Preparing Your Stove For Winter

Keeping your home nice and toasty throughout the cold months is important for the long nights ahead. To ensure you’re doing all of the right things to keep you and your family warm, follow our step-by-step preparation guide to ensure your winter is as comfortable and cosy as it should be. 

Wood burning stove

Preparing Your Stove for Winter


You needn’t clean your stove if you cleaned it in the summer whilst it was out of action, but it’s always good practice to give it a once-over before turning your wood-burning stove back on again.

Ensuring that your stove is clean before using it will keep it running at high efficiency, so here are the basic steps to follow:

  • Clear the ash pan and gently sweep out any remaining debris
  • Wipe the glass to get rid of any smears or smudges, you don’t want a blurred view of your wood burner’s captivating flames. The best way to do this is to spray glass cleaner on both sides and wipe down with a dry cloth. Then wipe down again with a microfiber cloth in circular motions to get rid of any dry streaks
  • Clean the seal on the door by using a soft brush to sweep away excess ash from the corners
  • Check the chimney or flue. Before doing this you’ll need to prepare the area and ensure you have covered all furnishings and place a large tarpaulin on the ground. Wear protective clothing, including eyewear, dust masks and gloves. Use a torch to take a look up the chimney – if you have a damper handle you will need to open it. Look for any activity from birds, as they can nest here, and look out for any damages or missing firebricks. If there are any damages or missing bricks, you need to fix these issues first.Inspect the lining of your chimney flue, if there’s a 3mm build-up of creosote, it will need a clean. Do this using an appropriately-sized brush that will reach the full height of the area. Ideally, you’ll need to be on top of your roof, so unless you’ve got the equipment and have done this before, we’d suggest you contact a professional who can do this safely. When cleaning the height of your chimney, you will need to brush in a downward motion and repeat until all debris loosens and falls onto your tarpaulin.

Stove door & rope seal

  • The rope seal is the component that seals your stove glass door. It’s function is to provide an airtight seal to ensure your stove is burning at maximum capacity. If your fire is burning too aggressively or there’s visible tar build-up on the stove door, it typically means your rope seal needs replacing.You can perform a test if you’re still unsure. Simply place a piece of thin piece of paper between the door and stove, and close it (do not turn the fire on). If the fire rope seal doesn’t need replacing you’ll find it difficult to retract the paper. If it’s easy, the seal is not tight enough and requires a replacement.

Stove exterior

  • Cast iron stoves have a tendency to rust, so to keep it looking new rub it down with a wire brush, wipe and paint over with a heat resistant polish for a flawless finish.Check over the stovepipe too and see to it that the fire cement hasn’t degraded. If it has, simply apply fire cement to any of the gaps you see.


  • Used to protect the surrounds from extreme heat, firebricks need to be replaced when they are worn, cracked or missing.

Fire grates

  • Over time, fire grates will become distorted and ill-fitting, no matter how expensive. Simply purchase a new one when the time comes, to ensure maximum safety in the home.

Stock up on wood burning logs

  • Call your local supplier to ensure you have enough wood burning logs for the winter. At KG Smith & Son we provide free delivery nationwide and next day & emergency delivery, should you require it. We provide ash, oak and beech firewood because we only supply and deliver quality products to our customers.

If you need advice or assistance with your stove, contact your local professionals at KG Smith & Son. We have a great wealth of experience within the industry and have been providing customers across Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire, North London, Oxfordshire, Leicestershire, Northamptonshire, Warwickshire, Wiltshire and the surrounding areas, for years. We can deliver quality products directly to you and provide next day and emergency delivery to those who require a quick turnaround.



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