Understanding Wood Burning Stove Regulations

Stephen Kilby Wharfe Valley Stoves

Understanding Wood Burning Stove RegulationsWhen installing wood burning stoves, did you know there are numerous regulations you need to follow?

With misleading information and sensationalised headlines filling the media regarding the future of the wood burning stove industry, it is becoming increasingly confusing for our customers to separate the facts from the fake news

Understanding Wood Burning Stove Regulation-DEFRAIn layman’s terms, in a bid to further reduce the impact heating appliances have on our environment, the bodies that govern our industry (DEFRA, Stove Industry Alliance and HETAS) have introduced stricter guidelines concerning efficiency levels and particulate matter by which a multitude of appliances manufactured after 1st January 2022 and sold in the UK (and Ireland) must adhere. These will be known as Eco Design 2022 Ready.

The primary areas of focus for the Eco Design directive are reduced particle emissions, lower Carbon Monoxide emissions and improved efficiency levels through better fuel standards and sustainability. Local councils will also be handed greater power to enforce the Eco Design Ready Scheme in their region.

Will my existing stove be legal after 2022?

Assuming you are a responsible stove owner with a HETAS certificate and using only fully-seasoned approved fuels, then you will not be affected by the new regulations as it will only concern stoves manufactured (and subsequently, purchased) after 1st January 2022.

You may wish to consider improving your existing stove however with the installation of an electrostatic filter (pulls the particles from the exhaust fumes before emitting into the atmosphere), using wood approved by Ready to Burn and ensuring you book in a minimum of two chimney sweeps a year. Ideally any stoves that are older than 10 years should be replaced with a more efficient stove.

Why should I consider an EcoDesign 2022 Ready stove today?

What can be better than making a difference now and start personally contributing to a proposed reduction in UK carbon emissions by two million tonnes per year? By purchasing an Eco Design Ready stove, you unlock the full potential of a modern, highly-efficient wood burner which could slash your particulate emissions by up to 84% vs your existing stove (SIA research), cut fuel costs and reduce your carbon footprint on the planet whilst continuing to enjoy all the benefits you love from your woodburning stove. You can even dispose of your old stove responsibly through the nationwide Stove Scrappage Scheme.

As a HETAS approved and environmentally aware stove retailer, here at Wharfe Valley Stoves we will always promote the correct operation of wood burners in conjunction with approved fuels to ensure complete adherence to all current DEFRA, HETAS and government regulations and guidelines and fully embrace the Eco Design 2022 Ready initiative. Ignoring the sensationalised and false headlines that all stoves are to be banned, the new limits on emissions align our products with the world we exist in today and permits us all to continue enjoying the back to basics tradition of solid fuel heating appliances, responsibly

Wood Burning Stove Fuel

You’ll also want to make sure you’re burning the right type of wood. While wood is generally more environmentally friendly, it really does depend upon which type you’re using and how dry it is.

Hardwood tends to be the better option as it burns at a much slower rate. Regardless of which type of wood you burn, it’s crucial to ensure it’s as dry as possible. If you’re using wood you’ve collected yourself, unless you dry it out, there’s a chance it could contain as much as 90% moisture. This would significantly reduce its efficiency.

Importance of a Hearth

Did you know that wood burning stoves need to have a dedicated area to the front for safety purposes? This is known as a hearth and it allows the heat to circulate away from the stove, preventing it from becoming trapped underneath. If the heat is being released directly downwards at a temperature of 100 Degrees Celsius, you’ll need to have a stove hearth that’s at least 125mm. If it’s cooler than that, the hearth must be at least 12mm.


Depending upon the type of wood burning stove you own, you will need to ensure your chimney is regularly maintained. This is because many wood burning stoves release a large amount of carbon dioxide. Even with a good legal flue system to keep these harmful gases inside and out of the chimney, problems can still occur if the chimney isn’t maintained.

Professional Installation

If you are buying a wood burner which requires a chimney or flue system, it’s vital you get it professionally fitted. This will ensure you are meeting the legal guidelines and that the stove will be 100% safe to use. It’s also important to ensure the installers you’re using are HETAS certified.

As you can see, there’s a lot to think about when you’re buying and installing a wood burning stove. It’s crucial you follow the correct guidelines, if only for your own safety. At Wharfe Valley Stoves, we stock a great collection of wood burning stoves, and our installers are fully HETAS certified.

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