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No heat from fire

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by jennywren, Nov 9, 2013.

  1. jennywren

    jennywren New Member

    Sep 13, 2013
    devon uk
    Hi Guys,

    I have an open fire but of late im not getting much heat from it, (yes im a newbie to open fires) The fire has been swept so I am assuming it is the logs or coal that im using, - would this make a difference, any advise would be greatly appreciated,. Also the fire cement on the back of the fire has been removed as it was cracked and to be replaced (sweep said it was safe to use fire until it is done) so would that help reflect the heat?

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  2. Beer Belly

    Beer Belly Minister of Fire

    Oct 26, 2011
    From what I'm reading, you have an open Fireplace ???.A fireback would help in this situation, I wouldn't expect a lot of heat from an open Fireplace as most of the heat is going up and out the chimney. In my experience, you'll get localized heating, but the rest of the house will be cold.
  3. Oregon aloha

    Oregon aloha Feeling the Heat

    Jul 4, 2013
    Willamette Valley and the coast
    An open fire looks great, but I have never known it to give out much heat. If your thermal mass around your fire gets warm you can enjoy some warmth from that, but if you are trying to heat the room you would be better off with a wood stove or insert.
    I don't know if the repairs would help with heating, but if it is a outside wall chimney then it would help to keep the cold out.
  4. Sprinter

    Sprinter Minister of Fire

    Jul 1, 2012
    SW Washington
    Open fireplaces have an efficiency of from very low to negative. I've had open fireplaces in the past and about all they seem to do is suck cold air in from outside and make the house drafty.

    They are nice to look at, though, and if all you want from it is an occasional fire for ambiance on a cozy evening, they're fine.

    If you want serious heating capability, though, you may want to consider an insert.
  5. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

    Nov 18, 2005
    South Puget Sound, WA
    If the fire is hard to start and not taking off quickly, the wood is most likely not fully seasoned. Is this a masonry fireplace or a zero-clearance unit with glass doors?
  6. webby3650

    webby3650 Master of Fire

    Sep 2, 2008
    I'm guessing it's a small Rumford style wood/coal fireplace? (Based on the location.)
    The quality of the wood or coal is really the only possible reason it would be any different. It's typically not a good idea to run a fireplace without a fireback in place, it not only protects the stone behind it from the fire but can also be an added protection to the combustibles behind the fireplace if there are any.

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