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8 Easy steps to clean and maintain wood burning stoves

Since we love to include log burners in some of our interior design ideas I thought it would be a good idea to post some knowledge on how to maintain these beautiful pieces. They take some additional care that not everyone is aware of and its important not only for the aesthetics but for the safety of the wood burning stove. We have had words with a professional in this field "John Hope" from Stoves N Fitting UK so that we can provide the best information possible for you.


It is necessary to keep the up with the maintenance and cleaning of your wood stove or home oven at least on a yearly basis to make sure its kept clean and to prevent any type of corrosion. You should also retouch the paintwork and make sure it needs no minor repair work. John Hope from Stoves N Fitting UK reveals the vital points of this process in his eight-step tutorial.

Some of the things covered in this article

  • How to clean a stove glass door
  • How to clean a wood burning stove exterior
  • How to replace rope seal on wood burning stove
  • How to use a wood stove sealant
  • Wood burning stove tips and tricks

Easy and professional ways to revamp your old wood burning stove or oven

Multi-fuel and wood burning stoves are in big demand in recent years and act as a great enhancement to any type of household. It is not just the fact that they are energy-efficient and eco-friendly but also very attractive and relaxing and a great furniture item to include in a luxurious apartment or indeed any kind of family home. The only problem is however that in time, wood burning as well as gas ovens obtain a dirty and grimy coating which can often cause spots of corrosion. The painted surface area could discolour over time, inside the ashes develop a thick crusted layer, the glass will most likely become darkened or clouded and the door seal could lose its shape.

This tutorial clarifies how you can easily give your wood stove a face lift, repair some common faults as well as bring them back to their newly purchased appearance. Execute these steps regularly to maintain your stove and fittings and extend the longevity of the wood burning stove or oven.

The carry out this tutorial you will need to use the following items

Eliminate soot residue & tar on the chimney breast; Repair corrosion spots on the metal

Step 1. Get rid of any soot residue & tar on the plaster:Be sure to only service stoves that have cooled down. If soot residue as well as tar have appeared on the plaster in the chimney gap, brush away dust and then use a layer of a stain blocker to prevent it permanently marking the visible areas in the future. If required, use a 2nd layer 2 hrs after the initial one has completely dried out. When completely dry, the surface area can be coated with most types of masonry paint.

  1. Repair corrosion spots on the stove:The constant use of the stove can cause corrosion on the outside and inside surfaces. To eliminate the risk of this spreading or eating into the metal you can use a clump of steel wool to gently scrub away the corrosion until the marks have been cleaned, be sure to use a set of protective gloves when doing this. Use you heavy duty floor cleaner to remove the mess, and use the bristle attachment to clear dust off the surface area all set for the paint to be applied.

Re-spray the scrubbed areas; clean the door window glass

  1. Re-spray the areas scrubbed with the steel wool: Firstly mask the glass parts of the doors and fittings with old newspaper and masking tape. Use dust cover sheets or blankets to protect the nearby wall surfaces and hearth as well if you intend to be painting the entire stove. Prior to using the paint, open doors and any home windows to guarantee excellent air flow to prevent breathing in any toxic or harmful fumes. Hold the spray around 25-30 cm far from the surface area and then spray the unpainted stove surfaces.
  1. Tidy up the stove glass: If the stove has grimy or clouded glass windows, it could mean that they are not efficiently burning the fuel. To clean up, clean the glass with a typical oven cleaner or heavy duty glass cleaner like this product here HG Stove Glass Cleaner , leave for 5 mins (some may require much longer exposure), after that get rid of all of the residue with a wet towel. To revamp a sooty glass panel on a multi-fuel stove you can use timber ash on a wet fabric which acts as a gentle abrasive. Scrub away the residue then clean with a dry towel once more.

Examine the rubber/rope seal; give a brief health survey

  1. Examine the rubber/rope seal: Gradually the rope seal around the door will become squashed or misshaped, this will definitely influence the appliance's performance and safety because it will be enabling fumes to escape from areas other than the flue. Establish a little fire in the stove and then shut the doors to check for any areas that are not air tight. You can do this by using a lit candle light around the door-- if the fire is attracted in the direction of the door then it is a bad seal and this should then be replaced with one to fit your models specifications.
  1. A health check for your stove: Clear out the firebox and any loose ash and debris from the base of the stove if you have not already done so in previous steps. Use a torch inside to examine that the firebricks are not damaged or that there are no warped or cracked joints anywhere on the stove. Leave the air inlets open as well as the door to make sure a good circulation of air via the flue is present to make sure it gets completely dry. If you use a chimney then you will need to hire a chimney sweeper.

Prepare the stove and fireplace for a final seal; Use slate oil for the wall/hearth

  1. Tidy the area to prepare for using a sealant:You can seal a slate fireplace/hearth to boost the colour as well as make it simpler process the next time you come to clean your stove. Firstly scoop any loosened dust and debris, after that with durable floor cleaner and some warm water scrub the hearth, wiping up the water as you go. Be sure to clean up any excess water and then completely dry the whole area with an old towel. Leave for a minimum of 4 days prior to using sealant to ensure any water that has soaked in can evaporate fully.
  1. Apply slate oil to the fireplace: Some masonry treatment fluids should not be used where the temperature level is most likely to go beyond 26C so be sure check out the advice on the label of the product that you choose. Slate oil will help block any dust, grime and debris from your hearth while still enabling the slate to get air. Be sure to cover up any carpets or furniture in the surrounding areas so you do not get any splashes or marks from the solvent. Apply equally with a brush or sponge and then make sure it gets to fully dry for a few hours before applying a 2nd coat (check product label for a more accurate time).
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