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What is a Stove Register Plate?

In today’s home heating guide, we explain all about stove register plates and why they’re important.

Old Wood Burning Stove

If you’re considering buying a wood burner or if you’ve just had one installed, you may be looking for more information about the stove register plate and what it actually is. 

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at everything you need to know about a wood burner register plate including how to fit one so that you can be well informed.

So, read on to discover more about what a register plate has to do, and why your wood burner needs one so that you can have all the information you could possibly need.

What is a Register Plate for a Wood Burner?

A register plate for a wood burner is a sheet of metal which is fitted at the chimney’s base if you install a stove in an existing fireplace.

Sometimes known as a stove register plate, flue plate or a chimney register plate, this metal sheet is designed to seal the chimney’s throat not only to make it look more aesthetically appealing but also to make sure that all of the airflow in the chimney goes through the stove.

Typically, register plates are installed when a wood burner is fitted into a fireplace that is already in your home.

Although register plates are sometimes called a chimney closure plate they are not exactly the same and serve different purposes.

wood stove in a fireplace

 

If your chimney is being lined with a flue, you only require a chimney closure plate which will help to seal off the chimney’s base to make it look more attractive.

Closure plates are more commonly seen than wood burner register plates since many stove installations come with a flue liner as it helps with the draw on the wood-burning stove.

On the other hand, if the byproducts produced as a result of using your wood burner are going to be exhausted directly into your chimney rather than into the flue inside it, a register plate is necessary.

Related: Learn how to easily start a wood stove fire.

This must also be sealed to stop smoke and waste gases from entering the room after they have gone through the plate.

Although closure plates that are used whenever a stovepipe is directly connected to the flue in the chimney should also be sealed, they don’t need to be sealed to quite the same extent as a register plate.

This is because should a closure plate fail, waste gases and smoke from the fire still won’t be able to enter the home as they remain sealed inside the flue.

It’s also possible to find register plates that have hatches so that the chimney can be swept through them.

wood burning stove

Recommended: What’s a wood stove damper and why is it important?

What Does a Register Plate Need to Do?

It’s important to have a closure plate or register plate installed for several reasons. These include:

  • Helping to prevent any debris that could fall onto the wood-burning stove or into the fireplace.
  • Guiding the stovepipe into the chimney either before it is connected with the flue or before it is let out into the chimney.
  • Providing a neat and tidy look for the chimney’s base once the wood-burning stove has been installed.
  • Helping to maximize the draw on the wood burner by supplying a small channel that waste air can pass through.
  • If the stovepipe directly vents into the chimney without any flue liner being present, it ensures that no potentially hazardous waste gases produced by the fire can escape and get back into the home.

For these reasons, register plates have to be made from a material that is both non-combustible and robust and, therefore, they are usually made either from galvanized or stainless steel.

Both closure and register plates must be manufactured from metal as this will help to prevent any damage occurring to the fireplace or stove should a large, heavy item like a brick should fall from inside the chimney.

The register plate has to be the correct size to fit the opening which is at the chimney’s base. Usually, register plates are sold in specific sizes and therefore, you’ll need to choose one which is suitable to fit your chimney’s internal size.

Also, your register plate must have an opening that is the correct size for the stovepipe. Although some can be cut to the correct size, others come with adapters and prebuilt holes that suit standard stovepipe diameters.

Recommended: Learn how to use a wood-burning stove safely.

How to Fit a Register Plate

Although fitting a register plate to a wood burner doesn’t necessarily require assistance from a professional, it’s advisable to hire an expert to get the job done since all works must be compliant with building regulations.

Nevertheless, if you want to know how to fit a register plate yourself, here are some simple instructions to point you in the right direction.

Wood burning fireplace with glass door

It’s important to choose a material for your register plate that will be non-flammable. Fireproof board can sometimes be used to make a register plate since it is simple to cut to size, light and simple to position, but pre-cut metal register plates are the best option.

​Recommended: We explain how to use a stove as efficiently as possible next.

The first step is to fit a frame that will hold your register plate in position. Once this is done, the stovepipe must be fitted onto the top of the stove.

Measure the distance between the stove’s top (inside the flue outlet) and a point a minimum of 1 centimeter above the frame’s top. This will allow you to cut the stovepipe and flue liner to the correct length.

You then use an adapter to fix the bottom of your flexible flue to the flue pipe’s top. Fit the flexible flue liner in the adapter and check it’s centrally located before tightening up the adapter so the liner is held firmly in position and the adapter is secured to the flue liner.

Now, you can fit your register plate into the frame. You can use the stovepipe offcut as your template and cut out the circle with a jigsaw.

It is then time for sealing the flue to the register plate. Fire cement can be used for this and gaps and joints can be sealed with fire mastic.

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