As the heating season approaches, many homeowners are beginning to stockpile firewood for the home. As you start hauling and stacking log after log, it is important that you know how to safely store the wood. Wood storage should be completed in such a way that the wood is kept as dry as possible. Wet wood not only burns inefficiently but can lead to greater creosote buildup in the chimney flue. Wet wood is also more prone to insect infestation as well as mold and fungus growth.
- Store firewood too close to the home. This is not only a fire hazard but can also lead to termite infestation within the home’s foundation.
- Store firewood directly on the ground. The wood absorbs moisture from the soil leaving it damp and useless. Also wood can stick to the ground and leave clumps behind when you lift it.
- Stack firewood against a wall or fence if it is still damp. This stifles air flow and makes it more difficult to get the wood dry and ready for the fire.
- Cover completely with a tarp. This reduces the air circulation needed to keep moisture at bay. If you feel it necessary to cover, place the tarp only on the top of the wood stack leaving the sides open.
- Store firewood a safe distance from the home and other structures when possible. A typical safe distance is five feet or more.
- Store firewood on a concrete slab, asphalt, or even a tarp.
- For outdoor storage, stack firewood away from other structures. Leaving both the front and back open allows for proper circulation of air allowing the wood to dry. Dried firewood can be stored inside against a wall or other dry place.
- Choose a sunny spot to store your outdoor wood stack. You also want to consider a convenient spot for hauling wood inside.