Investigating Solid Fuel-Burning Appliance Fires

An in-lab program exploring heating with solid fuels and the fires that can result.

Upcoming Dates

    No upcoming dates for this seminar.

Tuition is $595 per person.

Register early! This class is limited to the first 45 students.

Held on site at the Fire Findings laboratory testing facility - 2026 Plaza Drive, Benton Harbor, Michigan.

40 minutes from South Bend (Ind.) or Kalamazoo (Mich.) airports and 2 hours from Chicago airports.

St. Joseph/Benton Harbor is located along the southern shores of Lake Michigan - a gorgeous area to visit.

People accustomed to the minimal maintenance of gas or electric heat have forgotten (or have never known) that solid fuel heating requires maintenance and correctly installed appliances. If not, fires are likely and investigators will be called upon to make sense of the remains. To assist investigators, enter this popular Fire Findings’ in-lab class.

Course Background

The home building boom of the past few decades brought about the installation of fireplaces in thousands and thousands of homes across North America. Now, homeowners pinching every penny are pressing those appliances into service as auxiliary heat in their homes. Others are turning to pellet or wood-burning stoves to supplement central heat or replace it altogether. It’s no surprise to experts in the field that a lot of fires involving the installation and/or use of these devices has resulted. 

As a participant in “Investigating Solid Fuel-Burning Appliance Fires,” you’ll see how these appliances are intended to be used and installed. We’ve installed full-size chimneys in our lab that allow us to connect to a fireplace, pellet stove and wood-burning stove to operate them in our lab classroom. You'll get to check out the displays close up and see if you can find the numerous potentially fire-causing installation issues. You’ll also learn how manufactured chimney systems, both active and passive, function.

Optional CFI test credits and CEU credits available.

Gain useful information about these topics at the
‘Investigating Solid Fuel-Burning Appliance Fires’ seminar:

In addition, you’ll:

About Your Instructors

Jack L. Sanderson, Fire Findings’ founder and Certified Fire Investigator (CFI), is a nationally known speaker on a wide variety of fire investigation topics. He investigated his first solid fuel-burning appliance fire more than 30 years ago and, in recent years, has conducted considerable laboratory testing of solid fuel-burning appliances. He’s also a former building inspector and a “burner of wood for heat.”

Nathan P. Dwyer, PE, CFI, has a unique perspective on solid-fuel appliance investigations. Since fireplaces can have nearby or include electrical supplies, he is often called on to rule in (or out) a nearby electrical service.


More Information

While you're visiting along the Lake Michigan shoreline...
The Southwestern Michigan Tourist Council has a visitor information packet just for Fire Findings’ seminar participants. To get yours,
call (269) 925-6301.

We recommend Comfort Suites, of Stevensville, Michigan, for your hotel accommodations.
Comfort Suites is about 10 minutes from the lab and your stay includes a free hot breakfast, wireless internet, microwave ovens and refrigerators in every room, fitness center and indoor pool.

For $84 per night, choose from queen or king suites (excludes tax).

To reserve this special rate online, we'll email you a link with your seminar registration confirmation, or call Comfort Suites directly at (269) 428-4888. Mention you're with Fire Findings.

Comfort Suites is located at 2633 W. Marquette Woods Road, Stevensville, Michigan.

Hotel reservations are on a first-come, first-served basis at this special rate. Don't wait too long to make your reservation after you've been confirmed for the seminar session of your choice.

IMPORTANT: Check conference availability before making your hotel, automobile or flight reservations. Please call us at 269-925-2200 during regular business hours to confirm seminar openings.

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