Open fire or Log Burner?
Open fire or Log Burner?
An open fire is certainly the quickest and cheapest set up all you need is a chimney and a dog grate. Coal, logs, recycled heat logs you can burn all fuel types in an open fire place.
Log Burners require a lot more work and money, but will use a much smaller amount of fuel and provide more heat. They can be fitted into a fire place or any where in your home as long as flue can be fitted. This is where it gets more costly, budget £2k plus for a stove (more if you decide on a designer stove) and expect fitters to be at your home over 2-3 days depending your choice of materials. Stoves are much cleaner than an open fire and safer for children, although a fire guard should still be purchased.
What you can or cannot burn in your fire depends where you live. Many parts of the UK are smoke control areas which means you can only burn authorised fuel. Not sure check with your fitter or council.
In terms of fuel there are different types to suit all budgets:
You can now buy smoke free coal for a smoke controlled area as they produce less smoke and less C02. There are also different shapes and sizes to choose from, some are more dense and will have a longer burning time than others. All types can be used for both open fires and stoves. Ask your coal merchant for advice when buying to make sure you get the right type for your needs.
Kindling is cheap off cuts that are for lighting the fire or stove, you can make your own by saving collecting of cuts of wood.
Kiln dried logs – Ideal for use for wood burners and multi-fuel stoves, they have a high heat output and are efficient.
Seasoned dried logs – Ideal for use for open fires, wood burners and multi-fuel stoves, these can't be burnt when first bought, they need to have a drying time of between 1-2 weeks.
Unseasoned logs – Ideal for open fires, these are great if your budget is tight, but you'd need to buy them in the summer and store them in the dry to make sure they are ready for winter.
Heat logs – Ideal for open fires, wood burners and multi-fuel stoves, these are made from 100 per cent wood waste so are eco-friendly and can be used straightaway.
Whatever you decide upon;
Make sure you fit a carbon monoxide detector.
Make sure you have your chimney swept yearly, ask friends for recommendations.
Make sure you store your fuel in a dry place. Moisture and fire results in smoke and sizzling!