The Yule log began as a Nordic tradition. The Yule log is the largest log picked and would be placed into the fire hearth. This Christmas tradition is carried out in several countries all over Europe.
It is a tradition to light the log with a previous year’s log. Keeping the wood in storage it is slowly fed to the fire through the 12 days of Christmas
In France, it is a tradition for the whole family to help cut down the log.
A tradition in Cornwall uses a dried out and bark-free log call the mock.
Barrel makers in the UK had unused logs that they couldn’t use therefore they gave their customers them for Yule logs.
Ashen faggot is an old English tradition from Devon and Somerset. A faggot is a large log or bundle of ash sticks bound with nine green lengths of ash bands preferably from the same tree. They would burn this on Christmas Eve and in the heart of the fireplace.
Types of wood
The UK uses oak
Scotland uses birch
France uses cherry. They sprinkle wine over the log before its burning, therefore, it smells nice once lit
Sprinkle Chemicals on the log to create coloured flames;
Potassium nitrate violet,
barium nitrate green,
copper sulphate blue,
table salt bright yellow
However, throwing ashes out on Christmas Day can be unlucky
Chocolate Yule log
Eaten in France and Belgium this is a popular Christmas pudding. Additionally, made with a chocolate sponge, layered with cream and covered with chocolate and decorated to look like bark.
This week’s topic will be all about an on-going crisis facing our planet – deforestation. Statistically, the earth loses 19 million acres of forestry per year. Also, deforestation contributes massively to climate change – about 15% of all global emissions come from the process of deforestation.
Other effects of Deforestation
There are many far more immediate consequences too. Firstly, deforestation causes the loss of animal habitats, which in turn results in massive extinctions. The water absorbed by the trees and the soil beneath are ruined and can enter into larger water systems. This decreases the quality of the water, and contributes to poor health and the spread of disease. Also, deforestation results in the disturbance of many of the native tribes that reside in rainforests. Furthermore in the Amazon alone, there are over 350 different tribes and deforestation is ruining their homes, food and water supplies.
What can we do?
Recycling, reducing your carbon footprint and choosing greener alternatives are the best places to start. Regarding wood burning in your homes, always ensure your wood comes from a sustainable source. Also, using a Firemizer will not only reduce harmful air pollutants by 72%, but helps your fuel last 38% longer. Placing a Firemizer on the base of your wood-burning stove or fireplace will allow the wood to burn more evenly, meaning that there are no clumps of unused fuel in your ash. Therefore, less wood is wasted in heating your home saving you trips to the wood store, and more trees for the planet.
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.
Using your BBQ this Summer with Firemizer and Firebuilder!
Continuing our month focused on the furnishings that help enjoy the outside in Summer, this week it’s all about BBQs! Like the fire-pit, the BBQ is often the centrepiece of any outside gathering, as everybody loves party food. From burgers and hot-dogs, to corn and kebabs, and cheese and veggies, there’s nothing a BBQ can’t handle! Therefore, whatever your dietary restrictions, there’s food on offer from everyone – vegetarian, vegan or meat-lover. Here’s a list of some great vegetarian recipes if you’re interested in trying something different this summer – https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/collection/vegetarian-barbecue
Using Firemizer and Firebuilder with your BBQ
Firemizer is a really handy tool to have beneath your coal BBQ. It’ll get your coals hotter much faster, help them to burn more efficiently and last up to a third longer, and reduce any harmful pollutants emitted by 72%. Simply place it on the base of your BBQ, place the coals on top, and start it like normal and see the different. In addition, why not use Firebuilder to start a perfect fire every time? With no kerosene, the food will be free from any harmful chemicals to keep your food tasting great. Just break the cardboard brick, light the edges, place it on top of your solid fuel and let the fire burn downwards.
JustAverageJen’s BBQ with Firemizer
Blogger JustAverageJen wrote about her experiences using Firemizer in her BBQ last summer, as well as other BBQ essential tips. Cooking for both vegetarians and meat-lovers, Jen’s advice is for anyone wanting to host a perfect BBQ this summer. She evens explains that Firemizer allowed her to “cook more items than normal as [the fire] was still hot so we cooked some food for the following day!”
