Best Trees for Firewood – Detailed Manual

Best Trees for Firewood

If a wood-burning stove is used as the main or backup heat source in the house, and besides it there is a sauna, a barbecue or a smokehouse on the farm, the owners have to prepare fuel every year. And you need to do this wisely, choosing which firewood is better for the stove, and which ones to stock up for the fireplace or frying meat on the fire. In this case, everything is important: the type of wood, the humidity, and even the ” age ” of the firewood. How to choose the best trees for firewood, read the article.

For a home oven, it is necessary to burn for a long time and intensively, with minimal ash formation and high heat transfer, allowing you to put fuel as little as possible and clean the furnace.

What kind of best trees for firewood is better to heat the bath, it is also clear-quickly flaring up and giving a lot of heat?

The general requirement for all trees for firewood is good combustibility and high heat transfer. These qualities largely depend not only on the type of wood, but also on humidity. Even the most “correct” tree will burn poorly, emitting a lot of smoke and leaving unburned coals if it is not dried.

Firewood from recently cut trees has the highest humidity, especially if their harvesting was carried out during the active movement of juices – in spring or summer. The drying rate is also different for different breeds: some require several months, others up to two years, provided that they are properly stored.

Advice! It is easy to determine the degree of humidity of trees for firewood: dry logs make a ringing sound when they hit each other.

Another important selection criterion concerns the ability of firewood to emit resinous substances and soot during combustion, which clog the chimney. Alder and aspen firewood have the lowest degree of soot formation, and coniferous wood is in last place in this parameter.

For a bath with a straight chimney, this is not very critical – the channel is easily cleaned without bends. But for a home brick oven with a cranked chimney, its overgrowth with soot and soot is fraught with loss of traction and related problems.

Selection of Firewood According to the Characteristics of the Breed

best trees for firewood

Firewood belongs to the category of goods that are not transported from afar, but are content with those that are harvested in the nearest areas. Otherwise, transportation costs more than the fuel itself. But if you have a choice, you should think about which trees for firewood is better, analyze the prices and buy high-quality fuel.

If possible, preference is given to hard hardwoods with a dense wood structure that burn for a long time and hot. Coniferous trees for firewood is also used, but, taking into account their resinous nature and the formation of soot, they try not to do it all the time.

We offer you to learn more about different types of trees for firewood and their effectiveness for heating.

Oak Trees

By all parameters, oak trees firewood is considered the good firewood for stove heating, but also the most expensive. Solid and dense oak wood: it burns for a

  • very long time;
  • gives off more heat than all other breeds;
  • due to slow and prolonged, it is economically consumed;
  • it emits a pleasant aroma of the forest and secretes useful vapors.

These qualities are most inherent in good firewood from middle-aged trees. The table of calorific value of the main species puts oak in the first place.

Beech, Ash, Maple

Wood with similar properties to oak trees has ash, maple, yew, beech, hornbeam and other hard-leaved trees. They are also difficult to ignite, but they burn for a long time and with the release of a large amount of heat.

But good firewood from maple, beech and hornbeam is almost not found on sale, since these breeds are valuable and are not cheap, it is too wasteful to use them for heating the house. Firewood from yew, acacia and ash trees is more affordable at the price and the possibility of purchase, however, it is better to spend them sparingly – in severe frosts or for gatherings by the fireplace.

From Fruit Species

Many fruit trees – apple, cherry, plum, pear trees – also belong to solid and calorific ones. But they age quickly, with age the wood loses its properties, and young fruit-bearing plants are not cut for good firewood. It is clear that such” exclusive ” firewood, although suitable for heating, but to use them for this purpose would be blasphemy.

If some fruit trees on the site has to be cut down, then it is sawn and stored for other purposes – smoking, cooking on the grill, etc.

Birch Trees

Choosing which good firewood is better to heat the stove, most prefer birch logs, noting their main advantages. Birch trees firewood:

  • they are easily pricked;
  • they dry quickly;
  • they burn hot;
  • they smell nice;
  • they are inexpensive;
  • they are the most common and affordable.

Indeed, it is easy and pleasant to heat the stove with these firewood – they light up well, burn merrily, burning almost to the ground and giving a lot of heat.

However, it should be taken into account the fact that the birch quickly rots and becomes rotten, so such good firewood cannot be stored for a long time or stored for future use. In addition, the high content of tar in the wood and bark causes clogging of the chimney.

Advice! If the main fuel for a bath or home stove is difficult to ignite oak firewood, then it is worth buying a few birch logs and splitting them into splinters for ignition.

Alder Trees

best trees for firewood

Alder trees firewood is very recognizable – the tree on the cut has a bright orange color, and some varieties may have red or bluish shades.

The main advantages of alder trees firewood:

  • fast drying in natural conditions;
  • fragrant smell;
  • high amount of heat transfer;
  • the ability to be stored for a long time with the preservation of properties;
  • low smoke generation.

In those days, when houses and baths were heated in a black way, they often chose not which good firewood was the hottest, but which gave little smoke, and they harvested alder for heating, and the sawdust remaining during sawing and chopping was used for smoking meat and fish.

Aspen Trees

According to the degree of heat transfer, aspen trees are much inferior to oak, birch or pine, so it is used not as the main fuel, but for cleaning the furnace and chimney from soot deposits. It is for this that aspen firewood is valued, the properties of which give little smoke and emit substances that loosen soot during combustion are similar to the properties of alder and sedge.

For cleaning, the furnace is first heated in the usual way to warm up the walls of the chimney channel, and then the furnace is clogged with hot coals with aspen or alder logs. Soot flakes begin to fly out of the pipe almost immediately, some of the deposits fall down and are cleaned manually.

