With all the different aspects to keep your chimney clean and safe, using the correct type of wood is a big component. There are different types of wood to burn. Make sure it is correct with your chimney.
Building a fire in your fireplace is very different than a campfire. Going out into the woods and chopping wood down does not mean you can dump it into your fireplace. There needs to be more consideration in what goes into the fireplace. The wood has to not let out too much smoke and fumes so the chimney can function without becoming too dirty or damaged. For these reasons, the right wood needs to be taken care of and properly handled to keep your chimney safe.
Proper Storage Means Lower Chimney Cleaning Services
Unseasoned or wet wood, that has not dried for six to twelve months, puts your home in danger. Also, makes your fireplace and chimney get dirty quicker. Wet wood produces too much moisture while burning, it will give you a smokier fire. These are less enjoyable. The moisture will accelerate the buildup of creosote. Creosote is extremely flammable, and soot, but will block your chimney’s airflow. Having these substances increases the risks of chimney fires and carbon monoxide poisoning.
Chopping your own wood and storing it properly ahead of time to allow time to dry, provides you an abundance of well-seasoned wood for the fall and winter months. Now, if you buy seasoned wood but incorrectly store it, then it will reabsorb the water. Improper storage will costs you more money and using the wet wood will create problems inside your chimney that will be expensive to fix. Following our firewood storing tips will save you a call or two to a chimney cleaning service more than once a year.
Location Is Key
The location of storing your wood is important. The right location can make the firewood last longer and keep your fires safe. Most people gravitate to storing their wood next to their fireplace for decoration, but this is a bad idea, especially if you cut your own wood. There are chances of small critters living on the wood and you do not want this brought into the home. Besides that, you want to store wood somewhere that has good airflow to allow it to dry and remain dry rather than reabsorbing moisture.
The ideal area would be somewhere outside near your home that has good coverage. This area will need to be on cement or gravel rather than soil. If the wood is sitting on dirt, bugs and bacteria can get into it and cause it to rot. An open barn or shed is best because due to being outside with great airflow, but also they will cover the wood and protect it from the rain. Last resort, the wood is on soil, try to stack smaller trigs or branches underneath to elevate it off the ground. You can also place hardwood or a tarp underneath the stack. There are firewood racks that elevate the firewood from the ground with a cover, these are purchasable at most local stores such as Lowes or Walmart. This is an alternative option if you do not have an open barn or shed.
It is also important how the wood is stacked. Do not just throw them in a pile. Doing so will cause a lack of ventilation, meaning there will be no airflow to the wood. The firewood at the center of the stack would probably rot by the time you were ready to use it. Stack the wood neatly, but not higher than four feet. If the wood has not been seasoned yet, then stack it with the bark side down. This position helps moisture evaporate easily from the wood.
Remember, when stacking the wood, do not put it right against the wall. Doing this will let the moisture and bacteria to go back into the wood. Best to leave a few inches between the wood and the wall. If the wood is dry, then place a tarp over it for extra protection. If not, the only place a tarp over when there is rain while leaving the sides exposed to have ventilation. Keep in mind the drier the wood, the better the fire.
Following these tips will allow you to always have a safe fire. The proper wood will bring more enjoyable fires every night without having to worry about your chimney becoming dirty and dangerous.