We tried and tested Bio-Bean’s Recycled Coffee Logs!
The lovely folks over at Bio-Bean sent us some of their Premium Eco Coffee Logs to test in our log-burner. Paired with a Firemizer and Firebuilder, these little recycled pocket-rockets worked an absolute treat for our eyes and our stove!
We started with the Firemizer on the base of the stove and a Firebuilder burning on top. Made of used coffee-grounds collected from shops across the country, they reduce unnecessary greenhouse gases and need for landfill sites, getting that extra mile out of your Americano. The logs themselves still give off that lovely coffee aroma whilst in the packet, so handling and inspecting was joy.
We then threw the first coffee log on top of our Firebuilder, and within moments the log was burning nicely. As the logs are old coffee grounds, they retain about 20% more energy than wood, meaning they burn much faster. This was immediately noticeable – within minutes we had a fire going. The coffee logs do have a tendency to crumble and break apart, so be extra careful we stoking the fire. When we noticed the fire simmering down after a little while, we placed a couple more logs in to bring it back up and, sure enough, the fire was roaring again within minutes.
The coffee logs are an excellent way of getting a fire started quickly, or building it back up when dwindling. They take to the flame immediately and require little intervention – perhaps occasional rearrangement when the logs crumble into smaller fragments. Truly, the only slight shortcoming of the coffee logs is the amount of smoke and ash they produce. Thankfully, with Firemizer, no clumps were left and we were able to brush off the collected ash into the pan. Unfortunately we couldn’t do anything about the amount of smoke each log produced when burning, but with the stove doors closed and the flue wide-open, it didn’t linger around the house.
Bio-Bean’s Coffee Logs are a revolutionary concept and make excellent use of waste that would typically be considered useless. Instead, they have managed to create a sustainable alternative to fossil fuels that packs the speed and strength of caffeine. The logs provide an excellent way to start or resurrect fires quickly and efficiently (especially when paired with a Firebuilder.) Try them for yourself by visiting http://www.bio-bean.com/coffee-logs/ now!
We tried and tested Green Olive’s Kiln-Dried Hardwood and Olive Wood!
The people over at Green Olive were lovely enough to send us some of Kiln-Dried Hardwood and Olive Wood. Paired with Firemizer and Firebuilder, we cleaned our stove, patted the ash off and got to work burning these logs!
Olive Wood Logs
After getting our stove-fire started with a Firebuilder, we threw on a few of the Olive Wood logs. As a natural, low-moisture wood untreated by chemicals, these logs were lightweight and attractive (if not slightly too big). These logs did take a while to get going, but once they were, they lasted far longer than standard logs. This may have reduced the amount of heat given off however, as our thermometer gave consistently lower readings. The flame produced by the Olive Wood was a noticeably more regal-golden colour and the smell – oh the smell! The entire house was filled with a lovely olive scent that was closer to an Italian restaurant than a wood-fire. There was no smoke or steam coming off the fire, just bright yellow flames and that delicious smell. Despite the slow start and reduced heat output, the logs burned for much longer than normal logs and (with the help of Firemizer) burned evenly and continuously.
The Kiln-Dried Hardwood came in much thicker, denser logs that instantly smothered the Firebuilder’s flame before it could become established. Instead, we attempt to use the top-down method of starting a fire so we could get to use the Hardwood. The top-down method is simple –
Place your logs in a neat pile at the bottom, on top of the Firemizer.
Put kindling on top of them, with scrunched up balls of newspaper if needed.
Position your firelighter (or our Firebuilder) at the very top. The wood and kindling should resemble a tepee shape.
Light the Firebuilder and let the fire establish downwards, catching on the newspaper, the kindling and then the wood.
Once the fire is going, add more logs if/when necessary.
