Blazers be a better option than smokeless coals for long burn heat ? I'm buying smokess at £6.50-£8.50 per 25kg bag and use about 30kg a week (supplementing the seasoned wood).

Any observations welcome, thanks.
13 Feb 2013, 11:25
Oh Lee

I just realised that I did not answer your question. Yes it is normal for both pipes being hot, the top normally contains the outgoing hot water the bottom the return. Dependent on your installation will determine how quickly the bottom one gets hot.

On my installation firstly hot water circulate by gravity between the stove the the hot cylinder - without entering the cylinder. Once this water is up to temperature then some of the water is fed to the cylinder - this releases some colder water to the stove so the lower type is cooler. The cycle repeats until the hot water temperature is satisfied.

Then water is released to the central heating system, this in turn will lower the temperature of the return until it raises the water temperature. again this cycles. After a while both pipes will hot and so will the house!

the down side is that it does take a little longer to get the CE working in the whole house, the advantage is that hot water is first satisfied and the stove temperature is maintained at optimum temperature for efficient burning
Julia Wilcox
13 Feb 2013, 13:00
My neighbour has installed a new wood burner, we are semi detached house and since this has been installed my wall that backs against their wall where the chimmeys are get really hot, is this usual?? Also I have light switch on this wall, will this effected by the heat??
15 Feb 2013, 13:27

This does sound a trifle strange. If there are any concerns then you can always contact the council to review. There are rules surrounding how far away a stove and flue can be from combustible materials. There must be very thin walls! between you!

26 Feb 2013, 12:46
We have just had a double sided town and country welburn fitted and have been playing trial and error with some local log suppliers with very varied results...

I bought a moisture meter off amazon and am getting some logs around 20 % and others up to 30 + % .

This has led to frustration getting the fire really going well and the glass keeps getting very mucky (which is annoying when I have two big glass doors to clean!!)
I have a log store coming today from a local fencing company so all the duff logs will be put away for next winter...

I ordered a "selection pallet" today from woofwood with a bit of everything on it to see what works best.

Any advice related to our stove would be helpful , some specific questions I have are as follows...

1 - Our stove has a grate (with an ash pan underneath) but lots of people are saying wood burns best with a bed of ash...is it safe to let the ash build up through the pan and grate ? The manual says not to do that but I wonder if that is referring to smokeless fuels?

2 - As we have glass doors on both sides , how best to stack logs / fuel? Cut ends of logs pointing to the side firebricks or pointing at the glass? Or should it not really matter if the fuel is dry?

3 - Are the blazers & hotties best left as one piece (and oriented depending on answer to #2) or broken into pieces and burnt hole pointing to the sky?

Cheers in advance for any help offered!
26 Feb 2013, 13:02
Hi Neil

Hope you enjoy your new stove and enjoy trying out the hotties and blazers. Just to answer your first question. Wood really should be burnt on an ash bed, made a huge difference to my stove once I did that. As I have a multi fuel boiler stove with a griddle, I just allowed the ash to build up. Once the first amount of ash builds up, mine hardened slightly so that there was no chance of anything coming through. I had my chimney swept first week in January, pans are only 1/4 full since then. Of course ash is created, I just take it off the top. Some of the comments about ash touching the grate is normally aimed at those burning coal and not wood.

I can't see any difference whether they face to the side or glass, as long as not touching the glass.

Have fun and keep warm

05 Mar 2013, 23:26

What are your hot tips, ( fuel/meyhod), for keeping my Villager woodburner ticking over all night if possible. Thanks
10 Mar 2013, 16:04
Well have had chance to try all the products out so far (except the wood coal which I gave to my brother)

Little hotties don't seem work too well on my stove , to burn them cleanly they get the stove too hot , if I turn down the secondary airflow I get smoky trails at the top of the flame which I reckon smut up my glass...

Similar problems with the verdo logs and straw logs , plus I didn't like the black ash the verdo logs made.

Blazers worked pretty well but I didn't like the way they expanded out.

Heatabix were great , burned very clean and lasted a long time with good heat and didn't expand all over.
Will buy these again.

But the best of the bunch were the kiln dried logs which gave a clean flame , superb heat and bright charcoal burning down to almost no ash at all, will be putting in an order for those soon

Still can't keep my glass totally clean (perhaps my expectations are too high) and the airwash doesnt seem to work very well , perhaps thats the price we have paid for having a double sided stove...but doesn't take too long to wipe clean when cold using damp kitchen roll (dipped in ash if needed to get rid of any brown residue).
11 Mar 2013, 19:54

We are getting a 6kw Woodwarm stove fitted please could you suggest the best Ecolog products for maxium heat output.

