Multi Fuel Stove Installation
One of the most frequent topics for discussion we encounter is the difference between a Multi Fuel Stove installation and a Wood Burning Stove installation. There are two separate elements to this discussion which we guide our prospective clients through.
The first is in the difference between the two types of stove and it’s a very simple difference which is to do with the way that the different fuels burn. When burning wood, it’s very important that you maintain a bed of embers and, in order to achieve this, you’ll need to limit the flow of oxygen through the ember bed. If air flows through the embers then they’ll burn away very quickly which means that when you re-fuel your stove with another log, there’s not enough of a hot ember bed to start the new log burning well. This not only reduces the efficiency of your fuel usage but also leads to smouldering, creates a lot of smoke outside, creates a lot of soot and blackens up the inside of the stove. For that reason, a Wood Burning Stove has a solid fire bed with no holes in it for air and oxygen to flow through.
Burning smokeless fuels on the other hand, positively needs air flowing through the fuel bed in order to burn efficiently. In order to achieve this the fuel grate inside the stove has lots of holes in it and is raised above an ash collection space, usually containing an ash pan beneath. The space beneath the fuel bed and the holes in the grate allow air to flow through the smokeless fuel as it burns (like a blacksmith’s forge) which allows the fuel to burn cleanly and efficiently.
It’s perfectly possible to burn wood on a Multi Fuel Stove of course but not the other way round. Smokeless fuel won’t burn properly in a Wood Burning Stove.
Choice of Fuel Liner
The second element of the Multi Fuel Stove Installation Vs Wood Burning Stove Installation discussion is in the choice of flue liner. There’s absolutely no difference between the installation processes but the soot that’s formed by burning smokeless fuels is far more corrosive than the soot formed by burning well seasoned wood (Ready To Burn). For that reason it’s always advisable to install a 904 (higher) grade stainless steel flue liner rather than a 316 grade stainless steel flue liner if you intend to burn smokeless fuels. The higher grade of flexible liner is a more expensive product but it will withstand the corrosion far better.