According to statistics, there are over 7,000 chimney fires in the UK every single year. In fact, the vast majority of these deadly fires can actually be prevented with regular maintenance and general fire safety. Here at Pearson Fuels, we believe that it is our responsibility to ensure that our clients use the coal we supply responsibly and safely. Read on as we go through three of the most important fire safety tips that every fireplace and stove owner should know…

Regular Chimney Sweeping

When carbon-based fuels like coal and firewood are burned in a chimney, a deposit known as creosote builds up on the side of the chimney flue. Although it is relatively low risk in small quantities, it is important to have a chimney swept regularly in order to keep creosote under control. After all, this substance is incredibly flammable, which means that it only takes a small spark to set alight an incredibly dangerous chimney fire.

CO Detector

Another danger of burning carbon-based fuels is a toxic gas known as carbon monoxide (CO). In fact, this gas is so dangerous that it is imperative that every homeowner using a fireplace or stove has a CO detector in place in order to identify it in large quantities. Released as a by-product of combustion, the gas is usually released into the atmosphere via the chimney flue; however, large deposits of creosote can cause it to linger in the home. Since carbon monoxide is odourless, colourless and tasteless, CO poisoning can wreak havoc on a homeowner’s health for days, if not weeks, before it is discovered without a detector in place.

Fireplace Guards

It is an unspoken rule that children should never be left unsupervised around a fire. After all, they are inquisitive creatures and it is an adult’s responsibility to ensure that this curiosity does not result in a fatal injury. The most effective way to do this is to invest in something known as a ‘fireplace guard’. These create a literal blockage in front of a fireplace in order to separate young children from the naked flames without reducing the heat output of a fire.

When it comes to fire safety, it is important that a burning fire is contained. After all, if the recommended precautions are not adhered to then the life of every household member is put at serious risk. Thankfully, fire safety is as simple as burning the right fuels and ensuring that the flue is regularly swept. To find out more information, get in contact with the best coal merchants around and speak to a member of the Pearson Fuels team today!

As one of the most well-known fossil fuels on the planet, coal can actually be found in more than one way. After all, everybody knows about bituminous coal but what about peat, lignite and anthracite? Here at Pearson Fuels, we have taken it upon ourselves to set the record straight. After all, coalification is a process that takes 300 million years to complete and this means that we can mine the fossil fuel in different stages of its development. Read on as we go over everything you need to know about lignite…

What is Lignite?

As coal forms, it goes through several different stages and these are often ranked by name in the following order: peat, lignite, sub-bituminous, bituminous and anthracite. Due to this, lignite is known as a younger rank of coal that hasn’t been subjected to the intense pressure and heat that older ranks of coal like anthracite have. This means that it is much softer, has a ‘crumbly’ texture and can found close to the earth’s surface.

Uses For Lignite

Despite its soft texture, lignite is a rank of coal that can be used in a few different ways. For example, it is often used for electric power generation and is sometimes used to produce soil fertilisers. With this said, it has a lower heat value than harder coals like anthracite which means that it isn’t suitable for most other coal applications.

Mining Lignite

Since it is a young form of coal, lignite can be found close to the surface of the earth and this makes it much easier to mine than the harder alternatives. In fact, an Australian coal mine in Latrobe Valley is estimated to contain around 65 million tonnes of lignite, which is thought to be a staggering 25% of the world’s reserves!

Although we tend to place our focus on home coals that have an effective heat output like bituminous coal, the team here at Pearson Fuels believe that it is our responsibility to educate our readers on everything coal related. After all, each coal rank is not created equally and early forms like lignite are simply not suitable for burning in the home. To find out more information about the coalification process, get in contact with the best coal merchants around and speak to a member of the Pearson Fuels team today!

Although experts predict that our coal reserves will be available for another 150 years at the current rate of consumption, it is important to remember that the fossil fuel is a non-renewable energy source. This means that we will eventually run out of it. With this said, the process that took place in order to create the coal that we use to generate power and heat our homes is rather interesting. Read on as the Pearson Fuels team go over some important aspects of the formation of coal…

Peat

Coal is the product of dead vegetation that has been subjected to millions of years’ worth of pressure. At the very start of this process, the earth was covered by thick swamp lands; when trees and plants died they would sink to the bottom of the water where there was little to no oxygen and this created a moisture ridden material known as peat. As the earliest form of the coalification process, peat is the youngest rank that coal can be given.

Pressure and Heat

Following this, the material known as peat was subjected to millions of years’ worth of pressure and heat. This is because the earth’s surface continued to change and the natural development of things like seas, rivers, clay and sedimentary rock started pushing peat deeper and deeper into the earth. In addition to this, the sheer weight of rocks like sandstone placed a huge amount of pressure on peat that literally squeezed the moisture out of it. As a result, peat gradually developed into a material known as lignite, the next rank of coal, which is often brown in colour and ‘crumbly’ in texture.

