When it is cold and grey outside, you are all the more pleased to have a cosy, warm home where you can cuddle on the sofa or in bed. A fireplace or stove in the living room, for example, creates a particularly homy atmosphere. Thanks to so-called eco-fireplaces, you can even provide the incomparable feel-good factor with low emissions. Let us take a look at the eco-friendly trend!
- Open or closed fireplace?
- How eco-fireplaces work
- Using the right firewood
- Upgrading old stoves
- Enjoy cosy warmth on cold days
Open or closed fireplace?
When we hear the word “fireplace”, we think of a cheerfully crackling fire to watch while sipping a cup of tea or cocoa. However, open fireplaces are becoming increasingly rare for reasons of efficiency and environmental friendliness. Instead, modern wood fires are conquering the market as closed systems. The advantage: you experience the typical warmth and cosy fireplace feeling, while enjoying a solution in harmony with the environment. Higher temperatures can be reached in a closed fireplace, so that the firewood is burned more completely and efficiently. Modern filters also ensure that the outgoing air is cleaner.
How eco-fireplaces work
Fireplaces and closed fireplaces can cause high levels of pollutant emissions if used incorrectly, as the burning of firewood produces fine dust and soot particles. This is where the modern eco-fireplaces come into the game. Manufacturers have been bound by specific emission limits for a number of years, so new models have become much more eco-friendly.
The low-emission stoves and fireplaces have efficient dust filters and an automated combustion air supply. Fine dust filters prevent harmful dust particles from being released into the air. Modern systems that have an electrical connection can even filter fine dust particles that accumulate inside the flue pipe. This ensures even cleaner exhaust air.
An electronic combustion air control system measures the temperature in the stove and that of the exhaust gases via temperature sensors. Based on these values, the air supply is automatically regulated to ensure optimum combustion and to save wood.
Using the right firewood
With a new wood-burning stove or eco-fireplace with an energy label, you can enjoy a romantic atmosphere on cold autumn and winter days in an environmentally-friendly way. In addition, you should also pay attention to the correct use in order to keep emissions as low as possible. Only use firewood for heating, no waste paper, cardboard or fresh branches from the garden. Firewood should always be untreated and contain a maximum of 25% moisture. The lower the moisture content, the better! Therefore, you should store your firewood in a dry place for about two years before using it for the fireplace. Ideally, the logs should have a diameter of between 6 and 12 centimetres so that they can dry well. When buying firewood, you should always ask for the value of the wood moisture and test it to see if it is correct. Dampness impairs the combustion process, so that much more smoke will be produced. This leads to a higher dust content in the exhaust air and the formation of carbon monoxide. Dry firewood is therefore the key to carefree fireplace enjoyment!
Upgrading old stoves
You already own a stove and do not want to buy a completely new model? Many old stoves can be upgraded! Efficient dust filters can usually be installed later to filter out the finest dust particles. It is even more eco-friendly with an electronic combustion air regulator, which filters out a large proportion of the dust particles from the inside of the flue pipe due to its electrostatic charge. This system is often associated with higher purchase costs than, for example, a conventional soot filter.
If the stove is already too old – more than 25 years – you should think about a complete replacement. The technology has developed considerably in the meantime and old stoves may not meet modern standards of environmental friendliness and efficiency. It is best to have your stove inspected by a chimney sweep to discuss its condition and possible upgrade.
Enjoy cosy warmth on cold days
Wood is a renewable raw material and therefore suitable for environmentally-friendly heating if the wood comes from responsible forestry – or from your own garden. With a modern eco-fireplace or stove and the right use of firewood, nothing stands in the way of your well-being with a crackling fireplace. So make yourself comfortable indoors when it is freezing cold outside. 😊