NZ Lifestyle Block

Why an upside down fire burns best


RESEARCH BY Norwegian energy experts has found the most efficient and clean way to light your fire is to have large wood on the bottom, kindling in the middle, and paper on top.

SINTEF Energy Research has found it reduces particle emissions by 50-80%, achieves more even combustion, and prevents soot from settling on the glass.

As the larger pieces of wood begin to burn, they release particles and gases. The flames from the kindling above burn them off before they escape up the chimney.

SINTEF recommends:

■ Don’t have the firebox too full – the wood content should be about 25% of the chamber’s volume so it gets hot quickly, which burns the maximum gases and particles.

■ Loosely pack the larger wood, so it has air around it.

■ Have the air intake open for at least 10 minutes to allow the firebox to get hot as quickly as possible.

■ Use firelighte­rs.

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