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Thread: Real fires and chimneys

  1. #1
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    Ross lillywhite
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    Default Real fires and chimneys

    does anyone use a real fire in their home, bought a new house that has a real chimney, went out yesterday and got a grate, smokeless coal etc and had the chimney swept, tried to light a fire and within minutes thought someone had thrown a gas cannister in the house. had to open all the windows to find the children with their eyes streaming, mind the coughing told me where they were,i am getting the sweeper back as i have a tile on the chimney with only a small gap which is causing no draw, according to a neighbour.
    but can i use a real fire with no smoke at all in the house as i dont fancy redecorating every year, sorry its long but fancied the idea of chestnuts and marshmellows on the fire, as you can guess it was my first attempt.

  2. #2
    Iain is offline Overpriced piece of old tat - Ferrari 250 GTO Club Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by ross View Post
    does anyone use a real fire in their home, bought a new house that has a real chimney, went out yesterday and got a grate, smokeless coal etc and had the chimney swept, tried to light a fire and within minutes thought someone had thrown a gas cannister in the house. had to open all the windows to find the children with their eyes streaming, mind the coughing told me where they were,i am getting the sweeper back as i have a tile on the chimney with only a small gap which is causing no draw, according to a neighbour.
    but can i use a real fire with no smoke at all in the house as i dont fancy redecorating every year, sorry its long but fancied the idea of chestnuts and marshmellows on the fire, as you can guess it was my first attempt.
    If you have a proper chimney that will draw then no reason why it won't work surely? Chimney isn't going to draw with a tile on top of it though

    You also don't really want an open chimney pot - ideally it needs some sort of cowl up there to keep the rain etc out.

  3. #3
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    Even a small hole should be enough, mine doesnt smoke and I use it throughout the winter.
    Smokeless coal is costly, get some wooden blocks in there dude !!!!

  4. #4
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    I have a real fire, and also use wood rather than coal, add some Pine Cones they glow nicely

    I have a friend who has a chimney sweeping brush and just borrow it from time to time to keep it clean, not had any problems with smoke in the house.

  5. #5
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    The draw on the chimney depend on a lot of things including the size of the opening, the flue, the design of the throat and the natural ventilation.

    There needs to be a source of fresh air close to the fireplace in order to create an airflow. Houses today have double glazing, sealed doors etc which reduces the airflow. If the chimney has not been used for some time I would get it tested by a flue specialist to ensure there is no leakage in the flue - your sweep may be able to do this. The chimney may need lining to ensure it is safe.

    Clearly the chimney needs to have the tile removed

  6. #6
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    If it's warmer outside than in then you will get a down draft, just hold your hand above the fire and you can feel a cool draft on the back of your hand

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iain View Post
    You also don't really want an open chimney pot - ideally it needs some sort of cowl up there to keep the rain etc out.
    Pidgeons also like to go sliding down them sometimes. They will either appear in your lounge looking a bit confused and covered in soot or get stuck in the flue and die and rot, which smells delightful.

    If its an old house and the fire has not been used for a while it might be worth getting the flue checked for leaks.

  8. #8
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    I have a few open fires and have had the same experience on a couple of occasions over the years.
    Assuming your chimney is ok (and open at the top.. get rid of the tile!!) then you can just be a bit unlucky with the wind blowing back down the chimney at the wrong time. If it happens often and there are buildings or trees around you which are causing unusual air flow then you can get specially shaped cowls which act like a wing and create a draw of air above the chimney.

  9. #9
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    phillg is offline Looks like a 308 to me? -The Ferrari 288 GTO Club Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by zoRob View Post
    Pidgeons also like to go sliding down them sometimes. They will either appear in your lounge looking a bit confused and covered in soot or get stuck in the flue and die and rot, which smells delightful.

    If its an old house and the fire has not been used for a while it might be worth getting the flue checked for leaks.
    I've had the bird problem,what a mess,another good reason to have some sort of cover on the chimney pot.

  10. #10
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    i have had two pidgeons and a parrot down mine, now got a closed in stove, very cosy and not as much mess
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