The Top 3 Most Important Steps to Remember
When Preparing Your Wood for This Winter Will You Be Ready?
When it comes to cutting and preparing firewood for use in your outdoor wood furnace, you'll need a well-thought-out strategy to maximize efficiency while lowering creosote buildup.
Freshly cut green wood contains up to 50% moisture. That means that 50% of the weight of the wood is water.
When you try to burn green wood, you must first use up your precious BTUs from your fire to boil off the water in green wood. Those are BTUs that could have gone into your home but instead are wasted.
Properly seasoned wood contains only 20% moisture.
WHEN IS THE RIGHT TIME TO PREPARE YOUR WOOD?
It will take at least 6 months for green hardwood to properly dry in order to burn properly in your GX Series or other gasification outdoor boiler. You actually should prepare your wood this summer for next Winter.
HOW TO PREPARE YOUR WOOD?
Here are the 3 Most Important Steps to do when preparing your wood:
Obviously, splitting your wood opens it up to allow it to dry much faster. A round log will never properly dry - it will start to rot before it has had enough time to dry. Anything over 6 inches in diameter gets split.
If you don't split your wood, the moisture will stay within. When there is too much moisture in your firewood, your wood boiler's heat exchanger will consume more energy to evaporate the moisture before it can turn the wood into heat.
Stacking wood allows it to air-dry faster, particularly if you only stack the wood in narrow piles so the air can flow freely. Many people stack their wood on pallets to keep the bottom layer from rotting.
Make sure your woodpiles aren't too dense or deep, as this will prevent airflow. Smaller woodpiles that are loosely packed dry faster. Most of the water from heavy rains is splashed away when your piles have open-air spaces.
Cover your woodpile on the top from rain. Don't entirely cover your woodpile. Do not allow your cover to hang far over the edges of the pile as this prevents airflow.
If you completely cover it, moisture will remain inside, preventing it from evaporating properly. This method can lead to mold growth and the discoloration of your firewood.
The amount of time for proper seasoning depends upon many factors, but if you have a GASIFIER outdoor wood boiler, you should have already cut, split, and stacked your wood for this upcoming winter.
All other traditional outdoor wood burning boilers will sometimes operate a little better with some higher moisture content wood. This is because they are not high-efficiency furnaces and a load of really dry wood will burn up like a pile of match sticks, and too much of that heat will exit the chimney before it has a chance to transfer through your furnace walls into your water jacket.
Do NOT burn all green wood, but also don't just burn 'matchstick dry' firewood in your outdoor furnace either.
So for these traditional outdoor wood burners, it is ok to use wood that is less seasoned. We have some customers who mix some green wood in with their dry wood and they report that this works very well.