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Do you use an open fire or wood burning stove?

Scientists say lighting a cosy fire at home is bad for your health and can be as dangerous as a building site because of carbon emissions.

Lighting a fire at home may create a cosy atmosphere – but the warmth and glow now come with a health warning.

Scientists say householders should put on a mask before striking a match in their fireplace, or risk inhaling harmful fumes.

They say a family fireside can be as dangerous as a mine or building site when it comes to carbon emissions.

A potentially damaging number of particles are released, particularly when a fire is lit and as logs are first added. And it can take three hours to clear the pollution, after opening a window, a study led by Leon University in Spain found.

The results show the most pollution is caused when a fire is lit and when logs are piled on for the first time. Wood which has problems starting to burn creates a lot of smoke.

Small particles have been shown to reduce lung function, cause cardiovascular problems and make them less resistant to infections, with the study warning they can pose a ‘significant risk to human health’. The amount of inhalable particles reached 483 micrograms per cubic metre of air, similar to the mining industry according to the research.

How do you feel about this latest health warning? Do you use an open fire or wood burning stove? Will you think twice when you strike your next match? Do you take note of new research generally or disregard reports such as this?

 

Do you use an open fire or wood burning stove?

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taconia
23rd Mar 2018
0
Thanks for voting!
I've burned wood in good wood stoves for over 40 years and still cut, split, and burn my own wood. For the user's health, a good airtight woodstove, especially with an air draw from outside (through the wall small pipe), should be zero threat, and certainly less than ducted air that often carries fungal spores and insect droppings from the ducts.

Everyone burning wood, however, has to take responsibility for putting into the air significant amounts of particulates and carcinogens. My friends who are proud greens and burn wood, don't admit that on a per capita or per BTU basis, they put more pollutants into the air than any power plant using any fuel.

My rationale is that I have (18 acres 6.6 hectares) of marsh and forest that lock up far more pollutants than I create.

Open fireplaces, of course, are exceptionally polluting indoors and out and put 80 to 90% of the BTUs up the chimney. Terrible waste of trees, but nice looking, of course.
Catrina700
14th Mar 2018
0
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As a child we lived in the country, with no electricity or gas. We cooked on a stove with coal or wood. We also had open fires in each of the downstairs rooms, which were lit during the winter months. My father lived until he was 96 and my mother until she was 84 it did them no harm.
annej2003
9th Mar 2018
0
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We love the atmosphere and warmth created by a woodburner and as we do not have any other fuel option than oil, it makes a nice alternative and saves on some oil use.
DaveK2
9th Mar 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
We have a wood burner and it is fabulous. It radiates heat and the actual fire is behind the glass doors, so the only time fumes come out is when it’s being lit - a matter of seconds. We also have a carbon monoxide alarm situated a few feet away from it and this has never gone off.
I would bet that you breathe in more noxious fumes - and more damaging ones - breathing in exhaust gases on most town centre roads.
jeaniembe
5th Mar 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
I live in a semi detached house and my neighbour has a put in a wood burning stove. For many years I had no problems as others living there had different forms of heating. We've always slept with a small window open but their smoke comes into the bedroom and affects my chest. Neighbours have had open fires in the past and those don't have the same effect as the smoke rises. Only people who live away from others should have them.
Auntiebee
3rd Mar 2018
0
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ElectricLandlady
1st Mar 2018
-1
Thanks for voting!
If you keep your chimneys swept and clean the stove/hearth out regularly, there should be very few particles entering the room, even if the fire is smoky. I have open grates in all my living rooms (not all in use at the same time, though), and these rooms are airier and require less dusting than the rooms with the hearths blocked, draft-free windows and heated only by radiators.
Mim56
1st Mar 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
I have an open fire, at first it seemed romantic but I soon started to hate how dirty it made my lounge. My husband has asthma & since the possibility of him having COPD was raised we haven’t lit it. Wish I could just get rid of it (without any expense or disruption)
jeaniembe
5th Mar 2018
0
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We used to have an open fire and wood surfaces would be coated with dust every day and the horrible job of cleaning the grate every day.
teejay
1st Mar 2018
1
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Im sorry but who are these scientist, they spread doom and gloom, we lived in the country and always had open fires range cookers, how did we survive,it seems nowadays its just a long list of thing we cant do, even tho us 50 + people have done it for years,my wife and I often sit in our gazebo with a lit fire pit,still here, who would think it.
GordonS17
1st Mar 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
I have an open fire and burn both coal and wood it seems all types of heating do some kind of harm what are the alternatives
NorfolkBroad
1st Mar 2018
2
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So no mention of the harm that breathing in gas and carbon monoxide can do? How do these scientists explain the existence of man since they first learned how to make fire, through to the industrial revolution with chimneys belching out smoke, via the route of smokeless coal whereby over recent years there have been radical developments within the manufacturing process to improve the CO2 emissions. You can't electrocute yourself with an open fire! Over the past few years, many researchers/scientists have analysed the potential environmental impact of a more widespread transition to natural gas from coal, but conclusions have been mixed. Natural gas produces less carbon dioxide per unit energy than coal does, making it appear at first glance as a cleaner fuel. But natural gas is predominantly composed of methane, a much more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, and it is thought that leaks at drilling fields could outweigh its potential benefit. My conclusion is that different scientists are telling us different things!
leee
1st Mar 2018
0
Thanks for voting!
I can't go anywhere with a wood burner or open fire. I have bronchiectasis and they choke me. It can be quite difficult going for a pub meal in the winter as lots of my local places have one or the other. They can make me very ill.
Fortunately we don't have a chimney where we live and nor have our neighbours so it's not a problem.
Carol Barrow
1st Mar 2018
4
Thanks for voting!
Traffic pollution is more dangerous to health than coal fired or wood burning stovrs
YvonneS8
1st Mar 2018
7
Thanks for voting!
It can’t be any worse than using a gas fire or boiler. I have no heating in my house other than my wood burner and it’s always warm and cosy. I won’t be changing anytime soon. It’s a load of rubbish, there’s always something new that’s going to kill us! Usually something enjoyable
Tender
8th Mar 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
You said >>there’s always something new that’s going to kill us! Usually something enjoyable

