Tag: fireplace

Why we love Halloween (and you should too)!

Why we love Halloween (and you should too)!

Can you hear that creepy organ playing in the background? The distant rumble of thunder coming from the distance? The shadow of a black cat from outside the window? Shrieks of terror and squeals of joy as the streets are packed with tiny ghosts and ghouls? It must be Halloween again! While you’re preparing for the scariest evening of the year (whether you’re trick-or-treating, or having a movie-marathon), this week’s blog post is all about why we love the 31st!

Food and Desserts

Of course, when most of us think of Halloween, our first instinct is to think of the massive amount of candy we’ll consume. Halloween and candy go hand-in-hand. It’s really the one time of year that amassing a huge haul and eating it in one night is encouraged! However, it’s not just candy that gets our taste buds going, but all the cool and creepy desserts too. From candy apples, to skeleton cookies, to a big bowl of spooky punch, there’s an endless list of ideas. To get you started, there are 11 ideas for you here.

Costumes

In true holiday spirit, Halloween is certainly one of those holidays that has a tendency to… creep up on you. The days are getting shorter, and we’re all still suffering from the post-summer blues. Before you know it, you’re drowning in invitations to haunted houses and Halloween parties, so it’s no surprise a lot of people struggle to get a costume sorted in time. If you’re among them, here’s 22 cheap and cheerful costume ideas that require little-to-no time at all.

Arts and Crafts

One of everyone’s favourite ways to celebrate Halloween is carving the pumpkin! It’s a way to really unleash you’re inner-creative demon with something spooky, funny, or just totally imaginative. Obviously we’re not all carving-experts, and often the worse the carving the funnier and scary it is! Here’s a fantastic collection of the best and brightest pumpkins from last year.

Traditions

It wouldn’t be Halloween without Halloween traditions! If haunted houses and big parties aren’t quite your speed, there’s nothing better than a spooky movie-marathon. There’s always the black-and-white Hitchcock classics, but they’re definitely a bit too scary for those with kids. If the trick-or-treating is done and the fire is still roaring (up to 38% longer with a Firemizer), then there’s plenty of child-friendly Halloween-themed films the whole family can enjoy. Find a list of them here.

Help your Wood or Coal-Burning Stove live its best life!

Stove Life!

Now we’re into the final quarter of the year, it’s likely you’ll find yourself starting your wood-burning stove more often. Nothing beats the feeling of evading the outside in your lovely warm front room, listening to the crackling wood. As it’s getting more use, it’s incredibly important to make sure you’re using and maintaining your stoves correctly. That way, you can get the most out of your fuel and stove in terms of heat output and lifespan. Here are some quick and easy tips to make sure your stove stays pristine and performing properly.

Know your wood!

Firstly, it’s important to make sure you’re using the correct fuel in your wood-burning stove. Beech and ash logs burn the best especially when seasoned, so you should be harvesting your wood about a year in advance of when you actually plan to burn it. Both of these types of wood when dried out can produce quite a lot of heat output with a consistent flame. Burning hardwood is likely to give a stronger flame and appear to give out more heat than softer pinewoods. This is because they are likely to burn faster and cooler than hardwood because they have a lower calorific value.

Keep a clean stove!

Your stove door should fit snugly to keep the heat of the fire concentrated inside. If the door itself feels loose, you could be losing a lot of heat output. Keep an eye out on the Firemizer website for Maxseal – a new product that ensures your stove door is sealed and secure. Using a Firemizer will reduce creosote build-up in your chimney by 57%, keeping a clear flue. It will also make sure there are no unused clumps of fuel in your ash bed – Firemizer makes sure your fuel ins burned evenly, helping it last 38% longer.

Use the top-down method!

The way in which your start your fires could also improve stove life. Firstly, make sure your firewood is cut in a variety of sizes to fill all available space. Using the top-down method of starting a fire is a great way to start that perfect fire (especially when paired with a Firebuilder). Read our step-by-step guide on how to use the top-down method, as well as lots of other helpful tips and tricks here.

Money Back Guarantee!

