Tips for Burning Seasoned Wood with Air Quality in Mind
Did you know that even seasoned firewood can produce air quality issues when it’s not burned properly? Below are some good tips on how to avoid this from the Benton Clean Air Agency in Washington that apply here in Interior Alaska, too. Click here for the page in which this information can be found.
THE FIRE: GIVE IT AIR!
The right amount of air gives you a hotter fire and more complete combustion. That translates to more heat from your wood and less smoke and pollution. Here are some cleaner burning tips:
- Build small, hot fires. Don’t add too much fuel at one time.
- Step outside and check the chimney or flue. If you can see smoke, your fire may need more air.
- Read and follow the stove manufacturer’s instructions.
- Don’t “bank” the stove full of wood and damper down the air supply. This wastes wood, produces much air pollution, promotes accumulation of creosote (which requires more frequent cleaning and can lead to chimney fires) and yields very little heat. Half-full is adequate; it provides enough air space for efficient combustion.
- Don’t damper down too far. Allow enough air to reach the wood. This varies among models and kinds of stoves.
- Make sure your stove is the right size for your home. Too large a stove will overheat your living space. You’ll want to damper down. This causes added pollution and wastes wood.
- Don’t burn in moderate temperatures. You’ll want to damper down, which causes more pollution and wastes wood.
- Don’t burn when air currents carry your smoke to your neighbor’s yard or house.
- Only burn dry, seasoned firewood, never garbage. Burning garbage is illegal in the state of Washington and creates a greater health hazard.