The Basics of Installing a Wood Burning Stove in Your Home


A wood burning stove is a simple, economical way to provide a cozy, warm atmosphere for your home. You will need to ensure that your stove and pipes have been installed properly for safety reasons. With some basic information, you can be confident that you have a safe wood burning stove installed.

First Steps

After choosing your stove, you will need to determine which types of pipes are right for your home. You should check your local regulations regarding chimneys and wood burning stoves before installing any pipes or flues. You will need to gather your materials in advance. Typically, you will need a pipe cap, insulated or single skin pipe that is long enough to reach at least six inches over the roof of your home and metal fasteners to secure the pipe if you don’t have an existing flue or chimney.

Installing A Pipe

A clip together system is the most common method of installing a wood stove when there isn’t a chimney available. In general, you will want to use an insulated pipe that is installed through the ceiling if you don’t have an existing chimney. Insulated pipe is designed to reduce the heat that ceilings and walls are exposed to, which reduces the risk of fire when the wood burning stove is in use. You may also opt for a combination of single skin, or uninsulated, and insulated pipe as long as the single skin pipe is placed a safe distance from combustible materials.

Single skin pipe needs to be placed at a distance of three times its diameter away from flammable materials. For instance, a five inch pipe would need to be fifteen inches away from walls to be safe. If there is an available chimney inside the home, you may be able to use a different method to install a wood burning stove.

When You Have a Chimney

You may be able to run a new flue through an existing chimney. You will need to have your chimney inspected to determine whether it is lined, unlined or masonry. Once you have determined the type of chimney you have, you can determine the types of pipe and supplies you will need to complete the installation of your wood burning stove.

Basic safety regulations state that chimneys require at least 150mm space between the flue and chimney and about 225mm of hearth space in front of the wood burning stove. You will typically need a space of about 220mm above the stove, as well, when measuring the distance of combustible materials.

When properly installed, your wood burning stove can be safe and efficient. You may need to have your flue inspected by a Hetas installer or your local building official to ensure your flue is installed according to regulations.