300 Million Years Later

Since the coalification process is not one that can be rushed, the next 300 million years continued to place extensive amounts of pressure on lignite, removing as much moisture as possible and creating a material that is filled with an abundance of carbon: bituminous coal! This is the rank of coal that is used in a variety of modern ways like power plants, residential home fires and even steel production. In fact, the implementation of bituminous coal is what lead to the fast pace of the industrial revolution, as it allowed factories and warehouses to run for hours on end and steam engines to travel greater distances than ever imaginable. Interestingly, if bituminous coal is subjected to further pressure and heat, it creates a material known as anthracite, the highest rank for coal.

Here at Pearson Fuels, we consider ourselves the most qualified coal merchants on the market. After all, we have taken it upon ourselves to educate our readers and ensure that they understand the detailed and lengthy process that took place in order to give them the bituminous coal they are able to burn in a house fire. To find out whether we can help you with your fuel needs, get in contact with a member of the Pearson Fuels team today!

Ever since the Industrial Revolution, the use of coal has increased considerably. After all, back in the early 20th century it was a great source of power for trains, factories and even residential households. Here at Pearson fuels, we recognise that the global demand for coal continues to increase every year but with experts predicting that we only have enough reserves to last for another 150 years at the current rate of consumption, the government has been looking for alternative energy sources. Read on as we go through three reasons why coal is still a reliable energy source…

Affordability

In comparison to alternatives like oil and natural gas, coal is the most affordable energy source on the market. After all, it is available in abundance and studies show that our reserves have enough coal to last another 150 years at the current rate of consumption. The biggest competitor is hydro-generated power, which uses water and is known as a renewable energy source; however, it does not provide the convenience of coal and is said to create more problems than it solves.

Creates Jobs

The coal mining industry may not be as big as it was in the early 20th century, however, it is still a very successful and highly sought-after source of employment. After all, in order for coal to be used to generate power and energy, there must be miners who dig deep within the earth in order to find veins of coal, extract it and transport it to the required facility. From this, we can deduce that coal actually creates jobs and helps boost the economy.

Land Reclamation

Once a mine has been thoroughly investigated and there are no more traces of coal, the land can be reclaimed and repurposed for another use. This means that there is no need to have an open piece of land that acts as an eyesore to beautiful scenery. In fact, from golf courses to national parks, there are an abundance of different ways that previous coal mines can be re-purposed in order to benefit the aesthetics of a local area.

Although it is important to remember that coal is a non-renewable energy source, large industrial power plants use more coal every year in order to generate energy than a single household will use in a lifetime. After all, as one of the most reliable energy sources on the market it is safe to say that the aesthetic value of a coal fire is hard to beat! To find out more information, get in contact with the best coal merchants around and speak to a member of the Pearson Fuels team today!

Following the Great Smog of 1952, Parliament introduced The Clean Air Act in 1956 in order to combat the lack of quality air that London had as a result of burning fuels like coal and wood. In fact, research has shown that the air was so bad that you couldn’t see your hand if you put it out in front of you. Here at Pearson Fuels, we try our very best to promote safe coal usage and, in this blog, we have decided to go over everything you need to know about Smoke Control Zones…

Authorised Fuels

Living in a Smoke Control Zone means that you are limited in the fuels that you can burn as you are not allowed to emit smoke from a chimney. This is where the term ‘smokeless fuels’ comes from; homeowners are permitted to burn anthracite, semi-anthracite, gas and low volatile steam coal inside their home as they are considered the safest fuels.

Exemptions

With this said, homeowners that own exempt appliances like boilers, cookers and stoves do not have to follow these rules and are permitted to use unauthorised fuels like wood and bituminous coal in line with what the manufacturer recommends on the packaging. As always, the Pearson Fuels team advise our readers to check with their local council before buying and burning unauthorised fuels in a smoke control zone as it is important to ensure that you are following the rules. After all, the government issues £1,000 fines to homeowners who emit smoke from a chimney in a smoke control zone.

Areas in the UK

The majority of smoke control zones tend to be found within large cities like London, Manchester, Birmingham and Leeds; however, there are also many areas where parts of the local authority have been declared a ‘smoke control area’. As a result, this means that it is important for homeowners to check with their local council ahead of time in order to avoid prosecution.

With over 70 million new cars hitting the road each day, the need to promote clean air is more important than ever. After all, poor respiratory health can lead to things like pneumonia and even lung cancer. Here at Pearson Fuels, we stock and supply a wide range of smokeless coals that are perfect for homeowners who live in smoke control zones. To find out more information, get in contact with a member of the team today!

