Knowledge Base

Our knowledge base offers advice, help and answers to those commonly asked questions such as 'How do I install a wood burning stove?' or 'What's the difference between a wood burner and a multifuel stove?' as well as offering useful tips on using a stove and stove maintenance.

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Knowledge Base » Installing a Stove

Smoke Control Areas

The Clean Air Acts of 1956 and 1968 were introduced to deal with the smog’s of the 1950s and 1960s which were caused by the widespread burning of coal for domestic heating and by industry. Under the Clean Air Act local authorities may declare the whole or part of the district of the authority to be a Smoke Control Area. It is an offence to emit smoke from a chimney of a building, from a furnace or from any fixed boiler if located in a designated Smoke Control Area. It is also an offence to acquire an ‘unauthorised fuel’ for use within a Smoke Control Area unless it is used in an ‘exempt’ appliance. The current maximum level of fine is £1,000 for each offence.

If you live in a Smoke Control Area and wish to use a wood or multi-fuel appliance, fear not, as there are many exempt appliances on which you can burn authorised fuels. Authorised fuels are fuels which are authorised by Statutory Instruments (Regulations) made under the Clean Air Act 1993 or Clean Air (Northern Ireland) Order 1981. These include inherently smokeless fuels such as gas, electricity and anthracite together with specified brands of manufactured solid smokeless fuels. These fuels have passed tests to confirm that they are capable of burning in an open fireplace without producing smoke.
Exempt appliances are appliances (ovens, wood burners and stoves) which have been exempted by Statutory Instruments (Orders) under the Clean Air Act 1993 or Clean Air (Northern Ireland) Order 1981. These have passed tests to confirm that they are capable of burning an unauthorised or inherently smoky solid fuel without emitting smoke.

Check if you are in a Smoke Control Area at the following website: www.uksmokecontrolareas.co.uk