How To Store Firewood
Once you’ve worked through your woodpile and split your logs into useful-sized blocks of wood; you’ll be looking for a good way to store them. Storing your logs appropriately means that they are well protected from the elements, thoroughly dried-out to minimize smoke when you eventually burn them and away from things that can cause them to rot.
Well-seasoned wood will not smell or rot as it has no moisture content, which means that you can easily store it in your home so that you have it to hand when you want to start a fire. But that doesn’t mean that you have to store them inside your home. We are going to discuss a few different ways you can store your firewood to give you the best fires.
If you are looking for a place to store your logs outside, there are a few things to keep in mind.
- Convenience – you don’t want to have to go too far each time you collect your logs for burning. You’ll want somewhere relatively close to your house because logs can be heavy, and you don’t want to be carrying your nicely-seasoned far if the weather is wet!
- Damp – storing you logs where they stay or become damp means they will begin to smell, rot and will make poor firewood. You will want to separate them from sitting directly on the ground and especially away from soil as this bring bacteria as well as moisture.
- Flat surface – you don’t want your log pile toppling over. A surface such as concrete, dry gravel or tarmac is suitable, but you can use a tarp with sticks to raise the log pile for aeration. You can also elevate your logs on a board which you can buy from most hardware shops.
- Away from walls – stacking your log pile against walls puts them at greater risk of being affected by moisture and bacteria. If you do need to stack it near a wall, then leave a gap of a few inches between the log pile and the wall to allow plenty of airflow.
- Local rules – some towns and cities have strict regulations on how you may store firewood. It is best to check with your local council or planning office before choosing where you are going to store your log pile so that you know that you are storing them legally.
Once you have chosen your location and method of raising your logs from the ground, you can begin to stack them. You can use different methods to stack them – either all parallel to each other or alternating the direction for each layer so that you maximize the air flow between levels.
Storing You Logs Inside
Storing your logs inside doesn’t necessarily mean that you keep them in your home. A storage shed or a corner of your garage are both great places to store firewood are a great protection from wet weather. They also reduce the risk of your logs being affected by contact with soil. This, of course, is not the case if your shed is in an inappropriate place in your yard and is prone to moisture build up.
If you only have a small pile of logs, you can get brackets and racks that can fit to the walls of your shed or garage to store your logs off the ground. This may limit the number of logs you can store more though than simply stacking them.
Even though your logs are inside, you will still need to stack them appropriately so that they get enough airflow in between layers of logs. Even inside the logs can begin to rot if they don’t have enough aeration to prevent moisture build-up.
Storing Firewood In Your Home
The chances are that when you are bringing the logs into you your home to store, they won’t be sitting around long before they are used. You will likely be bringing mainly well-seasoned, dry logs that are ready for burning. You, therefore, have a bit more flexibility in how you store them.
Dry logs can be stored in trunks or boxes in your home. If they are well dried-out and seasoned, then they won’t smell so that they can be stored in your living room or whichever room you plan to use them in. You can also incorporate them into furniture which is already in the room.
You can incorporate a log pile into storage in some coffee tables or make an attractive-looking log store in shelving near a fireplace – making the log pile a feature of the room. You can get many different designs of shelves, cradles and brackets to suit all tastes and room decorations. Alternatively, if you only have a couple to store, you can simply store some in a basket near your fireplace.
How Do I Know When My Logs Are Ready To Burn?
Wood can dramatically change when it is seasoned and ready to burn. When you first cut the fresh logs, they will be heavy, with vibrant color and a stronger-smelling scent.
As wood dries out and releases the trapped moisture, they become lighter and will sound more hollow when hit together. The loss of moisture will also cause more cracks to appear as the wood, although fresh logs can also have plenty of cracks, so don’t just use this method to decide! Seasoned logs lose their vibrant color over time, eventually appearing as a paler, grey color. They will also lose that sappy smell that they have when logs are first cut.
It can take at least 6 months to season your firewood sufficiently, which seems like a long time. However, if you are well prepared, this wait is well-worth it, and you will be sure to enjoy the results of the effort you put into it!
If you are looking for cost and time-effective way to split your logs so they are ready for seasoning and storing, take a look at our reviews of what we consider to be some of the best log splitters available.