It is never too early to start planning ahead for your firewood supply. In fact, you really should already be thinking about firewood for next winter because of the seasoning process. Ashbusters recommends only burning seasoned firewood because of the clean-burning and long-lasting fires this wood produces. What exactly is seasoned firewood? It is wood that has been allowed to dry for at least six months after it has been cut. You also need to properly store this wood so that it will not get wet before you can use it. Whether or not you cut your own wood, you can still season your wood to be sure that it is dry before you need to use it next fall and winter. We would like to share with you some tips on how to season and store your firewood for the best results.
Be sure your wood is cut to length and split to the right size.
You will want each piece of firewood to be at least three inches shorter than the length or width of your firebox, according to The Wood Heat Organization. You will also want to be sure each piece is consistent in length. In order for your firewood to dry sufficiently, have each piece split so that its largest cross sectional dimension is around six inches.
Stack the wood in a single row, and allow your stacks to be exposed to the sun and wind.
The sun and wind can be very helpful during the seasoning process. The Wood Heat Organization recommends that you stack the wood in a single row about four feet high. Choose a spot that is sunny, and you can let the heat of the sun evaporate the water inside the wood to be carried away by the wind. You can alternate directions of the wood when you are stacking to help the air circulate better.
Allow the wood to dry for at least six months.
This is why you must plan ahead for your firewood supply. If you typically start using your fireplace in the fall, you will need to start stacking wood in the spring so that it will be seasoned properly. If you live in a damp area or use dense wood such as oak, you will need to let your wood dry even longer to be sure it is dried sufficiently.
Cover the wood stacks with a tarp on rainy days.
To keep water from rain out of your firewood, you can place a tarp over the stacks. Be sure that the sides are not covered by the tarp because you need air to be able to circulate properly.
Following these steps is a great way to be sure your firewood is seasoned. Contact us at Ashbusters if you have any questions about storing and seasoning firewood.