The Hardwood was far more effective for us using the top-down method, and within 30 minutes the fire was roaring. It needed minimal interference too, just the occasional handful of newspaper to prevent the flames being smothered under the logs. The flame understandably wasn’t as golden as the Olive wood, but it gave off was that familiar smell of good-wood-burning. It also didn’t give off much steam or smoke either, keeping the stove’s glass doors clean and free of soot.
Both types of wood presented their individual challenges; the Olive Wood needed that extra bit of time to become established, and the Hardwood was often too dense and heavy for standard lighting methods that just used a firelighter. However, both types certainly had their rewards for persevering – the smell of the Hardwood was wonderful, whilst the Olive Wood lasted much longer and presented a dazzling golden flame. Pick up a bag for yourself and see which best suits your stove or hearth at https://www.greenolivefirewood.co.uk/.
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!
With the winter nearly over, we should take advice from those animals waking up from hibernation – it’s never too early to start preparing for next year! So while they’re out collecting their food, why not think about getting a log-store to collect and keep more wood in to burn next winter?
Correct storing is essential to getting the most out of your wood as this allows the necessary seasoning, ideally for 6-12 months. Otherwise it is likely burn for less time and produce less heat, potentially emitting dangerous and environmentally-damaging smoke. Planning ahead for winter is incredibly important, so a log-store will help get the most out of your fuel when the fire is needed.
There are a few requirements your wood will need when getting a log-store – firstly, shelter. In order to keep your wood dry and let it season properly, protection from the elements is vital. Be sure to position the log-store in a place that isn’t constantly harassed by inclement weather and that it has a sturdy frame with a sloped roof to keep the rain out!
The other necessity of your store is space. Not only must the depth align with log size, but the wood also needs air circulating around it to help it dry out, so slatted side panels are a must. Also, don’t just put the larger logs at the bottom and smaller on top, mix up shapes and sizes or chop them down to provide enough breathing room between each piece.
How to build a Log-Store:
In the interest of saving money, building your own log-store couldn’t be easier or cheaper! All it takes is a few pallets (which local businesses can provide for free), four wooden posts, general tools (such as a hammer and galvanised nails) and a few hours of time and labour.
First, use the pallets as the store base – either one or two pallets wide, depending on how many logs you intend on storing.
Secure your four wooden posts into the ground at each corner of the pallet base – if you want to go all out, use sand and cement mix to keep them in place. Make sure the front or back two posts are slightly taller to allow for your sloped-roof!
Break down a few pallets or use wooden planks to use as slatted side and back panels, spaced evenly and secured in place with nails.
Do the same for the roof but without allowing space between-panels – keep that rain out!
When storing, space out your wood shapes and sizes to allow maximum air circulation so it can season.
It’s that easy to craft your own log-store and start getting the most out of your firewood in winter, and with the addition of a Firemizer, your fuel can last up to 38% longer – meaning less trips back outside to grab some more!
It’s a suspiciously simple yet incredibly effective product. Everything you need to know about the product and how it improves your wood or coal-burning falls into three qualities; Efficient, Environmental, and Economic.
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 and its stainless-steel-alloy mesh evenly distributes the heat across the entire base of your wood or coal-burning stove or fireplace. This means that with the addition of Firemizer, your fire will burn far more resourcefully than it ever did before.
Secondly, Firemizer is a helpful tool in the battle against climate change. It is non-catalytic, chemical-free and with its cardboard packaging, entirely recyclable. You can even use the leftover stove ash in your garden as compost for plants! Firemizer reduces excess creosote tars that build up in chimneys by 57% and general air pollutants by 72%, and with 38% of extra life added to your fire, saving a third of your wood or coal resources in the process!
Finally, and most importantly to some, are the economic benefits. By reducing the amount of solid fuel needed and simultaneously increasing the lifespan of your fire, Firemizer immediately starts helping you save on energy bills from the second it’s placed under your fire until the end of its lifespan (typically around 500 burn hour or one season).
So stop throwing your money and resources into the fire – purchase a Firemizer and start burning efficiently, environmentally and economically!