Really like the sound of the selection pallet to try out lots of new products.

Advice would be great thank you!
21 Mar 2013, 13:04

Just to say I have a Hercules 30B woodburning stove and love the hotties for starting the fire and keeping it going for a few hours, we mix this with our own seasoned wood as we found that we were going through 4 packs of hotties on a very cold day (old house, bad insulation), as suggested a good base of hotties makes burning the wood so much more efficient. I have found that our old electric storage heaters also have come in handy as I have removed the volcanic bricks from them and placed them on the top of the stove. This maintains the heat in the backboiler water overnight to ensure easy lighting in the morning.
I love the idea of the discovery pallet and look forward to trying out some of the other products available, especially those which will keep the fire going overnight.

I do have one question with regard to the wood coal. At present if I change from wood to coal I clean out the whole woodburner (including sweeping the flue) and never have the two types of fuel in together. The manufacturer stated not to use the two fuels in conjunction with each other. If I use your wood coal on a bed of hotties would this be alright?


22 Mar 2013, 21:33
Getting secondary burn?!? I am becoming obsessed with my new charnwood country 6...... We have a fantastic supplier of used whisky barrels which burn so hot it's brilliant but here's the thing.......it's like feeding a donkey strawberries!
I keep the bottom (primary) vents open when starting the fire.....the temp soon builds up so I close them 90/100%....do I need the top vent open or closed for secondary burn? At the suppliers their big stove was shut all the way down and the flames danced beautifully. How do I get the same effect and make my oak barrel logs last longer?
25 Mar 2013, 13:29

Welcome to another Charnwood users.. although I have the Charnwood country 16b so quite a bit different. The water cools the stove down quite a bit, but with the weather we having I have still to light my gas central heating. Not been used at all this winter!

I think in order to get the flames dancing nicely, you need to make sure that you have a nice bed of amber's to keep the heat temperature up. I must admit I rarely need to us the primary vents as i control mostly from the secondary. I have found that if you don't have a well established hot bed you run the risk of getting blackening.

I understand what you are saying about the whiskey barrels ( do you ave to empty them of whiskey first?). I presume that the barrels are half an inch thick or there abouts. That is probably why you get the very high temperatures, Having large pieces of wood makes it more controllable I find. Also better for creating the amber bed.

Of course I have assumed that you have a good ash bed, essential for effective burning.
25 Mar 2013, 13:54
I get a lovely bed of Amber's, but to operate the stove to its best, when it's upto say 500 degree f should I have all of the vents shut to get secondary burn or should the air wash vent be open slightly to add oxygen to enable to secondary burn? Sorry to be a pest!
26 Mar 2013, 12:19
Hello, I've just had a loxton 5 fitted and having trouble keeping the fire alight without keeping the primary vent open full. I do wait until the fire is well established, but when i try to close (even 50%) the flames don't last long and i have to reopen the primary. I've never been able to play with the secondary vent yet, that's contantly open!

Any ideas? I get a really nice, hot fire, but going through logs as there's no tomorrow!!
26 Mar 2013, 12:50
Kay, I have looked into this and secondary burns when temperature inside the firebox reaches 1.100 degrees f. I have not been able to confirm this but I have heard that250 degrees on flue equates to 400 inside the fire box.

You certainly do need to have adequate air coming in to get secondary burn. If you do not have enough air then that will not allow combustion. If on the other hand if you have too much, this may drop the temperature to the point where combustion cannot occur.

A bit of trial and error. Important though for the firebox to be hot,well seasoned wood or the eco logs that Will sells all helps.
08 Apr 2013, 11:33
Hi, just had a Burley wood burning stove put in. Very confused as to what would be the best thing to burn? Would appreciate your input. And I take it there is no problem getting deliveries to the Glasgow area?
14 Apr 2013, 10:15
Hi, I have a 1900 range which as far as I know was installed at time of build in 1900 by a company called lobbs ltd ( burton-on-Trent) the company specialised in grates and cooking ranges and I traced them back to 1930 but got no further.
Anyway the range is just a focal point in my terraced house at the moment but we would love to see it working again as it would be great to heat up my cold house.
When we bought the property the previous owner said It had been disconnected so was unusable, not sure what he meant? Did he mean from the water?
I have no idea how they work, if it is log or coal burning and no one seems to know anything about them.
Please can you help me, I can email you a picture if needed
15 May 2013, 06:38
I've just moved into a house with a Clearview 650 log burner and need some advice.
I use zip firelighters and kindling to get the fire started and have logs that burn overnight. My problem is getting the temperature to 200c. Bucket loads of kindling don't appear to get the temperature even close?
Can you please suggest something (ideally that you sell!) that gets the temperature up quickly so I can use the long burn logs?
15 May 2013, 13:24
I would suggest Blazers fuel logs,to get the stove nice and hot then use our Shredded Heat bark logs.http://www.woofwoodfuel.co.uk/blazers-fuel-logs.php.

