Do I need a Flexible Chimney Liner?

It’s understandable why there may be some debate over whether you actually need to line an existing brick chimney when installing your lovely new wood burner, after all, that chimney may have been used for decades or even centuries unlined.

Closed heating appliances as we know them today are relatively new introductions to our homes and simply cannot be compared to open fires or even the original stoves of old. By reinventing the home fire with sealed doors, controllable air vents and flue pipes, the facts are combustion at home has changed massively for the better which in turn has changed the performance and usefulness of your existing open chimney.

So, what has changed?

With no control over air intake or burn temperature, all the cold air, smoke and by products of combustion from an open fire just shoot up the chimney and out of the home, taking the majority of the heat with them. By improving the controllability, safety, efficiency, impact on the environment and heat output of the domestic wood burning stove, one hazardous side effect of an unlined chimney is smoke now lingers for longer in the fire box waiting for secondary or tertiary combustion. If the chimney is unlined, the smoke will cool, slump back down and condense, depositing dangerous layers of soot and tar on the chimney walls. Over time, this will etch its way through the brickwork staining walls or worse, endangering your home and health. And if not regularly swept, can easily ignite, leading to potentially fatal chimney fires.

It is therefore easy to see why the stove industry standard for fixing this problem relatively affordably was the introduction of Chimney Liners, specifically stainless steel Flexible Flue Liners. The benefits of lining your chimney are multiple:

  • smoke moves quickly up through the reduced diameter of a liner vs a cavernous open chimney.
  • the metal pipework heats up warming the air inside and creating the all-important draw to power your stove correctly.
  • tar deposits don’t stick to the inner lining like they do to brickwork.
  • easier to light the fire.
  • greater control over the burn rate.
  • a sealed flue from stove to chimney pot prevents any leaks and is far safer for your home and the health of your family.

Why inhibit the performance of your beautiful new stove?

The introduction of the closed heating appliance in its current guise to our homes wasn’t seamless but by lining the chimney, problems such as lingering smoke and leakage through the walls or floors of the home were overcome. If the fires we light in our homes no longer resemble those of a Norman castle, it stands to reason that the chimney needs an upgrade also. If you have never lined your chimney, you simply are not experiencing the best your modern burner has to offer.

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