Safety Tips for Igniting a New Fireplace for the First Time

fireplace with flame lit after being ignited for first time with safety tips and professional installation and inspection by new england hearth and home

How to Safely Ignite a New Gas, Wood-Burning, & Electric Fireplace for the First Time

When igniting a fireplace for the first time, it is important to take certain safety precautions to ensure the safety of your home and those around you. Since it has never been lit before, it does not yet have a build-up of protective soot layers that help prevent fires and carbon monoxide leaks. By properly clearing the area around your hearth, finding the right fuel type, scheduling a professional inspection, and other top tips, you can minimize these risks and simply enjoy the warmth of your new fireplace. In this blog, we will discuss how these steps can make all the difference in preventing accidents and keeping your home safe.

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Are New Fireplaces at Higher Risk for Accidents than Lived-In Ones?

When comparing the safety of new and used fireplaces, newer installations tend to be at a higher risk for accidents. Over time, soot and creosote can build up, acting as a barrier that prevents fire from spreading to other parts of the house. Since new fireplaces do not have this layer yet, it is important to take further precautions before using them for the first time.

Schedule a Professional Inspection Before Using a New Fireplace

Having a professional perform a full inspection of your fireplace before using it for the first time can help identify any potential hazards and confirm that all parts are in working order. During this inspection, a certified professional will check for any manufacturer errors, proper ventilation, loose valves, and other important factors that could lead to accidents. When you get your fireplace installed by New England Hearth & Home, we inspect your entire new hearth before and after placing it into your home. We test everything, from the vent pipes to the gas pressure, to give you peace of mind that your fireplace is safe and ready to be used. To learn more about our services, call 781-562-0771 or submit an online service request.

Find the Best Fuel Type

Using the wrong fuel type can cause your new fireplace to malfunction or become damaged. Before using your fireplace, make sure to read the manufacturer’s instructions and recommendations for fuel types. Gas fireplaces can use either natural gas or propane while wood-burning fireplaces require seasoned hardwood logs. Depending on the make, model, size, and location of your appliance, there may be a better choice over another. If you are not sure which to choose, contact a professional at New England Hearth & Home for assistance.

Avoid Overcrowding the Space Around Your New Fireplace

The mantle of your new fireplace may be tempting to place decorations or televisions on. Although it may be a nice design touch for your home, this can also be dangerous when you are not familiar with your new hearth. It is important to make sure there are at least three feet of clear space around your fireplace so that no flammable objects come in contact with the flames or hot surfaces. This includes furniture, drapes, and anything else that could catch fire. Over time, as you become more accustomed to the noises, scents, flame size, and temperature, you may be comfortable adding more decorations to the space. In this case, it is still important to not block the doors and venting components.

How Long Can You Run a Fireplace When Using It for the First Time?

When using your fireplace for the first time, it is important to limit how long you run it. Keeping it on for extended periods of time can cause the unit to overheat, which could potentially be a fire hazard. To prevent this, it is recommended to only run your fireplace for 30 minutes at a time when first using it. This gives the unit enough time to warm up and allows you to keep a close eye on it.

Schedule a New Fireplace Installation or Inspection with New England Hearth & Home in Canton, MA

At New England Hearth & Home, we offer professional fireplace installations, inspections, replacements, and repairs. From the moment you enter our showroom, our team will guide you through each step to ensure the safety and comfort of your home. After installing your new fireplace, we also provide annual inspections and routine maintenance services to keep it running as good as day one for years to come. To learn more and get a free quote, call us at 781-562-0771 or submit an online request form!

Can You Cook S’Mores & Other Food With a Wood-Burning Fireplace?

roasting marshmallows over a flame in an indoor wood-burning fireplace to make s'mores using home hearth

Is it Safe to Make S'Mores & Cook Food Using a Wood-Burning Fireplace or Stove?

We have all heard the song about roasting chestnuts over an open fire or making s’mores during a camping trip. These are fun and delicious activities to enjoy outside during the Summer, but what about when the temperatures drop during the Winter? If you have a wood-burning fireplace at home, you may wonder if you can make these sweet treats using your indoor hearth. Before you get started, it is important first to make sure that it is safe and efficient. In this blog, we will discuss the possibility of cooking using your wood-burning fireplace and provide tips on how to keep the flames contained, your food unburnt, and your home safe. To learn more about wood-burning fireplaces and to schedule a consultation, visit our website or call us at 781-562-0771.