Money Back Guarantee!

Now that the summer is winding down and the wonderful weather is becoming a distant memory, we look towards Christmas. The days are getting colder and the nights are getting longer, so naturally it’s time to plan ahead. The summers can get expensive – holidays, day trips, meals with friends, so it’s not unusual to start thinking about money. Therefore this week, the focus will be all about how Firemizer can help you start saving money right away.

How does it work?

Firstly, Firemizer boasts an exceptionally efficient nature that helps to save you over a third of your solid fuel source. By slowing down the airflow to the body of the fire, Firemizer reduces the burn-rate. Its stainless-steel-alloy mesh evenly distributes the heat across the entire base of your wood or coal-burning stove or fireplace. Simply place beneath your solid fuel and leave inside your stove or fireplace. Firemizer will help your fuel to burn more evenly, ensuring none of it is wasted. It immediately starts helping you save on energy bills from the second it’s placed under your fire until the end of its lifespan (around 500 burn hours, one season). Through the reduction of creosote tars, it also ensures that overall chimney maintenance will be far less extensive.

Are there any other benefits?

Firemizer is a helpful tool in the battle against climate change; non-catalytic, chemical-free has entirely recycled cardboard packaging. It reduces general air pollutants by 72%, meaning there is a significant reduction in gases emitted by solid fuel fires.

What if I’m still unsure?

Of course, Firemizer’s benefits seem too good to be true, which is why we offer a money-back guarantee – we’re that confident! If you haven’t seen any improvements, simply contact us (regional details found on respective websites). We can offer a replacement Firemizer or a full money-back refund, so there’s really nothing to lose.

 

Pick up a Firemizer today and start burning better fires and saving money this winter.

Chiminea Safety Tips!

Chiminea Safety Tips!

The fourth and final outside fire-appliance is the beautiful chiminea! Chimineas have been found in gardens for nearly half a century. Mainly used for central heating, their early designs can be traced back to Spain or Mexico. Traditionally placed near a window, the long neck of the design prevented smoke from collecting inside. Here are a few more safety tips to make sure you have safe and soothing summer evenings.

Stability

First of all, make sure the chiminea is sturdy and not likely to tip over. Three/four legged stands are available, and a foundation of brick will decrease the possibility of fire spreading.

Location

Watch out for any low-hanging ornaments or branches. The chiminea should be in its own area, and a safe distance away from your home.

Preparation

When starting your fire, do not use chemicals like kerosene or lighter fluid to start the fire. In addition to the harmful gases they produce, but the fires are far more unpredictable and difficult to contain. Instead, use a firestarter and kindling, with newspaper balls to allow the fire to burn slowly downwards. Firebuilder is a firelighter and kindling-in-one, and does not use any chemicals. Made out of recycled cardboard, the unique airflow technology allows the fire to start at a quick but manageable speed.

Top-down Method

The Top-Down Method is the safest and most effective way to start a fire in a chiminea. For a step-by-step guide, refer to the Firemizer FAQs here.

Distance

Keep a safe distance between you and the chiminea as the outside surface is likely to get very hot. Also keep a watchful eye on any pets or young children that could accidentally come into contact with the structure.

Watch

Finally, don’t leave any fire unattended. Most of all, make sure the chiminea is always in view, and that you have a bucket or water or hose handy.

How to make the perfect pizza using your Pizza Oven!

This week’s focus is the mighty garden appliance – the pizza oven! If you’re lucky enough to have one of these incredible structures at home, now is the time to use it. Not only does it provide a great opportunity to invite friends over, it produces some excellent, restaurant-quality pizza. And really – who doesn’t love pizza? Make it as meaty as you like, smother it in veggies, give it a spicy kick or keep it simple. There’s a combination of pizza toppings for everyone out there. This week, we’re going to be giving you some simple steps to creating the perfect pizza with your pizza oven.

Get it hot!

