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How to Start a Fire in Your Fireplace or Braai

How to Start a Fire in Your Fireplace or Braai - How-to's

There are a few ways to start a fire, each having more or less the same result if you are using dry, good quality wood. Everyone has their own tips on how to start a fire. Some swear that there is only one way (their way, of course) and that all other ways are a waste of time. Others have tried a few different ways, finding one the does the job and sticking to it forever after. While it is good to experiment with what works for your fireplace, it is often useful to have a few insider tricks on how to get that fire going quickly and simply.

To help you master the fine art of fires, we have three ways to go about starting a fire in your fireplace, braai or woodstove. If you trying to learn how to start a fire, try one of these methods…

  1. The Grid

As the name implies, this method uses a square shaped grid. To build this fire, start off by placing two sticks that are more or less that same size alongside each other with a bit of a gap between them to leave room for kindling and paper. Then, place another two sticks on top of those first sticks, facing the other way. Continue adding sticks in a grid formation until you have a stack that is a few centimetres high. You can then carefully place kindling and newspaper in the centre of the grid and light it from the middle. Once the entire stack begins to burn, carefully add a log and allow it to catch. You can then add another log and another one until you have a nice fire going.

  1. The Lean-To

To make this type of fire, you will need a log and a selection of smaller sticks and kindling. Place the log on its side, and place sticks alongside it so that they are leaning onto the log. Make sure that the log is covered along its length, then carefully place your kindling beneath the sticks and light. The kindling should help the log to catch alight, which in turn will make it easier to add additional logs once the fire begins to grow.

  1. The Tent

You can also make a tent style fire that looks a little bit like a tepee. To do this one, you will need to very carefully prop a selection of sticks up so that they are leaning against each other at an angle, much like the frame of a tent. Make sure that the sticks are supported against each other, so that the tent does not collapse before it catches alight. Before you finish adding the final sticks, add kindling in the centre. Close the triangular shape and then light from the bottom. Once the fire catches, you can add logs slowly until it is blazing nicely.

Wood that is too damp, too soft or not suited to your type of fireplace may not catch as well as wood that is dry and appropriate for your fireplace. For best results, use dry, hard wood that is suited for your specific type of fireplace or braai. You can use fire starters in a braai or open fireplace, but not in a closed combustion wood stove, so make sure that you always follow directions for the specific type of fire you are making.

Contact Hydrofire today to learn more about choosing the best fireplace in South Africa for your need.