How to Build a Safer Fire
Dos and don'ts for the cold-weather season
Begin with andirons or a grate, seasoned firewood, kindling no thicker than your thumb, and a starter like crumpled or twisted newspaper. Pop on a screen, and keep the fire going by adding logs gradually, maintaining air channels. Never feed flames with gift wrap, pizza boxes, or other fast-burning trash.
Let the ashes cool before removing them. Leaving an inch or so of ash is fine and can help jump-start your next fire. Be sure to get regular chimney checkups—using a certified pro, of course.
Thanks to the Chimney Safety Institute of America