Buying firewood for the winter and how to store it

Pile of firewood

There’s nothing better than enjoying a warm, relaxing fire during the winter months. But if you want the experience to be the best that it can possibly be, you need to buy the right kind of wood. Burning so-called “green wood” fresh off the tree will result in a low quality fire that smokes a lot and might not even burn properly at all. 

What Type Of Firewood Should You Buy For Winter?

So what should you be doing instead? Ideally, you want to prepare for winter by buying kiln dried logs in advance. Typically, if you wanted to prepare wood for the winter, you would have to chop it in the spring and then leave it to dry out in a shelter during the summer and fall months. Kiln drying accelerates that process. Vendors squeeze the moisture out of the wood by putting it in a large oven and heating it. A kiln heats the wood’s internal temperature until it reaches 150 degrees and keeps it there for around 75 minutes. This gives time for any moisture to work its way out. It also destroys and bugs or spores that could lead to mold or mildew while the wood is in storage. 

Kiln drying offers many benefits. Firstly, it negates the need for consumers to begin the process of collecting winter firewood in the spring. Kiln drying allows you to buy wood at any time of the year and get a fuel that burns well. 

Kiln dried wood is also a cleaner version of traditional wood. Many commercial outlets that prepare food prefer using sterilized forms of wood that are low in contaminants. Wood is ready to burn immediately and doesn’t require advanced preparation. Because it is generally well-prepared, you don’t need to store it outdoors (mainly because bark isn’t peeling off). And it produces much less smoke as it burns, giving you a cleaner fire.

It’s also good if you want to move your wood around. Since its moisture content is exceptionally low, it weighs less, making an excellent choice for camping. It also lights easily with minimal kindling, unlike regular green wood. 

 

How To Store Kiln Dried Logs 

You can store kiln dried logs either inside or outside. Most people keep their logs indoors in a basket next to their fireplace. So long as your home isn’t excessively humid, the logs should remain in good condition indefinitely. 

If you’re storing kiln-dried logs outside, you’ll need to be a little more careful. Store the logs in an area with as much protection from the elements as possible. If you know, for instance, that prevailing winds typically blow rain in one direction, face your wood store in the same direction. This way, the rain hits the covered section at the back of the store, not the wood. 

Also, be sure to store logs neatly as a stack. Don’t dump them haphazardly as this can attract moisture. Allow for good circulation around your logs and if you expect bad weather, place a tarpaulin over the top of your store.