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Pocketmags Digital Magazines
Pocketmags Digital Magazines

Do wood burning stoves make sense for modern homes?

Sustainability expert Nigel Griffi ths takes a look at whether the fl icker of real fl ames can still make a viable and eco-friendly contribution to space heating
The Elise Edge+ from Stovax ( is available with a heat output of 7kW in the wood burning model and 8kW in the multi fuel option

As I write, I’m sat next to my wood burning stove which – even though it’s still summer – I have just lit. The whole process took two minutes, but that’s because there were newspapers to hand, plenty of kindling prepared, the ash pan had recently been emptied and there were logs in the porch ready to fi ll the basket. It would have been even quicker if a broadsheet paper been around; they make better fi relighters but rarely appear.

Why are stoves so popular?

They say that wood warms you three times: when you’re collecting it, cutting it, and burning it. All true, but to this I would add one more – stacking it – as fi rewood generally needs to be properly stacked at least once in a dry place after it has been cut and split. It’s a work-out, though, and good practice for tasks like dry stone walling. But does it still make sense to have a stove in a modern home which, of course, needs very little space heating?

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About Build It

Make a success of your bespoke home building project with inspirational design ideas and practical advice from Build It magazine. Our September issue includes: - Barn Conversion Guide - Buying Land - money saving tips - Should You Use an Architect? - Designing Your Home Renovation - Windows: Repair or Replace? - Build It's real-life Self Build Education House ... and more!