1 May 2012

A Guide to Storing Firewood

Posted by bcsands

When the days get shorter and the temperature cools down you know it’s the time of year that we begin to look at our heating needs. And if you have a wood heater or fireplace of any type it means that you will be ordering firewood.

Did you know that there are good and bad ways of storing firewood? Of course we deliver firewood to you in bulk bags, and that’s a very suitable storage method because it largely keeps the elements out, but if you have a small or narrow storage area then bulk bags can get in the way.

 

Storing Firewood in Small or Cramped Conditions

If our firewood bags restrict the access way, or if you get your firewood delivered loose on the road verge, then you need to read on.

Firewood is almost always delivered in logs of even length, but the widths vary widely from large logs, too big to burn without being split, to small pieces used as kindling. It may be tempting to store all the big logs on the bottom of the pile, but this means that you may not have the right mix of kindling and bigger pieces, so try to stack them in varying thickness throughout.

Storing firewood by placing it in a crisscross (#) pattern it will keep drier and let the air pass through, but if you plan to cover the load, then stacking it neatly in rows that get shorter (like the sides of a pyramid) is also acceptable and may take up less space.

 

The Secrets of Stacking Hassle Free Firewood:

Do it right the first time and take the time to stack your firewood for ease of access, ease of use over time, the best conditions for the wood and mess-free.

  • Don’t stack firewood higher than your waist. Make a new row rather than a higher pile. This will reduce the strain of lifting, damage in high wind and slippage.
  • Don’t stack too close to a fence or the house. You don’t want to encourage white ants – or worse, firewood may dent or rot the wall or fence.
  • Don’t stack directly on the ground. Use 2 lines of pavers or any other non-wood base to lift the firewood at least 10cm off the ground to restrict white-ant access.
  • Don’t apply insecticides. You (and your neighbours) are going to be breathing in smoke from your fire so don’t poison it with chemicals.
  • Check for insects before bringing your firewood indoors.
  • Unless your firewood is freshly cut, cover the top (but not the bottom) to prevent heavy rain from wetting the surface. (Rain will not soak into properly seasoned wood, but surface damp may make your fire more difficult to light.)

 

As well as the usual Australian insect hazards – spiders! – be careful of European wasps. Firewood stacks make ideal nesting places and while wasp nests can start small, they, and their population can grow very rapidly. If you stack your firewood outside of the containers we bring it in, please inspect it regularly for wasps, particularly if you do not disturb the pile for some time. If you do have a wasp nest in your wood pile, please contact the professionals to have it removed – wasp stings are very painful and if you have an allergy, or enough wasps sting you, the stings can be very dangerous.

There is nothing like a real fire to warm more than just the room and occupants, it creates a place to gather and talk or to simply gaze at in the relaxing warmth.

Enjoy your winter.

 

 



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