All About Stoves
The baffle plate inside every stove is what makes a stove efficient. This plate is located inside the stove at the top of room heaters and at the top or back of boiler stoves (some boiler stoves don’t have baffles as the boiler itself acts as a baffle) it is removable and should be easily accessible for monthly cleaning. Not cleaning your baffle to the recommended manufacturers maintenance guidelines can cause smoking problems (and even lead to a chimney fire) as fuel gathers up on top of it, and may result in it restricting the airflow to the chimney.
Without a baffle a stove is more like an open fire. When the flames, fuel and heat rises to the top of the stove they hit the baffle before being drawn around baffle to the exit and flue. Some fuels (mostly timber) don’t fully complete the combustion stages in the initial fire and the left over particles will hit the baffle and fall back down to burn again giving greater efficiency from your fuel. A baffle may become moved or dislodged by over filling the stove or poor attention by the user. Always ensure that the baffle is in the designated area for it to be placed or this may cause server problems with air flow
- Required for efficiency
- Needs frequent cleaning
- Always make sure the baffle is inserted correctly
Air is the key ingredient of any solid fuel appliance or stove. A stove transfers its heat to a room as air passes over, under and around it. Cold air is continuously passing over the stove while the heated air raises up.
Different manufactures have different requirements for a minimum of air flow to be available around, under and on top of the appliance/stove. Without sufficient air flow the stove will not be able to deliver sufficient heat to the room, also whilst running the risk of the overheating and cracking the stove.
The current minimum of airflow for around an appliance is 50mm by building regulations, however always check the manufacturers guidelines for each individual stove.
- Stoves heat passing air
- There are minimum space requirements
What Do The Vents Do?
This is one of the most important aspects of any stove or appliance. Air control is key to getting the right kw and efficiency from your stove.
A stove with to much air flow will be burning fuels at a high rate and losing heat up the chimney and expelling its fuel quickly. A stove without sufficient air flow is just as bad if not worse! Not burning fuels at the right temperature and causing the chimney and inner stove to tar up, as gases aren’t being ejected/propelled up the chimney with assisted airflow and even causing oxygen itself being sucked in excess from the fuel itself causing tarring.
To Much Air:
- Heat Loss
- Excessive Fuel
- Loss of efficiency
To Little Air:
- Heat Loss
- Tarring up appliance
- Tarring up chimney
- Smoke into the room
- Loss of efficiency
Primary Vent (Bottom):
This is the vent usually at the bottom of the stove and normally placed on the front door. This is the main intake of the stove and designed specifically for the burning of solid fuels such as coals, peat, turf, briquettes and anthracite.This vent is required to be fully opened when lighting a stove.
Stoves with an overnight capacity usually requires you to close this vent fully and make a half a turn back open to put it in slum mode.
Secondary Vent (Top):
This vent is primarily at the top of each of stove, however some models now have the air intake for this at the back of the stove. This vent has two major functions:
1: Wood burning
Timber burns much more efficiently and evenly with air flow travelling around it. Using only the top air flow is a must to get the most out of burning timber whilst keeping the bottom (Primary) Closed.
2: Glass cleaning
Keeping the top air vent open, while keeping the bottom air vent closed will cause a certain amount of air to pulled down by the glass and back up under the grate. This heated air passing by the window over a short period of time will clean the glass. Never use abrasive materials for cleaning the glass – especially the ashes from the stove. There are many recommended solvents on the market for cleaning glass.
Always use only recommended fuels for you stove. Never burn household waste or plastic in your stove. Burning the incorrect fuels may damage your stove or chimney and may result in a chimney fire. Burning the wrong fuels will result in manufacturer warranties becoming void for your stove and chimney liner.
Coals and fuels for open fires are not allowed to be burnt in stoves. There are chemicals in coals and manufactured logs for open fires that will cause your stove to over heat and warp. Always make sure your fuel labels states it is suitable for stoves or closed appliances.