Fake Ones

Like birch, lime types of wood is stored for no longer than two or three years, after which it loses its quality. Nevertheless, they are very valuable as fuel for bath stoves, as they are able to burn very intensively and heat it in a short time.

When it is burning, it gives fragrant smoke and releases medicinal properties that promote wound healing and relieve the symptoms of lung diseases.

For permanent heating of the house in winter, lime wood is poorly suited because of the ability to burn too quickly.

Poplar, Willow

Willow (willow) and poplar types of wood are rarely used as firewood and only in the absence of a better alternative. Their soft and loose wood is of low grade, unsuitable for construction (with the exception of wicker fences made of willow vines), nor for heating stoves, nor for making fires.

Such a tree burns quickly, sparks strongly, and gives little heat. Therefore, even at a bargain price, it is unprofitable to buy firewood from poplar – too many of them will be required for heating, and too often they will need to be put in the oven to maintain the fire.

Coniferous Trees

All conifers, with the exception of larch, are characterized by a high content of resin in the wood. It accumulates in the “pockets” between the fibers, which burst when heated, scattering the red-hot resin. Therefore, fir and pine wood should not be used to heat fireplaces with an open firebox.

For a home stove with a cranked chimney, they will also not be the best type of fuel, since the thick smoke from the burning resin, passing through it, deposits sticky soot on the walls. The disadvantage is also the high rate of combustion of coniferous firewood.

But the bathhouse can and should be heated with them, at least for the sake of a healing aroma that acts relaxing and calming on bathers.

How to Prepare and Store Firewood

best trees for firewood

For fireplaces and pyrolysis furnaces, it is desirable to dry the fuel additionally, keeping it in a warm and dry place for several days. Well-dried should also be “cleaning” firewood-aspen and alder, used for cleaning chimneys.

It is desirable to prepare oak in advance and put it into operation in a year or two – this time is required for it to dry the best firewood. Birch, on the contrary, is used in the year of purchase. Linden is stored no longer than 2-3 years, if they want to enjoy its amazing aroma in the bath.

Split best firewood is stored for storage, since the logs dry longer, and birch ones can rot in general. The woodpile is placed under a canopy or in a special woodpile with blown walls. It is also possible in the open air, but by making a flooring above the ground and covering or laying the top row so that precipitation does not seep inside.
Which electric chainsaw it is better to choose, read in our updated article.

Useful video on how to save firewood dry matter throughout the year


best trees for firewood

What wood should you not burn?

It is strictly forbidden to burn the following in the fireplace:

Coniferous firewood-spruce, pine and deciduous logs are characterized by low density, give little heat and emit a lot of soot, especially with poor traction. Over time, a large layer of soot appears, which can flare up at any moment.

Thus, the glass and the chimney quickly become clogged and cause inconvenience. It is also not uncommon for small embers to bounce off in large quantities. This is primarily a fire hazard. Low heat transfer of wood does not bring any benefit and the room does not warm up at all.

Various garbage-fireplaces differ from ordinary hearths in their design and directly interact with the room. When burning garbage, all the smell gets into the house and this can lead to deterioration of health and even poisoning. For example, when using painted boards. It is better to dispose of all the garbage in more acceptable ways.

Wet wood – this option is acceptable, but only if absolutely necessary. Raw firewood smokes, emits a lot of soot and little heat. The result is almost the same as when using coniferous species. It is better to heat the fireplace in the house only with high-quality and suitable wood.

How do I choose a firewood tree?

Good, high-quality firewood should have the following properties:

  • high flammability;
  • high heat transfer;
  • low ash content;
  • low or medium smokiness.

All these parameters depend on two factors – the state of the firewood and the type of wood from which they are harvested. Without reference to what kind of firewood to use in a stove or solid fuel boiler, even in a house, even in a bath, they must be dry.

What’s the hardest wood to burn?

Alder wood burns slowly, but very hot. There are a lot of coals left, but there is practically no soot and soot. So for the fireplace – the very thing. However, it is better to achieve high temperatures first, so that the further process goes easier.

Can you use any tree as firewood?

The best qualities are possessed by hardwood firewood; they are more often used. Birch, oak, linden-any, depending on their availability and needs. The main thing is that they should be dry. In fireplaces, it is better to use those types that smoke less, do not «shoot”.

In order for any tree to burn cleanly, efficiently and safely, it must meet several criteria that do not always depend on the breed.

High-quality firewood:

  • Dry;
  • Clean;
  • About 12 cm in diameter;
  • Approximately the same in length and thickness;
  • Made of hard hardwoods.

Even ironwood firewood can be very bad if it is raw. Most of the energy will be spent on the evaporation of moisture and the release of stinking poisonous creosote.

There are several ways to determine whether a dry tree is enough by eye:

  • The knock “stick on stick” will be “empty” and ringing, wet wood sounds dull, “filled”, “stupid”.
  • A dry tree weighs much less than a wet one.
  • The bark holds fast — the wood is raw.
  • Fresh sawn wood may be moist to the touch and have a rich smell.
  • It is enough to set fire to a small chip. Dry wood is easily ignited, wet wood hisses, smokes, stinks and is very difficult to decompress.

According to the moisture meter, the humidity of firewood should be within 15-20%, which is quite achievable if you start harvesting no later than six months before the heating season.

Serg Cooper
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Comments: 1
  1. Nikki Cooper

    Thank you for this information. Thanks to your article, I managed to pick up trees for firewood. So, this was important data for me.

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