Case study 5 - A common problem with chimneys built after 1965

This late 1980’s fireplace was originally constructed for an open gas fire. It is always a compromise to squash a stove into a small open fire chamber. The chimney was built at a time when no thought was given to the potential of the future installation of a wood burning stove. A local HETAS engineer installed the stove with little thought to the original construction method. The position of the low quality stove gave little heat.

It was impossible to clean the chimney properly leaving a sticky tar inside which finally leaked through the badly jointed clay pot liners and surrounding brickwork. The chimney terminated 1 meter too low which contributed to downdraught problems and smoke spillage into the room. So, our mission was to salvage and update the fireplace and chimney to accept a Charnwood Country 4 high efficiency wood burning stove and chimney lining system. The chimney was built up to the correct height and relined using a 6 inch stainless steel flexible liner. The stainless steel flexible liner would not pass through the badly built clay pot flue bend so we had to break in at that point to clear the blockage.

Parts of the original fireplace were dismantled and a larger rendered chamber and slate tiled hearth created to ensure a practical good looking fireplace with the correct proportions, able to deliver the full heat output of the new Charnwood Country 4 stove. With its easily swept new stainless steel lining system we managed to drag this dated fireplace and chimney safely into the 21st century.