Blazers fuel logs are also a Hetas registered biomass fuel.

Stove thermometers are great and we sell them and swear by them but do use visual clues about your fire, such as how bright the flame is and if the fire box is glowing. I would suggest using a stove thermometer with a Clearview stove.( our will do both stove and flue)
15 May 2013, 18:49
Thanks for that Will. The stove has a thermometer which is why I know I'm struggling to get past 100c, that and the fact that the room doesn't get remotely warm even after hours if having on the burner. Will order trial pack of blazers to see if they help.

18 May 2013, 10:33
It might be your fuel, but if the stove is really not working well there might be another problem. I have come across a Clearview where the throat plate was inserted the wrong way round, now this has been put right the owner says its like having a new stove and it works brilliantly. So I suggest checking with your installer or Clearview and trying our Blazers fuel logs as well! Sometimes a good Chimney sweep can spot flue and chimney problems as well.
18 May 2013, 10:57
I have just checked and the Clearview 650 does require a 7 inch or 175 mm flue pipe. I assume this is because it is a 12 Kw stove. It is more common to have a 150mm flue on the majority of smaller stoves so this might be worth checking as well.
28 May 2013, 13:32
That is really strange as Clearview are cracking stove with the ability to be used as boiler stoves too. Actually thinking about it, if you have a theremometer on the stove itself is it an external one? I was just thinking, I have a Charnwood and temp on stove never gets v v hot as it is a boiler stove hence the water acts to keep the temperature of the stove down. That would explain why yours does not heat the room up as much if heat is being taken away by the water.

Agree with Wills comments about checking out flue and chimney though. if you using all that kindle then the stove should really be roaring
Kevin Brown
08 Aug 2013, 08:16

we have an old solid fuel aga on which we burn anthracite and a Hunter Herald 8 multifuel stove which is used as a log burner. Can you recommend any of your products which could be used on both? The aga requires a slow burning/high heat fuel and the fuel feed is a 10cm opening.

Mny thanks
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25 Aug 2013, 23:59
Spent last 2 hours reading wonderful site! Thanks. I have 5kw Clearview Pioneer and have to store wood etc in garage, do not want to chop up wood (toooo old now), live in a semi 2up 2down. What would you suggest to use please? Have used stove only 3x since installed and works great with logs, but cannot move such quantities from the pavement into the garage! Thanks
27 Aug 2013, 22:13
I have been enquiring about EcoOakBriquettes which apparently are as good as 'coal'? Would be easy to store, easy to put in scuttle and shovel into fire? This with some logs, hotties, blazers and bark logs and some straw logs? Would this be the answer please? Thanks
28 Aug 2013, 14:20
I will be gettimg a Contura 880 stove installed this week and am looking forward to using this.
Can you please advise what logs would you recommend i use for this stove?
Many thanks,
christy s
29 Aug 2013, 11:30

We are installing a wood burning stove in a single storey extension. The stove will be located in a large living / dining / kitchen area.

We are advised that there should ideally be 4.5m of flue to ensure sufficient draw.

Whilst recognising that that is the ideal, we wondered whether - in view of the space being a large one - that length could be reduced slightly and to what extent. Our concern is that 4.5m flue would extend fully 2m above the flat roof height and would be a bit of an eyesore.

We've seen some wood burners that seem to have much shorter flues so wondered whether we could trim a bit of length.

Thanks for any help and advice.
Will of WOOF!
05 Sep 2013, 15:27

I have recently introduced ecoal 50 into the WOOF! range as rather ironically, this is the greenest fuel we can sell as officially smokeless. Of course there are other smokeless fuels on the market like Homefire and Homefire ovals and many many more but none quite like ecoal 50, because it has fifty percent renewable materials and fifty percent Homefire which is tried and tested 40 year old blend of high performance naturally smokeless anthracite and coal.The renewable materials are olive stones mixed with molasses as the binder and added to the Homefire. If you have a Multi- Fuel stove the performance is quite outstanding and I have managed to keep a stove in for over 12 hours. The heat output is as good if not better than any Smokeless solid fuel I have tried and using up Olive stones in this way is very important as the waste mountain from Olive oil production is quite an environmental challenge.
E-coal 50 has strong environmental credentials and whether you live in a smoke control zone or not; it is certainly a high heat long burning solid fuel. ecoal 50 will give 40% less CO2, 80% less smoke and is 38% hotter when compared to House coal. For complete convenience there is even an instant lighting pack.
For more information and prices go to http://www.woofwoodfuel.co.uk/smokeless-fuel.php
08 Sep 2013, 17:00
Does anyone have experience of Firefox stoves. They are a budget stove made in China. I have heard that unlike several stoves from this part if the world they are pretty well build. One critisism I have heard (chatted to a couple of chimney sweeps) is that they tend to burn hot and fast.

