Can I use briquettes in a smokeless zone?


 

Can I use briquettes in a smokeless zone?

Yes, but only if you have a DEFRA certified stove (also known as an exempt appliance). Most modern stoves are exempt and it’s easy to check if yours is by looking on the DEFRA website. This will tell you what the permitted fuels are for your stove. If it says “Wood Logs” then you can use any of our briquettes as smokeless zone fuels.

Authorised Fuels for Smokeless Zones

DEFRA also have a list of authorised fuels for smokeless zones which do not include many wood products. This makes people believe that they can’t burn wood products in a smokeless zone. But in reality, you can, as long as the appliance is exempt. The only caveat to this is to burn DRY wood. Poorly seasoned logs, or freshly cut logs, will be too wet and will produce smoke even on an exempt appliance. Stick to kiln-dried logs and wood briquettes to keep the atmosphere and your neighbours happy. Our briquettes make excellent smokeless zone fuels.

free standing woodburner with flames and stacked wood woodfuel cooperative

Moisture content is key

For Smokeless Zone Fuels, remember; the amount of moisture in a log directly affects the amount of smoke it will produce. Freshly cut timber is around 50% moisture. Properly seasoned logs are 20-25%. Kiln-dried logs are usually 12-18%, while wood briquettes are well under 10%. So briquettes are very well-suited for use in exempt appliances.

This low moisture content also means that they give more heat out as well. And because they’re denser than logs, they burn longer, as well as hotter. Win win!

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Quick guide to choosing the best Wood Fuel for your stove and lifestyle.

Wood Fuel Co-operative
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*Break - We strongly recommend you break these briquettes in half (or less for very small stoves) because they do expand whilst burning and you don't want them to overfill the fire.
*Easy to light - We always use a Firelighter and Kindling Sticks to start our fires. Most briquettes are graded four stars to light because they are quite dense and require kindling.

Notes:

  • All stove and flue combinations tend to have different burning characteristics. Fuel that works well in my stove may not work so well in your stove, and vice-versa.
  • Most modern stoves are more efficient than most older stoves, meaning a modern quality stove will burn fuel more economically and generate more heat over a longer period.
  • Always try to burn fuel with a 'lick of flame'. Smouldering fuel to try to extend burn time is bad for your stove, flue and the environment due to unburned particulate matter in the smoke.
  • Be prepared to break briquettes into smaller sections to fit into your stove comfortably. Many briquettes do expand whilst burning and you don't want them to expand onto the glass.
  • The chart above indicates which briquettes are easy to break. Some are small enough so they don't need breaking. This makes for a cleaner environment around your stove.
  • All briquettes, except Everyday Value and Hotmax, benefit hugely from using kindling to light them. I suggest five kindling sticks will be sufficient, meaning a net should last 30 days.