Coal & Smokeless Fuel Q & A

Q: Why is house coal being banned in England?

A: House coal is being banned by the government in order to combat air pollution.

Q: When will house coal be banned?

A: The sale of house coal will be phased out as of 1st May 2021, then will be banned comepletely by 1st May 2023.

Q: Can I still purchase house coal between 1st May 2021 and 1st May 2023?

A: Yes, but you won't be able to purchase from outlets such as supermarkets, garages or garden centres. Only from Approved Coal Merchants like us, and they will have to be in open 25kg bags or in open 50kg sacks tipped out into your shed/bunker/bulk bag.

Q: Why do Approved Coal Merchants get a two-year extension?

A: This gives coal merchants the chance to clear their stocks and to give regular house coal users the chance to gradually switch to approved Smokeless Fuels.

Q: What are Smokeless Fuels?

A: Smokeless Fuel is a type of manufactured solid fuel which gives off the minimal amounts of smoke. Demand for Smokeless Fuels is likely to increase now that the sale of traditional house coal is being phased out.

Q: Where are your Smokeless Fuels from?

A: We always source British fuels, and always look to source the best available. Anthracite is from Wales, Homeflame & Maxibrite are from South Wales, Newburn is from Teeside and Homefire Ovals & Taybrite are from North Lincolnshire.

Q: Which Smokeless Fuel should I switch to?

A: Newburn, Homeflame, Homefire Ovals and Dual are all suitable for open fires.

Q: Will it be against the law to burn house coal after 1st May 2023?

A: There has been no legislation placed on burning house coal after 1st May 2023 as long as you are not in a Smoke Controlled Area. Get those bunkers filled up!

Q: How do I know if I am in a Smoke Controlled Area?

A: You can view a list which shows the status of local authorities with respect to Smoke Control AreasBreckland, South Norfolk and Mid Suffolk have not declared any Smoke Control Areas. 

Q: Can I burn house coal in my wood burner or multifuel stove?

A: No! House coal and wood burners DO NOT mix! As for multifuel stoves, we would strongly advise against it! House coal has a slow burn, meaning that the smoke would damage your chimney flue, then by the time it gets going it would burn too hot! Hot enough to drastically shorten the lifespan of your appliance and potentially blow out the stove glass! We advise Kiln Dried Logs for wood burners, and Smokeless Fuel for multifuel stoves.

Q: Which Smokeless Fuel should I burn?

A: It depends on the type of appliance you own, and your own preference. The Smokeless Fuels we supply have their own attributes -

- Anthracite is ideal for use in cookers and boilers, it creates a long lasting fire bed with high heat and low flame.
- Dual is easy to light, clean burn, low CO2 emission, high heat output, long lasting, beautiful red glow and very low ash.
- Homefire Ovals is premium performance! High heat, attractive flame, low CO2 emission, slumbers well overnight, low ash.
- Homeflame is ideal for use in multifuel stoves with a long flame, long burn and low CO2 emission.
- Maxibrite is a cleaner alternative to Anthracite, ideal for Agas.
- Newburn is high performance and cost effective with low ash.
- Taybrite is easy burning and slumbers well overninght.

Q: Does the size of Smokeless Fuel matter?

A: It depends on visual appeal. Larger sized briquettes such as Newburn and Homefire Ovals give a more authentic look for an open fire or a stove with glass on the door, there are larger gaps for better air flow.

Q: How should I store my coal/smokeless fuel?

 

A: If you order it loose then ideally in a bunker or in a dry corner of your shed. If you order in pre-packed bags store them either in a garage/shed or under tarpaulin. If you open a bag at least a day before use this should give your coal/smokeless fuel sufficient enough time to get the air to be dry enough for your fire.

Q: Wet bagged smokeless fuel? Can I still burn it?

A: Whilst we make every effort to ensure that no rainwater gets into our pre-packed smokeless fuel products, this may occasionally happen. We advise you not to burn smokeless fuel when it is wet. However, its quality will not be affected and it soon dries out, airflow is the key! If you require your smokeless fuel to be bone dry then you could use a couple of buckets in a rotation system to help give them the air to dry. Alternatively, you could open a pre-packed bag a few days before use to air it. You could also open the lid of your bunker ajar for air. They dry out very quickly in the sun too!