Loved it Yvonne!! If I am about to die--bring me ice cream and candy. lol
Wilf
1st Mar 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
I can see there is probably truth in the fact that smoke is not good for you especially coal smoke but I guess wood as well. However we have an open fire and like to have it on at weekends in the evenings. Its one of those things that I would not want to stop using as its so nice and after all we have been having files since prehistoric times so it cannot be all that bad!
linj
27th Feb 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
Lived in a barn conversion in a small village in Devon for seven years and the wood burner was a delight. The smell from all the other wood burning stoves in the village on a cold winters night was delightful. Wish that I was still there instead of sitting in front of a living flame gas fire.
Durrie
26th Feb 2018
5
Thanks for voting!
Load of old cobblers. Too many pseudo scientific papers around,.

students justifying grants. Tell em to light the fire with it and get a proper job,
AuntyC
26th Feb 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
Should have said we have a carbon monoxide detector in the room and had the flue lined. Also, in the case of powercuts in the early 1970s, we were the most popular people in the neighbourhood, as our house was warm!!
AuntyC
26th Feb 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
Our Parkray runs 24/7 at this time of year. Far better than central heating, We have a gentle, constant, background warmth available to dry or air the washing on bad days, and having costed out the price of running our gas central heating system on constant, we save a lot of money, even allowing for the ever increasing price of Phurnacite.
lizfid3
26th Feb 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
I don't have a wood burner but would love one. Always had an open fire growing up and when I had my family and not one of us has suffered any lung damage. It was much healthier than central heating both physically and emotionally. Loved seeing the fire blazing in the hearth, it had a feel good factor about it. I tend to ignore "experts" as a couple of years down the line other "experts" come along and rubbish the findings of the first lot. You only have to look at the dietary "advice" they keep on spewing out. They change their minds every time the weather changes. Think they need to get a worthwhile job...... like sweeping the streets!!
lufcMike
24th Feb 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
After all the hype of wood burning stoves they are found to be wanting .Shame as they look and feel so good.
ecarg
23rd Feb 2018
4
Thanks for voting!
As a child having an open fire burning coal and or logs was certainly preferable to ice on the inside of the windows.
Lionel
23rd Feb 2018
5
Thanks for voting!
Wandawarthog
23rd Feb 2018
6
Thanks for voting!
Well, we've been sitting around wood fires ever since we lived in caves.........and we are the ones who survived to bring new generations all the way to today. So I say....'Balderdash'!
Lionel
23rd Feb 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
Well said, I couldn't agree more.
nuttynanna
23rd Feb 2018
4
Thanks for voting!
Love my woodburner! Don't use it all the winter. Only on very cold evenings.
Lionel
23rd Feb 2018
4
Thanks for voting!
Light mine whenever it's cold; well I have a wife and three Collies to keep warm.
ginntonic
23rd Feb 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
I have a new wood burning stove as well as a combi boiler.
Lionel
23rd Feb 2018
7
Thanks for voting!
Yes, we've used a wood burner for many years. There's a monoxide device in the room, the chimney is swept annually and the stove serviced.

