1. Welcome Hearth.com Guests and Visitors - Please enjoy our forums!
    Hearth.com GOLD Sponsors who help bring the site content to you:
    Hearthstone Soapstone and Cast-Iron stoves( Wood, Gas or Pellet Stoves and Inserts)
    Caluwe - Passion for Fire and Water ( Pellet and Wood Hydronic and Space Heating)

RE: A reminder . . . do not use flammable fuels to ignite the wood in your stove

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by firefighterjake, Nov 12, 2012.

  1. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2008
    Messages:
    14,859
    Loc:
    Unity/Bangor, Maine
    ScotO likes this.

    Helpful Sponsor Ads!





  2. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2007
    Messages:
    27,816
    Loc:
    Michigan
    It is hard to believe but there are still some who will put gasoline or kerosene in the wood stove to get it going. Crazy...
  3. maverick06

    maverick06 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2008
    Messages:
    700
    Loc:
    media, pa
    it is surprising, but i have used gas to light a brush pile out back. Yeah it was stupid... yeah it didnt go that well, and yeah i wont do it again..... outside isnt smart, inside is just stupidly terrible! Of course there are more than enough warnings that there really isnt any excuse.

    I know super cedars are suppose to be wonderful, I havent used them yet. before I started coming to this forum i bough a box of the wax logs, break them up into golf ball sized pieces and off they go.cheap and easily available.

    The point I am making is, how good is gas to start a woodstove? sure it works, but, neglecting the safety issues, is it really any better? I bet its putting your life in serious risk for something that isnt even as functional as the other options out there.

    Compounding that, people probably resort to gas as their fire is hard to get started... because its green wood and hard to start....
    ScotO likes this.
  4. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    They used to use kerosene firestarters in the old days (popular in the Victorian era), but could you imagine someone accidentally putting gasoline in that pot instead of kerosene? I imagine that is one of the reasons they lost popularity. bottom line is, once you learn the proper way to start fires (and use well-seasoned wood to burn) you won't ever need a drop of petroleum product again. I haven't used anthing like that since I was really young (and stupid). Only a flint/steel, match or a lighter now.....occasionally a propane torch to get a quick one going in the outdoor firepit.....;)
  5. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2012
    Messages:
    5,934
    Loc:
    Philadelphia
    I use diesel or kero for starting brush fires almost weekly, and find it very safe and predictable when used correctly. I would never use gasoline to start any fire, indoors or out, and never any liquid fuel of any type in an enclosed space / stove / bomb.
  6. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
    Messages:
    27,278
    Loc:
    Northern Virginia
    Have to admit that for years I used a cat food can with some Kero in it to start the cold stove splits. How I avoided a disaster I will never know. And am glad to never know. Probably the only salvation was never closing the stove door while it was burning.

    Just plain nuts. A gallon of Super Cedars is cheaper anyway.
  7. Todd 2

    Todd 2 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2012
    Messages:
    385
    Loc:
    NE Ohio Atwood Lake
    The smell of burnt hair, along long time ago taught me a lesson about a bee's nest in the ground, a gallon of gas, and my Bic lighter !!! Super Cedars or such for me !
    ( LIke Joful said, a stove bomb comes to mind )
  8. glenncz

    glenncz New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2012
    Messages:
    18
    what's wrong with putting in a little kerosene to get a fire started? I use a firestarter with a paper towel around it, then a little bit of kerosene on the paper towel. I used kerosene 1000 times to start a fire in my former regular fireplace. never ever had the slightest problem or hint of danger. Now i just installed an insert, and it says in the manual don't use kerosene etc, possibly???? it could damage the unit, how I have to wonder?? I think kerosene is being confused with gasoline, unless there is something I don't understand.
  9. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2008
    Messages:
    14,859
    Loc:
    Unity/Bangor, Maine
    Folks have used kerosene in the past . . . and some folks still do . . . I suspect the main danger is with confusing kerosene with gasoline -- some folks aren't all that smart. There is a chance that if it was warm enough the kerosene could have some flammable vapors . . . but that chance is pretty slim.

    That said . . . in this day and age there are a lot of other, better, safer and cleaner (and less smelly) methods of starting a fire . . . kindling, Super Cedars, Rutland fire starters, pine cones, etc. without the need to use kerosene.
  10. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2012
    Messages:
    5,934
    Loc:
    Philadelphia
    Agreed with Jake... most of the trouble is with liquid fuels more explosive than kero (gasoline, lantern fuel, etc.). That said, it's best to not use any fuel with flammable vapors in an enclosed space, such as a stove. Your open fireplace is a marginally safer application than an enclosed stove, glenncz.

    From a Wikipedia entry:

    At one time, the fuel was widely used in kerosene lamps and lanterns. Although it replaced whale oil, the 1873 edition of Elements of Chemistry said, "The vapor of this substance [kerosene] mixed with air is as explosive as gunpowder."[16] This may have been due to the common practice of adulterating kerosene with cheaper but more volatile hydrocarbon mixtures, such as naphtha.[17] Kerosene was a significant fire risk; in 1880, nearly two of every five New York City fires were caused by defective kerosene lamps.[18]
  11. DAKSY

    DAKSY Patriot Guard Rider Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Messages:
    4,891
    Loc:
    Averill Park, NY, on Burden Lake II...
    Not to hijack this thread, but I use pre-mix (2-cycle) gas for ground hornets. You don't even need to ignite it.
    Just pour it down into the nest & walk away. The gas evaporates & the 2-cycle oil remains behind & coats everything, including the hornets...They suffocate from the oil coating their outsides...
  12. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2012
    Messages:
    5,934
    Loc:
    Philadelphia
    Interesting. I use straight gasoline for the same purpose. I dump about half a soup can down the hole, and just let the fumes do the work of suffocating them. Yellow jacket colonies seem quite susceptable to this.