Q: My fire is burning quicker than usual! Why is this?

A: Don't forget to close your air vent (and damper located within the stovepipe if you have one) once you've got your fire going! It is also not unusual for fires to burn quicker than usual on a windy day when the wind can get inside vents. Other more serious reasons could be damage to the stove such as a failed gasket seal on the stove door or a possible leak in the stovepipe area.

Q: How often should I get my chimney swept?

A: In order to keep the risk of a chimney fire and carbon monoxide poisoning down to a minimum we advise you to get your chimney sept once a year at the very least! Whilst smokeless fuel produces less smoke than traditional house coal, it will still produce soot. If you burn house coal on a regular basis then it is recommended that you have your chimney swept at least twice a year. Your chimney sweep merchant can pass on useful advice when necessary. An annual stove maintainenance check every summer is advised too.

Q: How will my order be delivered?

A: Our vehicle is a dropside tipper, though no need to use the tipper function on this occasion! We will either stack your 25kg pre-pack bags where required or we will empty loose 50kg sacks into your shed or bunker.

Q: How do I pay? Is my payment secure?

A: We offer online payments through Paypal or online card payments through Cubecart which are 100% secure - we will be in contact to arrange delivery shortly after your online order. If you would rather pay via bank transfer then please contact us via e-mail or phone with your order so we can e-mail your invoice to you, our bank details will be on the bottom of the invoice - we will then arrange delivery as soon as payment has been recieved. Alternatively, you may pay over the phone with your card details and arrange delivery - once your card payment has been processed successfully we will destroy your card details immediately. For more detailed information please view the GDPR Privacy Policy.

Q: My online order is not being accepted! Why is this?

A: Our online shopping system is dependant on postcode areas in relation to how close they are to our yard - so this goes by the postcode area you live in and the order quantity. The closer your postcode area is based to our yard, the smaller the minimum order requirement will be. However, some of the postcode areas can be very diverse! A prime example is Hingham (11 miles away) is in the same postcode (NR9) as Lenwade (29 miles away!) Check out Delivery Locations at a Glance for more details to see if your location can qualify for a better minimum order or to see if your location on the boundaries of an outer postcode area is within our range.

Q: I've forgotten my password and I can't access my account! What do I do?

 

A: You can request a password recovery which will automatically e-mail you with a link (you may need to check your junk folder.) Follow the link, enter your new password twice and you should be good to go. If this doesn't work then please contact us with your name and address and we'll reassign you with a different password. Once you're logged in with your reassigned password, click on My Account and you'll be able to choose a new password.

Q: Can I pick and choose my delivery date and time?

A: During off-peak times this will be easier to arrange, we can advise whether your order will arrive in AM and PM though we cannot offer a precise time. During peak winter times we will look to stick to our weekly route plan in order to fit in as many orders as possible, though we've kept Fridays and Saturdays free to offer some flexibility.

Q: Do I need to be at home when you deliver?

A: As long as we have access to your shed, bunker or the area you would like us to stack the bags, you do not need to be at home.

Q: How long will I have to wait for a delivery?

A: Generally within three days, sometimes sooner. We have a weekly route plan written up in order to fit in as many deliveries together as possible. December in the build up to Christmas time can get very busy when delivery times are likely to double! 'Beast from the East' scenarios are even more hectic! Road conditions are likely to add unpredictability so please take these into consideration when ordering. Please view the Direct Deliveries Terms & Conditions.

Q: I need my coal/smokeless fuel sooner! What are my options?

A: You may arrange a yard collection by prior arrangement. Please contact us to arrange this so that we can make sure one of us are present at the yard when you arrive.

Q: Do you do a newsletter?

A: Yes, if you opt in we will occasionally get in contact about special offers and updates, you may need to check your junk folder. Alternatively, you may view or follow our Facebook and Instagram pages to keep up to date.

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