Whether it’s the ever-rising tariffs of energy suppliers, the desire to feel a little more in control of your life or just the pull of a more self-sufficient lifestyle, wood burning stoves are an enticing way to live off the grid in the comfort of your own home. Read on for a few tips on how to get the most out of your stove.
Whichever wood burning stove you choose, if you plan to get the most out of your wood burner you need to burn good quality dry wood, with a moisture content below 20%. Dry wood provides far more heat than wet wood, because heat energy isn’t wasted evaporating the moisture found in wet or green wood.
Burning dry wood will also mean your chimney and stove will remain cleaner for longer, thanks to the more complete combustion process and far fewer emissions – resulting in clearer stove glass, a clearer chimney, and fewer visits required from your sweep.
Firewood that you gather yourself will need to be stored in a dry and ventilated place for at least 18 months to allow it to season. Seasoning allows the moisture in the wood to evaporate. Once the logs have a moisture content of no more than 20%, they will be ready to burn. Using a moisture metre, you can easily check your logs are dry. Remember that if you are gathering your own logs, you will need to have permission from the landowner.
If you’re just starting out and need to wait for your wood to season, you can always purchase good quality logs to tide you over in the meantime. Nationwide suppliers such as Certainly Wood supply kiln dried logs certified to have a moisture content lower than 20% which will ensure your wood burner provides optimum heating performance, immediately.