Installing a new stove can be a minefield – here are the answers to the key questions you may have

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A wood burning stove next to a Chesterfield sofa

Image: Stovax Heating Group

Among the many elements that can really complete your dream home, a stove is one of the most coveted and comforting. It’s not just about the heat they provide during the colder months, it’s also their rugged good looks, the warm glow they emit, the sense of well-being they exude – home is where the hearth is.

However, there are numerous rules and regulations surrounding both wood burning and multi-fuel stoves that are worth considering before making one part of your design. We’ve put together a quick guide to address all the main questions you may have…

No smoke without fire

A modern multi sided gas fire in a bedroom

Image: Stovax Heating Group

There are a few hoops to jump through when installing a fire or stove but, armed with this information, it’s actually a relatively simple affair. The first step is to deal with an expert retailer, who will not only be able to guide you through the process, they’ll be experienced at taking you through the legalities.

They’ll assess your existing chimney and see if it’s fit for purpose, or they can advise you on what type of chimney to build, including pre-fabricated ones that are simple to install. Of course, there’s also the option of an electric log burning fire or stove, which won’t need a chimney, just a mains connection.

The small print

There are a number of rules and regulations that your stove needs to comply with as well. Again, a reputable retailer will only sell stoves that meet these safety standards, so you can choose your fire, and have it installed by a professional who will ensure peace of mind.

Use a HETAS professional who will assess your set-up and make sure your stove has the correct ventilation and is placed at a safe distance form combustibles, while also applying the rules regarding hearth size. If it’s a gas installation, you should use a Gas Safe installer to be compliant.

Safety first

A lit inset fire in a lounge

Image: Stovax Heating Group

Stove installations must be carried out in a way that’s safe for you and your family, but also for the local environment. By opting for a reputable installer, you’ll meet the local building control rules on your flue outlet – they’ll assess the surroundings in terms of trees and nearby buildings.

When opting for solid fuel over electric or gas, the installer will have to perform three smoke tests and ensure you have a carbon monoxide detector and data plate. Not only will this keep you and your family safe, it means you won’t fall foul of an inspection.

Warm and cosy

Legal and statutory issues aren’t the only things to consider, of course. There’s also the matter of heat. When drawing up your plans, remember that you’ll need to calculate space and then opt for a stove with sufficient heat output to fill it. As a rule of thumb, if you’re aiming for a snug 21°c inside when it’s freezing outside, you’ll need approximately 1kW of heat output for every 14 cubic meters of space.

Other factors can affect this however, so again it’s best to talk about your needs with a retailer who can steer you in the right direction. After that, it’s just a matter of deciding of who has to carry the logs in…

Discover more about wood-burning and other stoves with Stovax Heating Group.

Kevins Column

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