Sometimes I think all these scare mongering reports, pollution, health, global warming and rising sea levels are there to keep our populations in permanent abject fear. It is said a population in fear is easier to manage then a fully confident one.

Just think of Project Fear!
mpaton
23rd Feb 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
Has 1st April come early this year ?
i.e. They must be joking...
Lionel
23rd Feb 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
For some unfortunate souls every day is All Fools Day.
Irene88
23rd Feb 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
As part of the compliance procedure when my log burning stove was installed a carbon monoxide monitor was installed.

As soon as the fire is lit the door is closed, It's very effiecient and extremely warm.

Watching the flames also has a calming beneifcial affect.
Lionel
23rd Feb 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
Yes, you know what you're talking about. I'm in front of our stove now.
viking
23rd Feb 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
I do not have a wood burning stove. A neighbour has one of these, unfortunately the wood which should be used is not being used, consequently probably these synthetic type logs are used.
When downwind to these the smoky fumes really are disgusting,so I am not surprised with the findings at Leon.
CarmenB
23rd Feb 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
As I’m a smoker, the tiny amount of emissions from my open fire don’t worry me at all. I’ll continue to enjoy the comfort my fire brings to my living room for as long as I can.
Lionel
23rd Feb 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
I smoke a pipe in the evenings but still know when the stove door isn't shut properly.
mistryp
23rd Feb 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
Humans have been using open or stoved fire for time immorial. In modern homes when they are designed well with efficient ventilations, they ara of a huge therapheutic benefit.

The light and heat emmitted gives a relaxing and meditative conditions that relieve stress and anxiety which of course are of huge benefit for health and well being.
Lionel
23rd Feb 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
ArchieUK
23rd Feb 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
The know all,s are at it again, creating a problem where, one does not exist, we can all create problems to scare all and sundry.
I was brought up in a era where wood, peat and coal where the common fuel, but that was nearly 80 years ago, so I should be dead, thankfully they have got their sums wrong.
Lionel
23rd Feb 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
Well, Archie, I was born and brought up in the very early fifties. My mother and I would scavenge wood for the open fire.

Once leaving centrally heated London nearly fifty years ago, I've had an open fire or a stove. There's a wood burner blazing here tonight - three Collies stretched out in front and wife dozing in her chair.

Bliss.
Riversiderouge
23rd Feb 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
Whatever happened to the "Smokeless Zones" of 40 years ago, which reduced City Smogs?
Lionel
23rd Feb 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
I guess they were replaced by taxes, as usual.
Alicia
23rd Feb 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
No we live in a modern house with central heating and no chimneys.
Bein
23rd Feb 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
I’ve had wood burning stove for 40 plus years and never suffered any ill effects. This research cannot be taken seriously man has been burning wood since time began
Lionel
23rd Feb 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
Yes, absolutely. However we heat our homes and offices there's a by product of ... well, the experts will tell us I'm sure.

I worked for an old farmer many years ago. He once said you don't have a problem until you've got an expert! He's long dead but that truth lives on.
Munsterlander
22nd Feb 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
We have a wood buring stove and at this time of year it comes into its own. Very warm and we can keep it going at night and restart again in the morning.

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