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Fireplaces and Fireplace Alternatives

Fireplaces and Fireplace Alternatives

When you chose a new wood-burning stove it’s not just a stove you are choosing.

 

We know a new stove is often just one part of a whole redesign in your home, whether that is in a new extension living space, , re-vamped kitchen or cozying up your lounge, all of these installations require more than just the stove itself.

A traditional fireplace re-design brings opportunities for new hearths and fireplace surrounds with a whole range of products available from beautifully elegant limestone to rustic aged oak. A design style that is currently trending is for oak ‘floating’ beam mantle shelves which can be chosen in a range of finishes and colour gradients to suit your specific preference for design style.  Focus Fireplaces have a wide range to choose from including solid wood oak surrounds. Manor House Stoves are able to advise, supply and install a range of fireplaces including bespoke stone fireplaces.  I think we can all agree that nothing is quite as homely or festive at this time of year as a wood stove in a cosy fireplace!

However  the trend in recent years has also extended beyond the traditional “fireplace” design, the joy of a wood-burning stove being is that it does not need a “fireplace” as such, it can be installed as a stand-alone statement piece in a living space. In these designs the flue pipe is left visible forming part of the overall design and the finishing of wall behind the stove and hearth is where you can bring your own individual style and interior design to create a whole new look to fireplaces!

Some of our recent favourite installations have been of this style incorporating new innovative ways to create a centrepiece for your room with enamelled heat shield panels and hearth bases,  to decorative glass hearths;  we have collected some of our highlights from our manufacturers below.

At this year’s hearth and home show Vlaze teamed up with Charnwood Stoves to launch both of their new offerings, these heat shield panels come in a myriad of designs and colours to fit in with any room. From exotic leaves to intricate patterns there is a design to highlight any room!

We have also really enjoyed the resurgence of glass hearths, these specifically designed toughened glass pads offer a modern edge to homes where perhaps a traditional stone setting would not be the most fitting. Often, but not always used in more modern properties, they are regularly teamed with a tiled wall, creating the feel of a static fireplace without the need to build one.

But not all modern stoves are static! There are a range of contemporary stoves that have the option of turntable bases so that in open-plan rooms the stove can be rotated to face either direction as your daily activities move – to the dining table area while you’re eating,  to the lounging space when relaxing.  This brings a whole new design opportunity for the ‘fireplace’ and the expert staff at Manor House Stoves will not only help you find your perfect hearth and design treatment for the surrounding area but also advise you on the building regulation requirements to ensure your final choice is safe as well as beautiful-looking.

At Manor House Stoves we have a full range of stoves on display all of which are SIA EcoDesign Ready meaning they provide much cleaner burn and we have a range of styles to suit any taste and room specification – so whether you are looking for a traditional stove for a traditional fireplace or a modern stand-alone design piece we have the stove for you.

Summer Sweeping and Servicing

Summer Sweeping and Servicing

Summer is the perfect time to sweep and service your stove ready for the chill in the air come September..

Happily, during this barmy summer weather its unlikley you’ll be needing to fire up your stove, it is however really important to leave it in a state that prevents condensation, and as a consequence corrosion. It’s ideal to take this opportunity to get your stove cleaned, serviced and ready for when the nights draw in.

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It’s really important for the life of your stove that you have the stove and flue thoroughly swept out annually.

Makesure that all sooty deposits are removed from sitting on the top side of the baffle or throat plate. Remove all the loose parts in your stove and give the fire-box a good vacuum, check the condition of the firebricks and replace if they are broken or have cracks right through the brick. Hairline cracks are not a worry but you must keep an eye on them for deterioration.

Check that the door rope seals still provide and air tight seal; once all parts are back in place you can check this by closing the door, opening the vents and then holding a candle flame to the door edges and taking it around all sides.  If the flame is being sucked-in to the door it indicates that air is being drawn through the door seal and replacement rope is likely needed.

 Open all the vents while not in used during the warmer months maintaining ventilation in the flue system to prevent condensation which leads to erosion. Spraying the inside of the door and firebox with a light oil such as WD40 will also help to keep all internal parts working well while the appliance is not in use.

 

Stuv 30

We talked to our sweep of choice Thomas from Stovely and he gave us his top tips for keeping your stove working well and being fire ready for Autumn. 

“When your chimney sweep arrives to do the annual liner sweep and stove service, it’s an opportunity for you to find out how you’ve been getting on with the logs you’ve been burning and if you’ve got the right balance of air intake from the moment of lighting the stove, running it at the best heat level and allowing it to die down correctly at the end of the day. This is especially useful after your stove’s first winter. 

We can tell a lot from the deposits we remove during the liner sweep. We’re looking for soot that looks like black powder paint to know that the logs you’re burning have the right minimummoisture content and that you’re lighting and running the stove using the air vents correctly to run a fire that is not roaring flames but also not so starved of air that the logs are ‘slumbering’ and not fully combusting. 

On the other hand, if what we see are shiny, crispy and shard-like deposits it is likely your logs have too high a moisture content or you’re consistently running the stove with insufficient air being allowed into the stove, both of which mean the stove cannot generate the amount of heat required to fully combust the logs. It is likely in this scenario that sticky tar deposits can be seen in the stove interior and on the inside of the door and glass.

Consistently running the stove like this not only creates a less pleasant looking door glass but can become a fire and carbon monoxide risk. It also means the liner will tarr up and the stove is producing and expelling dangerous particulates into the atmosphere. Your chimney sweep will be able to advise you and if necessary, check the moisture content of your logs.

As part of a full stove service your sweep will also check your stove for wear and tear and carry-out the replacement of bricks and rope seals as necessary. As Stovely works closely with customers of Manor House Stoves together we can usually identify any required stove parts – even on the really old model stoves! – and get them ordered, as well as providing an annual sweep and service reminder right from the time of installation. To enquire about a sweep and service or set up an annual reminder please contact me at thomas@stovely.co.uk 07870662341″

Ford Logs – Our Trusted Log Suppliers

Ford Logs – Our Trusted Log Suppliers

Manor House Stoves regularly use firewood from Ford Logs in our showrooms and at home, and are happy to recommend them to our customers. Ford Logs are an Oxfordshire based, Woodsure certified supplier of quality kiln dried hardwood logs. Their logs are barn stored, fully seasoned (less than 15% moisture) and sustainably sourced exclusively from UK suppliers. Woodsure Accreditation means customers can rely on receiving a product which consistently meets rigorous quality and environmental standards.

Established in 2009, Ford Logs supply primarily Beech, Ash, Cherry and Oak which naturally burn slowly and with excellent heat. Once kiln dried, these slower growing hardwoods provide customers with an even greater heat output and a cleaner burn. This is far better for the environment than traditional firewood as there is less pollution created by the hotter burn. Ultimately kiln drying saves you money on firewood and reduces logging and deliveries. Most stove manufacturers recommend burning kiln dried wood as it is kinder to your stove and chimney liner. 

Ford Logs also offer natural firelighters, kindling and free local delivery.  Find out more at https://www.fordlogs.co.uk