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Benefits of Installing a Wood-Burning Fireplace Over Gas or Electric

Wood-burning fireplaces provide many benefits over gas or electric alternatives. Not only do they add warmth and ambiance to your home, but they are also more energy-efficient. Wood is a renewable resource that does not require electricity or gas lines to operate, saving you on utility costs in the long run. Additionally, burning wood produces less carbon monoxide than natural gas or propane, making it more eco-friendly. If you live in Massachusetts, you are no stranger to the frigid weather that comes with each Winter. Installing a wood-burning fireplace can keep your home warm and cozy during the snowiest storms.

Is It Safe to Make S'Mores Using an Indoor Fireplace?

Before you begin to roast and toast, it is important to ensure that your fireplace is safe to use for cooking food. Make sure that the chimney is not sealed and allows for smoke to be ventilated and out of your s’more. You should also confirm that your fireplace has been properly maintained and cleaned. A buildup of creosote can cause fire hazards, so it is essential to have a professional chimney sweep clean your chimney annually. It is recommended to have your fireplace inspected annually by a professional to check for any damages or potential hazards. During this inspection, you can also ask about using your fireplace for cooking and get advice on how to do so safely.

Tips for Cooking Food Using a Wood-Burning Fireplace

After you have confirmed that your fireplace is ready to use for cooking, here are some tips to keep your food and home safe:

Use a Drip Pan to Catch Any Crumbs or Dropped Food

Similar to debris buildup, food that gets caught in your fireplace can create a fire risk. Adding a pan or tray underneath your food can easily clean up any mess and avoid potential hazards. When making s’mores, gooey marshmallow residue can stick to your hearth and cause a fire if not removed. Also, leftover food can attract bugs and pests, leading to an infestation or damaged wood.

Keep a Fire Extinguisher Nearby

As with any open fire, it is essential to have a fire extinguisher in case of an emergency. Keep one nearby if the flames get out of control or something accidentally catches on fire. In the case of an emergency, fire extinguishers can be life-saving and prevent a small fire from turning into a larger, more dangerous one.

Read the Manufacturer's Guide Before Cooking with a Wood Fireplace

When you purchase your new fireplace, it should come with a guide from the manufacturer about troubleshooting, maintenance, and safety tips. In this guide, it should mention if your appliance can be used as a stove and the proper way to apply this feature. If you are unsure, contact the brand directly or the fireplace experts at New England Hearth & Home.

Avoid Using Aerosol Sprays & Non-Stick Cookware

Aerosol sprays and non-stick cookware should be avoided over an open flame. These products can release harmful chemicals into the air when heated, which can cause respiratory issues or a fire hazard if they come into direct contact with the flames.

Contact New England Hearth & Home in Canton, MA for Wood-Burning Fireplace Installations, Replacements, Repairs, & Instructions

If you are unsure the best way to use your wood-burning fireplace or stove, contact New England Hearth & Home for guidance. As a trusted fireplace servicer, our staff is on hand to answer any questions regarding your hearth and how to use it as a stove. Additionally, if you are interested in learning more about installing a fireplace in your home, we can help walk you through the different types, styles, and brands to find the right one for you. To learn more and schedule a consultation, visit our website or call us at 781-562-0771.

October is National Fire Safety Month: 5 Tips to Prevent Fires

smoke alarm in front of a fireplace for fire prevention safety for homes for national fire safety month

Every October, we observe National Fire Safety Month to address awareness about the importance of preventing fires and keeping your homes and workplaces safe.  Fire safety is a critical aspect of our daily lives, and we should all take it seriously. After all, it helps us protect our loved ones in a fire.

In this article, we’ll discuss five essential tips for preventing fires and keeping your loved ones and workplaces safe. Considering the following tips below, you can significantly reduce the risk of fire-related accidents.

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Maintain Electrical Appliances

Electrical appliances are common sources of fires. To prevent electrical fires, watch your appliances for any signs of wear and tear. Replace damaged cords and sockets, and avoid overloading electrical outlets. When you’re not using an appliance, unplug it to reduce the risk of overheating.

Install Smoke Detectors

One of the most effective ways to prevent fires is by installing a smoke alarm in your home or workplace. These small devices can save lives by alerting you to the presence of smoke or fire. Place them in key areas like bedrooms, the Kitchen, and hallways. Regularly check and replace their batteries to ensure they are in working condition. Read our blog to learn how to replace batteries in a standard smoke detector!

