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Expert tips, advice and recommendations to help you buy and maintain your perfect fire or fireplace

Electric Fires- Why the surge in popularity?

Have you considered replacing your old, inefficient gas fire or wood burning stove in recent months? If so, you may be thinking of changing to electric, here are some of the reasons why that may be the best choice for you: Whether you need something traditional or contemporary, there will be an electric appliance to suit you. Electric fires do not require a chimney or vent, installing one will give you the opportunity to remove any unnecessary source of drafts that may be existing. Flexibility of installation- an electric fire can be installed anywhere that it can be plugged in. They are a simple solution to providing a comforting flame and warmth to a room at the flick of a switch or push of a button. There’s a huge range of options to choose from: Flat wall fix / Freestanding- want to create an impressive centrepiece but have no existing fireplace recess? There are a variety of fireplace designs in timber or marble that can be fitted against a flat wall with the minimum of fuss. You could also choose a freestanding stove.  Inset fire- Want to keep an existing fireplace? All of our electric fire manufacturers have a number of options that are designed to fit into an existing fireplace opening. Even when the fireplace opening is non-standard, many of these fires can be provided with spacer frames to suit. Wall mounted- If you are looking to retain as much useable floor space as possible, why not consider mounting the fire on the wall? Built-In- Available in portrait or landscape shapes in all sizes, can be used within...

Choosing a gas stove

One of the most appealing aspects of a gas stove or fire is the ability to have instant heat at the touch of a button. Even if you are still looking for a wood burning look, many gas stoves look just like a real log burner. Many modern gas stoves can also be controlled via remote control, giving you full control of your fire from the comfort of your sofa. Gas stoves and fires come in a huge variety of shapes, sizes and finishes. Some, like the Gazco Loft gas stove, offer modular installation, giving you freedom of choice when it comes to the visual height and presence of the stove. Others might give you a variety of linings, frames and fuel effects, such as the Studio gas range. The Studio 1 Freestanding gas fire blends geometric angles with sweeping curves for a sleek contemporary finish. Offering a landscape view of rolling flames, this large format fire is available with a choice of a smoothly curved bench, or plinth mounting options, each echoing the fire’s distinctive design. Installing a gas stove if you don’t have a chimney There are a host of options to you to make it possible to have a gas stove or fire when you don’t have a chimney. A conventional flue gas stove or fire requires a chimney or flue system in order to function. If you do not have a chimney, you may be able to have a pre-fabricated system installed. This works in the same way a normal chimney would. The other option is to go for a balanced flue gas stove or...

How can I burn right?

Step 1: Do you live in a Smoke Control Area? If you live in a town or city, there is a good chance you live in a Smoke Control Area. In a Smoke Control Area, you can only use Defra-approved appliances to burn solid fuel, or if you do not have an approved appliance, you can only burn authorised smokeless fuels. Step 2: Have you updated your old fireplace? One of the best ways to help our environment when it comes to burning solid fuel is to consider the appliance you are using to burn your fuel. It is widely recognised that old stoves and fires are vastly less efficient when compared to modern, clean burning appliances such as an Ecodesign Ready stove. If you are using an open fire or older stove to heat your home, you may wish to consider replacing it with a clean burning, high efficiency model that produces less emissions. Some stoves are not only approved for use in smoke control areas, but are also Ecodesign Ready. An Ecodesign Ready stove burns so cleanly it meets, and in many cases exceeds, future 2022 environmental standards. Crucially, an Ecodesign Ready stove keeps emissions to an absolute minimum. Stovax stands in support of the Government’s Clean Air Strategy, and updating an old fireplace is a good place to start. We recommend updating to a DEFRA-approved or Ecodesign Ready stove or fire – you can read more about the benefits of Ecodesign Ready stoves on our website, and find out more about the Clean Air Strategy here. Step 3: Are you burning the right fuel? To take...

