Wood burn­ing ap­pli­ances must be reg­u­larly in­spected

The Telegram (St. John’s) - Home Buyers' Guide - - METRO REGION -

Thereʼs noth­ing as cozy as a win­ter day with a fire or wood stove burn­ing in your liv­ing room. Here in the ʻGreat White Northʼ more Cana­di­ans are in­stalling wood burn­ing sys­tems in their homes, but there are safety re­quire­ments and stan­dards that must be fol­lowed to avoid cre­at­ing a fire haz­ard.

The most com­mon wood burn­ing sys­tems in­clude ma­sonry fire­places, fac­tory built fire­places with as­so­ci­ated chim­neys, free­stand­ing wood stoves and fire­place in­serts or heart mount stoves. Each of th­ese sys­tems of­fers a dif­fer­ent level of heat, and has unique re­quire­ments for chim­neys, flues and in­stal­la­tion ar­eas.

“A fire­place or wood stove can warm up the am­bi­ence and tem­per­a­ture of a room in no time, but many peo­ple donʼt con­sider the main­te­nance and safety re­quire­ments,” says John Cooke, who is with Amer­iSpec of Canada. “Home­own­ers who are in­stalling a wood burn- ing sys­tem should work with a qual­i­fied con­trac­tor to make sure they keep the ap­pli­ance clean and work­ing smoothly.”

At the in­stal­la­tion stage, en­sure there is proper ven­ti­la­tion for the sys­tem to stop car­bon monox­ide ex­haust from leak­ing back into the home.

Wood burn­ing ap­pli­ances must be reg­u­larly in­spected for cracks, cor­ro­sion and proper door/latch op­er­a­tion. A qual­i­fied con­trac­tor can con­duct th­ese in­spec­tions, and should also clean the ap­pli­ance an­nu­ally to pre­vent ex­cess cre­osote build-up and en­sure safety.

When choos­ing a con­trac­tor or in­spec­tor, look for some­one with Wood En­ergy Tech­ni­cal Train­ing (WETT), which en­sures they have ap­plied education and field ex­pe­ri­ence in the area of res­i­den­tial wood en­ergy.

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