How Long Should Wood Be Seasoned For?
Before you add logs to your fire, it’s important to make sure they’re properly dry. A log should have a moisture level of less than 20%.
There are two ways to dry your logs; kiln-drying and seasoning. Kiln-drying requires a kiln, so most people prefer seasoning. But seasoning can take a long time – literally seasons.
It takes relatively little time for the ‘free water’ in wood to evaporate. Once it has, the wood will be down to around 30% moisture.
It’s only then that the moisture in the wood’s cell walls will really begin to evaporate and the seasoning process begins.
How long your wood will take to season depends on what kind of wood it is. Softwoods season more quickly, taking a year to a year and a half to reach the right moisture level. We recommend around two full years or more for hardwoods.
Think of seasoning the way you would for a meal – great seasoning makes the fire much better.
There are a few ways you can track the progress of seasoning. As wood dries, the bark loosens and – eventually – may even fall away. Peel your bark back and look at the revealed wood; if it’s still green, your wood has a long way to go. In properly seasoned wood, more of the bark should have been shed than what remains.
Try lifting a piece of the wood regularly. Dry wood weighs much less, and as you feel the weight drop you’ll be able to see the process.
You’ll also see the colour fade and darken as seasoning continues.
There’s no substitute for a moisture meter, however; track it regularly.
However, if you don’t have the time or the space to season your own wood, help is at hand. We offer pre-seasoned firewood as well as unseasoned and kiln-dried. Place your order today and enjoy low prices and great service.