A wood stove is a cooking or residential heating appliance that can burn wood fuel and wood-driven biomass fuel and sawdust bricks.
Most types of wood stoves contain closed firebox, solid metal, fire brick, and air controls. It is connected to a stovepipe vent that will fill with hot combustion gasses once the fuel is combusted. The chimney or flue glasses must be hotter than the outside temperature to ensure combustion gasses flow out of the fire chamber and through the chimney. You would agree that having this appliance at home puts your home at risk of a fire breaking out. Hence, the need for wood stove insurance.
If you are in British Columbia and you want to find out more about wood stove insurance requirements, we will discuss this in the article — you can also get more information from the insurance pros at Surex by clicking here.
What Is Wood Stove insurance?
Woodstove insurance is about having a policy that covers your wood-burning stove and any damage or loss that may occur as a result of you using it. You can also purchase a policy that covers your liability in case the wood stove injuries or damages a third party in your home.
Traditional home insurance does not usually cover a wood stove appliance. The premium to be paid for a wood stove insurance depends on the insurance company but you are almost certain of a higher premium because most insurance companies are reluctant to cover a wood stove because of the potential dangers of using a wood stove.
To be on the safe side, you need to inform your insurance company that you possess a wood stove. The usual practice is to send someone over to inspect the wood stove and confirm if you meet the necessary safety requirements before they agree to cover your wood stove request.
How Does It Affect Your Home Insurance?
Having wood insurance has its consequences when trying to get an insurance company to cover it. The first problem you might face is to get an insurance company that will agree to cover the stove. Most insurance companies are always reluctant because of the risk involved.
At the end of the day, having a wood stove will increase the premium you will need to pay for home insurance significantly. The price of the premium will depend on the insurance company, the type of policy, and the construction of the woodstove unit. However, some insurance companies would rather charge you a separate premium for your wood stove rather than increase the premium for your general home insurance. It all depends on your insurance provider.
How Insurance Companies Deal With Wood Burning Stove Insurance Requirements
there is the likelihood that once you inform your insurance provider that you own a wood stove, they will send an inspector over to your property to assess what type of wood stove it is. If an inspection is requested, your home insurance will not cover the woodstove until the wood stove is inspected by their officer and you pass their safety requirements.
One of the general requirements is that your wood stove must be connected to a chimney to regulate heat and transport harmful gasses out of the home. The type of chimney connection is one of the things the inspector will assess. The things he will be looking out for are a clear chimney and a clean chimney, well-sealed, and adherence to your local fire codes.
Some insurance companies may also require annual or semi-annual continuous checks on your wood stove to ensure you always meet their requirement and you are not at risk in any way. One of the safety guidelines that insurance companies look out for is a clear space of 3 feet in the surrounding of the fireplace or wood-burning stove.
If you also have a screen in the woodstove area to prevent sparks from spreading, this will be a plus for you. Your chimney must also be clear of any flammable substance like creosote, a byproduct of wood. All in all, insurance companies are always careful and reluctant to cover your wood stove because it increases the chances of a fire outbreak in your home.
Wood Stove Requirements For Insurance
If you have already installed the wood stove, the insurance company will want to certify that it was installed by a professional and it meets the local fire codes in your province. You will also need to provide proof with documentation that your wood stove is safe and has also been inspected for defects.
Then there may be a continuous inspection by the insurance company to ensure that your wood stove is always in good condition. If you are yet to install the wood stove, the insurance company will require you to use a licensed contractor to install the wood stove which will be at an extra cost for you.
Some of the other safety requirements that your wood stove must pass include:
- Floor protection – This will protect your floor against intense levels of heat from the stove and embers with a non-burnable material.
- No risky locations – Locations close to flammable materials like wood, cloth, or plastic
- Chimney and flue pipe – This must all be clean and clear to meet all requirements. It must also not contain flammable materials.
- Appliance clearances – This will require you to clear the space around the wood-burning unit. This ensures that you are able to meet the guidelines for how far the stove needs to be away from combustible materials and a proper shield is installed.
Tips To Maintain a Wood Stove
Here are some maintenance tips for your wood stove to ensure you always meet requirements:
- Schedule regular cleanings (annually) and professional stove inspections every three to five years.
- Have a fire extinguisher close by and easily accessible.
- Only use dry wood and do not overfill your wood-burning stove. Burning too much wood can cause tar and other materials to build up and lead to a fire.
- When you need to clean the ashes from the wood-burning stove, wait until they are entirely cool and scoop them into a metal bucket or container.