How to Build a Clean Burning Fire With Little Smoke


On a chilly winter night, nothing warms a home more quickly than a crackling wood fire. Building a brightly burning fire takes a little practice, but once you've mastered the technique you'll start efficient fires in only a few minutes.

Things You'll Need

  • Newspaper or paraffin wax fire starters
  • Kindling (dry, finely split sticks in a variety of sizes)
  • Seasoned firewood
  • Match
  • Place two split logs in your fireplace with 4 to 6 inches between them. Choose logs that are about 3 to 4 inches thick.

  • Twist a length of black and white newspaper and place it between the two logs.

  • Place 1 inch of kindling on top of the newspaper and logs. Light the newspaper with a match and allow it to burn for several minutes.

  • Lay 3 or 4 small logs (3 to 4 inches thick) perpendicularly on top of the two logs in the fireplace once the kindling has almost burned out.

  • Add larger logs once the fire is burning brightly. Always add 2 or more logs at a time for most efficient burning.

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  • Photo Credit Flame of a fire and fire wood in fireplace image by Aliaksandr Zabudzko from
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