Skip to main content
COVID-19 Alert Level 2 Most of our services have resumed. Some restrictions remain. Visitors to our buildings should check in using the NZ COVID Tracer app or register manually.
For the current status of council services and closures - Learn moreCOVID-19 Alert Level 2
Water restrictions in Auckland More Water restrictions are in effect across the Auckland region. Learn moreWater restrictions in Auckland

Kūtia te paoa mai i tō pākaiahi

Minimise smoke from your fireplace

​Decrease smoke from your domestic fire through these energy efficient practices. Aim to produce little or no smoke from your chimney.​

What you can burn

  • Burn dry, well-seasoned wood that has been split properly. Dry wood has large cracks at the end of the log.
  • Burn low-sulphur coal (0.5 per cent or less by weight). High-sulphur coal produces more smoke, odour and harmful emissions.

What you can't burn

  • Don't use wet wood.
  • Never use green wood.
  • Never use treated timber. These generate toxic substances.
  • Don't burn rubbish, glossy paper and wrappers. These produce chemicals and odorous smoke.

How to start your fire

  • Stack wood loosely in the firebox so air can circulate.
  • Use enough kindling.
  • Start the fire with paper, dry kindling or an approved commercially available fire lighter. Never use accelerants such as petrol.
  • Do not put too much firewood in at first.

Once your fire is alight

  • Keep the fire burning brightly. The brighter the fire, the less smoke it produces.
  • Burn smaller logs rather than trying to burn a single, large log.
  • Keep the air control open for at least 30 minutes.
  • When you add logs, open up the air control to high for at least 20 to 30 minutes before turning it down.
  • Don't keep the fire burning overnight.
  • Don’t add a full load of wood when there are only a few glowing embers. This causes excessive smoke for long periods.

Maintain your burner or fireplace

  • Regularly remove ashes from the burner or fireplace.
  • Have your woodburner checked if it is smoking excessively.
  • Have a professional clean your chimney or flue every year.
  • Do not repair your woodburner as this is unsafe.
  • If your burner is more than 10 years old, upgrade to an authorised woodburner, heat pump, flued gas or pellet fire.

Collect and store firewood

  • Split your logs. Logs dry faster when split, so split wood into pieces about 10cm thick before storing.
  • Stack wood loosely off the ground in a criss-cross pattern to let dry air circulate around it.
  • Get your wood supply in the summer. Freshly cut wood needs to be stored for 8-12 months to allow it to season properly for good burning.

 Related topics

 

 

Air quality in Aucklandhttps://www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/environment/air-quality-pollution-contamination/Pages/air-quality-auckland.aspxAir quality in AucklandWe monitor air pollution in Auckland which is largely coming from emissions from transport and domestic fires.aspx
Rules for domestic heating applianceshttps://www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/building-and-consents/building-renovation-projects/heat-your-home/Pages/rules-domestic-heating-appliances.aspxRules for domestic heating appliancesObserve the rules on domestic heating appliances to limit particle emissions.aspx