Making the perfect log fire

Is there anything cosier and more romantic than a real log fire? The cheerful, bright glow of a real fire can comfort us when winter throws its worst at us. Getting the perfect log fire is not as easy as it looks and here are some top tips for getting the best log fire in minutes:

  1. Logs

You will need a good supply of seasoned firewood logs with a moisture content of no more than 20%. A mix of different sizes is best. Try to remember to fill the wood basket during the day to save you getting logs from the woodshed once its dark. For an attractive storage place for your logs, consider Metal Log Holders from

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  1. Good quality kindling

Good kindling is vital, so keep a basket of dry twigs or sticks that have been split to around a 2cm diameter. You can gather these while taking walks in the country. Other materials for excellent kindling include orange peel, beech and pine cones.

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  1. Leave the ash

white fire ash. Don’t do this, instead leave a layer of ash about 5cm deep and make an indentation in the middle for the kindling. The ash is ideal for burning the first fire embers and will help get the fire going faster.

  1. Big and small

Put bigger logs to the back of the fire and a smaller one to each side. This will form an enclosure in which to light the fire on top of the ash base. Place down the material you intend to light first, rolled up paper, cardboard etc and then some kindling on top. If you have a wood stove, keep all the air vents open and the door just a little ajar.

  1. Burning well

The best fire trick is to get it burning strongly for around 40 minutes to heat up the chimney and to get the stove to a working temperature of around 200C on the stove thermometer. Once the fire is burning well, partly close the air vents, so the flames roll nicely above the fire. Provide the fire with a couple of fresh logs when the burning ones are reduced to embers. This will help keep the fire burning low or in other words, burning just enough for the stove to keep running efficiently. It’s not an easy thing to achieve but once you get the hang of it, you’ll have the perfect fires.

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