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mm mm is offline
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Default How to start a draft in a fireplace

Someone told me a good way to start a draft in a fireplace it to take
one sheet of a newspaper, wad it and roll it at the same time so it
will burn well and is tall with a "handle" at the base, light the top,
and hold it up inside the fireplace, close to the chimney.

When I do this, everything is fine. Then I light the paper below the
kindling which is below the logs, and even the first bit of smoke goes
up the chimney.

When I skip this part, lighting a sheet of newspaper near the chimney,
there is no current up the chimney and after I light the fire, the
smoke goes out into the room and eventually up the stairs to the first
floor. Even then, if there is not too much flame, I can do the
newspaper in the chimney thing and start the air flow up the chimney,
and it sucks the smoke out of the basement room, into the fire and up
the chimney.

But someone told me the newspaper thing is not a good idea. True? and
if true, why not?

It seems to work well.

In my case, I have a steel fireplace with galvanized chimney, and an
iron log rack.