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How much water have you paid for when you buy your wood?

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How much water have you paid for when you buy your wood?
by Susi Nightingale
28 March 2018

Log Moisture Content

It is always a good idea to buy wood paying in volume rather than by weight as you do not want to find that in fact you have paid for huge water content in the wood and as it dries out the weight goes down!

A moisture meter will be a useful item both for checking wood you are buying in and also for measuring how the wood you have cut down yourself is drying out.

Even though wood dries much quicker in the summer, when the weather tends to be drier and hotter. It is better to cut the wood down in the wintertime before the sap rises as the wood will have a lower water content in winter and therefore be much quicker to dry.

It is best to split your wood when you have first cut it down as it will be much easier and you also give your wood a bigger surface - so you are speeding up the drying process.

There are a lot of good reasons for burning dry wood; it will give you much more heat and it is logical and easy to understand that drying out the wood inside the firebox will take away from the heat produced for the room.

Dry wood will also produce much less smoke and emissions and is therefore much better for the environment.

Wood is a great link to the natural world and the whole process of handling the wood - splitting and stacking it is comforting and relaxing - the visual effect of a nicely stacked log pile in and outside can be treasured and admired. What other energy source can be satisfying in so many ways?

It is often good to have a basket with your kindling and a box for your firewood in the living room ready for the week ahead plus several log piles if you have room for this in different stages of drying; one ready to use another waiting for you to check if it is ready - to be a year ahead with firewood is always a good aim.

Homeowners lucky enough to have a small or large woodland will be able to maintain their woodland by clearing older and unwanted trees and replant new trees to replace them. You will often find that in bigger woodlands the re seeding happens automatically and will just need some adjustment.

A wave of wanting to supply your own heating has gone hand in hand with a trend for growing your own food, gathering wild food and exploring home cooking from raw materials.

During the recent snowfall many people in the UK found themselves with no electricity and water at this point a radiant wood stove in the heart of the home with a flat top where you can warm a simple dish reminds us of what once was and still is.

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