Firstly, you need to make sure your pizza oven is at the right temperature to cook the pizza thoroughly, and since you’ll be cooking with wood traditionally, this could take some time. Using a Firebuilder will get your fire started easier and quicker, and doesn’t require the use of chemicals like kerosene. It differs from pizza oven to pizza oven, but generally it should be at about 300°C – 570°F.

Make the best base!

Regardless of if you’re using a pre-made base or have made your own from scratch, don’t smother it in sauce. Leave space at the rim for the crust to raise, and evenly spread the cheese and toppings. Have fun with the toppings too – try out interesting new combinations, you never know what could work!

Give it a spin!

Because of the dome-like structure of the pizza oven, a lot of the heat output is directed towards the back. While the pizza is cooking, make sure to spin the base by 180° every few minutes. This will ensure the pizza is cooked evenly, and you won’t be left with any raw dough or toppings. Make sure you’re using heat-proof gloves, safety first!

Timing is everything!

Unlike a gas oven, at the right temperature cooking in a pizza oven will only take up to five minutes. Check to see if the cheese is bubbling and slightly browned but not burned. The outside crust should be slightly brown and crunchy, but the inside should be soft and with a brown underneath. If you’re cooking multiple pizzas, make sure the oven stays at that perfect temperature. Placing a Firemizer on the base will help the wood to burn more evenly and efficiently, and keep that temperature higher for longer. It will also preserve the life of the wood inside the oven, meaning less trips back to the wood store.

Chimney Sweep FAQs

How often should I have my chimney cleaned and maintained?

This week’s blog topic is the importance of keeping chimneys well maintained and clean after continual use. A good rule of thumb is to have your chimney cleaned by a certified professional at least once a year. If it is more often than not the prime source of heating in your house, you might want to consider having it swept more. Ask your chimney sweep for their advice on how often it should be serviced. Do not ever attempt to clean the chimney yourself – you could end up doing causing damage to your chimney. It’s important to call a certified chimney sweep as they know the typical signs of creosote build-up and nesting wildlife.

 

Why is it important to have my chimney cleaned and maintained?

The continual maintenance of your chimney is central to its efficiency and heat output. The chimney sweep aims to remove all the creosote build-up on the inside of the chimney to prevent chimney fires. Creosote is a highly flammable substance that results from the regular burning of certain types of wood (especially pine). Using Firemizer with your solid fuel is proven to reduce creosote by 57% and helps your fuel burn 38% longer. By having your chimney properly maintained, it ensures that you’re getting the most out of your fireplace or stove. There’s no fear of chimney fires, a release of harmful gasses or any unexpected wildlife nesting inside. Animals like birds, squirrels or small insects can also cause long-term damage to the structural stability of the chimney.

 

When should I start thinking about servicing my chimney?

A year between each service is recommended, and the best time to get it serviced is before the burning season. Anytime during the summer or early autumn is ideal to make sure your chimney is in perfect shape once the weather turns colder. Seek out your local chimney sweeps and book in early to ensure you’re getting the most out of your chimney.

5 ways to get the most out of Father’s Day this year!

Father’s Day

This Sunday marks every Dad’s favourite day of the year – Father’s day! The one-day that he can put on his favourite films, fall asleep on the sofa and nobody can complain. Father’s day is usually a very quiet Sunday, so why not surprise him and do something a little different? Here’s a list of five ideas to help get you started on making this year’s celebration a little different.

Go-Karting

Does Dad love a bit of speed and the smell of burning rubber? Go-karting is the perfect opportunity to get him on the track and unleash his inner-speed demon! It’s an activity the whole family can get involved in too – start a family tournament and find out once and for all who the fastest in the family is!

Car Show

It seems like every Dad loves a good old car show – a chance to gaze at some Porsches or Ferraris. It might be boring to some, but to others it’s a chance to marvel at some iconic vehicles seen in films like James Bond or Back to the Future. Sometimes, you might even get a trip down memory lane about cars once owned and the wonderful memories that accompany.

Golf

Okay, bear with us one this one – especially if the weather is nice, it could be a prime opportunity to dust off Dad’s old golf clubs or that shiny new pair he got for Christmas that year and hit the links. Traditionally a very relaxing game that could take up the whole day, it’s a great way to enjoy a sunny Sunday.

