What is a solid fuel appliance?
Basically, it is any heater that uses wood, wood pellets, coal or even agricultural crops – corn, for instance - as a fuel. These appliances are
items that most people are familiar with: wood stoves,
coal stoves, wood pellet stoves, fireplaces - both masonry
and factory built
All the appliances you have in the home operate more reliably, efficiently and, most
importantly, safely, if they are installed and serviced correctly. Solid fuel appliances are no exception to this and following these few simple guidelines will ensure safe and efficient operation.
Ventilation Air is Vital - Heating appliances, whatever fuel they burn, need to be able to 'breathe' in order to function
efficiently and safely. To 'breathe', they need a constant and sufficient flow of air so the room must not be completely airtight. If your home has draft-proofing or double-glazing fitted you may need vents in an
exterior wall of the room. If vents are already there always ensure they are not blocked or covered. If in
doubt contact your local heating engineer to check your ventilation.
Flue Cleaning - To enable your appliance to 'breathe' efficiently it is absolutely essential that you do not
allow soot or ash to build up where it can hinder or prevent the free flow of smoke and other products of combustion.
- Empty and check the ash pan every day.
- Flues at the back of the boiler should be cleaned once a week, but always let the fire go out and allow ashes to cool before cleaning.
- The throat plates at the top of the room heater should be removed and cleaned monthly.
- Have your chimney swept at least once every year, preferably before each winter. Always use a recommended chimney sweep. Check in your local Yellow Pages for a list of members in your
Your Safety Checklist
- Proper ventilation.
- Regular cleaning and sweeping.
- Always use the right fuel.
- Never leave an open fire unattended without a fireguard.
- Always use a securely fitted fireguard when children are in the house.
If your appliance begins to burn slowly, goes out frequently or if you smell or suspect fumes:
- Open doors and windows.
- Carefully put out the fire, or allow it to burn itself out.
- Do not stay in the room any longer than necessary.
- Do not attempt to re-light the appliance until a professional
has checked it.