I don't want to regret scrimping, anyone have opinions on these stoves? Any recommendations for other budget 5-8k stoves? I am thinking combination wood/coal but having read what is on Woof I am coming round to the idea that there is really not much to be gained from burning coal, and that wood only would leave my concience clear from an Eco standpoint.

This raises a side question is there comparative info somewhere on comparative £ / kw hour?

Will of WOOF!
13 Sep 2013, 16:11
Product review.
It is a testament to the quality of Blazers fuel logs that they have been in the WOOF wood fuel range since we started in 2008. I estimate we must have sold over a hundred and thirty thousand packs in that time! They are produced in North Wales from home grown timber which is forest stewardship council certified (FSC) Blazers have one of the highest heat output ratings of all the wood briquettes I have ever tried at 5.5 Kw per Kg per hour.The pack weights approximately 10 kg and there are 5 individual logs in a pack, although really each log should be thought of as at least 4 ordinary logs and I would advise breaking them up into three or four pieces before burning.The thing about wood briquettes or Heat logs is that they are really a new type of solid fuel that comes somewhere between ordinary logs and coal in terms of performance and many times I think closer to coal.In fact Blazers fuel logs have been adopted by the National Trust for use to power the boiler in their iconic steam yacht Gondola on Coniston water in the Lake district.Blazers were chosen over coal for environmental and practical reasons.One of the big advantages is that they are so clean and easy to handle, having a pleasant smooth finish. The engineers even wear white boiler suits.

Blazers suit all types of Wood Burning and Multi – fuel stoves. In smaller 4-5 Kw stoves I would always break them up as in the firstly phase of lighting if burning vigorously they can start to expand, but this expansion is reduced once the fire is established.In large stoves I would just crack them in half before burning. Blazers burn with an energetic bright flame and give a lovely heat and are particularly excellent if you have a back boiler in the stove. If I have been burning seasoned wood and switch to fuel logs the performance is so much better it makes me feel like I have a new stove. The other inherent benefits of Fuel logs is the low moisture content and subsequent lower smoke resulting in cleaner chimneys with less tar and soot. You also get very little ash and any produced can be easily composted or put no a vedge patch. This is perfectly safe because there are no artificial glues or binders just the natural lignin that is already in the wood. The wood is re-formed under so much pressure 900 psi,that the lignin is squeezed out and acts as a natural resin binder.

To start a fire in your stove with Blazers I would open the pack and bang two together to break up in to some smaller pieces about two to three inches long, I would then put some kindling on top of a fire lighter and place the broken pieces rough side down on the kindling and light as usual.In a Multi fuel I would have both the primary and secondary air supply fully open while lighting with the stove door shut,and then shut off the primary air when lit; just controlling the wood briquettes with the secondary air. This is the best way for wood to burn as opposed to Coal,which likes to only have a primary air supply.
14 Sep 2013, 12:27
I would like to echo for the readers the advice given by Will on his recent post on how best to use a wood burning stove. All good advice.

I want to add a short comment on wood burning boiler stoves - I have had one for a year and a half. We use it EVERY day to heat up hot water and hot water and central heating in cooler times.

By the very nature that a boiler stove has a one inch "coat" of water means that the properties are different, it is a totally different animal. And you need to appreciate this. let me explain

I still ahve a gas central heating system ( which I have not used ONCE) since moving to wood bruning. Now 2 seconds after firing it up, it belts out 16kwh constantly. Compare that to my boiler stove which also has a capaicty of 16kWh, i light the firelighter, kindle goes up, starts burning the larger pieces etc.

Half an hour after using my gas central heating the radiators are warming up. half an hour on my wood bring stove they still cold. Why? well first of all the installation that I have allows me to heat up wood only, GCH only or a combination. I prefer to run wood only. 16kw is my optimum, may take 20 mins to get there AND then ony 8kwh goes to hot water.

there is good reason for this and if Will is willing, I am happy to explain to people why that is privately.

Why am I writing this? because a boiler stove has basically two stages 1) to heat up the water in my 180 liter water cylinder as well as all the radiators and 2) keeping it at that level.

