Wood heaters, stoves and fireplaces can be a great addition to any room, offering you a nice view as well as the aroma and sound of a crackling fire. They can also ensure your home is toasty warm, even on the coldest winter day! If you're thinking of getting a wood heater for your home, note a few questions you might have about these pieces so that you can find the best one for your needs.
Can you actually cook with a wood stove?
A wood heater or stove may be made with a specially coated metal that is meant to stay cool to the touch, but a working wood stove will have burners on its top that collect and retain heat. You can then actually cook on that wood stove, just as you would a standard stovetop, although you may not be able to do much to control the temperature of the burner!
If you're thinking of cooking inside the wood stove, remember that it's very easy to start a grease fire or ignite a pan that is not meant for direct exposure to flames. Choose a wood stove that is meant for actual cooking, such as a pizza oven, as these will usually have thick racks that help to keep grease away from the open flames. You'll also want to ensure you only use cookware meant for cooking inside a wood stove, such as cast-iron pots.
What is a flue and how is it different than a chimney?
A flue refers to the vent attached to a wood stove or fireplace, so a chimney is actually a type of flue! If your home doesn't have a chimney, a flue can often be cut into an exterior wall. This allows smoke from the wood stove to be vented outside the home as needed, and also allows you to add that wood stove to just about any room of the home!
Will a wood stove hurt the home's flooring?
Some stand-alone stoves or heaters, meaning those that aren't built into a wall, will have footers or risers, to elevate them off the home's floor. This keeps the stove cooler and also ensures it doesn't hurt that flooring. However, it might be recommended that you have a stone inset created for the heater, in case of flying embers that would otherwise ignite carpeting or singe a timber floor. Whatever the case, ask your installer about any precautions needed to protect your home's flooring when having a stove or heater installed.