Tag: wood burning

Deforestation and its environmental effects

Deforestation

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.

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.

Fun things to do around the Fire-pit this Summer!

 

Fun things to do around the Fire-pit this Summer!

Fire-pits are quickly becoming the centrepiece in any garden – just like the hearth, the fire-pit becomes a centralized meeting point. Now that the weather is beautiful once again, spending the days and evenings outside seems far less discouraging. An afternoon relaxing with a book, dinners outside, a drink with friends, the garden has much more room and ambience to offer than any inside room. If you’re planning a gathering of friends and family, try some of these fun activities to make the night memorable.

Sweets and Treats!

When hosting an outside activity around a fire, the go-to activity is usually centred around food. Hot dogs make a great savory treat when accompanied by ketchup and mustard, a BBQ classic! Nobody wants to wait around for food, so getting your fire started quicker and stronger is crucial. Using a Firebuilder makes starting your fire easier than ever – simply break the cardboard brick, light the edges, place it on top of your solid fuel and let the fire burn downwards. As a kindling-and-firestarter-in-one (with no added chemicals like kerosene) your fire will be roaring before you know it.

If you’re looking for something on the sweeter side, there’s no fireside food better than the S’more. Here’s a simply recipe from Hershey’s themselves to make the perfect S’more this summer – https://www.hersheys.com/en_us/recipes/smores.html

Sing-alongs!

It might sound cheesy, but sometimes there’s really nothing better than a good group sing-along around the fire! Grab your guitar and strike a few chords, you’re bound to find a song that everyone knows the words to. You can even bring out some kitchen objects and get a full DIY orchestra going!

Stories and memories!

Whether it’s a spooky ghost story, or an embarrassing memory, stories by the fireside are a time-old tradition. With the added help of Firemizer, your solid fuel will last up to a third longer, meaning less interference and more time to share. Simply place a Firemizer at the base of your fire-pit, place your fuel on top and let the unique steel-alloy grid help your fuel to burn more evenly and efficiently (whilst also reducing any harmful pollutants by 72%).

 

Get the most out of your fire-pit this Summer with the help of Firebuilder and Firemizer, and make those summer nights last as long as possible.

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.

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.

May Day Weekend

May Day Bank Holiday Weekend

Over the May Day bank holiday weekend, you may find yourself stuck for things to do with that extra day. Instead of sleeping in or watching TV, here’s a list of cheap, alternative things to get you out the house.

 

Walking Tours in London

If you live in the countryside and want a change of scenery, why not head to the sprawling London metropolis? There’s a wealth of landmarks and tourist attractions that we so often forget are on our doorstep. In the interest of keeping it cheap and cheerful, there are over 40 free walking tours on offer to you. These range from historic walks through the park, to the strip between Buckingham Palace and St. Paul’s Cathedral, to the London Outer Orbital Path (LOOP) that takes you through stately monuments and houses.

Cheese-Chasers in Gloucester

This strangely appealing annual event always promises not to disappoint. In Brockworth, Gloucester, hordes of competitors throw themselves down a hill in order to catch the prized wheel of cheese. Yes, you read that correctly. An 8lb wheel of Double Gloucester cheese is chased down the famed Cooper’s Hill and the first to the finish line is crowned Cheese Champion.

Pet Animals in Newcastle

Just outside of Newcastle city centre in Jesmond Dene is a little haven that the little ones will enjoy. Filled with standard pigs and rabbits (as well as rarer alpacas and tropical birds) this petting zoo will delight all! It’s free entry with a soft play area and café, so if you’re in the area and stuck for ideas, this is an easy fix.

Host a Garden Party

Getting out of the house doesn’t necessarily require going far; weather permitting, invite friends over for an impromptu garden party! Soak up the sunlight and maybe even get a barbecue going – get it started easier using a Firebuilder and help it last up to 38% with a Firemizer! If the weather isn’t so good, swap garden for a cheese and wine night, and use Firemizer in your wood or coal burning stove or fireplace instead!

Take a walk in the Peak District

Over April and May, walkers take to the hills making the most of the year’s first bouts of good weather. With so many various trails to choose from, from mountain heights to valley lows, to fit your experience level. Take a day out for a quick escape or organise a longer trail over the full weekend, all you need are comfy shoes and a weather proof coat!

 

There are just some of the cheap, wonderful ways to get the most of your this bank holiday this year!

Earth Day 2018

Earth Day 2018

April 22nd is Earth Day, a day to celebrate the world’s largest environmental movement. Started in 1970, the Earth Day movement has mobilised over 200 million people worldwide since going global 20 years later. Over 1 billion people and 50,000 partners across nearly 195 countries all contribute to the yearly observation of this day. Moreover, it has influenced substantial change in approaches towards climate change and influenced that passing of acts such as the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act and the Endangered Species Act.

History:

Founded by Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson, he sought to bring about change after witnessing a devastating oil spill in 1969. Done alongside the counter-culture movements and student-led anti-war protest in America, Nelson used this momentum to educated about climate change. Furthermore, after years of mounting success in educating and inspiring the world to confront and change our attitudes towards how we treat the planet, Nelson was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1995.

A Billion Acts of Green:

In 2010, in the face of opposition from climate change deniers and oil-lobbyists, the Earth Day Network launched its most ambitious scheme yet – to get people across the world to commit 1 billion acts of environmental service. These acts ranged from small, personal commitments like Meat-Free Mondays, into global tree-planting initiatives like The Canopy Project. As it stands, we’ve reached over 2 and a half billion Green Acts, with a new goal of 3 billion. Find out how you can help reach this goal here. Equally, using a Firemizer reduces air pollutants by 72%, and Firebuilder is kerosene-free firebuilder that’s made of entirely recycled cardboard. Using these two products can drastically reduce your carbon footprint and inch us towards those 3 billion Acts of Green.

2018’s Theme

Additionally, the theme for this year Earth Day is ‘end plastic pollution’ – did you know that the UK and US throw away over 550 million plastic straws every day that eventually find their way to our oceans? These cause serious damage to natural ecosystems and tiny micro-particles find their way from our oceans to our tap water. This year, commit yourself to stop using disposable plastics and instead seek out environmentally friendly alternatives. Purchase a re-usable bag for shopping, acquire your own reusable water bottle instead of buying another, and wash-up metal cutlery instead of throwing away plastic knives and forks. End the needless use of disposable plastic products and make your contribution to Earth Day this April!

 

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