Common Fire-Building Techniques


If you own a fireplace but find yourself struggling when trying to build a fire in it, then you definitely aren’t alone. Fire-building can be a tricky and intricate process, but, once you get it down, you’ll be good to go anytime you need to light things up! Learn about a few of the more common fire-building techniques below, so that you’re ready to go this holiday season. At Mountain Man Fireplace & Chimney, we’ve got your back!

Three Common Methods

Now, there are more than a few methods out there when it comes to building a solid fire. From the log cabin to the platform to the start method, you’ve definitely got your fair share of options! Today, we’re going to focus on three popular methods that people have been standing by for years: the top-down method, the tee-pee, and the lean-to. Let’s get started.

  • The Top-Down Method: This fire-building technique has gained a lot of attention in recent years, and people everywhere have been claiming it as a surefire to get a fire going, no matter what. You start with your bigger logs on the bottom, with the ends facing the front and back of the fireplace. Next, add 4 or 5 more rows of logs, using smaller and smaller pieces as you go higher. After that, you’ll add your kindling, followed by the smallest shavings of wood you have. All that’s left to do then is the light the top, and you are good to go! No more adding wood all night long – light it and you’re done!
  • The Tee-Pee: The tee-pee method takes on a more classic approach to fire-building. You start with your tinder. Place it in the middle of your firebox, then form a tee-pee around it with some kindling. Continue to add kindling, followed by larger sticks, all while keeping the tee-pee shape. Next, form a bigger tee-pee around your structure with larger logs. Lastly, light the tinder and let the flames take everything over. Eventually, the logs will fall, and you can continue adding wood to fuel your fire.
  • The Lean-To: Find a long stick, then insert it into the ground at an approximately 30-degree angle. Put a tinder pile under this stick, then surround it will small pieces of kindling. Next, prop up some kindling against the main stick, then add another layer on top of this, using larger pieces as you go. Light your tinder pile, then continue adding logs as your fire burns.

Using The Right Wood

Always remember – using unseasoned wood will result in creosote accumulation, smoky fireplaces, and less heat. You’ll need to invest in extra maintenance, and you simply won’t get the results you’re looking for. Seasoned wood will be dark and split at the ends, shorter in length, lightweight, and it will sound hollow when two pieces are hit together.

Let Us Help You Out This Holiday Season

Holiday festivities are upon us, so you’ll want to make sure you’re ready for anything! Call us in for an inspection today. Our CSIA certified staff will set you up right!