Winter is coming: make sure your wood stove/fireplace is safe

It’s that time of year and nothing is more comforting than curling up beside a crackling fire or around the warmth of a wood stove.

  • Nov. 9, 2016 7:00 a.m.

Barbara Latkowski

Caledonia Courier

It’s that time of year and nothing is more comforting than curling up beside a crackling fire or around the warmth of a wood stove.

But before doing so, it’s important to take the necessary steps to ensure that your fireplace or wood stove is operating properly and free of hazards to prevent events such as chimney fires.

The first step is to watch for warning signs according to the Technical Standards and Safety Authority.

Look for corrosion or rust on the outer shell of a metal chimney.

Watch also for bulges or corrosion of the liner as well. Other problems include: loose bricks, crumbling mortar, dark stains and white powder.

These issues should be checked and repaired immediately by a certified contractor or mason.

Secondly, check stove pipes and connections. Ensure that screws are located at every joint and that each connection is tight and secure.

Also, look for signs of dark staining or white powder (leeching) at every joint. Rust is a sign that the stove pipe needs replacing.

Third, check walls for excessive heat.

If the wall above your fireplace or wood stove is very hot, it could be a sign of improper chimney installation causing a potential fire hazard.

Also, make sure your chimney is cleaned once every year to avoid any potential hazards such as obstructions, etc.

Lastly, keep combustible objects away from your wood stove or fireplace and a properly fitted screen should be used at all times. Floors and walls should be protected with non-combustible shields.

In the case of gas fireplaces, never leave a young child alone near a gas fireplace.

Every year, children are burned from contact with the glass barrier at the front of a gas fireplace.

It takes an average of about 45 minutes for a fireplace to cool to a safe temperature after it’s been extinguished.

Create a barrier around the gas fireplace and teach children about the dangers of fire.

For more information, visit:


Just Posted

New Seven Sisters replacement confirmed

Mental health facility will have 25 beds, up from 20 in current facility

Convicted animal abuser to return to B.C. court May 21

Catherine Jessica Adams is facing a breach of probation charge

Gallery: Project Heavy Duty inspires students into it’s 32nd year

The event is a collaboration between SD91 and industry in and around Vanderhoof, Fraser Lake and Fort St. James

Telkwa pot plant application passes review

Cannabis company claims new Health Canada regulations are working in its favour

Madison Scott’s mother hosts event to keep search for her missing daughter alive

Eight years ago, the Vanderhoof teenager disappeared, and the RCMP continue to chase leads

Kelowna toddler suffers cracked skull after fall from balcony

Neighbour who found the two-year-old boy said he has a bump the size of a golf ball on his head

RCMP probe if teen was intentionally hit with ski pole by mystery skier on B.C. mountain

The incident happened on March 20 on Grouse Mountain. Police are urging witnesses to come forward

Support growing for orphaned Okanagan child after father dies in highway crash

Family thanks emergency crews for assistance in traumatic incident

Pipeline protester chimes in on Justin Trudeau’s B.C. fundraising speech

The government purchased the Trans Mountain pipeline and expansion project for $4.5 billion

Baby boom seniors putting pressure on B.C. long-term care: report

B.C. leads Canada in growth of dementia, dependence on care

UPDATED: B.C. man says he’ll take People’s Party lawsuit as far as he can

Federal judge shut down Satinder Dhillon’s ‘nonsensical’ motion to bar use of PPC name in byelection

Canada stripping citizenship from Chinese man over alleged marriage fraud

The move comes amid severely strained relations between Ottawa and Beijing

Nevada court orders former Vancouver man to pay back $21.7M to investors

The commission says Michael Lathigee committed fraud over a decade ago

Most Read