Stage 1 I need to keep quickly and efficiently. There is no point in having a flue temp of 700 degrees as all the heat is shooting up the chimney! What you do need is consistent level of heat. This is where the logs Will is ideal, dry logs, regular burn, efficient.

Stage 2 needs a lot less energy to keep the water at temperature.

Hope that helps you guys

17 Sep 2013, 18:00
Stupid question...

I have a double sided stove (town and country Welburn).

When reloading, should I rake embers towards the sides, towards the doors or just spread evenly?

All the advice I can find is for single sided stoves which says to rake forward and then reload fuel at the back...
colin souter
25 Sep 2013, 22:49
Hi I'm dying a skagen traditional from cleanburn. Great for the first 5 months but this week .....after a total cleaning....I don't seem to be able to get a good consistent flame. This co includes with a new delivery of kiln dried logs. What is my problem? No lovely flames to watch. Mostly smouldering glow. Cheers
30 Sep 2013, 11:46
Hi, we have just had a Charnwood C5 Multifuel Stove fitted and Chimney Lined. Now the stove burns great and throws out plenty of heat,but the problem we are having is we can,t keep it in all night, in fact it burns away in about two hours tops. This is our third multifuel stove we have had over the last 20 years, and never had this problem before, even with the damper full in, you can still see it drawing away. I only burn wood, and buy solid fuel at a last resort. We have gone back to the supplier and the appear to be scatching their heads a bit !!!.

Theresa Rooney
03 Oct 2013, 13:54
We have had our morso 1416 since may.......and we are using the new heat logs.....formally hotties which are for us so much easier than the wood we had delivered which was still very damp.
I have got a stove thermometer.....and I am able to get the stove up to 350 without any problems at all..........as I am new to all this.....how do I get the stove to stay at that temperature....as when I shut the primary air off the temp falls........do I put more fuel on?
Any hints and tips greatly appreciated!
Many thanks
03 Oct 2013, 16:31
Hi Theresa, the Morso 1416 is a very well made stove - fine quality. Its great to hear that you find the WOOF! Heat Logs are better than the damp logs you were using - our Heat Logs are very dry and very dense and, being pure hardwood give a long, hot burn.
A couple of questions please if I may? Are you using a WOOF! stove thermometer? Are you reading the temperature in Fahrenheit or centigrade?
It doesn't look like you are doing anything wrong. You are making an effective fire. It's good to reduce the primary air once the Morso 1416 is up to your desired temperature. In doing this you are introducing a lot of air into the combustion to get the fire going and, in turn, at this stage quite a lot of heat is driven up the flue. Once the rate of air introduced slows the stove temperature may actually increase while the temperature of the flue falls. So it might be worth (at the point where you have a satisfactory blaze) placing the thermometer on the stove instead and seeing what reading that gives you. I hope you will find that the reading is where you wanted it to be! Do let us know how you get on. Thank you.
05 Oct 2013, 14:45
Thank you Julian for the reply.......we are new to all of this and I am sure it is a learning curve!!
I have a not got a woof stove thermometer and I am reading it in fahrenheight.
The Last two fires I did were so much better than my previous ones and the living room was lovely and warm and cosy.....so I am sure I am doing something right!
I was just a bit concerned that I was not able to keep the temp up at around 300F!!!!
However I will definitely try it on the stove to see what happens.
Also I am wondering would blazers work well in our stove?
I am really happy with the heat logs and the fire magic and have been using them in conjunction with my now dry logs to produce a great fire..
Its still quite warm up North!!
So not used the stove on a regular basis.......hoping to in the next few weeks when it gets colder and I can then let you know how we are getting along!
Many Thanks

07 Oct 2013, 17:59
Stoves under Pressure.

The outside air pressure and general weather conditions can have a tremendous effect on the way your stove operates both good and bad. It is sometimes very hard to imagine how much effect air pressure can have on the operation of your stove.I am writing this at a time where we have just been through a week when it was hardly possible to get the stove to go at all! ( 07.10.13) The last week has been unseasonably mild at about 18 degrees C during the day, but overcast and quite warm and muggy with a sort of slightly unpleasant damp air as well. This Friday night we had a terrific thunder and lightning storm with heavy rain and the next day I lit the stove at lunch time and it went straight away burning hot and bright because the storm had cleared the air.

The changes in air pressure can play havoc with stove lighting and despite all our super dry wood fuels it has been hard to get the stove to go, this is the effect of low pressure. When this happens it is best to think of the chimney as having an air lock just like you get in a water pipe,the best solution is to try and warm the chimney through before fully lighting the stove by just burning some balls of newspaper or a little bit of kindling to try and change the pressure, but there are rare occasions that nothing will work.

