Burn it Smart! Safer More Efficient Healthier
Objectives of the Workshop • To help you: • burn wood SAFELY • burn wood more EFFICIENTLY • keep your family and community HEALTHY
Agenda • Stoves, Fireplaces and Central Heaters • The new clean burn technologies • The Chimney • Safe Wood Heat SystemsBreak • Wood Smoke and Your Health • Maintaining Your Wood Heating System • Firewood • How to Burn Without Smoke
What is a renewable energy resource? • Hydro-electric • Solar power • Wind power • Biomass energy (wood)
Wood Stoves Conventional stoves are usually older and have no features to reduce smoke Advanced technology EPA certified wood stoves burn cleanly and efficiently
Pellet stoves • A clean burning option • Pellets are made from sawdust that is ground, dried and compressed • These stoves can operate up to 24 hours unattended
Conventional Fireplaces • Conventional masonry and conventional factory-built fireplaces are not efficient and are not suitable for home heating • They are also a source of air pollution
Fireplace Inserts • A fireplace insert can transform a conventional fireplace into an efficient heating system.
High efficiency fireplaces • Advanced technology fireplaces have the same combustion features as advanced wood stoves
Masonry heaters • A masonry heater is a low smoke, high efficiency heating option
Central Heating • Most wood furnaces and boilers are not clean burning and efficient
Outdoor boilers • Their large, simple fireboxes make clean burning difficult.
Advanced Wood Burning Technology Advanced technologies offer several advantages, including: • Much higher efficiency • Much less smoke pollution • Greater safety because less creosote is formed • Burn less wood for more heat
Two types of advanced combustion: • Catalytic • uses catalyst to clean up exhaust • Non-catalytic advanced • most common type in Canada
Inside a catalytic wood stove Smoke passes through a catalytic honeycomb that lowers smoke ignition temperature
Inside a ‘non-cat’ wood stove 1. Firebox insulation 2. A large baffle 3. Preheated combustion air
Compare old with new: Overall Efficiency 40 – 50% 60 – 80% Graphic adapted from California EPA publications
A clean burning furnace • At least one EPA certified wood furnace is now available. • If you want a central heating furnace, consider only an EPA certified model.
A cleaner burning outdoor boiler • A new generation of outdoor boilers recently became available. • If considering an OB, choose only one that is EPA certified.
When you shop for a wood burning appliance: • Look for one that is EPA certified. • Ask your dealer to show you advanced stoves and fireplaces.
The Chimney Masonry Chimney Metal Chimney
Why outside chimneys are a big problem: • Cold air flows down them, filling the house with smoke and odours. • More restriction: at least two 90° changes of direction. • Creosote forms faster. • The chimney parts cost more.
Inside chimneys work better because: • An inside chimney stays warm and always produces some draft, even when no fire burns. • An inside chimney can be located above the appliance for a straighter system and better performance.
The ideal: straight up! • Provides stronger, more stable draft • Does not cold backdraft • Less creosote formation • Needs less maintenance
Safe wood heat systems • A Guide to Residential Wood Heating has an overview of wood heat safety rules.
Codes contain reliable rules for: • Floor pads • Single wall flue pipe • Double wall flue pipe • Appliance clearances • Clearance reduction using shields
For new or changed systems: A building permit is mandatory • The permit will result in an inspection Inform your insurance company • A new installation or change could change your insurance policy • Check with your agent to ensure that you will be covered
Dispose of ashes safely • Ashes can stay hot for days and emit carbon monoxide • Put ashes in a steel bucket • Store the bucket outside on concrete, not on a wooden deck or near firewood
Think Safety Smoke Detector Fire Extinguisher Carbon Monoxide Detector
Contact a professional! • Look for the logo. • Ask retailers, installers and sweeps if they are WETT certified. • Call 1-888-358-9388 • Visit www.wettinc.ca
The second half . . . • Wood Smoke and Your Health • Maintaining Your Wood Heating System • Firewood • How to Burn Without Smoke
Wood smoke and your health • The spicy hint of wood smoke in the air might be pleasant . . . BUT • Wood smoke is not healthy to breathe. • Everyone should avoid breathing wood smoke • Especially children, the elderly and those with respiratory ailments.
Why you should not breathe wood smoke: • Wood smoke, like all smoke, contains a number of toxic compounds • Some are linked to increased cancer risk and other lung diseases • Some make asthma and emphysema worse • There is a clear link between breathing smoke and respiratory health
How to avoid breathing wood smoke: • Make sure your wood heating system is designed right and is in good shape • Burn only seasoned wood • Never let the fire smoulder • Avoid opening the loading door on a full fire. • Learn to burn without smoke.
If you or someone in your family has asthma, allergies or environmental sensitivities: • Consider using other heating options. • Be especially careful about wood smoke inside the house. • Use only wood that is free of rot, mould and fungus. • Bring only a small amount of wood into the house at a time.
Coated, painted or pressure treated wood Salt water driftwood Plywood, particle board or any wood with glue on or in it Household garbage Cardboard and paper products Unseasoned wood Clean, seasoned firewood Just enough plain newspaper to get the fire started Commercial fire starters are usually ok Do Burn Don’t Burn
Maintaining your wood heating system • Every wood burning system should be cleaned and inspected at least once each year.
Chimney cleaning • Some systems form large amounts of creosote quickly • Others rarely need cleaning • The only way to know is to check often Clay tile full of creosote Brush removing creosote
Appliance maintenance • Check gaskets for looseness and wear • Wood heating dealers carry a variety of gasket types • Check door latches and hinges for fit and security
Firewood Good fuel is the secret to efficiency
A cord of firewood • A full cord measures 4 feet by 4 feet by 8 feet or 128 cu. ft. • At right are three “face” cords each measuring 4’ high by 8’ long by 16” wide, or 43 cu. ft. each or combined, one full cord.
In early spring, the wood should be: • Cut to length • Split to a variety of sizes, and • Stacked on rails to keep it off the ground • Just the top covered (or not covered) To be ready for burning in the fall