Hello! My name is C.J., and as you may have guessed from the title of my blog, I am a huge dog lover. My dog has specialised things in my home like a built-in shelf for his food and water bowls and a dedicated grooming area with a bath. Outside, he has his own shady area, a dog house with a heated floor and a sturdy fence. I worked with contractors through all of those projects, and I hope to do even more. This blog is going to talk about contracting... I hope to start with some posts about the process involved in some of the things the contractor made for my pup but I also plan to include some posts with a more general contracting focus. Take a look and enjoy!
Everyone loves the sight, sound and smell of a wood heater on a cold winter's night—nothing beats curling up by an open fireplace and warming your toes by the flames! However, wood heaters have been slowly disappearing over the last 30 years due to concerns about their efficiency and effect on the environment. Parts of Australia have been offering subsidies for those considering switching to gas, and the ACT Government has gone one step further by banning their installation outright in certain new developments.
For those who still own a wood heater, however, there's no need to shiver on cold nights. Here are some quick and easy tips for keeping your wood heater environmentally friendly.
Knowing the basics
It should go without saying, but home owners should only operate wood heaters that have been approved for use in Australia. Wood heaters that have been designed in accordance with the requirements published by Standards Australia (AS/NZS 4013:2014 and AS/NZS 4012:2014) have been certified to comply with a maximum level of emissions. Also, ensure that your wood heater is installed by a licensed tradesperson.
The type of firewood chosen can have a significant impact on the amount of smoke a wood heater produces. Most wood heaters are designed to work best with one of either hard or soft wood, so refer to your manufacturer's instructions to determine which of these to buy.
Bright and hot fires produce the least smoke. Wet firewood can lower the temperature of the fire and create unnecessary pollution, so choose dry, unseasoned wood for the best results. Never burn wood that has been treated or painted, as this can release toxic chemicals such as lead or copper chrome arsenate into the atmosphere.
Lighting the fire
The faster the fire is lit, the less smoke is produced. Using paper and kindling under the logs can help get a good fire started, and by fully opening the air controls for at least half an hour after lighting, your fire will get the oxygen it needs to really get going.
Keep your fire burning brightly to reduce the chance of smouldering. Dampening down your fire or allowing it to smoulder can create lots of unnecessary pollution, so add logs regularly and keep the air controls open for at least 20 minutes after each time you do so.
If operated correctly, wood heaters can be a great source of heat and a perfect complement to the decor of any home. Following these tips will ensure that your environmental impact is minimised and your neighbours' airspace is clear!