On the plus side, and something that makes me think nature is a wonderful thing, on a really cold clear night the stove will draw really well, giving a hot bright fire and keeping us all a little bit warmer just when we need it.
10 Oct 2013, 17:27
Hi Guys,

I have just had an "Contura 810 Woodburner" installed in my conservatory, lovely job and looks fantastic, however, have had a few niggles with the odd neighbor complaining about smoke especially when lighting...any tips on that.
It appears to burn well but flue temp' about 18" above stove is only 120 degree C, i believe it should be higher...Help
And, finally, is there any fuel out there which will burn overnight, would love to be able to do this ?

Any help much appreciated
11 Oct 2013, 15:47
Julian..........your advice was spot on!
Fired up the stove yesterday afternoon......when the stove got up to the desired temp I shut down the primary air control and then moved the thermometer to the side of the stove......it actually rose to over 350 and stayed there for quite a while.........put more logs on as and when needed....and by the time by husband arrived home later on that evening our living room was 30 degrees,
Later on we opened the living room door....to let some of the heat escape.......and this morning when I got up the house did not feel chilly at all.......so no need for the gas central heating!
Thank you so much....and Will also for all your tremendous advice.
I have been telling all my friends and family who have stoves that they must check out your website.......I have even sent them the link to it,
One final thing.....I didn't realise our house could be so warm and cosy.....can't waIt for Christmas....have the tree up and the fire on.....bliss !
Many thanks once more
15 Oct 2013, 08:44
Well done Theresa. At 30 degrees. was thinking .. you could start a bed and breakfast and dry sauna soon! That will be a first.:)

As I own a boiler stove the living room (21' by 13') also gets nice and warm and we have to open the patio doors sometimes just to make it acceptable - never did that with gas CH. Boiler stoves do operate slightly differently as they have constant circulating water so the stove top and sides (on my model) do not go above 80 degrees C ( i have an infra red gun) even though I maintain flue temp in the 300-350 range as much as possible.

Following on Julians comments, burning wood the secondary should be the only way required to control the fire burn rate.

And it is nice when the whole house warms up - I was lucky enough to get some wood from house where they had wood worm in loft rafters. All wood was cut up, kept it outside well away from any other log store and that has worked wonders:)
18 Oct 2013, 09:45
We have a Aga Ludlow SE Woodburner stove (DEFRA approved) as we are in a smoke controlled area. Can you confirm whether we can use fuel other than wooden logs.
My current understanding is this, as long as your stove is DEFRA approved for use in a smoke controlled zone then you can acquire solid fuels that are not classed as smokeless under the clean air act. The irony being that in fact not normal wood logs pass the test as a smokeless fuel. There are beginning to be some distinctions made regarding air quality between “Nuisance smoke” and light smoke. You are also allowed 20 minuets of smoke for lighting up time as until the stove and all the flue ways are hot it will not work efficiently.

The real trick to create as little smoke as possible is to start with a small fire until the stove and chimney is hot, then add just a small amount of fuel at any one time just a couple of logs for instance, then when the fire is “Established” add more perhaps larger logs and with the right balance of air they will burn slowly with little or no visible smoke.

Heat Logs, Wood Briquettes and Fuel logs are particularly good for this type of burning and give a heat and length of burn performance that is more akin to coal than traditional wooden logs.

If your stove is a true wood burning only model, with a flat floor and no grate, you will find it almost impossible to burn almost any type of coal smokeless or otherwise as it is very difficult to get it to burn without a constant primary air supply from underneath the fuel which is normally through the grate. The product we have that is called “Wood Coal” will burn with the same characteristics as wood on the flat floor of your stove using the secondary air supply to keep it going. This is because it has an amount of organic material that ignites more easily than coal. The Wood Coal will burn for very long periods of time but it is not classed as smokeless.
20 Oct 2013, 03:15
Hello! :-)
I do wonder if I could get some advice, as non of the local stove shops have being able to do so (I think that they are all too busy with Christmas coming).
I have being considering among some stoves and not sure which one would be the best, for quality - KW and physical size.
My sitting room/dining room, is split into 2, with an arch in between and the fire would be going in a corner of the wall that divides both rooms, I dought much of the heat will be transferee into the other room due the position.

Street window (sitting room) to patio doors (dinning room): 705 cm
The with of the sitting room: 425 cm
Hight of sealing 230 cm

I'm hoping to have perforated flues, this way I can have some extra warm in the rooms that the flue has to go through.

