The chill in the air outside makes this the perfect time to want to cozy up to a fire in your fireplace, firepit or wood-burning stove. But don’t let the warmth and ambiance of a crackling fire be ruined by harmful, smelly smoke!
Here are some Best Burn Practices from the EPA website to help insure that your fire helps to ignite all the right romantic sparks while NOT igniting any dangerous ones:
- Season wood outdoors through the summer for at least 6 months before burning it. Properly seasoned wood is darker, has cracks in the end grain, and sounds hollow when smacked against another piece of wood.
- Wood burns best when the moisture content is less than 20 percent. You can purchase a wood moisture meter to test the moisture content of your wood before you burn it.
- Store wood outdoors, stacked neatly off the ground with the top covered.
Modular wood shed plans and materials list (PDF) (2pp, 205k)
- Burn only dry, well-seasoned wood that has been split properly.
Wood Smoke Brochure: Wet Wood is a Waste (PDF) (2pp, 881k)
- Start fires with newspaper and dry kindling or consider having a professional install a natural gas or propane log lighter in your open fireplace.
- Burn hot fires.
- To maintain proper airflow, regularly remove ashes from your wood-burning appliance into a metal container with a cover and store outdoors.
The EPA article also reminds everyone to make sure that smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are installed for added safety.