Is it safe to use a wood burning fireplace?

Wood burning stoves can be very safe appliances if installed, used and maintained correctly. By design, wood stoves can be considered to be safer compared to open wood burning fireplaces because the fire is kept behind a sealed door, while any byproducts from a stove fire must leave your home through a sealed flue.

How do I know if my wood-burning fireplace is safe to use?

5 Easy Steps to Make Sure Your Fireplace Is Safe

  1. #1 Examine the Firebox. Look for any cracks, gaps, or signs of wear in the lining of the firebox (the interior of the fireplace). …
  2. #2 Look for Telltale Smoke Stains. …
  3. #3 Make Sure Your Grate Is the Right Size. …
  4. #4 Check the Chimney. …
  5. #5 Double-Check Your Fire Extinguisher.

Can I use my wood-burning fireplace?

Select the firewood you want to use in your fireplace. Only use wood that has been seasoned for at least six months, otherwise it will be too wet to burn properly. Do not burn pine in your fireplace because it causes creosote buildup and puts your home at risk for chimney fires.

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How do you make a wood-burning fireplace safe?

To Burn a Fire Safely, Build It Slowly, Adding More Wood as It Heats. Keep the damper of your wood fireplace completely open to increase draw in the early stages. Burn the fire hot, at least occasionally—with the damper all the way open to help prevent smoke from lingering in the fireplace and creosote from developing.

How toxic is burning wood in the fireplace?

Although the image of a log fire is often associated with the holidays, romance and cozy nights inside shielded from plummeting temperatures, experts say wood-burning appliances are a threat to lung and heart health. They emit harmful air pollutants and fine particles that can enter the lungs and bloodstream.

Can you get carbon monoxide poisoning from a wood burning fireplace?

It’s also the most dangerous and deadly. The direct answer to the question above is: yes. Your gas, pellet or wood burning stove, insert or fireplace will produce carbon monoxide. All heating appliances should be vented to the outside.

Should I be able to smell my gas fireplace?

Although it is normal for a fireplace to omit a slight odor, it is important to take proper precautions if you think you may smell a potential gas leak. Natural gas itself is odorless, but has an additive that makes it smell like rotten eggs.

Should you open a window when you have a fire in the fireplace?

Open a window when using the fireplace to prevent the room from becoming smoky. The air coming in from the window will go up the chimney. Before making a fire, open the glass doors, pull aside the screen curtains, and place the kindling, newspaper and logs inside. … The window needs to be open only a few inches.

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What do I need to know about wood burning fireplaces?

What You Need to Know When Burning Wood

  • Get an annual chimney check. …
  • Keep it clear. …
  • Install a chimney cap to keep debris and animals out of the chimney.
  • Choose the right fuel. …
  • Build it right. …
  • Keep the hearth area clear. …
  • Use a fireplace screen. …
  • Install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

Why should you never burn plastic items in a fireplace?

Plastic. It doesn’t matter what type of plastic you have—plastic bags, bubble wrap, plastic bottles or cartons—never throw it in the fireplace. When burned, plastic releases harmful chemicals that can be dangerous for your health.

What should you not burn in a fireplace?

10 Things You Should Never Burn in Your Fireplace or Woodstove

  • Wet wood. Wet, or unseasoned, firewood can contain up to 45 percent water. …
  • Christmas trees. …
  • Painted or treated lumber. …
  • Any type of paper with colored print. …
  • Plywood, particle board, or chipboard. …
  • Fire accelerants or fire starters. …
  • Plastics. …
  • Dyer lint.

Do all chimneys need to be cleaned?

The National Fire Protection Association says, “Chimneys, fireplaces, and vents shall be inspected at least once a year for soundness, freedom from deposits, and correct clearances. … Some heavy use fireplaces produce an incredible amount of soot and creosote during a cleaning.

Fire safety