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3 December 2020

How to Keep your Fire Burning

Lighting your fire is the first step in wood-burning but keeping the fire burning hot requires more technicalities than many people realise. It all comes down to the components of the ‘Fire Triangle’ – the 3 requirements for Fire. These are Oxygen, Heat, and Fuel (logs in our case!).

In this blog, we will give you tips and tricks on how to keep your fire burning hot. Tips and tricks on lighting your fire can be found here.

A classic sign that your fire isn’t burning hot enough is that the fire is smoking or it keeps going out.

1. Adding Logs to the Fire

To get an efficient burn you need to burn more than one log at a time. The logs also need to be in contact with one another. This enables the transfer of heat and flames to get the fire burning hotter than when burning one log alone.

Adding logs at a slanted angle / leaning up slightly rather than flat will also increase the air flow and create a better burn. Laying logs flat doesn’t provide enough room for flames and reduces the air draw meaning the logs are more likely to smoke.

Multiple logs added to the fire at a slanted angle

2. Log Size

Start off by adding smaller logs to the fire until it gets hot. Once the fire is going well with small logs, larger logs can be added. Adding big logs to the fire straight away can slow the burn and reduce all the heat created from lighting the fire. The fire can be regulated by the size of log added. For example, bigger logs will burn slower than small ones.

3. Air Vents

The air vents in a fireplace can help you regulate how fast or slow the logs burn. When starting your fire, you want all the air vents to be fully open so there is sufficient oxygen. Only once the fire is burning hot should these vents be adjusted. Each fireplace is different but usually closing the vents down to halfway is enough to slow the fire down whilst keeping it burning. Closing the air vents completely reduces the heat, causing the fire to smoke and may even put your fire out.

Modern houses can be extremely airtight meaning even with the air vents fully open, it is difficult to start the fire. In this case slightly opening a window opposite your fireplace can help create enough airflow to get the fire going. Once the fire is alight and hot the window can be closed.

4. Preparing Logs for the Fire

Our seasoned logs and Kin Dried logs are both ready to burn. However, if you are struggling to get your fire burning hot enough, another thing that can help is preparing logs for your next fire. Bringing logs inside the day before you want your fire can help them dry out even more and bring them to room temperature meaning they will require less energy to light and burn hotter than cold logs straight from outside.

5. Ensure your Chimney is Swept

Your chimney should be swept at least once a year. This removes any soot, dirt, and creosote from your chimney leaving a clean passage. Having a clean chimney will create a better draw which helps the airflow, whilst also reducing the risk of chimney fires.

6. An Ash Bed

The bed of ash doesn’t have to be cleaned out between each fire. Wood tends to burn better on a bed of ash. Leaving a couple of inches of ash in the base of your fire can help the burn.

A lot of factors can affect the way your fire burns. From wood species burning differently due to their differing densities, to how still the outdoor air is, the ease of keeping your fire burning can change day to day. We hope that this and our tips and tricks for lighting a fire posts will help you to enjoy a warm fire during the winter evenings.