Maintain Electrical Appliances

Electrical appliances are common sources of fires. To prevent electrical fires, watch your appliances for any signs of wear and tear. Replace damaged cords and sockets, and avoid overloading electrical outlets. When you’re not using an appliance, unplug it to reduce the risk of overheating.

Practice Kitchen Safety

The kitchen is a place where fires can easily start.  Always stay attentive when cooking, especially when using stovetops and ovens. Keep flammable objects away from the cooking area, and have a fire extinguisher nearby. Never leave the kitchen unattended while cooking.

Store Flammable Materials Safely

Many homes and workplaces store flammable materials like cleaning products, gasoline, and paints. To prevent accidents, store these items in a well-ventilated, cold, and dry place away from heat sources. Ensure that they are in containers designed for their specific purpose and keep them out of the reach of children.

Create an Escape Plan

If a fire occurs, having an escape plan can be a lifesaver. Make sure your family or coworkers know what to do if a fire breaks out. Establish a meeting point outside your home or office, and practice your escape plan regularly. This simple preparation can make a significant difference in an emergency.

Contact New England Hearth & Home for Fireplace Safety Tips, Cleanings & Inspections to Keep Your Home Comfortable & Safe

In a nutshell, it’s vital to remember that fire safety is something we should all take seriously. By following the easy tips we discussed, you can crucially reduce the chances of a fire happening in your home or workplace. This keeps your loved ones and property safe and gives you peace of mind. So, take action to prevent fires today and keep your surroundings secure.

The Benefits of Using a Pellet Stove

Pellets used for a pellet stove laying in a pile on a table in front of a burning pellet stove

The Benefits of a Pellet Stove

Sometimes we crave a real fire in our home during the winter months to keep everything comfortable and warm. The hard part can be knowing what kind of stove would work best for your home. There are different installation methods and price points depending on the stove of your choosing. The most common dilemma is deciding between installing a wood stove or a pellet stove. We believe that a pellet stove may be perfect for you rather than a wood stove. In this blog, we will discuss pellet stoves and their benefits for your home and the environment.

Pellet stove that is burning in the corner of a room

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Pellet Stoves Are Easy to Use

Unlike other stoves, a pellet stove does not require you to keep wood for fuel. Instead, you just need to purchase pellets and fill the stove with them. No need to split firewood or to utilize a large area to keep wood. Pellets are easy to store and are environmentally friendly because they are typically reused materials made from sawdust. They are even easier to turn on than other stoves because they utilize an igniter that allows you to turn it on at the push of a button.

Fewer Maintenance Requirements

Wood stoves require a lot of maintenance because of the amount of smoke and chemicals they produce. For wood stoves, you need to make sure the chimney is constantly clear of debris and creosote. Wood stoves produce large amounts of smoke which is why they need catalytic converters to be properly maintained. However, pellet stoves do not require the same tedious tasks. On top of the low maintenance it even has easy installation. They produce much less smoke and don’t even require a chimney during installation. They can get away with using a small tube that utilizes forced ventilation. This means you can theoretically place your pellet stove in any area as long as it has a wall and an electrical outlet.

Someone cleaning the glass of a pellet stove with a rag

The Cleaner Alternative to Wood Stoves

Pellet stoves produce 50% less carbon emissions because they are able to utilize both pellets and natural gasses. This will lead to you helping your environment and your home in the long run. Pellet stoves also keep your home cleaner by not having wood lying around inside. Wood can attract numerous types of insects that can be unappealing or annoying to deal with, to say the least. Pellets avoid this problem altogether and keep the pests at bay by not attracting them.

Pellet Stoves Are More Efficient

Whilst wood stoves may seem more visually appealing and can create a nicer aesthetic. Pellet stoves are much more efficient at actually heating up your home. A pellet stove can exceed 90% in efficiency. This means that the majority of the heat being generated is being pushed back out into the home instead of being lost. Wood stoves tend to have a much lower efficiency rating typically half of a pellet stove. Having nearly half the production of a pellet stove means that wood stoves are not as reliable when used to heat a home. Pellet stoves even cost much less than a wood stove does. In some cases, this can include the cost of installation along with the pellet stove being cheaper than just the cost of a wood stove itself.

Pellet stove that is burning in the corner of a room

Contact New England Hearth & Home in Canton, MA for Pellet Stove Installations and Advice

If you’re deciding whether a pellet stove is truly right for you then you come to the right place. New England Hearth & Home will help you find the best option for your home. If you’re unsure what route to take with the heating in your home give us a call today at 781-562-0771, or visit our website to learn more.