Its snowing today in Minnesota. I know, It's Minnesota of course its snowing and cold. Well, we have been living off borrowed time this year with no snow and warm weather, until today! Most people see the snow as the end of the fall season. No more cozying up to a warm fire in your outdoor fireplace on a cool Minnesota evening or toasting marshmellows on the coals of a bonfire. If your like me and don't want to stop burning in your outdoor fireplace. Then don't! Here are some tips to keep your hands warm as you play in the snow and help protect your outdoor fireplace from thermal shock of a Minnesota winter
1) If you are going to burn in the winter, keep your outdoor fireplace covered so it stays dry. Keep the snow off. Snow will create extra moisture that will freeze and thaw between uses.Keep your outdoor fireplace dry.
2) Warm up the flue. Slowly warm up the flue and firebox before you start burning a lot of wood. Warming up your outdoor fireplace slowly will help prevent thermal shock, which can cause the flues and masonry to crack. burn one log to start and then slowly add more as the fireplace heats up.
3) Burn dry wood. Burning dry wood helps the flue stay clean of cresote. Cresote build up could start on fire and cause the inside of your chimney to get too hot and crack the chimneyliner.
The most important thing to remember is to bring the hot chocolate! You can burn in your Minnesota outdoor fireplace in the winter. Just remember these tips and your masonry outdoor fireplace should be able to handle the cold weather as you fire it up and warm up the kids as they play in the snow.