There is nothing like the heat boiling out of the wood burning stove or fireplace on a cold winter night. However it does take some work to get some good firewood ready to feed that fire. The dryer and more cured the firewood is the better and hotter it will burn so let’s take a look at some ways to properly store your firewood and why it’s important to pay attention to how you do store it.
The whole idea of properly storing your firewood is to get it as dry as possible before you use it. Dry firewood will burn hotter and produce less smoke and leave less ash in your fireplace that you need to clean up later. Also, dry firewood will store longer before it starts to decay and less ash in your fireplace is just less times that you need to clean your chimney which is always a good thing.
Many times when you purchase or go cut your own firewood it is not already dry, so you will need to store it in a way that it can get dry. So it becomes very important how you stack your firewood and how you cover it from rain and snow. When you stack of firewood next to some type of wall or barn or whatever does not place it directly against it, you want to leave a few inches of room in between the firewood and whatever it is you’re stacking it against so that the air can flow through and help dry out the wood. You also want to leave a few inches of room between each stack for the same reasons. Also moisture can come up from the ground so unless you are stacking it on cement pad or something like that, lay down a couple of rows of two by fours or wooden pallets to get the wood up off of the ground.
To keep the elements off of the woods some type of lean to shelter without any sides works great. However, this is not always practical so in a pinch a tarp can be used. But you do not want to cover the entire pile up with the tarp as this might seal up any moisture that is already in the wood. Just cover the upper part of the pile so that there is still air movement around the wood. The parts of a wood pile that is exposed and will get wet should be able to dry back out relatively fast.
Stacking your word against your house is not always recommended as firewood is a fantastic attractant to all kinds of bugs and mice. You can spray down your firewood with some bug killer, but this may not be the best approach. So if you can find a way to pile up your firewood away from your house but still the convenient spot now might be the best route. You can keep a smaller amount next to the house or even in the garage as long as it turns over through the winter as you burn it so that your favorite wood time critters don’t move in and set up residence.
Follow these simple firewood storage guidelines and you should end up with nice dry wood to burn all winter long while the snow blows outside.