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Had a small fire incident outside on our wood deck. There didn't appear to be any structural damage to any of the supporting material, just a few surface boards which need to be replaced.

Can the charred material be left alone, or does it have a chance of igniting from heat form the sun due to the black color?

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

Wood ignites at 575 degrees Fahrenheit. Simple sunlight alone will not provide enough energy to cause wood sitting in the open air to ignite. (Otherwise, buildings which had burned and been put out but not torn down yet would be forever bursting back into flame...)

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The problem with charred material is that is can be very hard to tell if the fire has been put out, or if it is still burning inside.

I don't think the heat of the sun is an issue...

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Very true - but if it's only surface damage and it has been out for a while, then it sounds more like a scorch than a real burn. And it still isn't gonna burst into flames cause of sunlight. :) –  The Evil Greebo Sep 12 '11 at 12:55
    
Yes, I was very lucky that my guest was just addicted enough to cigarettes to go out and catch his fire before it started really burning in earnest ;) –  mootinator Sep 12 '11 at 14:34
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