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Over the weekend an ambiguous article was written in a popular newspaper stating that log burning stoves ‘will send insurance through the roof’; but having been in the stove industry for over 40 years now, here, at Hunter Stoves LTD we have not seen this to be the case. The article fails to convincingly prove this argument, providing only a single case of a man that lived in a thatched property whose insurance increased a fraction. This case does not even apply to the vast majority of stove owners as many people no longer live in thatched houses. Furthermore, the article discredits its own ominous headline by stating: ‘Domestic fires have halved since 2001 to around 39,600 a year, according to the Department for Communities and Local Government. The number attributed to stoves, chimneys or open fires was so small it was not recorded’.

The article also fails to provide any supporting evidence from Insurance companies to confirm stoves raise house insurance and are classed as more dangerous, Insurance analysts Defaqto said: ‘There is no industry-wide policy. Your premium will be set according to an individual underwriter’s attitude to stoves.

Wood burning stoves circulate the air flow and are therefore able to produce higher temperatures than an open fire would; the circulation means that the wood is burnt more efficiently and effectively and is proven to reduced your heating bills. There is the most miniscule possibility that the greater heat could produce sparks but the likelihood of them causing a fire on a thatched roof is so slim. The time of year that you would be using your stove would mean the thatch is wet or damp and unlikely to be able to catch light. It is also recommended that if you have a thatched roof then a spark guard is purchased for the top of your chimney.

The one truth that the article does highlight is that all stoves must be installed by a HETAS fitter, which are the official body recognised by Government to approve the installation of your stove. However, there are other competent person schemes that can be used to install your stove, including APHC, BESCA, Blue Flame Certification, Certsure, NAPIT, andOFTEC. It is key to note that without your stove being installed by a certified installer your insurance will not be valid.

In sum, the headlining statement to this article is deceptive and over shadows the clear positives that owning a wood burning stove can bring. It is a detrimental suggestion that stoves provide a greater risk that open fires, and that they are solely to be enjoyed by the ‘middle classes’. At Hunter Stoves LTD we pride ourselves on producing products that are at the forefront of wood burning technology so as to make our stoves more efficient, in turn making your heating bills lower, and of excellent quality so they last for years, but all at affordable prices to be enjoyed by all.

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