Why use a HETAS registered installer?
Registered installers are trained and approved to HETAS standards and can self certify that their work complies with the relevant Building Regulations. If you were to use a company that is not HETAS registered, you must apply to your Local Authority Building Control Department for a Building Notice. You must then pay the appropriate fee (possibly up to £300.00). Should there be a problem and the worst happens and HETAS do not have a record of a HETAS Certificate at the property, then I’m afraid it can void your insurance. After your installation a copy of your Certificate is forwarded to HETAS who will notify your Local Authority on your behalf. Please note that just because a company is HETAS registered it does not always guarantee quality, well installed work.
Why line your stove?
We advise clients that are planning on having a stove fitted to also line the chimney’s flue with a stainless steel lining system. This is because a stove looses much less heat through the flue than an open fire so creates a colder and slower draw giving gases time to condense and stick to the flues walls.
With the liner being made from steel, It conducts heat much quicker creating a more draw up the flue. The benefit of a faster draw is this ignites fuel and gets your stove to its highest efficiency a lot faster. As well as tackling the problem of giving gases time to condense creating tar and creosote build up on the flue walls. Creosote can eventually leak through causing damp tar stains. It is also very flammable and the main cause of chimney fires.
A liner is also much more efficient on fuel as the response to the air vents on your stove is significantly increased. The best way i can describe it is like a volume control for your flame. This is something you just wont get on an unlined flue. Liners are dropped from the roof and connected directly to the stoves flue pipe. This creates a safe installation preventing smoke spillage escaping through damaged mid feather bricks into bedrooms above or neighbours if the stack is shared.
Another benefit of having the stove lined is it makes the sweeping process much cleaner, easier and quicker. This keeps your hearth and the walls of your chamber free from any soot as there is no need for sweeping hatches in the register plate. The liner is swept through the stove as it is now all one connected system.
What grade of liner do you require?
There are two grades of steel for your lining system. The quality of stainless steel used for the inner and outer layers of the liner affect its lifespan and recommended usage. 316 which has a ten year guarantee is only suitable for use with wood and very occasional smokeless fuels. 904 has a 20 year guarantee and is suitable for a mixture of wood and smokeless fuels and is recommended for people planning on heavy use of their stove, especially with coal.
What size stove (kw)
Most stoves I install are around 4 -5 kw’s. This is the most common size output to heat most rooms effectively. Larger, older properties or properties with an open plan design could consider a higher output. I would only recommend up to 8 kw`s as any more would be an unbearable heat. Also remember, any open fire or any stove with an output higher than 5 kw`s requires an open air vent to be installed in the room that the appliance is in. Any stove 5 kw or below does not require this as there is sufficient oxygen in the room for the stove to operate efficiently.
The beauty of slate is it will not mark or stain and with a new coat of slate, teak or linseed oil it can look as new as the day it was installed, many years later. Also when using slate with a wood burning stove the front hearth can be in one piece, therefore no unsightly mortar joints are on show from the hearth being laid in 3 or 4 separate pieces of stone, just one big chunky piece of slate that looks great with wooden floors or carpets.
There are much cheaper alternatives for hearths like Indian stone for example which is used for paving driveways. Some installers choose to use this to keep costs down. Indian stone is a very porous material meaning it will stain and mark easily which isn’t ideal for a hearth due to soot and ash when emptying your appliance. You have to consider how your fireplace is going to look in years from now.
No chimney No Problem!
If you don’t have a brick built chimney you can still enjoy a real fire by using a twin wall insulated flue system. These are a stainless steel flue surrounded by insulation and finished with an outer skin of stainless.
They’re relatively cool to the touch on the outside surface.
A 6 inch twin wall insulated flue usually has an outer diameter of approx 8 inch These flues come in a chrome finish but can also be powder coated in any colour
Twin wall insulated flues can be placed through an external wall and up the outside of a building or they can run indoors through lower and upper ceilings. These can then be boxed in with a timber frame, plasterboarded and emulsioned/wallpapered or they can be incorporated into fitted wardrobes. You wouldn’t even know it was there!
Most Twin wall insulated flues can be placed within 50mm of combustible materials which enables simple routing of the flue throughout the house with minimal disruption.
Will it make a mess?
Installing a new stove or fireplace can be dusty work. I ask clients requiring a full knockout to have the room cleared of furniture and belongings. Heavier furniture that is unable to be removed can always be covered over. Usually a quick polish and good hovering (by us) after the install is all that is required.