Here at Pearson Fuels, we know everything there is to know about fuel quality and how it can affect a fire. After all, our team are more than qualified to offer assistance whenever our clients need it. In fact, one of the most common error that we stumble upon is unseasoned firewood and homeowners who are burning it without understanding the importance of the seasoning process. Read on as we go over three reasons why it is vital that you season your firewood…

Removes Moisture

The main reason why firewood has to be seasoned is to remove moisture. After all, the average log has a moisture level of 50-60% but the most efficient firewood should have a moisture rating of around 20%. Luckily, this can be achieved through seasoning! After all, a high-moisture content can increase the amount of creosote, a highly flammable substance, that builds up inside your flue.

Efficient Fire-Output

Having a low moisture content in your firewood is essential in order to get the most out of your purchase. After all, seasoned firewood burns hotter and longer than unseasoned firewood and this means that your fire out-put becomes much more efficient because you don’t have to burn as much seasoned wood in order to achieve the same results.

Easier Transportation

Wood that has a high moisture level is noticeably heavier than seasoned wood, which has a low moisture content. After all, wood is a porous material and this means that it will soak up water until it cannot physically do so anymore. As a result, transporting and storing unseasoned firewood can be a difficult task because the logs are so heavy.

Seasoning firewood is a big commitment, however, the results can be incredibly fulfilling. After all, the entire process can take around 6-12 months and it is vital that you place the logs in a secure location that is above the ground and away from moisture. With this said, we supply a wide variety of kiln dried logs and imported firewood which are already seasoned so that you can cut out the middle man! To find out more information, get in contact with the best coal merchants around and speak to a member of the Pearson Fuels team today!

Here at Pearson Fuels, we recognise the growing interest in smokeless fuels. After all, making small changes in order to benefit the environment has become increasingly popular over the past few years and this means that more and more house coal users are deciding to swap out their bituminous coal for a smokeless alternative. Read on as we go through a few reasons why you should make the change too…

Eco-Friendly

Perhaps the most known benefit of smokeless fuels is the reduced damage they have on the environment in comparison to bituminous alternatives. In fact, smokeless coals contain less volatile materials and have a high carbon content of around 98% which is why they give off less smoke when they are burned. This means that they release less dangerous gases into the atmosphere, producing around 20% less carbon dioxide according to statistics.

Efficiency

Due to their high carbon content, smokeless fuels are said to be incredibly efficient to burn and result in a very impressive fire output. In fact, smokeless coal fires tend to burn at very hot temperatures in comparison to bituminous coal or firewood and are characterised by bright dancing flames that can fulfil any aesthetic desire.

Cost-Effective

Although smokeless coals tend to be more expensive than bituminous house coals, many homeowners see them as an investment for the future. After all, they burn for a lengthy amount of time which means that your supply will last much longer. In addition to this, they are an incredibly versatile fuel choice as they can be used on a wide variety of appliances including multi-fuel stoves and open fires. This means that you don’t have to invest in a brand new fireplace if you decide to change your choice of fuel.

Although smokeless coal is known for its environmental benefits, many people are unaware that it can actually benefit your fire output too. After all, their chemical composition denotes a high carbon content and this means that there will be less ash remaining when smokeless fuels are burned, generating an incredibly efficient fire output. To find out more information, get in contact with a member of the Pearson Fuels team today!

For first-time coal users, it can be overwhelming when you receive your first delivery. After all, it is important to store your fuel in a safe location where it cannot be affected by moisture. Luckily, the Pearson Fuels team are here to help! Read on as we go over a few top tips that can help you decide the best way to store your coal both indoors and outdoors…

Outside

Coal Bunker: These days a coal bunker can fit in a garden without affecting the aesthetics of your exterior. In fact, they are the easiest way to store your coal because they are designed for that specific purpose, meaning that your coal is very unlikely to be affected by moisture damage.

Dustbin: If you are looking for a more cost effective storage solution, an old dustbin is another great way you can store your coal outdoors. After all, they are large in size which means that you will have a lot of available space and they are also less conspicuous than a coal bunker which means that you won’t have to worry about people stealing your coal supply.

Inside

Bucket: If you don’t have the outdoor space or prefer the convenience of indoor storage then a coal scuttle or bucket could be the best storage solution for your requirements. After all, they are a secure alternative and whilst they don’t offer as much space as a bunker, they will certainly keep your coal protected from moisture damage.

Basement: Many homes come with a basement and these areas can be the perfect place to store your coal indoors. In fact, they are often large enough to comfortably fit a coal bunker indoors if you prefer to dispose of the bags. With this said, it is perfectly safe to store coal in a basement inside the bags, which is a cheap and convenient solution to coal storage.

Here at Pearson Fuels, we know how important it is to keep your coal dry and that is why we recommend that you invest in a coal bunker. In fact, we stock a 250kg metal coal bunker that is perfect for both indoor and outdoor use! To find out more information about our range of products, get in contact with the best coal merchants around and speak to a member of the team today!