How to light a fire responsibly

fire lit in Outdooroven

The start of Fall means the start of shorter days and colder temperatures at night. Time to get that Outdooroven going as a heat source! As the Outdooroven is heated by burning wood, it’s important your fire will have a clean burn in order to reduce the emission and minimize the impact on the environment. Here are our tips on what kind of firewood to use and how to responsibly light a fire.

Wood is a sustainable heating source because it is a circular material, meaning it will grow back and isn’t lost forever. However, this does not apply to every type of wood. Find out what to pay attention to when picking your firewood and how to light that fire.

1. Buy certified firewood

The first step to picking your firewood is to buy wood that comes from sustainable sources, such as recycled or FSC® certified wood. Why is this important? The strict environmental, social and economic rules set by the Forestry Stewardship Council make sure we will still have the forests and nature to enjoy in the future.

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2. Make sure the wood is untreated

Burning treated wood, like painted or impregnated wood, will release dangerous chemicals into the air, which can affect yourself and your local environment negatively. Another reason why to always buy certified firewood: it is a given that this wood is untreated.

3. Only use dry wood

When burning a fire, it’s important to always use wood with a moisture content below 20 percent. This wood has been dried for over two years and can be recognized by visible deep cracks and the bark coming off. If you use wood ‘wetter’ than this it will not only be hard to burn, it will cause a lot of smoke development due to an incomplete burn as well. This is bad news for the lifespan of your fireplace and the environment.

4. Mind the weather

Not all weather conditions are ideal for lighting a fire. If you have the option, always check the weather before you do so, as burning wood on a misty day or an evening without wind is not the best idea. The smoke from the fire will linger longer than it usually would and can cause a lot of local air pollution. Keep an eye on the weather and keep your neighbors happy!

5. Follow the Swiss method

Finally, there’s an ideal way to actually build the fire. Building a fire according to the Swiss method is recommended by researchers, survivalists, fire departments and environment organizations. Why? This method makes sure you build a safe and environmentally friendly fire: it leads to a clean burn with better combustion and is energy efficient. Read all about it in our step-by-step guide on the Swiss method.

 

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