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Overview

Before lighting your first fire in your fireplace or wood heater for the season, we have a few tips to offer on how to safely light your fire.

Steps

1Prepare your fireplace

Your fireplace may already be clean, but if it's not, you'll need to clean out any ash or coal before getting started. Make sure there's a retainment grate or barrier on your fireplace, which acts to contain the fire and keep it in the fireplace. You should also open the flu, dampeners, or vents to ensure there's good airflow when the fire is lit.

Green Bunnings hammer
Pro tip: if you're not sure when you last cleaned your fire flue, we recommend grabbing some chimney cleaners or a chimney sweep log. These help to prevent build-up of tar, soot and creosote in your chimney or flue, helping to avoid chimney flue fires and improving the safety of your fireplace.
Dirty fireplace.

2Stack and light the kindling

Take eight to ten pieces of kindling and stack them in a crosshatch style arrangement, by placing two pieces on the base of the fire vertically, and two pieces on top of those horizontally, repeating once.

Following product instructions, place firelighter bricks or gel amongst the kindling. Using a gas lighter or matches, light the kindling and wait for it to become well alight.

Kindling stacked up.

3Add the firewood

Once the burning kindling settles, it's time to add the first pieces of firewood. Place a few pieces of smaller firewood onto the kindling, being sure to allow space between them so air can circulate.  Once these smaller pieces settle and are burning hot, it's time to add larger logs. Again, be sure to allow good airflow between each log, to prevent smouldering and smoke.

Green Bunnings hammer
Pro tip: ensure your wood is dry so that it lights well and doesn't produce excessive smoke.

4Sit back and enjoy

Now that you've got the fire going, it's time to relax and stay warm.

Fire burning in fireplace.

5In need of a wood fire?

If you don't already own a wood fire heater, read our helpful guide to find the right wood fire heater for you.

Suggested products

More D.I.Y. Advice

Health & Safety

Asbestos, lead-based paints and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber are health hazards you need to look out for when renovating older homes. These substances can easily be disturbed when renovating and exposure to them can cause a range of life-threatening diseases and conditions including cancer. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page.

When following our advice in our D.I.Y. videos, make sure you use all equipment, including PPE, safely by following the manufacturer’s instructions. Check that the equipment is suitable for the task and that PPE fits properly. If you are unsure, hire an expert to do the job or talk to a Bunnings Team Member.