Hardwoods – Hardwoods are the best wood to use for fireplace, stoves, furnaces and other wood-burning appliances. The density allows them to burn longer, and thus making them a more efficient type of wood to burn.

We did some research here, because while the short answer is pretty straight forward, we wanted to give you some “whys” and some “whats” when it comes to wood, and things to be aware of to ensure the efficiency of your wood-burning appliances.

The folks over at woodheat.org have dropped a few hints we wanted to pass onto you.

The below chart indicates the wood that would be the most dense on down to lower density types of wood:

Density of Common Tree Species

Here is a list of the tree species commonly used for firewood, according to their relative densities. Trees at the beginning of the list have the most energy per cord, while those toward the end of the list have the least energy per cord. Although they are less dense, the species in the latter half of the list can make excellent firewood for spring and fall because they make heat control easier and don’t tend to overheat the house.

Ironwood | Rock Elm | Hickory | Oak | Sugar Maple | Beech | Yellow Birch | Ash | Red Elm | Red Maple | Tamarack | Douglas Fir | White Birch | Manitoba | Maple | Red Alder | Hemlock | Poplar | Pine | Basswood | Spruce | Balsam

If you have chopped wood, which in central Indiana may not be the case — not to underestimate our DIYers, ensure you have left the wood out to dry for some time. Now that Fall is here, you’ll want to cover the wood to ensure it’s dry enough for burning.

As we head into this heat season, we’ll leave you with some tips from woodheat.org on buying firewood (we picked just a few):

  • Ask friends and neighbors who burn wood for recommendations
  • Do some quick research and select the dealer who seems most reliable and comes with the best recommendations
  • Do not order wood by phone — go to the storage area to inspect the wood and take a tape measure to check piece length and pile size
  • Look for wood that is clean — sand and mud on firewood makes it less desirable
  • Make sure the pieces are split small enough for your appliance; you don’t want to have to re-split it all
  • Do not buy randomly piled wood — only stacked cords can be counted
  • If possible, get the wood in spring and stack it in your own yard so you can control the seasoning process

Heat season is here, and once you have ensured the safety and functionality of your fireplace and other wood-burning appliances, it’s certainly time to consider what you will use to fuel the fire, literally.

Haven’t had your fireplace, chimney or other wood-burning appliances cleaned and inspected yet this year? Give us a call and we’ll ensure you are set!