Choose the right log burner for your home

A log burner can be the perfect focus for a living room or kitchen. Although associated with rustic cottages or farmhouses, there is now a wide range of designs available. Even the most minimalist and elegant example of modern architecture can benefit from a stylish log burner in the right space.

Home is where the hearth is

It's possible to choose stoves that will match your decor. If your kitchen is all about brushed steel and ultramodern gadgets, a traditional stove be obtrusive. Instead, consider a streamlined modern design. Scandinavian stoves are particularly attractive if you are looking for a futuristic style.

The most obvious place for a log burner in a traditional home is in the fireplace. If you have a working chimney and a proper hearth, installing a log burner should be relatively straightforward. If you need to open up the fireplace, ensure that the back of the burner is protected with a heat resistant surface and that the burner stands on a suitable surface like stone slabs or strong, heat-resistant tiles.

Accessories are half the fun of owning a log burner. Look for matching pokers, tongs and ash shovels to make your fireplace look the part.

If you don't have a chimney but want to use one of the small modern varieties of log burner, it is possible to use a double skin flue vented through the ceiling and loft, then through your roof. There are strict regulations on these and you will need a building notice and to have the work inspected and certified.

Safety first

Used incorrectly a log burner can be a serious fire hazard. Ensure that your flues and chimneys are free of potentially dangerous tar deposits. Follow the instruction on your burner regarding the fuels to use. Do not use wet or unseasoned wood as these will cause a lot of soot and will not burn efficiently.

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