Logs are an excellent source of fuel for people with wood burning stoves in Oxford, as they are natural, renewable, and carbon neutral.
Unless you have your own supply of wood it is best to source your logs from a reputable supplier, so you know they have been seasoned properly and are from well managed trees – using pollarding, for example. (This is an ancient method of harvesting hardwood logs that increases the tree’s lifespan.)
Logs are carbon neutral because they emit the same amount of carbon that the tree absorbed during its lifetime – and the same amount as if it had been left to rot.
What is the difference between hardwood and softwood?
Because hardwood trees are slower growing, the wood they produce is almost twice as dense, meaning it would typically produce twice the energy of softwood trees. Hardwood logs are therefore typically used for burning.
Seasoning and storage
New wood contains a high proportion of water that, if burned causes the fire to emit large quantities of smoke and steam; this causes tar to accumulate in the flue and increases the risk of chimney fire.
If you do collect or harvest your own wood, seasoning is a simple process that will give you lovely dry logs that burn well:
- Cut your wood into suitable lengths and split
- Stack and cover, preferably in an open sided store to allow ventilation
- Allow to dry for 1 – 3 years
In seasoned wood the moisture content is usually around only 20%, therefore the log will feel lighter, the bark will separate easily and splits will appear in within the grain.
Enjoy problem free log burning
Remember that as with all fuels, log burning stoves do produce particulates and therefore care must be taken to sweep the chimney up to 4 times a year. Oxfordshire Stove Company are registered chimney sweeps, who can give you a valid certificate after each sweeping.
For further advice on looking after your chimney in Oxford, or any of our services, call or email and we will be happy to help.