Can you add a wood burning stove to your garden office?
Yes you can, as long as you consider the following points:
You can add a wood burner to your garden building if : –
1. It has a floor that is strong enough to support the stove and the hearth.
2. It has a roof that can have a hole through it to accept a flue and the ceiling and roofing materials are correctly finished to protect from fire and heat damage.
The type of roof you have on your outdoor office dictates the height that the chimney has to rise above the level of the roof. This is controlled by the building regulations Part J
If your office is roofed with a fireproof material such as slate or bitumen roof tiles the chimney can be lower.
If your roof is finished with untreated shingles or a turf roof the chimney has to be taller.
The height of the chimney must also be calculated to be far enough away from any roof windows in your office.
Important. Check that your professional installer calculates the correct height for you so that the installation meets all building regulation requirements. More about Building regs below.
One of the ‘problems’ with installing a stove in a purpose built office is that if it is very well insulated you will only need the smallest of stoves to heat it. And, you may still find yourself, in the middle of winter, having to throw the door open to cool down.
Typically you will want a stove that produces less than 5kw of heat. Most stove manufacturers produce one stove as small as this and Salamander Stoves specialise in small stoves for canal boats and garden buildings. The solid fuel association provides information on British Stove Manufacturers.
If you are putting the stove in an un-insulated building you will obviously need a more powerful stove. But, it may make more sense to invest the money in insulation rather than in an expensive stove and a continuous supply of wood.
Also think about…..
Planning Permission and Building Regulations
There are a number of points you need to consider before you buy your stove:
- Adding a wood burning stove may need planning permission. You can add a stove to your house without planning permission, but not necessarily to an ancillary building. If you live in a listed building or a conservation area you will definitely need planning permission.
- If you live in a smoke control area you will need to ensure you buy an approved ‘clean burn’ stove such as the Ecoburn Defra.
- You need to carefully consider how the flue will affect your neighbours. It will be at a lower level than a house flue and wood smoke is harmful to health. It wouldn’t be unreasonable for someone to complain to environmental health if your wood smoke was continually blowing into their home.
- All wood burning stoves need to meet building regulations Part J so make sure you are using a HETAS registered retailer and
- You must install a carbon monoxide alarm.
And finally –
What About Wood Storage?
This may be an obvious question but do you have enough space around your office to store wood, especially if you are intending to season it yourself? do you have a reliable local source for good quality logs?