A stove that burns logs or some other kind of fuel can be a wonderful addition to your home, providing warmth, a cosy focal point to gather around, and can even save you money. There are a few important factors, however, that you must consider before you purchase your new stove.
Complementing your lifestyle
There is a large choice of stoves available, so, first of all, think about what kind of stove will make a positive impact on your home life. Think about how much work you expect the stove to do, as there is a significant difference between a stove that only has to warm one room and a system that can heat an entire house. There is no point buying a stove that produces too much or too little heat, as this will either be a waste of money, or you will be shivering.
Your stove may need to be building regulations-friendly, and you will probably require a professional to install it. Also, remember that there is a certain amount of work involved in removing ash and keeping the chimney clean. For more on why a clean chimney is important, see this report from The Telegraph.
Fuel for thought
You also need to consider what kind of fuel you hope to burn, whether there is a supply near your home, and where you will store the fuel. Fuel options include coal, pellets and carbon-neutral wood. A multi-fuel stove can be more flexible, and many areas have smoke controls in place, so to use wood as a fuel, you would need to look at Defra approved multi fuel wood burning stoves. If you want to find out more about the benefits of Defra approved multi fuel wood burning stoves then it would be a good idea to consult with experts in this area, such as http://www.stoveworlduk.co.uk/DEFRA-approved-Multi-Fuel-Woodburning-Stove-5kw, who can give you some helpful advice.
All stoves must have an efficiency rating, and the minimum is 65 per cent. A higher rating means that the stove is more efficient, and will be better for cutting fuel bills, and some models have cleanheat technology to mix in more air for more efficient burning. The stove should also have a CE mark to show that it meets accepted European safety standards.