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Frequently Asked Questions

Types of Solid Fuel Appliance
What size should we get?
Where should we buy your appliance from?
Do we have to locate it in an existing fireplace?
Will our chimney be suitable for a solid fuel appliance?
How long will it take to install?
Can I burn anything in it?
Will I need my chimney swept?
How much will it cost to fit?
Can I install it myself?
What do I do about a leaking chimney?
Which Building Regulations apply?
Here, we have tried hard to put ourselves in your shoes. All too often websites fail to notify their customers because they either baffle them with technical data and statistics or the authors take for granted that their readers are fully aware of all the complexities of each individual installation. These two errors can lead to poor communications and hence cause problems for both parties in the future. What we'd like to do is to explain to you many of the pitfalls which our customers may face when deciding to install a solid fuel appliance. In this way we ensure that you have most of the answers we think you will need before you start.

The first point to mention is that we keep referring to “solid fuel appliances”. We do this because many people use the term “logburner” which, apart from being technically incorrect, could greatly affect the decisions you make about what you actually want and what either your installation engineers like ourselves or your supplier THINK you want.
There are two main types of “solid fuel appliance” one is a wood burner and the other a multi fuel burner. The regulations governing their installation are the same but you first need to decide which of these two you really want. If you are uncertain then our engineers will be happy to discuss the differences with you to help you make an informed decision.

Using a Competent Persons Scheme registered installer can save time and money; and they will ensure your heating appliance works safely and efficiently.
All enquiries will require an engineer to visit you to survey the site of the proposed installation, because no two sites are the same. He will help you assess the correct size and type of solid fuel appliance you should buy to fulfill your needs. Too big and it will not only look disproportionate but will make the space uncomfortably hot. Too small and it will fail to heat the room. Sounds obvious but there are specific calculations we use to maximise efficiency.
You have a number of choices but there are several very important factors you should be aware of and we will discuss these with you during our visit. Wherever you buy your appliance from you MUST make sure it is CE compliant and we urge you to be cautious because there are a number of appliances on the market which are made abroad and which do NOT meet the strict CE standards. Our engineer will be happy to recommend several local approved suppliers whose appliances all meet CE standards.
No, not necessarily, because unlike open fires, a solid fuel appliance has its own flue, which in some cases can be routed to suit your wishes.
The answer is probably yes but you will need a flue liner, which is a twin-wall, stainless steel flexible hose that runs up your chimney terminating in a fixed plate to ensure that all the exhaust gases are safely expelled. It may also be necessary to install a chimney pot depending on the existing layout of your property. (i.e. Listed building)
As you would expect most of the work is carried out indoors, we do however need to go up on your roof to install the flue liner and possibly fit a chimney pot, so although it usually only takes us a day to finish and commission a solid fuel appliance it can sometimes take a bit longer because of the weather and circumstances.
No. It is essential that you only burn the fuel specified by the appliance manufacturer. Some appliances are only suitable for wood (and even then only certain types of wood) others are termed “multi fuel” and even with these you can damage the flue liner if the wrong fuel is used. Solid Fuel Installations Limited can advise you which varieties of fuel are suitable and also the most efficient as they all have different calorific values.
Yes. You must have your chimney professionally swept BEFORE we start the installation and then again TWICE annually thereafter. This maintenance programme not only clears the flue liner of debris accumulated through use but optimises the efficiency of the appliance. We can undertake this task ourselves.
Unfortunately there is no flat rate because each installation is unique and will require us to survey the proposed site and discuss the entire scope of work with you.
DIY stove installation is not recommended; instead you should call on a qualified competent engineer. We are registered under the Competent Person Scheme.

Whilst it's an interesting and challenging DIY project, incorrect stove installation can be very dangerous, please be aware that hot fumes from the stove are a fire risk if the stove has been improperly connected with the flue or if the flue itself is incorrectly installed. Secondly carbon monoxide fumes can cause suffocation, poisoning and death if they enter closed areas with poor ventilation. If you are installing a solid fuel appliance yourself, you should at the very least install a fire alarm and a carbon monoxide detector and the installation MUST be inspected by your local authority building control to check it complies with building regulations.

Solid Fuel Installations Limited is fully qualified to install stoves in compliance with building regulations.
Leaking chimneys are caused by the lime mortar disintegrating and the exposed pointing that remains startings to corrode, resulting in smoke leaking through the chimney into rooms, loft spaces or into a neighbour’s flue. Our fitter’s install flexible liners into leaking chimneys when installing wood-burning stoves, so that the dangerous smoke goes up the stainless steel chimney flue.

Leaking chimney flues are one reason to have a flexible liner installed with your solid fuel appliance. They also make your appliance work better because metal conducts heat quicker and makes it draw properly. If no flexible liner is installed by one of our wood stove fitters, a chimney could start to leak a few years after the chimney passed an integrity test.
Read a full copy of the Building Work Leaflet and the salient points.
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