I have a bunch of old papers that I need to get rid of and it occurred to me that I could just burn them in my fireplace one day, but I got to wondering if that was really a good idea as I’d never done so before (I’d always done this outdoors).
Well, it turns out that “it depends” on precisely what I’m burning, but I did find this article on several items I should never burn in the fireplace and wanted to share it with you, too, so you’re aware as well…
“The fireplace looks like a handy place to dispose of unwanted combustibles, but it’s safest to burn only dry, seasoned firewood. Many items you might innocently pop into the fireplace create serious hazards.
Don’t burn colored paper. The inks used in wrapping paper, newspaper inserts, and magazines contain metals that can give off toxic fumes when burned. Paper burns very quickly, so there is also a danger that flames may enter the chimney and ignite the creosote deposits in the flue. Balls of paper can ‘float’ up the chimney on the hot air that is rising through the chimney and ignite flammable materials outside the home.
Never burn painted, stained, or treated wood or manufactured wood such as plywood and particle board. Chemicals in ‘salt treated’ wood, paint, or stains can produce toxic fumes when burned. Likewise, burning manufactured wood products produces toxins and carcinogens…”