Before you light a clay chimenea for the first time you’ll need to cure it. It’s a simple process – just follow these guidelines:
Make sure you never light a fire directly on the base of the chimenea. Put around 5cm of sand or lava rock in the bottom, then add a small amount of kindling and scrunched up newspaper on top. Light it, and allow a flame to build. Once it’s burning well, add a small log and allow it to burn out. Once the chimenea has cooled, you’ll need to repeat this process at least a couple more times.
Once you’ve cured your clay chimenea, lighting it is exactly the same process as it is for a metal one or a firepit:
Step 1: Add kindling
Put lightly scrunched up newspaper on the sand inside a clay chimenea, or the log grate of a metal one or firepit. Place kindling or finely split dry firewood on top of the newspaper.
Step 2: Light the fire
Use long safety matches or a long-nosed lighter to light the newspaper and kindling.
Step 3: Add more wood to keep the fire burning
Once the fire has caught sufficiently, add another log. Just 1 or 2 are enough to keep the fire going and generate a decent amount of heat.