A wood-burning stove is a great addition to any room, adding a touch of luxury and cosiness in addition to being practical and energy efficient.

Over time, you will probably notice that your stove is getting quite dirty and the surface may become marked or rusty. Inside, ash build-up may cause the glass door to appear sooty and the seal may become less effective.

Luckily, it is a quick and simple matter to set your stove to rights, leaving it looking as good as new. Here’s how:

Remove tar/soot

Before carrying out any maintenance on your stove, always ensure it is perfectly cool. If tar and/or soot deposits have come through onto the plaster, clean these off with a brush or damp cloth and apply a coat or two of stain block. Once this is dry, you can finish with your paint colour of choice.

Rust issues

Rub away any small patches of rust with some wire wool and vacuum up the resulting debris. You can then repaint if required.

Respray

If you want to respray your stove, ensure that you mask the handles and door using sheets of newspaper held in place with tape. Cover the surrounding area and ensure the room is well ventilated. Using stove spray paint, apply several coats until you achieve the desired effect.

Window cleaning

To clean the stove window, you can use a specific stove glass cleaner; alternatively, a dampened ball of newspaper dipped in ash and rubbed gently onto the window will bring it to a brilliant shine.

Check the seal

You should periodically check the rope seal on your stove. This will tend to lose its shape over time, allowing fumes to escape.

Stove health

To ensure your stove is working well, and more importantly safely, make a point of regularly cleaning out the firebox and emptying the ash pan. Ensure that the firebricks are sound. During the warmer months, leave the stove with the door ajar and the air inlets set to open to allow it to air properly. Summer is the perfect time to get your chimney swept in preparation for autumn’s chillier nights.

Hearth sealant

If you opt to seal your hearth, you will find it a lot easier to keep clean. First clean it thoroughly with hot water and floor cleaner, then rinse. Refrain from adding sealant for at least four days, as the surface needs to be completely dry for it to take properly; alternatively, you could treat it with a hearth-specific oil. Be sure to protect your carpets and soft furnishings before applying.