With winter well behind us and warmer days making a regular appearance, many have cleared out their fireplace ash, ensuring their firebox stays cleaner and free from corrosion throughout the months of disuse ahead. Since leftover ash can draw in moisture and trigger decay throughout your masonry and metal components, getting it all out is a must!
But what do you do with all that leftover ash? If you don’t want to toss it, keep these ideas in mind.
First things first, ensure your ash is completely cooled and free from embers before doing anything with it. When scooping out your firebox at the end of a season, you should always use a metal shovel to remove the ash, then place it in a metal container with a raised bottom and a tight-sealing lid. Once you’ve filled the bucket, place it on a non-flammable surface such as brick or concrete for a few days. This will give any embers or sparks sufficient time to burn out, guaranteeing you stay as safe as possible throughout the removal process. After that, you are free to use the ash for a wide range of purposes!
Put It In Your Garden
A popular use for fireplace ash is to enrich your soil. Depending on what you are growing and your garden’s acidity levels, your flowers and vegetables can benefit a lot from a bit of ash mixed in with their dirt. There are a lot of good nutrients in ash that help certain plants grow, and it can raise the pH levels in your garden, as well.
Be sure to do your research though because some plants won’t benefit from the extra ash and some, like potatoes, may even suffer from it. If what you are growing is a calcium-craver, like tomatoes, mixing in ash will do a lot of good. If they are ones that prefer more acidity, like blueberries or azaleas, steer clear.
Ash is also good for deterring snails and slugs, both of which can bring harm to your garden, so sprinkle some around the edges of your dirt bed to keep these pests away.
While putting ash in your garden is one of the more popular uses for it, there are lots of other things it can help with, as well. Try using it to get stubborn skunk smells out of your pet’s fur by simply rubbing it into their coat, or you could mix it with water to create a paste that is good for cleaning your fireplace doors and for shining silver.
It is also known for being a key ingredient in homemade soaps, and it can help clear pond algae, enrich your compost pile, and remove paint or oil stains in your driveway, as well.
All in all, ash can serve a big purpose when you use it right! Make the most of yours today. Need fireplace care this spring and summer? Count on our team to set you up right, so you are ready to go when fall comes back around. Call Wells & Sons today to set up your appointment.