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Cutting Firewood during the Winter Months

There is a lot one can do to prepare for winter. Besides getting new warm clothing, fine-tuning your HVAC system, and stocking up on supplies to avoid last-minute emergencies, you also need to stock up on firewood if you use a wood stove or firewood heater/furnace. Some people have a wood furnace that they have to light during this season hence the need to have enough stock. This means you need to prepare in advance.

Preparing Wood for Winter

Preparing wood to use in winter should start early, preferably when the weather starts warming up. Most experts believe that wood should be prepared in early spring for the winter. One needs to start filling the woodshed for at least six months to avoid the demerits of using green wood. While green wood still burns, it does not burn properly.

It is possible that it will be smoky, inefficient, and possibly release a lot of tar, making it furnace un-friendly. As such, you need to start stocking wood to allow it to dry and season appropriately over the six months. While filling the wood lot, make sure to have the wood elevated as this promotes faster and better drying, making the wood burn better. However, you may run out of wood and need more cuts.

Winter Cut Firewood

Cutting wood in the winter has advantages and disadvantages. Sap and moisture levels are much lower than if the wood was cut in the spring time, but fresh cut wood needs to be thoroughly dried out for safe and efficient burning. The biggest disadvantage to cutting wood in the winter is the weather conditions and the time it takes to allow the wood to properly dry for use.   

Firewood can be obtained by cutting down whole trees or from felled trees by limbing and cutting pieces. Alternatively, consider dry pruning once tree leaves have fallen before the vegetative recovery in spring. These pieces can be used to rekindle and light fires.

How to Cut the Firewood

You need to cut suitable sizes of wood for your stove. First, you need to cut the tree into trunks. It would help split the rounds into billets by cutting across lengths. Make sure to cut the trunks into mid-sizes that comfortably fit into the fireplace. It would be best to use appropriate tools and machinery to do this

Seasoning Cut Wood

It is advisable to cut wood in similar lengths, making it easy to stack them. Freshly cut wood contains moisture whose content depends on the species. Besides that, moisture also affects the fuel energy in the wood. Seasoning helps maximize the fuel power and can take 6 to 24 months. Seasoning starts by identifying a dry and well-aerated area, free of humidity. Raise the wood above the ground, and avoid leaning it on the wall. Both situations help minimize moisture seepage. Leave enough space between stacked billets for better air circulation. Cover the top of the wood with a ShelterLogic firewood rack. Leaving the top open exposes the wood to bugs, becoming a safety hazard since carbon monoxide levels rise with improper seasoning. There are different ways of covering wood, including using tarps, storing it under a roofed shelter, or using a commercial cover. Just be sure to allow proper aeration and leak prevention no matter what cover you choose.


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