Defra’s Clean Air Strategy

On the 22nd May the Environment Secretary Michael Gove published a Clean Air Strategy which aims to cut air pollution and save lives, backed up through new primary legislation. Here we demystify the strategy and look beyond the misleading headlines. The new strategy, which is now out for consultation, is a key part of Defra’s 25 Year Plan to leave our environment in a better state than we found it. HETAS, Woodsure and The Stove Industry Alliance have all been consulting with Defra for some time now and once again Defra has clarified they are not looking to ban stoves. This draft of the Clean Air Strategy outlines ambitions relating to reducing air pollution in the round, making our air healthier to breathe, protecting nature and boosting the economy. In this draft strategy, they set a clear direction for future air quality policies and goals. The strategy sits alongside three other important UK government strategies: Industrial Strategy, Clean Growth Strategy and the 25 Year Environment Plan. The Clean Air Strategy can be viewed in full by clicking here. There are national emission reduction commitments for overall UK emissions of five damaging air pollutants. These are: fine particulate matter (PM2.5) ammonia (NH3) nitrogen oxides (NOX) sulphur dioxide (SO2) and non-methane volatile organic compounds (NMVOCs) The announcement highlighted one area of particular concern is burning wood and coal to heat a home which contributes 38%* of UK emissions of damaging particulate matter. Cleaner fuels and stoves produce less smoke, less soot and more heat. In future only the cleanest domestic fuels will be available for sale. The Woodsure Ready to Burn...

Why it’s never too early to think about buying a wood-burning stove

With so many contributing factors to think about, putting your money into a wood burner is a great investment, but a decision you’ll want to take time to consider first. From different style options to budget requirements and fuel preparation, we explore some of the key reasons why now is the perfect time to start planning for your purchase in 2018. Read on for some top tips and handy hints on how to make the most of the coming months before investing in your very own Arada stove. Consider your heating requirements An important part of the purchasing process is first deciding which type of burner best suits your home; whether you’re after an inset, freestanding or cassette stove, you’ll initially need to determine where in the house it will be situated, and the size of the space it will be occupying. That way, you’ll have a better idea of the amount of heat you’ll need to warm your home comfortably and efficiently. Think about your interiors Owning a stove isn’t just about staying warm and keeping cosy in winter; it’s to do with complementing your existing décor choices too. Arada’s range of stoves, log stores and accessories are available in a wide selection of colours to match your home, so if you fancy Sky Blue, Shimmering Rose, Metallic Brown or Devon Cream, you’ll be spoiled for choice when pairing your burner with your interior tone and mood. Prepare your fuel Just because you’re not likely to use your stove quite as much during the warmer months, that doesn’t mean you can’t start stocking up on your fuel! In...

How to burn wood efficiently

We’ve put together some top tips on how to burn wood efficiently this winter. It is important to start thinking about getting your wood burning stoves ready and stocking up on wood for the coming months. We have put together some tips on how to burn wood efficiently, and how to get the most out of your wood burner over the winter months. Should I get Kiln dried or Seasoned logs? Firstly, it is important to prepare for the cold by sourcing wood that has been properly seasoned. This is an important step, as the moisture content needs to be under 20% to ensure a clean, efficient burn. Clean burning will be obvious, as the firebox will be bright and clean, clean door glass and no build-up of black tars in the stove or chimney. Kiln dried logs are much more convenient to obtain and can be used immediately. Freshly cut logs will need to be correctly stored and seasoned before use which can take up to 2 years. Seasoned logs will be easier to light and provide maximum heat output. When buying logs, always make sure you get a Woodsure and/or HETAS quality assurance certification for guaranteed quality. How often do I need to clean my wood burner? Once the logs have been bought, it’s important to have your chimney swept and your stove serviced before you start burning any wood. The chimney should be cleaned by a professional chimney sweep and on average, may need sweeping once or twice per year depending on use. The stove should be cleaned and serviced as detailed in the user instructions,...