The Ultimate Firewood Buying Guide: What to Look for and How to Buy

Uncategorized By Aug 01, 2023

This comprehensive firewood buying guide covers everything you need to know about purchasing firewood. It discusses the different types of wood, such as hardwoods, softwoods, and fruitwoods, and their burning characteristics. It emphasizes the importance of buying seasoned firewood with low moisture content to ensure efficient burning. The guide also highlights the significance of considering the size and length of firewood pieces and provides recommendations for quantity and pricing. It offers tips on obtaining firewood from local suppliers, DIY cutting and splitting, and online marketplaces. Additionally, the guide answers frequently asked questions about burning firewood indoors, determining seasoning, burning treated or painted wood, storing firewood, and handling infestations.

The Ultimate Firewood Buying Guide: What to Look for and How to Buy

The Ultimate Firewood Buying Guide: What to Look for and How to Buy


When it’s time to cozy up by the fireplace or enjoy a bonfire with friends, having the right firewood is essential. The quality and type of firewood you choose can significantly impact your overall experience. This comprehensive firewood buying guide will walk you through everything you need to know, from what to look for when purchasing firewood to how to make the best buying decisions.

1. Type of Wood

Not all wood is created equal when it comes to burning in a fireplace or wood stove. Different types of wood produce varying levels of heat, burn rates, and distinct aromas. Some popular choices for firewood include:

  • Hardwoods: Examples include oak, maple, birch, and hickory. Hardwoods burn longer, produce high heat, and create long-lasting coals, making them ideal for extended burning sessions.
  • Softwoods: This category includes pine, fir, and cedar. Softwoods ignite quickly, making them suitable for starting fires. However, they burn faster and may not produce long-lasting heat like hardwoods.
  • Fruitwoods: Apple, cherry, and pear woods are known for their pleasant and aromatic smoke. They provide a delightful scent while burning and are often used for cooking and smoking.

2. Moisture Content

One crucial factor when buying firewood is its moisture content. Green, freshly cut firewood typically contains a high moisture content, making it difficult to ignite and burn efficiently. Opt for seasoned firewood, which has been dried for at least 6-12 months, as it burns cleaner, produces more heat, and creates less creosote buildup in your chimney.

3. Size and Length

The size and length of firewood pieces are vital factors to consider. Standard firewood lengths typically range between 16 and 20 inches. Ensure that the firewood you purchase fits comfortably within your fireplace or wood stove. Additionally, if you plan to use firewood for outdoor purposes, such as bonfires or camping, you may want to consider smaller pieces for easier handling and transportation.

4. Quantity and Pricing

When determining how much firewood to purchase, it’s essential to consider how frequently you’ll be using your fireplace or fire pit. Generally, it’s recommended to stock up with a minimum of one cord (128 cubic feet) of firewood for a regular burning season. Buying firewood in larger quantities can often lead to cost savings compared to smaller bundles or individual pieces.

5. Obtaining Firewood

There are several options for obtaining firewood:

  • Local suppliers or firewood yards: Reliable sources for high-quality firewood. Ensure they have a good reputation and offer seasoned wood.
  • DIY: If you have the means, you can cut and split your firewood. However, this requires proper tools, knowledge, and access to appropriate wood sources.
  • Online marketplaces: Many online platforms connect buyers with local firewood suppliers, offering convenience and often user reviews.


Q: Is it safe to burn firewood indoors?

A: Burning firewood indoors is generally safe when following proper precautions. Ensure proper ventilation and regularly inspect and clean your chimney to prevent hazards.

Q: How do I determine if firewood is properly seasoned?

A: Well-seasoned firewood generally has cracks on its ends, appears grayish in color, and sounds hollow when two pieces are banged together.

Q: Can I burn treated or painted wood?

A: No, burning treated or painted wood can release toxic chemicals. Stick to untreated, natural firewood for a safe and enjoyable experience.

Q: How should I store firewood?

A: It is best to store firewood in a dry, covered area away from your home’s foundation. Use a raised platform or pallets to prevent contact with the ground and promote adequate airflow for further seasoning.

Q: Can I burn firewood that has insect infestations?

A: It is generally not recommended to burn firewood with visible insect infestations, as it can introduce pests to your home or outdoor area. Consider proper disposal methods for infested wood.

With this ultimate firewood buying guide, you are now equipped with the knowledge and understanding to make informed decisions when purchasing firewood. Stay warm and enjoy the crackling fires!