Woodstove Fire Prevention

It looks like winter’s here and your furnace will be running to keep your home warm. In addition to furnaces for heating, many South Easthope Mutual members have woodstoves  in their homes and shops.
Improperly installed and/or poorly maintained woodstoves pose a very significant fire hazard to the buildings where they are installed and your family. We thought we’d share some of the most common issues we see with woodstoves in hopes you will take steps to make sure they are as safe as possible.


Remove combustibles

The easiest fire prevention tip is to remove all combustibles from within 48 inches or 1.2 metres around the woodstove. Keep piles of wood and kindling as well as cardboard, garbage, toys, furniture, and other clutter well away.

The sticks and wicker basket are examples of combustibles too close to the woodstove and could catch fire.

Annual inspection by WETT certified professionals

Have your woodstove inspected annually by a WETT certified technician. They will ensure that they are applying the most up-to-date knowledge and information when it comes to the safety and installation of the woodstove. To find a WETT certified professional in your area, visit https://www.wettinc.ca/search.cfm.


Flooring around woodstoves

The flooring around and under woodstoves needs to be a non-combustible material. It must extend a minimum of 18 inches or about 46 centimetres out from the woodstove. Non-combustible materials include tile, stone and concrete as well as some newer types of engineered floors.


All installation, including the flue pipes must be installed to building code and CSA/ULD label guidelines.

Airflow around woodstoves is critical, especially for ones in a corner or against a wall. Proper air spaces need to be installed to allow for ventilation. The best recommendation for air flow is to have the woodstove installed by a qualified professional following the manufacturer’s instructions.

The image shows an example of air spaces in the brick where a woodstove will be installed.

Other loss prevention tips:
• Do not use homemade woodstoves.
• Use a metal ash pail, not plastic.
• Don’t store or dispose of ashes inside of or close to a building.
• Don’t dispose of ashes on windy days as the fire may rekindle or blow where it is not intended

Woodstoves can provide a really nice heat and make a room or shop very cozy. We only ask if you have one, follow the above tips, get it inspected annually and do any updates required. That way, you, your family and property should remain safe. South Easthope Mutual’s loss prevention team is always happy to answer any woodstove questions you may have. Preventing losses is everyone’s responsibility and we are all stronger when we do.


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