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Firewood Logs Buyers and Finders Guide

Firewood Logs Buyers and Finders Guide

The author of this book is Shez Courtenay-Smith, and she has heated her own house with wood for many years, and is clearly someone who likes to ask questions and understand topics fully, which is to our benefit when we read her book! This is a really in-depth look at using wood as a fuel to heat your home.

Shez traces her connection to firewood from growing up on a smallholding with a father somewhat obsessed with self-sufficiency, and who heated everything with free wood which a local sawmill saw as waste at the time. Many of the topics covered are quite technical, which Shez obviously has a very good understanding of as she seems to find it easy to clearly tell us about them. What also shines through is that she just really likes wood, and has this strong emotional connection to it and the process and concept of heating with it something that I can very much relate to.

The book delves into important aspects of firewood like moisture content, how to measure it, why we should only burn seasoned, untreated, wood, and why it’s a bad idea to burn wet, or treated wood. 

She covers the way in which firewood is sold sometimes by volume, sometimes by weight, sometimes by the “truck load”, sometimes by dumpy bag, sometimes in a heap, sometimes stacked. The distinctions can tend to be blurry to the point of being misleading sometimes Shez clearly lays out enough information to help us avoid these pitfalls and to find the deals that are good value.

She runs us through the pros and cons of finding cheap or free sources of firewood, what we can do, and perhaps more importantly what we should avoid. I am particularly impressed that when she gets to the topic of burning pallets that she describes how to tell from the labelling on the pallet whether it might be suitable to burn. This then empowers the reader to avoid burning pallets which may either be contaminated or treated.

And she covers broader topics such as how sustainable is forestry? She drums home the importance of insulation, mentions other types of heating, and looks at various grant schemes.

This is a book which really informs you about making sure that the quality of your firewood is high, how to burn it in a more responsible way, getting the best value for money, and many broader topics besides. It’s a large format A4 book, it’s written well with personal stories and humour as well as being packed full of helpful information, and if you viewed the book as an investment then it should very quickly pay for itself and more!

The guide is available to buy on Amazon