Save On Your Heating Bill: Chop Wood Chapter 15
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Save On Your Heating Bill: Chop Wood Chapter 15

The way you stack wood is important in the wood drying process.

By the teachings of Karl Marx, the consumer is always at the mercy of the means of production. This concept is especially apparent with utilities, where users usually only have one or two choices of supply. Astute observers will notice that electricity and natural gas costs rise in the winter when their usage increases for the purpose of providing heat (basic supply and demand). Although, conceptually, the individual will always be at the mercy of the market, using your fireplace can drastically reduce your utility bill during the winter.

Stacking practices are important to successfully providing yourself a good stock of wood. If you can keep your wood organized, then you will have a good, reliable fuel source. If you have a stack exposed to open air, it will cure more quickly. You should organize your wood by how recently it was cut and when you plan on burning it.

My stacking situation is less than ideal. I live in a residential neighborhood with a small yard, and I keep most of my wood in my shed. This shed is relatively sealed against the elements, and it regularly drips from the humidity of the evaporating wood inside of it. This means that moisture cannot escape the wood at the rate which it would like. Also important is that the double layer stack is against the wall, so the stack against the wall has very little exposure to air. Both of these problems increase curing time significantly. In fact, I have seen it so humid that it can mold occasionally!

To alleviate this problem, consider storing freshly cut wood in your yard. At this stage, moisture is not going to hurt it. If you do not pack the wood too tightly in your stack, there will be plenty of air flow, and the wood will continue to dry even as it is rained on. The rotting process can take a long time depending on the type of wood, so you don’t need to worry about keeping your wood dry until closer toward burning time (especially if you don’t live in a rain forest).

Always remember to keep your pieces relatively small. The greater surface area of exposed log is excellent for removing moisture quickly, and it also allows heat to penetrate better. Both make for easier burning. For large logs, eighth sections are probably appropriate. Quarter sections are probably fine for smaller logs.


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Comments (2)

good tips thanks

Great tips. Voted!