A quarter of people buying their wood-burning stoves are not told how to use their stove safely and effectively, according to a survey by Which? magazine.
The survey found that one in four of the 1,413 respondents did not feel they had been given enough information on how to use their stove. Some 7% of stove owners said they had not been given any information at all.
Which? writer Liz Ransom-Croker said: “Our research also found that people who bought from a big-name retailer were less likely to have been given information than those who went directly to the brand or an independent store, installer or chimney sweep.
“This was also the case for people who bought online, as opposed to buying in a physical store, especially when it came to the correct wattage for their stove or the best fuels.”
Ahem, yes, thanks for that, Liz.
But we’re going to excuse ourselves from that sweeping statement because our customers – and even those who are just considering buying from us – regularly tell us that the amount of information and advice we provide is a key part of our service.
This blog, our Stove-Buying Tips emails and this comprehensive wood-burning stove ebook are just a few of the ways we educate customers and prospective customers about buying, installing, operating and maintaining their woodburners.
Having got that off our chests, we can acknowledge that the Which? findings tally with our own anecdotal evidence of things that more stove owners ought to know about. And we know that many retailers are not as comprehensive as us in the information they provide.
Nearly a third of those surveyed didn’t know the best fuel for their stove. A dismaying 5% use wet logs, while 4% use house coal, both of which are very bad for the stove and the environment.
As regular readers will know, any logs being burnt on your stove should be well seasoned so that the moisture content is below 20%. In wet logs, this figure can be as high as 70%. Use a moisture meter to check your logs.
5% of the Which? respondent said they leave their stove slumbering on a low output every time they use their stove. Again, this is bad for the environment and the stove. Operating the fire at a higher output ensures more of the flammable gases are burnt. This results in less emissions and less creosote build-up in your flue.
If you would like to educate yourself more about your wood-burning stove, please download our free book The Wood Burning Stove Guide.