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Everything You Need to Know About Starting a Fire & Selecting the Proper Wood to Burn

The type of wood you burn will play a major factor in how much heat you can produce and how dirty or clean the pipes will remain after a certain amount of time.  In this blog, I would like to talk about what woods you should burn and why, and how to properly start a fire in your stove.

 

What woods you should burn in a wood stove

 

What Type of Wood To Use For Your Mini Wood Stove?

It is suggested to burn well-seasoned hard woods to get the best heat output, longest burn time, and cleanest flue pipe.  Hard woods burn hotter than soft woods. They produces more heat and keep the flue pipe cleaner. This is due to a hotter flue gas temperature and the fact that there is less sap and oils compared to soft woods.  Soft woods will burn much quicker, requiring the stove to be refilled more often, and much cooler, allowing creosote to stick easier.

 

Pressed logs are another great choice of fuel. They are very easy to break apart; no saw or wood splitter required. This is especially practical in small spaces like vans and boats. They also offer fairly long burn times. You want to get a brand of pressed log that does not have glue or wax as a binder. Those will act like the saps and oils in soft woods, which will clog your pipe much quicker. Pressed logs will expand, so do not over fill the fire box if using them.   

 

You can also burn coal, but it does not burn as well. If you use wood that is too “green”, the excess moisture in the wood will not allow it to burn as it should and the pipe will become dirty much quicker.  If you ever have issues with the stove, the first thing to do is to go to the hardware store and get some kiln dried wood and/or pressed logs. These have controlled amounts of humidity. This way, you can determine if the issue is related to the wood you are using, or something else. 

 

Type of wood to be used for burning

 

7 Great Steps to Start a Fire in your Mini Wood Stove

When you are starting a fire in your stove, here are some tips to consider.

  • Step 1: Place paper at the bottom, and kindling on top.
  • Step 2: Close secondary air intake (under stove) open primary intake (in front) to full open (all the way to the left)
  • Step 3: Light the paper, and keep the door open for about 3-5 minutes (This is to heat up the pipe to start the draft.)
  • Step 4: Once the kindling is going, add good wood on top.
  • Step 5: Close the door and keep the primary air intake full open for 20 minutes.
  • Step 6: Once the flame is going and the stove is running hot, you can then open the secondary air intake
  • Step 7: Adjust the primary intake as needed.


Above is a video showing exactly how to light the stove, step by step. 

 

I hope this blog was informative and helps you in choosing which wood to use and how to start your Cubic Mini Wood Stove. Check out this related post on how to start a fire in a fire pit - it's a slightly different process.