A writer for the Sierra Club, Bob Schildgen, aka Mr. Green, forwarded me a question from one of his readers about wood stoves. He is looking for response of "experts." I told him I could post his question to this list and we can collate best responses - minus everyone's names. Then, he will give credit to hearth.com in the Sierra Club magazine and/or their website, wherever they use the response. So, please offer some insight and this can be good way to get hearth.com out there to a bigger readership too. "We have a small to medium size woodstove that resembles a Mama Fisher, Baby Fisher, etc.: an old Sweet Home with a front load, recirculating passive damper system for a 1200' house. We have a chimney thermometer just above the stove and by watching and inspecting, we have never had to clean the metalbestos 6" diameter pipe chimney for ten years. "Some say a wood stove heats the house faster if you always leave the stove's front door open (with a firescreen to catch sparks). Some say the stove door must be closed after the chimney reaches operating temperature (about 250 degrees) for the stove to circulate air inside the firebox and burn efficiently. Some say just close the door after you got it started, and MYOB. "I use the middle way, reasoning that if stoves worked so well with doors open, then they would put screens on the stove doors instead of glass or steel. Either way, we use paper or cardboard to get to 250 degrees, and we never need a chimney sweep. I also reason that if stove doors are open, the heating efficiency is like a fireplace, maybe 20%. If the doors are shut, I presume a reasonable simple woodstove would be about 60% for a fisher type, a recirculating passive type, 80%." Thanks!