Best burning firewood. (1 Viewer)

DaveXA

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So, I'm fairly new with using a fireplace. The home we recently moved into has a good fireplace and I've been using it a good bit. We're enjoying it.

What is the best wood to use? I don't know the kind of wood the owner had stocked here, but we used all of it and it was not too hard to keep going. Then found some free wood. I think it's cherry. It was from a tree that had what i guess were carpenter ants. It's really solid and I'm having a hard time keeping that burning for any length of time. What would you suggest is the best wood to use in a medium sized wood fireplace?
 

Paul

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Dave, I’ve had lots of success with oak and pecan.
 

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Any kind of conifer will stay burning. You can mix with woods like cherry/pecan/maple once you've got a good bed of coals.
 

0rion

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Any type of hardwood is going to be your best bet. There's an art to building a good fire and one I take great pride in. You need good kindling that's small and dry to start with. Get that kindling going then build your main fire on top of that...stack so that you can keep good airflow up through it. Airflow is key and probably the #1 thing I see people do wrong.
 

saintmdterps

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We had 2 red oaks come down in storms over the last few years, and I've gotten about 3 cords of firewood out of them. The wood burns hot and long, with no hissing or popping. Burn hot fires to keep the chimney clean. Keep some firewood in the house (freezing weather in the area should have killed any critters) because room temp wood lights quicker.

I've also burned Holly, which lights quickly and burns bright and hot, but does not last as long as oak.
Had me a good fire going last night for the Saints win :beerchug:
 

saintmdterps

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Any type of hardwood is going to be your best bet. There's an art to building a good fire and one I take great pride in. You need good kindling that's small and dry to start with. Get that kindling going then build your main fire on top of that...stack so that you can keep good airflow up through it. Airflow is key and probably the #1 thing I see people do wrong.
Have you burned top-down fires? I've had good luck with those as well. Doesn't seem to matter as long as you have dry kindling. I keep a box in the garage, and the yard keeps us supplied with sticks :hihi:
 

0rion

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Have you burned top-down fires? I've had good luck with those as well. Doesn't seem to matter as long as you have dry kindling. I keep a box in the garage, and the yard keeps us supplied with sticks :hihi:
I've burned fires about every way you can imagine over the years. I definitely have a system on how I like to start and maintain them. I'm surrounded by woods so I have an endless supply of wood to choose from.
 

faceman

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Any kind of conifer will stay burning. You can mix with woods like cherry/pecan/maple once you've got a good bed of coals.
Hardwoods are the best bet. My best friends dad had a fireplace. He'd always look for white oak and water oak . I would advise against conifers. They produce a sap that sticks to the inside of the chimney and is very flammable.
 
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Hedon James

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Good advice in this thread!

In general, softer woods like pine & conifers burn quicker, while harder woods like oak & elm burn longer & hotter. If you can't identify the wood, a good rule of thumb is that if it splits easy, it burns quick; and harder to split burns longer & hotter. I think Orion is a bit of a pyro (LOL?!), but he's right. About the only thing I would add to his comments is that after the kindling, I like to start off with the softer/quicker burning woods to build that coal base, then switch to harder/longer burning woods.

And you'll learn certain woods smell better than others. Maybe it's just me, but certain woods provide a very pleasant aroma in the house. I was raised around that, and like Pavlov's dogs, I get warmer just smelling that scent. But I imagine everyone is different. Pay attention to what you burn and note what woods you like the best! JMO...

And I can't tell if Chuck was joking or serious, but "dry" is pretty important too. When I say "dry", I mean "seasoned". And that doesn't mean it fell last year and you cut it up and split it last month. Seasoned means you cut it, split it, stacked it, and let it air dry for the year. In a perfect world, you're working on NEXT YEAR's wood today. Burning "green" wood is inefficient and will cause a lot of creosote build up in your chimney, which increases fire hazard. The best way to keep creosote to a minimum is to burn your chimney as hot as possible. It's called a "firebox" for a reason...burn it HOT!

Good luck, and definitely ENJOY!
 

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Hardwoods are the best bet. My best friends dad had a fireplace. He'd always look for white oak and water oak . I would advise against conifers. They produce a sap that sticks to the inside of the chimney and is very flammable.
He was asking how to keep the fire lit. The sap in conifers is flammable as hell.
Douglas fir, hemlock and cedar are about all we have around here, you can start a fire with those no matter how crappy your technique is.
 

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