Different sites have giving me different KW, from 4.8 to 7. ?

so my choice of stoves are:

1 - Bronsley Serrano 5 SE
432w – 540h – 473d

2 - Bronsley Serrano 7 SE
608w – 540h – 488d (p.g. 8)

3 - Portway 2 contemporary stove- 7kw
500w – 588h – 295d

4 - Pioneer Clearview 400- 5kw
462w – 591h – 383d

My hole is:
920h /990 middle (it has an arch)
550d / 850D from the front to the back (triangular)

In the corner of the room, there is a wall that covers the corner, as if it was a fire place, but instate of a fire place there was an electric stove. I removed that, and manage to open a bit more the hole to the measurement I mentioned. I can't make it taller or wider with out putting the whole construction into risk of falling of. I would prefer obviously not having to bring to much forward the stove, as it would be eating into the small place I have left in the sitting room (I had to choose between a book case or a TV, I choose a book case, so I have no TV in the house, lol).

Could you pleaseeeeeeeeeeeee give me some advice? I would send you some pics but not sure how to insert pics here.
which stove is made of quality to last "forever". I have MS, and I will only be able to do this "1" as I have no possible way of earning any income apart from my disability allowance (which that could be gone at any time, with all the new government regulations). I do not want to be boiling, just nice and comfortable. I can leave the door of the kitchen open (which is beside the dinning room (dinning room + kitchen is similar W than that the sitting room).

Not sure if any of this make sense, it does in my head, lol.

Is there any advice that you could offer?
thank you

Graham Telfer
22 Oct 2013, 07:53
I read this on an American site:

The dryer the wood, the more dense is the smoke at a given heat input rate.

On another American site I read this:

When wood is too dry – even good hard wood – combustible gasses are emitted too quickly in the burning process. The fire burns fast and furious, forcing the stove user to damp the stove down.

In an "airtight" stove this leads to a smoky fire, since there is not enough air entering the stove for complete combustion. And that means wasted fuel in the form of unburned smoke, greater creosote buildup in the flue, and more pollution.

Since ecologs are "super dry" by this measure surely they are extremely bad for modern stoves; or are these American commentators talking a load of guff?
30 Oct 2013, 12:48

Strange comments from across the pond. As an analogy..So your car is driving too fast too furious ( good film title I think!) "forcing the car user to press the brake peddle!"

the whole point of controlling the secondary airflow is to ensure that you get the right amount of air into stove to achieve the optimum burnign conditions on your stove, the fuel you are using etc. A car does not drive at 1mph or 70 mph only, it is possible to drive at 30 40 50 0r 60!

You want to control the flames to suit the fire and stove e.g. you let more air in at start of the fire (when you have lot of flame less heat) or when reloading compared to when you have a well established ember where you have less flames but more heat.

Hetas regs
01 Nov 2013, 23:07
Comment post 20 oct
Reading between the lines it's not all great. One flue per fire / stove. The flue liner should be installed and insulated for the best performance from the stove and also ease of lighting.
Running a stove at peek out put is deemed to be the best for efficient use of fuel as gasiforcation takes place in a hotter combustion chamber, hotter, better the burn.
Go for a stove with an out put rating of 5kw that way you don't have to have an air vent installed.
The opening is a good size however the back of the opening could do with resizing of squaring off.
The new broseley fires are ok the early one were poo!
Clearview haven't changed their design for over 20 years
The portway is a little clunky when in operation.

Heats regs
01 Nov 2013, 23:17
Massage for Andy

Get the fire box hot first place 5-8 sheets of news paper in the fire box and light it close the door on the catch so it is held open open the primary air so it burns fast. Once the paper has burnt out re lay the fire with " DRY KINDLING "
At least a good hand full light this and then once it gets going start to build up the fire. The smoke is caused by loading to much fuel in to the fire box and cooling down the combustion chamber.
Hetas regs
01 Nov 2013, 23:46
The Charnwood c5 is defra as an option
If you have a defra unit it will never stay in over night. Most manufactures tweet the air wash to get the defra approval, more air for combustion so no smoke.
The Germans and scandics do it with tertiary air control!
This is when the incoming air is warmed by the flue gasses so when it enters the combustion chamber it's already at 150-200 degrees. nice clean glass!,,,,
Graham Telfer
09 Nov 2013, 07:22
A comment about thermometers

Our stove is a convection type. This means the steel firebox is enclosed in a steel jacket. Air is heated as it travels up the channel between the jacket and firebox.

The advantage of a convection stove is that the top and sides do not get as hot as a radiant stove. This is safer if you have young children or are older.

