Blog about fireplaces and stoves in Mallorca

Tips for lighting a good fire

Sometimes lighting the fire can be difficult. Anyone who has ever come home to a cold house in winter knows that there are many ways to light a fire. This is one of those ways that makes the process easier and is also better for the environment.

Experts often differentiate between top down and bottom up ignition, where the ignition starts either above or below. We prefer top down ignition. This method produces less soot and ash, ensures a better air supply to the fire and allows the first load of wood to last longer.

For the first ignition, and to get it right the first time, this is what is needed:

  • A couple of large logs
  • Between 8 and 12 small pieces of wood chips or small firewood
  • Ignition pads
  • Matches

Step 1 Air and wood

Make sure that the air inlets to the stove are fully open. Place logs at least the thickness of a fist at the base of the hearth. The logs must be clean and dry.

Step 2 Small firewood

Add a layer of small firewood or wood chips, even better if there are two or three layers. Remember that airflow is important – a distance of about 1 cm between pieces of firewood is ideal. Small firewood should not be thick, small logs or chips between two and four centimeters thick are ideal.

Step 3 Ignition pads

Place a couple of kindling tablets on top of the small firewood or use newspaper. Even better if you use some small pre-treated ecological material for lighting. Note that ignition with newspaper is particularly polluting and contributes to soot formation in the chimney.

Step 4 Light the fire

The last step is the easiest, turn on and close the door. Some chimneys need more time than others to create a good draft, especially brick chimneys. If the draft is not sufficient, it may be a good idea to open the stove door slightly until the stove is hot. If the dwelling is “too well” insulated, it may be necessary to open a window. The same recommendation applies if any mechanical extractor fan (kitchen hood) is in operation.

Some comments

As the firewood burns, the amount of gases it emits increases. Jøtul’s wood-burning stoves are clean-burning stoves. This means that the combustion chamber is designed to burn the gases before they escape through the flue, thereby improving efficiency and reducing pollutant emissions.

As the duct heats up, the natural draft increases. It is therefore recommended that the air supply be gradually reduced as the fire gathers strength.

If you follow these guidelines and light the fire with a couple of thick logs, the first load of firewood will last an hour. When it has become embers, you can open the door and add more firewood. It is recommended to leave the door ajar for a few seconds before opening it fully. In this way, we guarantee that the chimney flue will carry away the gases that remain inside the combustion chamber and avoid smoke plaster in the room.

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