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How to go glamping: Lighting a wood burner

Wood burners in our spaces will all be slightly different, so always look for instructions from the owners, but this guide should ignite a passion for mastering the wild’s most primitive art.

Ready to get lit?

  1. Ensure the burner is clear of any larger/partially burned pieces of wood and place a firelighter onto the grate.

  2. Build a tipi structure around the firelighter using approximately 10 bits of kindling (the smaller bits of wood). Make sure your kindling is really dry.

  3. Light the firelighter and close the door nearly all the way, but leave slightly ajar whilst the fire gets going. You won’t normally need to play with the air vent as the owner will have already correctly set this in a certain position.

  4. When the kindling is burning well, place a small log or two on the fire, leaving the door slightly ajar until the logs catch well.

  5. Close the door and allow the fire to build up by adding another small log or two.

  6. Keep your eye on the fire. It is better to refuel little and often than to stack too many logs on at once. Ideally you want no more than two logs in your burner at a time (although this will depend on the size of your model).

  7. Leave the fire to burn through and get fully warmed up before reducing the air flow – there’s usually a sliding lever at the bottom – to a setting that allows enough air to maintain, but not grow, a fire. Don’t leave the stove unattended whilst warming up, as this could potentially lead to a fire getting out of control.


My fire keeps going out.

Ensure the wood you are using is completely dry.

How many logs do I need to put in a wood burner?

How long’s a piece of string? This depends on the size of the burner, the dryness of the wood etc. Don’t worry, your common sense will do here. Aim to keep a fire comfortably under your ‘under-control’ limit, and you’ll be fine.

What’s the best way to enjoy a fire?

If you’ve forgotten to bring any Barry White with you to play in front of the wood burner, you don’t deserve to light it anyway.

Can I leave my stove burning overnight?

Leaving any fire is rarely a good idea. If possible, close your log burner’s air vents, and spread the remaining material out inside, effectively the reverse of making a pyramid structure – robbing it of oxygen to burn. A sprinkle of water is a wise addition once all spread out.

How do I put out a wood burner?

The question is, do you need to? Check with your owners about wood burner etiquette, and if truly concerned, see above.

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