Cleaning Tip: how to clean the glass door of your fireplace

We’re only just over a week into “official” winter but round these parts “winter” and the need to have the fire on at some stage during the day usually lasts from about April to November. Yep. That many  months. And while the first few fires of the season are a joyous ritual by September or October I am so over the ash EVERYWHERE the chopping, collecting, stacking and sweeping that the novelty has well and truly worn off.

That said, there truly is nothing I love more than the sound of the first crackles, the smell of the wood in the freezing cold air and of course the warmth that comes from our fire. It’s the hardest working member of the family for many months so I have to make sure it gets looked after.

One question I get asked often is about cleaning the glass on the fire door. I am pretty anal about making sure it stays clean so I CAN see all there is to love about a fire so I thought I would share with you guys a tip I learnt that really is the best!

This morning the fire actually went out for the first time in a few weeks. I needed to empty out all the coals and ash (I should probably do this more often but when it’s going continually it’s hard to be bothered) so I gave the whole box a good clean out. There was quite a bit of build up on the glass: soot and built up dark discolouration from some wood being too close to the glass and different hard burning woods that leave that there.

My tip? Use the ash from the fire place.

Huh? The ash! It’s the best thing I have found to really clean it off. Here’s how I do it:

1. Take some paper towel and dip it into water squeeze off excess water

2. Dip the wet towel into the ash

3. Using a circular motion clean off the tough grime with the ashy paper towel

4. Wipe clean

I also usually finish off with a whit of windex to get it sparkling but if you didn’t want to use any chemicals just leave this out. I have also seen people use pieces of wood instead of paper towel, use the same method of dipping in water and then ash and the same circular motion.

You wouldn’t think it works…but it does. You will be impressed seriously! And then you can sit back and admire the fire, until it’s time to clean it up and set it all over again. Winter can be a long season when you count on a fire for heating your home!

Have you tried this method?
Got any other fire place hacks or tips to share with us?
Don’t say install a gas one!


  1. Very many years of cleaning fire glass, very many indeed. Scrunched up newspaper. Scrub with it in circular motion. Newspaper dampened in a bucket of water with a dash of methylated spitirs is better than any commercial cleaner to clean windows,

    Fro years of using a slow combustion heater, here is a tip. Most heater instructions sayto have a coupleof inches of ash on base of heater to protect the metal. Let fire die down overnight or when convenient. Using a small metal shovel with long handle such as come in fire sets of poker, shovel etc, scoop out ash into a METAL bucket. Then use the poker with hook to bring down ash from back of heater to make the requisite couple of inches of ash needed. Carefully take bucket outside away from children and pets. Good for many plants, especially sweet peas but it must be cold. Or fill ash bucket with water to chill it.

    Do not do what I did once when I added it to compost heap. Good idea, but it was still hot and I set back paling fence on fire. Put it out with a hose, but it was a warning

  2. My sister in law taught me this trick last winter. Who would of guessed?!! I’ve also invested in a Dyson stick vacume so I can zip up pesky ash in seconds. Muuuch better!!

  3. Yep we use newspaper and coal too ?

  4. Great tips! We are in a home with a wood burner for the first time in our adult lives since we moved to the UK. I haven’t had to light it since we moved in, but I will definitely be using your method come autumn. Probably more for atmosphere seeing as we have radiators and underfloor heating throughout the cottage. Hallelujah!
    That line about winter being long when you’re dependant on a fire is soooo bloody true. When I was growing up in the Snowy Mountains it felt like it was nearly always needed, and with only a fire (that burnt out over night) to warm the whole house, getting ready for school in the mornings was not fun!!!

  5. Once clean use “Silvo” silver cleaner on the glass. Wipe on, let dry then buff off. Magically stops build up that seems to come straight back and keeps clean for ages!

  6. I’m the same, I can’t bear it when I can’t see through the glass door! This is an interesting idea, I’ll be trying this tonight!

  7. Love the tips! I find it easy to keep a clean house when you do the little things so that your not cleaning for hours on the weekend when you should be enjoy some life. Love

  8. to the point excellent tips to clean the glass door.

  9. Thanks for this tip it worked on the glass so well no chemicals all natural great job thank you so much! Get ready winter.

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