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Are you looking to get more out of your fireplace in 2019? One way to do just that is by learning how to select and season your firewood. By burning only seasoned wood in your fireplace, you guarantee a cleaner and more efficient burn. Along with this, the creosote levels in your chimney will grow at a much slower pace, and you won’t encounter as much smoke, either.

All in all, using properly seasoned wood in your appliance make a big difference in the overall health of your chimney. It’s well worth taking the time to find the best firewood to burn! The Chimney Doctor is here to ensure you get the most from your fireplace by offering some tips for selecting the best firewood!

Seasoned vs. Unseasoned Wood

pile of firewoodFresh wood contains too much moisture, and it’s not good for your fireplace. When selecting wood for your fireplace, you’ll want pieces that contain as little water as possible. You should look for logs that are darker in color, as this indicates they have been sitting out to dry for sufficient amount of time. Unseasoned wood also has a fresher smell, so you’ll want pieces with a mustier odor. You can knock two pieces of wood together. If they make a dull thud-like noise, then they contain too much water to burn well. On the other hand, if they make a hollow-sounding clunk, they are good firewood.

You should look for logs that are shorter in length and split at the ends, as water exit these pieces quicker, since it doesn’t have as far to travel. When you stick to these tips, you should find best fuel to burn in your fireplace. That being said, purchasing wood is always a gamble, which is why many season their own firewood.

How To Season Firewood

If you’re interested in storing your own fuel, then keep these tips in mind. First, split the wood, so that it is able to dry out faster. It’s also a good idea to store smaller pieces that can be used for kindling later. Store your wood pile off the ground, and be sure to provide a sturdy roof over the pile, so that rain, snow, and bad weather won’t affect the process. Keep the sides open so air can circulate.

Most wood are ready for use after six months of sitting to dry, but some hardwoods take up to 12 months before they are properly dried out. Follow these guidelines, and you’ll be guaranteed better fires all season long!

What To Avoid

Obviously, seasoned wood is better than unseasoned wood, but what are the rules about burning trash and debris? The answer is simple: Don’t do it. Burning trash, plastic, cardboard, magazines, or anything that isn’t seasoned wood release harmful toxins that will wind up causing damage to your fireplace and chimney. These problems lead to costly repairs, and this put your home and family at risk. It’s not worth it! To learn more about best burning practices, check out EPA’s burnwise program!