Gas and Wood Burning Stoves

Winterizing Napoleon gas and wood burning stoves: Tips and tricks from the pros

You want to burn your wood burning stove and gas stoves safely; of course you do. But how does one winterize them to make them efficient and safe?

wood-burning-stovesFirst off, a wood burning stove should have 36″ clearance from combustible materials and proper support and protection, such as a hearth mat. They should also be UL Listed. Use your Napoleon wood stove with a clean chimney and stove pipe. The Fire Marshal recommends that wood burning stoves be inspected at the beginning of the heating season.

If the wood burning stove is used frequently, then it may require additional cleaning. A Chimney of a wood burning stove produces creosote (soot), which is a natural by-product of wood burning. So if you have a Napoleon wood stove, you should burn only dry, seasoned wood and avoid slow burning, smoky to reduce the buildup of creosote in your wood burning stove. Also, burn your wood burning stove hot two times a day for 15-30 minutes to reduce creosote buildup. Wood burning stove users should dispose of ashes from their Napoleon wood stove in metal containers with tight-fitting lids. Place the container only on a non combustible surface, and never in a trash container.

Things you should never do with a wood burning stove, even if it is a Napoleon wood stove, are as follows:

  • Never use flammable liquids to light a fire or make it burn better
  • Never store flammable liquids near where wood burning stoves are being used
  • Never burn trash, large amounts of paper or small twigs. Paper can, in particular, ignite creosote in your Napoleon wood stove’s chimney
  • Never leave the doors of your Napoleon wood stove open or the screen of your wood burning stove off except to fuel the fire
  • Never dry clothing closer than three feet to the wood burning stove and keep furniture away
  • Never leave small children in an area where a Napoleon wood stove is in use
  • Never go to sleep before your wood burning stove fire is extinguished
  • Never close your damper with hot ashes in the Napoleon wood stove. A closed damper will allow the fire to heat up and force carbon monoxide in your house
  • Never burn charcoal indoors; doing so in your wood burning stove can give off lethal levels of carbon monoxide

As for gas stoves, tricks and tips exist too. First, ensure that your exit points of all the smoke are free of debris such as birds’ nests, spider webs and other insect infestations. Then look for tree branches and clear them within a perimeter four to six feet from where the gas stoves emit their smoke. Also, you should clean the glass door of your gas stoves at least once a month, making sure components of natural gas or propane don’t build up on the door. The inefficient operation of your gas stoves wastes money and can give off fatal levels of carbon monoxide, so be sure to look for signs of a white film that builds up over time on the glass of your gas stoves. In addition, you should make sure the glass doors of the gas stoves are securely in place and that the glass is not scratched. Finally, you should make sure you place your gas logs correctly in gas stoves. If the gas logs aren’t positioned properly, they may generate unhealthy levels of carbon dioxide, not only in your gas stoves, but also in your homes. To tell, see if the flame color pattern looks strange; it may indicate inefficient operation of your gas stoves.

Hopefully, this guide will assist you as you winterize your gas stoves and Napoleon wood stoves. We want you to operate your wood burning stove and gas stoves perfectly, safely and efficiently, so follow this guide and ensure you do so.