How To Choose and Store Firewood For Your Next Fire - Walden Backyards

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June 12, 2020

Firewood Basics: How to choose the right wood for your next fire

 

When it comes to building a great fire, the type of wood that you use can make a big difference. Accessibility to various types of wood differs by region, but Walden is here to give you a quick rundown of what you should be looking for when choosing your wood, as well as proper firewood storage techniques.

 

The type of firewood that is best for you will primarily depend upon whether you are planning on having an indoor or an outdoor fire.

 

What to look for in indoor firewood: To prevent smoke from wafting throughout your home, you want to choose firewood that burns clean, with minimal ash, and has a high BTU (British Thermal Unit: the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit).

 

Best wood for indoor fires: oak, birch, maple, and hickory

 

What to look for in outdoor firewood: For outdoor fires, BTU and cleanliness is usually not as important to people as the flash and crackle that your fire emits. Easy lighting also becomes a greater priority, as the wood will likely be stored out in the elements.

 

Best wood for outdoor fires: pine, aspen, birch

 

How to store your firewood: Nothing will dampen your bonfire experience like damp wood. For this reason, proper wood storage is just as important as the type of wood that you use if you are looking to enjoy your fire with ease. Here are a few tips to help you keep your wood in prime condition for your next fire:

 

  • Don’t store your wood directly against your house – Storing under an overhang is ideal for protection against rain and snow, but make sure to leave a few inches of space between your firewood and the side of your house. This will allow the wood to breathe and season well, and will help prevent infestations of carpenter ants.
  • Stack orderly, but not too tightly – This will allow your wood to breathe and season well. If packed too tightly, your wood will retain condensation and become damp.
  • Keep the bottom of your pile off the ground – Elevate the bottom of your pile from the ground to prevent the bottom logs from absorbing condensation due to changes in ground temperature.
  • Consider a tarp or lean-to shed – If your fire pit is a significant distance from your house, you may want to consider a tarp or lean-two structure to keep your wood out of the elements.

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