How to Store Firewood Outside In Winter

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How to store firewood outside in winter? Now, let’s embark on a journey through the intricacies of storing firewood outdoors during the winter months. The chilly embrace of snow, ice, rain, and other wintry elements poses a unique set of challenges for the guardians of firewood. Mastering this art is essential to ensure a steady supply of dry, seasoned firewood, vital for both efficient indoor heating and safety.

Decoding the Enigma: Store Firewood Selection

The selection of firewood becomes a pivotal act, orchestrating a symphony of combustion during the winter months. Delve into the nuances of firewood selection with these guiding principles:

Opt for hardwood species, such as oak, maple, ash, hickory, beech, and birch, as they promise prolonged and intense burning compared to their softwood counterparts like pine.

Patience becomes a virtue; let the firewood undergo a meticulous process of cutting, splitting, and stacking, allowing a full year for the moisture content to plummet below the 20% threshold for optimal combustion.

Beware the allure of freshly cut “green” or wet wood, a reluctant dancer in the flames, prone to inadequate burning and heightened creosote buildup in chimneys.

Seek out the seasoned veterans of the woodpile – firewood that underwent the triad of cutting, splitting, and stacking during the preceding summer or earlier, ensuring the driest and most seasoned companions for winter’s embrace.

Embrace the art of splitting, for logs parted into segments dry faster, with an optimal diameter of about 6 inches. Align with the standard lengths (16-18 inches) tailored to your fireplace or wood stove.

Exercise vigilance in inspection, for rot, insect infestation, cracks, or other defects can render the wood unfit for the fiery dance. Solidity and density become the hallmarks of desirable firewood.

The choice of well-seasoned hardwood, elegantly split, becomes the maestro’s wand, conducting a symphony that echoes through the winter air, with minimal creosote buildup.

Navigating the Labyrinth: Storage Location

How to store firewood outside in winter? Where one positions the outdoor firewood stack emerges as a strategic chess move, influencing its resistance to the capricious dance of moisture. Factors to consider in this spatial ballet include:

Elevation takes center stage; perch the firewood on pallets, cinder blocks, or a wooden platform, elevating it 6-12 inches above the ground to orchestrate a ballet of airflow beneath, thwarting the advances of ground moisture.

The stage must boast impeccable drainage, free from the clutches of low-lying terrain susceptible to the amassing of snowmelt or rainwater runoff. Muddy or sodden soil becomes an undesirable backdrop.

Sun exposure, a nuanced choreography, demands a delicate balance. Partial sun becomes the virtuoso, coaxing the wood to dry at an optimal pace, avoiding the hastiness of full sun or the languor of no sun. Dappled sun or intermittent exposure becomes the choreographer’s stroke.

Accessibility, the pas de deux of convenience, beckons the woodpile within reasonable reach of your home’s exterior, ensuring a seamless dance between replenishing and warmth.

Shelter, a protective partner, calls for a spot shielded from the whims of prevailing winds, embraced by the natural guardianship of trees, sheds, or garages. The dance of airflow, however, must not be stifled.

Clear space, the buffer zone, demands a 2-3 feet perimeter clearance, facilitating the ballet of insect/pest monitoring and allowing the seamless choreography of stacking, covering, and replenishing.

A level surface, the stage itself, craves an area as level as the dancer’s stance, fostering the construction of a stable, square woodpile base resistant to the seduction of rolling wood.

In this spatial orchestration, the woodpile finds its stage – a dry, sun-kissed but sheltered arena, poised for the winter waltz.

Choreographing Symmetry: How to store firewood outside in winter

How to store firewood outside in winter? The artful arrangement of store firewood within the outdoor storage area emerges as a ballet, dictating the seasoning journey of each log, split, and cord. The efficiency of the stack harmonizes with the optimization of space, guided by these recommended techniques:

Design becomes paramount; embrace a square or rectangular ballet, reaching for heights of 3-4 feet with internal rows and levels intertwining in an intricate dance.

Logs and splits unite in a tight embrace, nestled side by side without a breath between. Overlapping layers emerge as the dancers, fending off water infiltration and drying challenges that haunt loosely stacked wood.

In the log-style stack, the direction waltzes between layers, a dance reminiscent of bricks in a wall, offering stability to the overall pile structure.

With split wood, the splits gracefully descend, rounded or tapered-end down, a dance of drainage and resistance to water absorption from rain or snow.

A small gap of 1-2 inches, a breath of airflow, emerges between each layer or row, allowing the entire pile to breathe and season evenly.

The ends of splits, stationed on the outer perimeter, bow outward at a 45-degree slope, a gesture efficient in shedding rain and meltwater.

Binding rows, a union of stability, occurs through stakes, wood scrap spacers, or tie straps every 2-3 rows, a defense against toppling in areas where the wind’s embrace may be too fervent.

A moisture-proof cover, the protective cloak, drapes over the stacked firewood, a shield against the crescendo of wet weather buildup.

In this ballet of woodpile construction, functional air circulation, and drainage find harmony, fortifying against threats like the weighty snow loads of winter. Consistent choreography optimizes the available space, a dance of practicality.

Veiling the Ensemble: Moisture-Proof Covers

How to store firewood outside in winter? Shielding firewood from the relentless advances of precipitation emerges as the final act in the winter symphony. The well-secured moistureproof cover becomes the prima donna, determining the effectiveness of the supply’s natural seasoning. Recommendations for the veil include:

Enter the heavy-duty protagonists – plastic tarps boasting a thickness of 10-12 mil, crafted for the outdoor stage, outlasting their lighter-duty counterparts. Seek tarps that proclaim their waterproof prowess.

Breathable tarps, woven from polypropylene, invite airflow while gracefully shedding water and snow. They dance with less inclination to trap moisture, a contrast to their solid plastic counterparts.

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