Let’s clear the air

For the sake of everyone’s lungs, (and your own pocket book) let’s improve our wood-burning habits

Let’s clear the air

Is it just me, or is there an awful lot of blue haze clouding our skies lately?

I am not against wood-fired heating. But I do get pissy when people buy new high efficiency wood-stoves and do not operate them properly. These slow burn stoves with secondary combustion chambers only burn clean when they are first brought up to full-throttle before shutting down the primary air supply. Same goes when reloading. When the secondary combustion chamber does not get hot enough the whole process crashes into a smoulder. Attempting to burn green and/or damp wood will also cause the system to crash.

Given our long history of smouldering stoves here in the Valley this might be hard to believe, but when a modern wood-stove is running anywhere near the touted 75 per cent combustion efficiency, it exhausts neither smoke nor smell. Achieving such efficiency involves careful storage of fuel, careful loading of the fire box to ensure rapid combustion ramp up, and careful timing when damping down into secondary combustion.

To all the wood-stove operators out there, please, for the sake of everyone’s lungs, (and your own pocket book) let’s improve our wood-burning habits and clear the air.

Pat Amos


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