How to Clean a wood or multi fuel stove and why it is important to keep it well maintained.

When people are considering installing a wood-burning stove, they often have concerns about how easy it is the clean and maintain. Stoves take very little maintenance to keep them working effectively and safely. Wood is an amazing fuel when it comes to efficient heat generation, and with a little extra maintenance, your stove can keep your home warm for years to come. In this guide, we cover how to clean your stove and when to get it serviced.

Why should you clean your Wood-burning/Multi-fuel stove?

A Stove that isn’t regularly cleaned can generate extra mess in the room where it’s located. But cleaning your stove isn’t just about reducing mess. A little bit if ash in the bottom of your stove will create a bed for lighting the stove, but too much will limit necessary air flow, and will blow out into the room when you open the door.

So how do you clean a stove to keep it working efficiently and safely for longer?

A small Fireside/Companion Set with Shovel and brush, and a metal bucket are required for ash removal. Try to ensure the embers have sufficiently cooled. Be careful moving the ash, as it can easily blow about in drafts.


Cleaning the Glass can be done with household Glass Cleaner and a cloth if done regularly. You can purchase products designed to clean stove glass, or you can use soap water and a damp cloth. The latter may take a little more elbow grease but is usually effective.

If your glass is becoming thick in tar like dirt very quickly, ensure that the wood you are using is sufficiently dry. If you have a Multi Fuel Stove, using smokeless coal will help reduce dirt build up. Please see our article ‘What is wet wood’, and ‘Can I have an open Fire’, for more information regarding burning quality wood, coal regulations and purchase.


Cleaning the exterior of your stove is a simple task, usually requiring little more than a brush or a vacuum cleaner with a soft brush attachment. Doing this regularly should prevent the build-up of dirt, grit and debris.


A Riven Slate Hearth can be cleaned and restored with some WD40 and a cloth. Spray the WD40 onto the Cloth and rub over the hearth and leave to dry. Depending on the type of stone the hearth is made from, warm soapy water is also a good cleaning agent.

Cleaning the Chimney/Flue

A sweep should be carried out of your liner/flue least once a year depending on the regularity of the usage of your stove. A Chimney Sweep will also usually carry out a thorough clean of your stove, checking the overall condition of your stove and component parts. They will alert you to any issues, allowing you to tackle them before they have a chance to develop.

Common occurrences

It is perfectly normal for a firebrick to crack, and generally there is no need to be concerned unless it has started to crumble or has moved. The stove rope will degrade and will need replaced more than once in a stove’s lifetime and usually presents itself as an issue when it no longer becomes possible to completely shut the stove down. You will notice the wood burns too quickly.

If the stove is over fired for its designed kilowatt output, you will notice issues such as:

  1. Stove rope degrading quickly
  2. The Baffle and/or Grate becoming bent
  3. Firebricks degrading quickly
  4. Discolouration of the Stove
  5. The Liner being Burnt out
  6. The Stove casing cracking (extreme cases)

Wood burning stoves and maintenance services from Caledonian Stoves.

Caledonian Stoves is a trusted supplier of wood-burning and multi-fuel stoves based in Stirling. We are happy to provide maintenance advice, chimney sweeping, and stove servicing.

Get in touch to find out more about warm, efficient, and clean contemporary Wood-burning and Multi fuel stoves, and for a free quote.