Cooking

If you’re hunting for something indoors (if the weather isn’t up to scratch), a cooking class could really help dad hone his culinary craft. Buy your ingredients from a local store and have a fun time creating one of his favourite meals! Be cautious though, the more fun you have, the more mess there’ll be to tidy up afterwards…

Camping

This one could encompass the whole weekend, but it would be a fantastic way to spread Father’s over the Sunday. It’s another great way to get involved, Dad might even teach you a few tricks – like starting a fire! For those who struggle to light the perfect fire every time, there’s Firebuilder. The unique draught technology of Firebuilder ensures that the airflow of the fire produces a fuller flame and faster heat production without the need for any extra kindling or the intrusion of chemicals like kerosene. That means there’s less time spent starting the fire, and more time to enjoy Dad’s stories by the fireside.

What are Brit’s favourite fireside stories?

As families in the UK become more time poor, Firemizer, creator of the handy household fuel and money-saving device, has launched a campaign to find the nation’s favourite fireside stories, encouraging families to spend more time together.

Whether it’s curling up around the campfire or settling down in front of an open range, humans have shared stories around the fire throughout history. Conversations around the campfire has played an important role in how we have developed as a species and according to research published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, ending the day around the campfire, where songs, stories and relationships blossomed, ultimately shaped cultures and perhaps even helped develop some of our ability to understand one another and cooperate.

Brian Irvine, CEO of Firemizer said, “For generations the fire has been the central point of the home and with more and more time-pressure being placed on families, we hope to encourage people to step away from the screens and share stories together.

“Whether that is reading or telling your favourite stories together, talking about your day or asking older generations to share memories – storytelling allows us to connect with each other on an emotional level.”

Creating time within your week to spend time together and talk and share stories helps young children to develop cognitive and communication skills and is an easy way for generations to spend quality time together.

The importance of the fire itself in storytelling has been discussed by anthropologist Polly Weissner. She said, “Fireside gatherings are often, although not always, composed of people of mixed sexes and ages. Body language is dimmed by firelight and awareness of self and others is reduced. Facial expressions—flickering with the flames—are either softened, or in the case of fear or anguish, accentuated.”

From ghost stories to childhood memories or camping capers, with summer just around the corner, Firemizer is now searching for the best campfire stories and memories to be compiled into an anthology for families to share together throughout the warmer weather. To submit your fireside stories visit www.facebook.com/firemizer or #firemizer on Twitter by Saturday 30 June.

5 common myths you’ve heard about fireplaces

Fireplaces:

This week’s topic is the alternative solid-fuel heating method for those without space for a log-burner – fireplaces! Fireplace always provide warmth and ambience to any room they’re in whether it’s your lounge, bedroom, or even the garden. They provide a great source of heat, a focal point in any room and with a range of styles both classic and modern to choose from, there’s a hearth out there for everyone. Fireplaces can actually add value to a property as they have become a highly sought feature for first-time buyers. Fireplaces can utilise various different types of solid fuels, ranging from pellets, coal, gas, propane and various types of wood.

The history of the fireplace dates back to prehistoric fire-pits and smoke-canopies in the middle ages. First introduced to Europe in the 11th century, the likes of Benjamin Franklin and Prince Rupert of the Rhine have contributed in shaping the hearth into its current state.

As such a popular home installation, there are many claims and figures out there about fireplace performance. Here are 5 commons myths you might encounter when purchasing or servicing a fireplace.

