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Problems getting your fire started in cold weather?
When it’s really cold outside, smoke may “blow” back into the room when lighting a fire. This can happen when dense cold air creates a “plug” in the chimney that stops the initial smoke flowing up the flue.To overcome this it is important to push the plug of cold air up the chimney with a rush of hot air. The following tips often help:

  • Place loose balls of newspaper or use firelighters such as Flamers at the back of the fire or stove, then light them with all the air vents open. This should create rush of hot air to push the cold plug of air up the flue. Opening the stove door slightly can also create a forced draught.
  • You will see the smoke suddenly disappear when the plug is cleared from the flue.
  • Add more newspaper if needed until a strong updraft is established.
  • Once an updraft is created, use paper and kindling to get the fire started, and gradually add larger pieces of firewood as normal.
  • Always make sure good dry wood is used as damp wood will add to the problem of smoking. Have the chimney swept regularly as blow back of smoke can also indicate a blockage or restriction in the flue.

The Happy Forrester

PS. If all else fails then a hair dryer can help solve the problem when blown up the chimney to warm the flue before lighting the stove!! Simple!

Wood Nymph