Winter is just a few weeks away now, meaning if you haven’t used your fireplace yet this year, the perfect opportunity will be here before you know it. Here are a few tips to help you select safe, high-quality wood for all your fireplace, woodstove, and outdoor furnace needs.

Your Guide to Choosing the Correct Firewood This Winter

For starters, you’ll want to consider the density of the wood in question:

More Dense Woods

  • Oak
  • Elm
  • Hickory

Less Dense Woods

  • Pine
  • Basswood

The density of the wood directly relates to the energy output once the fire is started. Hard, dense woods like those listed above generate maximum heat and less flames, which lead to a longer burn. Hardwoods are also more likely to leave coal beds behind, which will make it easier to get your next fire started.

Less dense woods are easier to ignite and produce more flames, meaning they also produce less heat. Based on this assessment, you may assume that hardwoods are the only wood worth considering for the fireplace. For the most part, we would agree! Oak is very easy to obtain and leads to a perfect fire time and time again.

Even still, there are times where softer woods are worth keeping around as well. Fall and spring, and even mild winter days are the ideal times to burn softer woods to avoid raising the temperature of your home past comfortable levels.  Additionally, it may be worth using softer woods to easily get a fire started and subsequently keep the fire going with a denser alternative.

A Few More Firewood Tips for the Winter Ahead

Regardless of which type of wood you plan to pick up this winter, we have a few additional tips to make sure you are prepared for the best experience possible:

  • Only buy seasoned wood, to reduce difficulty starting the fire and boost heat output once the fire is going.
  • Do not burn scraps such as wrapping paper throughout the holiday season.
  • Keep wood outside of the home if possible, to reduce the chances of bringing pests into the home.
  • Keep the wood protected with a tarp to preserve its integrity throughout the winter.

Schedule Your Chimney Cleaning Inspection for a Safe, Warm Winter!

Call Clean Sweep Maryland today at 410-558-1111 for professional chimney sweep, slate roofing and duct cleaning services designed to keep all of your listed properties clean and safe for sellers and buyers. If you have a prospective home buyer or home seller in need of a chimney inspection or repairs, we are here to help!