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Buying Firewood

Owners of wood burning fireplaces have a number of options when it comes to obtaining wood for their fireplaces. While some choose to chop, season, and store their own firewood, most homeowners rely on buying their wood from stores or other sellers.

When buying firewood, there are a number of things that homeowners should be aware of. Educating yourself on firewood ensures that you can tell the difference between high and low quality products, know where to find the best firewood, and aren’t paying too much for a subpar product.

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The following five tips are designed to help you make informed decisions when buying firewood.

Tip #1: Buy from reputable sellers

There are a number of places to find firewood. It can be sold in grocery and hardware stores, fireplace shops, tree trimming services, and through local ads in newspapers, signs, or on websites such as Craigslist. Before purchasing firewood, make sure to ask as many questions about the wood as possible. This may include asking what kind of wood it is, when it was cut, and how long it has been seasoned for. If the seller is unable to answer these questions, it may be best to find another source.

Tip #2: Decide how much to buy

Large quantities of firewood – more than just a few individual logs – are typically sold by the cord. A cord of wood is a stack of wood that is four feet high, four feet wide, and eight feet long (128 cubic feet in total). Firewood dealers may sell wood by the half, quarter, or third cord for buyers who want smaller quantities. A full cord of wood will typically fill the entire bed of a pickup truck; a sloping pile of wood thrown into the back of a truck may not be a full cord.

Tip #3: Buy dry wood

Firewood should be dried, or seasoned, for at least six months prior to use to lower the moisture content. Dry wood will have bark that peels easily, feels lighter, and has darkened ends with clearly visible splits. Likewise, when banged together the wood will make a distinct hollow sound.

Tip #4: Store your wood correctly

Even the best firewood can go to waste if it isn’t stored correctly. For long term storage, wood should be stacked off the ground in an area where it can continue to be dried by the wind and sun. Avoid stacking firewood directly against fencing or siding to protect your home from any insects in the wood or from accidental fire. Likewise, consider cover the top of your wood pile during periods of heavy rain or snow to prevent the wood from rotting.

Tip #5: Save money on firewood

If you have access to a pickup truck, you may be able to save money on delivery charges. Likewise, many companies charge extra for stacking after delivery, which you may be able to do yourself to lower the cost. Finally, purchasing the wood as rounds is often significantly less expensive; splitting it yourself is a great way to exercise and save money on your winter fuel source.

If you have questions about buying firewood or how the right firewood may be affecting your fireplace’s performance, contact the experts at Guaranteed Chimney Services today!

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