Tips on heating a home with and cooking on an Esse Ironheart

Now that the warm weather is here and seems as though it may be getting set to stay, I figure that I won’t have much cause to write about the Esse Ironheart woodstove until the fall. I thought I’d log (no pun intended!) a few tips here while they are still fresh from our first winter and early spring heating our home with the Ironheart, as well as cooking on and in it.

The Ironheart is one heck of an efficient woodstove, but it takes some getting used to. When everything is working smoothly, you can look through the door and see the wood gas inside igniting, which is one of the reasons why this woodstove is so clean compared to many woodstoves.

The key things that we’ve learned about helping our Ironheart to work efficiently include building fires at the back of the box and cutting wood into smaller pieces (eg quarter cuts of logs already split for burning – full logs were just too intense). Both of these things have made it much easier to control the heat generated, which has been particularly important for us as we live in a concrete house (ICF) and it gets awfully warm in here awfully quick. You don’t want to have to strip down too much when guests come over!

Overall, the Ironheart just doesn’t need a lot of wood to create a good burn and retain heat, so less wood is needed compared to most traditional woodstoves. On a typical winter’s day (eg -10 degrees Celsius) we could keep our home warm and toasty on just four split logs a day. If I ever move, I want to bring my Ironheart with me.

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