However stove top thermometers are unreliable with a convection stove because the temperature scale is rated for radiant stoves only and trying to get a convection stove up to a safe burn temperature based on such a thermometer reading is not a good idea.

I have not found a thermometer on the market with a scale for a convection stove. It is a pity that stove manufactures do not incorporate thermometers in their stoves as part of the design.
03 Dec 2013, 09:54
Now the cold weather is here I have been re-testing ecoal50 in our big hunter herald boiler stove and I have to say I am impressed.ecoal50 is made by CPL the coal merchants to the Queen, and they have been making the market leading brand of smokeless coal for over 40 years since the clean air act required smokeless coal.The trusted brand is called Homefire which comes and compresses coal briquettes in either hexagonal or oval shapes.Ecoal50 is a fantastic developement with 50% renewable materials added to the origionla high quality Homefire mix of smokeless fuels.It seems to give just as much heat and will last for up to 18 hours in our stove keeping the watewr hot and the house cosy.The great thing is you also know it is far more eco than nornal house coal or other smokeless coal. Their seems to be less ash and it is cleaner and easy to handle compared to other coal ash I have had to deal with.Well worth a try.
04 Dec 2013, 14:48
we've just bought an arrow 7kw inset multi-fuel stove after having an open fire for nigh on 40 years. we are lucky enough to have our own wood supply and I was wondering how long you would recommend for logs to be left to season before burning on a stove?
08 Dec 2013, 09:36
Hi. We are new to wood burners and are looking at buying the contemporary-looking Morso 7443 5.7kw for our new kitchen diner (5m x 6m). It has a heat convector I think, and we're planning to put in a direct air pipe because of the cooker extractor and because we are building a new wall anyway. Will it be too hot to put the table and chairs of the diner area near the stove? Im worried about it being uncomfortably hot to sit and eat long meals nearby.Do we need something smaller and if so what is there, as not many stoves come out below 5kw?

Many thanks for your help.
08 Dec 2013, 21:04
Having just bought a house with a meltifuel syove in it, I googled the make ( A coalbrookdale Severn) and found out that as it had a thermostat wheel on the side it has a boiler in it and its advised not to run it without water in. It appears that the 4 pipes on the back have never been connected up and yet it has been used for years. will the boiler part now be useless?
Is it safe?
05 Jan 2014, 22:24
Hi, i would like some advice on whether to go for a wood burning or multi fuel stove. I know that only wood can go in a wood burner but can this type of stove burn wood overnight, and can it be left burning while i'm out at work? I would like a stove not just to reduce bills but to heat the house up better and for longer. (I only have my gas central heating on for a couple of hours a day unless its really cold). I had the chimney swept and smoke tested several years ago and it failed the smoke test, the room is about 4 x4m. Its a mid terrace house with a hallway. Any advice would be appreciated, many thanks Marie.
12 Jan 2014, 16:49
I have a contura 810 woodburner fitted into my open plan conservatory. Can I use firelight brickets to keep it in overnight.
07 Apr 2014, 21:41
Hi. We have just installed a Charnwood c4 but don't seem to get much heat off it. Our room is around 4 x 6 metres. It seems to eat logs up. What would you recommend for longer and greater heat?
16 Apr 2014, 13:28
Phed confused a little by your comment. I recently read a very positive report on someone using a Charnwood C4 in an 10 x 4 room). If your stove is "eating up logs" that would suggest that perhaps your have too much air coming in through the primary and secondary.. but then you should be using dried wood (I always check on moisture content of wood first - I don't believe that the suppliers always provide dry wood!) so maybe worthwhile investing in a meter.

29 Apr 2014, 10:28
I have a 14kw Invicta inset wood burner. I want to put something above it i.e a mantel or Mirror but it gets so hot on the wall from the heat coming out of the vents. Anyone have any ideas or advice on what I could put above? I don't want my wall to look too cluttered.
02 Jun 2014, 00:21
Hi, I've recently had a Contura 5L Defra wood burning stove installed but have noticed that when I light it the flames blow to the right as I am facing the fire. Now the right side, of the inside of the firebox is black, whilst the left side is quite clear as it was when it was installed.
When I light a fire I leave the door on the first notch, which leaves the door slightly open, as recommended. The door opens on the right side and I have the damper? fully open.
Later, I close the door fully and then control the fire by the damper.
To experiment, I left the door slightly open when I lit a fire and closed the damper and the flames were central and not leaning to the right. Is this the way I should go?
Also, can I clean the right side or will I have to have it replaced at some time. Any advise would be so helpfull as I am new to wood burning stoves
10 Jun 2014, 12:12

I have put floor tiles floor to ceiling my stove that can hold the heat and make more of a feature of the room

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