    No need to light, although it's fun to do if you're safely away from any buildings. I always wait about 30 - 60 minutes after dumping the fuel down the hole, before lighting off. Haven't seen the ground explode yet, but would be immensely amused if it did.
    swagler85 likes this.
  13. David Tackett

    David Tackett Member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2012
    Messages:
    178
    Loc:
    Waynesburg, Kentucky
    I have used kerosene and lighter fluid in the past, but I avoid these now.
  14. Waulie

    Waulie Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Messages:
    1,010
    Loc:
    Nothern Lower Michigan
    Um, you guys are pouring gasoline and oil on the ground? Neato. :rolleyes:
  15. Grisu

    Grisu Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2010
    Messages:
    1,698
    Loc:
    Chittenden, VT
    +1 What an environmental hazard. I would never do that in my yard. http://greenliving.nationalgeographic.com/used-motor-oil-pollute-20129.html
    "Used motor oil can also pollute soil and drinking water. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 1 gallon of used motor oil can contaminate 1 million gallons of fresh water. If used motor oil reaches sewage treatment plants, even small amounts -- 50 to 100 parts per million -- can foul the water treatment process. Soil becomes less productive when exposed to used motor oil."
    I am sure that is mostly true for fresh 2-cycle oil, too. Here is an easy and environmentally friendly way: http://www.motherearthnews.com/Grow-It/Control-Yellow-Jackets-Technique.aspx
  16. DAKSY

    DAKSY Patriot Guard Rider Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Messages:
    4,891
    Loc:
    Averill Park, NY, on Burden Lake II...
    That's all well & good if you've planned ahead. When you've got little kids stung all over their little bodies, believe me, ground pollution is the LAST thing you think about.
  17. Grisu

    Grisu Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2010
    Messages:
    1,698
    Loc:
    Chittenden, VT
    I am not quite sure what you need to plan ahead when you can only put a glasbowl or similar over the nest entrance. Certainly not trickier than getting the chainsaw gas can and pouring that over it. Btw. I have little kids, too. First, I taught them not disturb yellowjackets & co but just slowly walk away. (A good advice for most animal encounters.) If they would be stung I would get them inside, calm them down and attend their stings. Then I would think about how to get rid off the nest with an easy and least invasive method. Animals usually attack only when threatened. Thus, I do not see the need for some kind of "revenge" but just want to make sure such an incident does not happen again.
  18. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2012
    Messages:
    5,934
    Loc:
    Philadelphia
    The 6 oz. of gasoline I dump into yellow jacket nests on my large rural property rougly once a year pales in comparison to the amount of oil run off your Vermont roads after a good rainstorm. I'm not concerned.
  19. Waulie

    Waulie Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Messages:
    1,010
    Loc:
    Nothern Lower Michigan
    Cool. Maybe we all should do it. Let's see, 6oz times 300 million is only slightly above 14 million gallons a year.
    Grisu likes this.
  20. BrianK

    BrianK Guest

    We stayed in an A-frame bed and breakfast several years ago with a large central fireplace. They had an antique kerosene fire starter in the fireplace similar to this one
    [​IMG]
    and a small jar of kerosene for starting fires. It worked great but its not hard to see where the idea could be a recipe for disaster.
  21. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2012
    Messages:
    5,934
    Loc:
    Philadelphia
    Sure... everyone living on large rural properties, as my previous post stated. I don't think there's anywhere near 300 million of us, or the amount of gas devoted to yellow jacket erradication is even measureable in comparison to the sum amount spilled and leaked at all our gas stations nationwide in a given year. Get your panties un-bunched, and learn to worry about the big problems, not a handful of country bumpkins playing pyro with yellow jackets.
  22. Danno77

    Danno77 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2008
    Messages:
    4,758
    Loc:
    Hamilton, IL
    So like, I have this friend who was super pissed at his inability to get a fire going with wet oak in his fireplace. He poured some 2-cycle mix in there (very tiny amount, I assure you), shut the doors, and waited for the gas to evaporate. Got the fireplace shovel, put a wad of paper on it, lit that wad of paper, and then cracked the doors to the fireplace ever so slightly and stuck that shovel in. The fireball was a cool (so he says) basketball sized ball of flames that sort of rolled out and halfway across the room.

    Well, the interesting part of the story is that one half of his beard was singed, so his wife was happy that he had to shave it, and also he found that your eyelashes can curl so much that with every blink the top curled eyelashes catch the bottom ones kinda like Velcro for your eyeballs.

    True story. No alcohol involved.
    Cross Cut Saw likes this.
  23. Grisu

    Grisu Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2010
    Messages:
    1,698
    Loc:
    Chittenden, VT
    What concerns me is that presenting a simple, cheaper and environmentally friendly method is apparently not enough to change your mind. Because of that mindset shared by millions and millions others I highly doubt we will ever reach voluntarily a sustainable lifestyle. However, mother earth will not care, she will give us a good spanking and teach us a lesson; if we like it or not.
  24. Waulie

    Waulie Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Messages:
    1,010
    Loc:
    Nothern Lower Michigan
    I don't wear panties, dude. Your opinion is that is a good idea to dump a toxic chemical on the ground. I just wanted to offer a different opinion for people who may be considering it. My opinion is that it is a pretty silly and potentially destructive way to control bees. You drink your well water?
  25. Lewisthepilgrim

    Lewisthepilgrim Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    Messages:
    56
    Loc:
    East Kingston NH
    I used to be a Diesel technician. I try to stay as FAR away from that STINKY stuff as possible ! I would NEVER bring that stuff into my house...>EVER. GROSS !!!!

Share This Page