5 common myths you’ve heard:

  1. Chimneys do not need regular inspections and sweeping. Chimneys must be serviced every year as build-ups of soot and creosote are often the origin of chimney fires. Firemizer reduces the creosote levels by 57%, meaning that chimney inspections will be far less difficult and pricey. However, creosote isn’t the only reason for inspections; debris and nesting animals also affect the structural integrity of your chimney.
  2. Fireplaces are poor sources of heat. Fireplaces can be poor sources if the fire is not maintained properly. Some believe that fireplaces send their heat up the chimney, and wood fires need oxygen to burn. Use a cast-iron fireback to radiate heat back into the room, and opening the flue will dispose of dangerous toxins. Firemizer reduces harmful air pollutants emitted by solid fuels by up to 72%.
  3. Lighter fluid and kerosene will produce a better fire quickly. Though it’s true that it will produce a fire quickly, this will be using harmful and potentially dangerous chemicals. Instead of putting your home at risk, use balls of newspaper or an entirely kerosene-free Firebuilder.
  4. I don’t need to clean my fireplace or chimney more than once a year. How frequently you use your fireplace dictates how often it should be cleaned (ranging from yearly to fortnightly). Always clear ash from the fireplace before starting a new fire (keeping a small bed of ash on the bottom). Firemizer reduces clumps of fuel in your wood, turning your ash into fine powder making clean-up much easier.
  5. It’s ok to leave the fire burning while I’m out or asleep. Absolutely not, fires are unpredictable and there are a number of factors that could contribute to a larger incident. To make sure it’s safely exterminated, throw a cup of water, sand or baking soda on top.

Conclusion:

When properly serviced and maintained, a fireplace makes the perfect addition to any room in the house. Pair your hearth with Firemizer and Firebuilder and get the most out of your solid fuel source saving you time, effort and money.

5 reasons why you should invest in a wood-burner

5 reasons why you should invest in a wood-burner:

Wood-burning is a popular trend that has escalated both in the UK and U.S. over the last decade or so. 1.5 million stoves are already fitted in Britain whilst 2.5 million American homes use wood as their primary heat source. The state of California in particular contributes 218,185 wood-burners to the 116 million total homes in the U.S. The reason for this rise in this popularity can be related to the environment, saving money or simply interior design preferences. Here are 5 reasons why you should invest in a wood-burning fire.

1. Wood is essentially carbon neutral. –

Though wood does release carbon dioxide when combusted, it can still be environmentally conscious. Unlike other fossil fuels, wood can be sustainable if bought from somewhere that ensures the replacement of every tree felled. This means that for every tree chopped down, another is planted, meaning the source can become entirely renewable. Wood-burning fires can however still release harmful pollutants and smoke if the wood hasn’t been dried or seasoned properly. Reduce harmful air pollutants by up to 72% if paired with a Firemizer.

2. They’re more efficient than hearths. –

Modern wood-burning stoves now come with efficiency ratings of somewhere between 80-85% whereas hearth will typically have around 20-25%. This means a wood-burning stove is about three times more efficient. Firemizer helps your fuel burn more slower and evenly, helping maintain this efficiency.

3. They can save you money. –

As the price of gas and electricity continues to rise, many houses are swapping to wood-powered heaters and boilers as a cheaper alternative. Again, locally-sourced wood is not only renewable but can also work out cheaper than your current energy provider. Also, gas or electricity services are often prone to power outages, whereas a well-maintained fire can burn all night. With Firemizer saving you 38% on solid fuel, you can reduce a third of the wood you burn too.

4. Wood-stoves are so versatile. –

Modern advancements haven’t just helped the efficiency of wood-stoves; they’ve also created a huge range to choose from. As long as there’s room to run a vent pipe to the outside, they can be fitted in any room of the house – from lounge to bedroom to kitchen. A Firemizer grid can easily be cut down to fit smaller stoves too.

5. They create a lovely scene. –

There’s no denying that wood-burning stoves have a certain romantic aesthetic to them. The sounds of crackling embers, the smell of firewood, the sight of roaring flames and the warmth they give off. A wood-burning stove or fire makes any room a domestic heaven we so often swoon over in the movies. With Firebuilder, the firelighter-kindling combo tool, starting your dream fire couldn’t be any easier – turning your home into a movie-set!

Contact your local Flue specialist or chimney sweep to get an expert opinion on what type and size of stove would best suit your home, and start reaping the benefits of the wood-burning fire (with a Firemizer and Firebuilder) as soon as possible!

Scroll to top