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RE: I was waiting to see one of these types of fires . . .

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by firefighterjake, Feb 8, 2013.

  1. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Every year someone with a woodstove ends up burning down their house, garage, etc. from the improper disposal of wood ash . . . every year.

    http://www.onlinesentinel.com/news/Home-burning-in-Waterville.html

    It's also interesting to note that a neighbor mentions them chopping up wood . . . makes it sound like they've been splitting wood recently . . . which also cannot be a good thing.
    raybonz likes this.

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  2. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    Those are great pics of a terrible tragedy.. Fortunately nobody was hurt.. This reminds me of the the Connecticut fire in which the grandparents and kids died due to placing hot coals next to the house and the house burned to the ground at Christmas time.. After this happened I now use a metal trash can with lid placed on brick 20' from my home.. I never dumped the ash next to the house but decided to be extra safe.. Stay safe!

    Ray
    Joful likes this.
  3. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    Although i use wood stoves in homes when rehabbing them i always take them out before renting or selling the house for the same reason i dont put gas cook stoves in. If its not FOOL PROOF it dont go into a rental as there are a lot of fools out there renting.
    n3pro, gyrfalcon and raybonz like this.
  4. paulm81

    paulm81 New Member

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    Before we bought the house we're in, we rented a house that had a small woodstove in the basement. We used a metal bucket for the ashes and I had heard ashes are good for compost, so I figured I might as well dump it in the composter. I guess it hadn't been sitting long enough, because after half an hour or so, the composter was on fire!! It was a fair ways from the house so it was more funny than anything (just some melted plastic), but it could have been different had the composter been up against the house.
    We heard through a friend that the house burned down after we moved out. Apparently the tenants had put ashes in a cardboard box in the garage. It has been rebuilt but I wonder if there is a woodstove in or not.
    We currently keep our ashes in a metal pail on the concrete garage floor for several days before dumping, but I wonder if I should find a spot outside.
  5. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Statistically speaking . . . there are more cooking fires started by electric ovens/cooktops than gas . . . not sure if that is due to more folks using electric ranges or if folks tend to be a little more cautious when there is an actual flame on the stove top.
    gyrfalcon likes this.
  6. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Answer: I would find a spot outside myself. Personal preference.
    gyrfalcon and raybonz like this.
  7. bluedogz

    bluedogz Minister of Fire

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    I can never figure out how to feel about these stories... I mean, you're bringing FIRE into your HOUSE. Do it carefully! I have trouble feeling sympathetic to someone who could not figure out that burny stuff needs to stay away from other burny stuff.
    gyrfalcon and PapaDave like this.
  8. Waulie

    Waulie Minister of Fire

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    Why is splitting wood recently not a good thing? Should I put away my maul? ;hm
    milleo likes this.
  9. NortheastAl

    NortheastAl Minister of Fire

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    Wood too wet, creosote=chimney fire.
  10. ArsenalDon

    ArsenalDon Minister of Fire

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    Thanks for bo
    thanks for both articles...I am a volunteer fire fighter in a community where 80% heat with wood. I think we have a responsibility to educate.
  11. Waulie

    Waulie Minister of Fire

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    Yeah, I get it. But, I'd bet many of us burning only dry wood have also been splitting wood recently. I don't stop processing wood just so people won't think I'm burning it green. ;)
    Backwoods Savage, milleo and raybonz like this.
  12. Researcher1

    Researcher1 Member

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    I have been splitting everyday for the past 2 weeks to start chipping away at this giant pile a tree company left for me.
    raybonz likes this.
  13. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    Im surprised insurance companies pay for fires caused by negligence,they could probably sue to recover their losses. They do charge more to insure a house with a woodstove(IF they know about it) Friend of mine had a chimney put in for a WS and then gave up the idea when faced with the premium increase.
  14. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    My insurance has ALWAYS known I burn wood and it costs nothing extra.. People make mistakes ALL the time it is human nature.. Your statements make no sense to me.. I damaged my chimney due to a chimney fire but you need to realize I was burning WAY before I was enlightened by Hearth.com.. Many insurance claims are made by people that make mistakes and this is why insurance companies are educating people to reduce claims and damage to property and people.. Wood burning can be as dangerous or safe as YOU make it.. The LAST thing we need is higher premiums.. Education is key to less incidents.

    Ray
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  15. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    Similar to car insurance, yes your insurance company will pay you for an accident,but if fault can be proven, they may go after the other guy for their loss,in the case of a house the other guy may be your tenant. And when i asked my friend why he had a new chimney but no stove,thats exactly what he told me,fire insurance premium increase was more than he could justify. Perhaps your company already has woodstove use built into your premium already ,every loss they experience is.
  16. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    No they do not.. I have asked my agent this question so unless you have proof please don't pass on this information.. My policy never went up after my claim.. Twenty five years ago there was no hearth.com so I did the best I could and followed my stove owners manual.. Bottom line is $hit happens even to the best of us! Now if I repeated what happened this might change things but as it stands now all is well.. You sound like an insurance company agent to me..


    Ray
  17. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    SInce i own about 2 dozen Homes, apartments and a commercial building and pay the fire and liability insurance on all of them yes i do have a lot of experience with insurance companies plus a few fires of my own over the years, but no im not an insurance agent. Im sure some companies (like my friends) charge extra for woodstoves.Im certain he was not making up a story. And your INs co Does not ,as i believe you as well. I can tell you my insurance company will not insure properties with 9 specific breeds of dogs,trampolines and some swimming pools. Im not sure how my company deals with wood stoves as i never mentioned that i have one.
  18. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    In my opinion rentals with wood heat is a bad combination and a real risk.. I own one home and that is enough for me ;)

    Ray
    NortheastAl likes this.
  19. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    I agree,thats why i ALWAYS take out the wood stove and carefully close up the chimney thimble (So no one gets any ideas) before i rent or sell the house.I even change the cook stove from gas to electric if there is one. Wood heat is better left to the experts. I say this as i look at my neighbors(far enough away) house with the black creosote running down his external flue pipe.Just waiting to burst into flames.
    raybonz likes this.
  20. Flatbedford

    Flatbedford Minister of Fire

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    I was splitting last night, but my wood is plenty dry.
  21. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    LOL I'm glad I am not the only one who forgets to type words or as I call em "wordos" ;)

    Ray
  22. Flatbedford

    Flatbedford Minister of Fire

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    OOps
  23. lopiliberty

    lopiliberty Minister of Fire

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    Its not only hot ashes, but in this area I see ALOT of scary(unsafe) looking wood stove chimney installations and have often wondered what keeps these peoples houses from burning down
  24. paulm81

    paulm81 New Member

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    We pay an extra charge for having our insert, and also our oil tank in the basement. I just checked the policy but it did not show the actual amounts. From what I remember talking to our broker, I think the insert is $40 per year and the oil tank is $50 per year. The $40 per year is per wood burning appliance, as I recently inquired about putting a boiler in my new shop, and it would be another $40 per year.
  25. gyrfalcon

    gyrfalcon Minister of Fire

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    Boy, I can't figure out any logical reason not to be super-extra-careful-cautious about ash disposal. If it were 100 percent ash, great, but it never is. There are always little live coals in there that get preserved for days under the blanket of ash. I don't dump mine (and a tiny stove like mine means daily scooping out of ash/coals to make room for the day's fire) until they've been sitting a week or more outside in a sequence of several a metal 5-gallon can sitting outside on stones or cement. And even then, if there isn't a nice thick layer of snow on the ground, I only dump them in the trench at the side of the fields across the road, and I worry about it even so.

    It's an incredibly stupid way to burn down your house, or end the lives of the occupants.

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