In our first guide, you should have been able to establish the basics of lighting a wood burning stove. You will have learned about whether to leave ash within your wood burning stove or whether to leave your stove as clean as a whistle and will have learned about kindling and how it really isn’t optional when it comes to having a good fire with minimal struggling and little frustration.

With the cleanest stove in the world, though (or if you’re using a wood burning stove, not the cleanest!) you’ll want to know how exactly to do it.

First, you’ll want yesterday’s newspaper. How exactly you use this as fuel is up to you. Some prefer to make balls of it… and others are pretty vocal about just twisting it and using it as some form of torch. Whichever method you use though, you can be assured that the newspaper will burn. You’ll want to use between 4-8 sheets of newspaper for a good burn- less than that and your fire will likely go out before the fire gets at the wood, and any more and you’re looking at some serious smoke.

Depending on the brand and the model of stove (for instance ACR stoves have quite a lot of elbow room, as well as Charnwood stoves as well as Aarrow stoves), you may feel that your little pile isn’t big enough. Use your best judgment. As long as your newspaper has a good coverage of your fuel, you should be alright.

Compress the paper however you feel best and place it in the centre of your stove.

If you like, firelighters are also great for usage within stoves – though, generally speaking, just newspaper should be enough. Scatter your newspaper with kindling, and get ready to get out your lighter or matches. When you’ve made a little pyre out of your fuel, newspaper, and the kindling, you’ll want to light the newspaper in a few places, in order to encourage the flame.

When the paper starts to burn, (gently!) close the door of your stove. Depending on your manufacturer, you’ll likely want to check the manual to make sure the door shouldn’t be left open. Watch your little fire until it starts to take form, and gently (and carefully) start feeding in fuel. You’ll likely want to start with little logs at this point and build up to bigger and bigger ones.

Lighting a stove is usually a quite involving and fun experience – there’s something rather nice about watching a fire take shape and take form, and when the process is refined, you’ll likely be able to have any stove up and roaring in a few minutes.