Find the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about burning logs and firewood.
SIZE & WEIGHTS
Why should I burn logs?
Burning logs is a much more environmentally friendly process than burning other fossil fuels such as coal, oil or gas. Burning logs releases CO2 into the atmosphere. But providing a tree is planted to replace each tree burnt, the same amount of CO2 will be absorbed by the tree as it grows, so the net release of CO2 into the atmosphere will be zero. Burning logs or other wood products is thus said to be a carbon neutral process.
Why should I burn Kiln Dried Logs?
Kiln Dried Logs burn hotter than seasoned logs or green logs - With less moisture contained in the kiln dried log, less energy is required to burn off residual moisture and therefore more energy converts into heat.
Kiln Dried Logs are much more efficient - The higher temperatures generated by kiln dried logs mean that everything is burnt, even the gasses released by the wood. In a cooler fire, these would simply escape up the chimney. They are also more economical because they burn hotter and more efficiently, you use less of them to achieve the same heat output.
Kiln Dried Logs help to prolong the life of your appliance - The higher temperatures burn off the water and the sap remaining in the wood, stopping it from building up on the inside of your appliance as tar, which over time, can foul and rust your appliance leading to a loss of efficiency.
Which are better for burning - Softwood or Hardwood Logs?
It depends on the exact species of wood you are comparing but, generally speaking, hardwood logs tend to be denser than softwood logs and therefore they burn hotter. Given two similar sized and seasoned logs, one hardwood and the other softwood, the hardwood log would generally be heavier and produce more energy than the softwood log. You, therefore, need fewer hardwood logs to produce the same heat output and because they take longer to burn the refuelling intervals are longer as well. Softwood logs are easier to light and are generally cheaper to buy. Regardless of your choice of hardwood or softwood logs they should always be as dry as possible before burning. - Read our online Real Wood Guide for a fuller explanation of wood types, density, calorific values and moisture content.
Are logs from Logs2U seasoned?
A seasoned log is one that has been cut and dry stored (i.e. under cover) for a long period of time, usually over 12 months. During this time, the moisture contained in the wood evaporates off into the atmosphere. To season logs yourself you will need a log store located in a well-ventilated area, some unseasoned logs and lots of patience. Read our online Real Wood Guide for more information.
Unseasoned logs are ok to burn on an open fire (best burnt with solid fuels as you will reduce condensates building up in your chimney), but can lead to severe damage if burnt on closed appliances because the temperature is not sufficient to burn off the sap contained in the wood, which then builds up on the inside of your appliance as a tar condensate. Read our online Wood Fuel Guide for more information.
Unseasoned logs or green logs basically means that a log has been freshly cut and is likely to have a high moisture content - i.e. above 50%. A seasoned log however, has been cut and dry stored for a long period of time so that the moisture content is considerably less - between 30 and 50%. Because of the lower moisture content seasoned logs will burn hotter and more efficiently than unseasoned logs. For the same reason Kiln Dried Logs at approximately 20% moisture, burn hotter and more efficiently still. Read our online Real Wood Guide for more information.
Not a lot really. The seasoning or kiln drying process drys the wood from the centre out, and a little rain will make virtually no difference to the moisture content of the wood. However, prolonged exposure or immersion of your logs will increase the moisture content over time and is not advisable. Seasoned and Kiln dried logs should, therefore, always be stored under cover in a well-ventilated area - a log store is ideal for this purpose.
There's no real answer to this question. How wet is "wet"? It will likely be a minimum of 12 months given warm dry weather, but may well be considerably longer if recent UK weather trends are anything to go by. Better to simply buy seasoned or kiln dried logs and start seasoning your green logs ready for next year. With experience, you will know when a log is dry enough to use. Alternatively, there are moisture content meters available to buy that range in price from a few pounds to a few hundred.
Moisture content can vary and is dependent on a wide range of factors - for example, a tree felled in winter is likely to be drier than the same one felled during the summer as they take on less water out of the growing season. Therefore, logs with a moisture content of over 50% are termed as unseasoned. Between 30 and 50% are termed seasoned. And up to 25% is termed as Kiln Dried. The definitions used by Logs2U to describe moisture content are in line with HETAS Biomass Assurance Scheme and therefore, all our kiln dried logs have an average moisture content of less than 20%. Please read our online Real Wood Guide to get a better understanding of factors which affect moisture levels. There's also a table which gives an approximate value of moisture levels for a range of different wood fuel products.
When we supply firewood and logs we try to think of our customer's needs and requirements, so we aim to manufacture logs and firewood that will fit most open fires and appliances. With this in mind, all our logs are cut to a length of 230mm plus or minus 20mm. However, due to the nature of wood (unusual shapes and sizes), this is not always possible to achieve, so you may, on occasion, have to cut wood to meet the measurements of your particular stove or wood burning appliance.
Because real wood fuels (logs and firewood) can contain water, log suppliers are not permitted by UK law to sell wood based on weight, instead, logs and firewood are usually sold by volume - a dumpy bag for instance, is 1m3 volume - 1m wide by 1m long by 1m high. All packaging volumes used by Logs2u are based on a loose volume equivalent measure.
If you do get tempted to buy logs by weight or by a lorry load remember that you could be paying for a lot of water - read our handy guide to buying logs online so that you get the best deal possible. Read our Firewood Logs weights and measure guide for a full explanation of our product sizes and volumes.
The nets and dumpy bags which are supplied with your logs do not have to be returned to us. We recommend that you find a recycling use for them. Many customers use them for collecting gardening waste.
FSC stands for Forest Stewardship Council. The FSC are an international body who promotes responsible management of woodlands and forests. Read more about the FSC and how it relates to buying wood fuel.
Still not sure which logs you should be buying for your stove or wood burner? Then read our Log Buying Guide.
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