Tips for Burning Smart

IF YOU MUST BURN, THERE ARE MANY WAYS TO BURN SMART AND BURN CLEAN

Save money, reduce air pollution and protect your health and the health of those around you by burning smart.

Burn only clean, seasoned wood

Split, stack, cover and store firewood. Use well-seasoned (at least 6 months) firewood split to the right size - generally 7.5 to 15 cm (3 to 6”) in diameter and 35 to 40 cm (14 to 16”) in length.

PREVENT THE RELEASE OF TOXIC CHEMICALS, NEVER BURN THESE PROHIBITED MATERIALS

  • Pressure treated or painted wood
  • Plastics and styrofoam
  • Particleboard, MDF or plywood
  • Saltwater driftwood
  • Cardboard

BUILD SMALL HOT FIRES AND AVOID SMOULDERING

Burn clean. Use small pieces of wood kindling and newspaper to start your fire. Use dry wood – 20% moisture or less. Moisture meters are available at hardware stores. Burn small, hot, bright fires.

Burn smart. Do not damper or hold your fire overnight. This creates air pollution, promotes creosote build-up in your chimney, and does little to provide heat.

BE A GOOD NEIGHBOUR

Watch your chimney. Smoke means that your fire needs more air and/or drier wood. Open the stove or fireplace damper to increase air circulation and improve burning.

Weather conditions at night and in winter often result in stagnant air, causing smoke to linger in the neighbourhood. This smoky outside air can be drawn into fresh air furnace intakes or open windows of nearby neighbours, subjecting them to a smoky indoor environment. Limiting wood stove and fireplace use to periods when the weather helps to break up and move smoke away will reduce the impact of wood smoke on neighbours. From October through March you can find out if weather conditions are favourable for indoor residential wood burning by calling 604-436-6777.

To reduce wood smoke in your neighbourhood, consider replacing your old uncertified wood stove or fireplace with a certified wood-burning appliance or natural gas appliance. Metro Vancouver residents may be eligible to receive a rebate of up to $400 when trading in their old uncertified wood-burning appliance for a new low emission appliance. Call 604-436-6722 or click here for more information.