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Prepping The Wood Stoves For Winter

We are almost in October and are very busy getting ready for winter around the homestead. All the longterm forecasts are calling for a cold and snowy winter, even here in the Ozarks. So we want to make sure we have plenty of wood stocked up and wood stoves in top working order.

I know that there are many people who would love to heat their homes with wood, but are afraid of the threat of chimney fire. It’s true that chimney fires happen.  However, 100% of the time this can be traced back to poor maintenance or failing to burn proper fuel in your stove. You must take the short amount of time to learn about the proper use and care of your stove. If you purchase a good quality stove and choose to hire a certified installer, the chances of you ever having a problem are close to zero. The problem is, insurance companies know that people are often in a hurry and won’t read the instructions of a top quality stove and may choose to install it themselves, rather than hiring a professional. Either they won’t insure your home or your rates will increase.

So with all that in mind, we take our stoves seriously. It’s time to clean them. It’s easy! Let us show you how!

Step 1.

Disassemble your stack. Chances are that your stove pipe has a few screws in it midway up. If you take those out, you will find that your bottom portion will slide up. Simply slide up the bottom pipe enough to fit a small bucket underneath it. Easy!
bucket

Step 2.

Head up to the roof. (CAUTION – If you do not feel safe or qualified to be on your roof, please call a professional to do this for you.) Remove the cap of your chimney. This is probably held on by 3-4 screws. Next, take your brush that is sized for your chimney and run it down, scrubbing as you go. With each scrub, you are pushing it farther down the pipe. After you reach the bottom, start to scrub heading back up to the top. Repeat as needed.

Step 3.

Head back down to the stove and empty the bucket with all the gathered creosote inside. Before you reattach your stove pipe to the stove, vacuum out the top of your stove of any ash or creosote that might be there. Now, reassemble everything. You’re done!

If that seems too good to be true, watch our video below this article and see us do the exact same thing. We cleaned two stoves in the video and it took us less than an hour.

Around the homestead, winter is on everyone’s mind. Getting ready for it is top priority and yearly maintenance of our wood stoves is now checked off our list. We hope you will enjoy and SHARE the video below!

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About Zachary Bauer

Zachary lives with his wife, two sons and his wife's parents on An American Homestead deep in the mountains of the American Ozarks. They all moved there together in July of 2013 where they began to build the homestead. They are off-grid with the exception of a phone line.

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2 comments

  1. I had a chimney sweep clean my stove and it was very educational. With the Pacific energy 2 step stove soot was minimal but creosote will gather at the chimney cap because of moisture and temp. differentials.
    I’m disabled so having a professional chimney sweep do all that climbing around on the roof was worth the cleaning cost. The sweep also did a basic inspection of my home fire safety gear. Smoke alarms, Carbon monoxide alarms, metal ash bucket and tools. A good chimney sweep will have tarps and industrial vacuum closed system and not leave soot in the home after cleaning.

    If you all have a that baffle system in your small stove you might think about pulling the pin at the back of the stove and dropping the baffle rather than disconnecting the pipe. Not exactly easy but it might be a bit cleaner job overall.

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