Log burning advice about buying logs, storing logs, burning logs and using your wood burning stove efficiently. How you can save money during this cost of living crisis by cutting your energy bills.
How Can I Save Money Burning Logs vs Gas & Electricity?
The energy price cap from October 2022 will mean that the average energy bill will be around £3420 per year. Heating your home is going to be expensive.
Alternatively, you could heat your home with a wood burning stove. Assuming you run a 5kw wood burner all through the winter you are likely to require around 3.0 cubic meters of mixed hardwood logs which can cost around £390.
Local firewood suppliers may be cheaper but logs bought locally may have a higher moisture content than premium kiln dried Ash or Oak.
There is a big variation in prices so shop around. Buying bags of logs from your local corner shop or garage is probably the most expensive way of buying logs.
The beauty of logs is that you can still literally pick them up for free!
However, even if you buy logs in bags from the local garage, heating your home with a wood burning stove will still be considerably cheaper than either gas, electricity or heating oil.
Why Buy a Log Burning Stove?
In a recent survey by the Telegraph 45% of those polled were interested in the money saving potential of burning logs, however 38% went more for the aesthetic appeal. Logs are not just warming they also warm your heart and lift your spirits.
However this winter it is going to be expensive to heat your home, and the one way you can control your heating bills is by investing in a wood burning stove saving money by stopping burning gas and heating oil.
How Much Does a Wood Burning Stove Cost to Install?
The cost of installation will depend upon the age and type of building. Crucially it will depend on whether there is a chimney and whether that chimney needs to be lined. Basically (2022) it costs around £1,500 to install a burner in a property with a pre-existing chimney. However, if a flue system needs to be installed then bills will rise to around £2500+.
Check the price of wood burning stoves at Amazon.
How Many Logs are Required to Fuel a Wood Burning Stove?
Wood burning stoves are more efficient than open fires. An open fire will require around 16 logs for a 5 hour period, a wood burning stove around 6 logs. (As ever with these calculations it depends on the size of your burner etc)
A burner can use around 3.0 m3 of logs during the winter if used evenings and at weekends. Although this obviously depends on the size of the burner and whether it is just heating just one room or the whole house.
Which Type of Wood is Best for Wood Burners?
Looking for log burning advice on which type of logs to burn.
Hardwoods are more dense and therefore burn longer than softwoods. However, softwoods are better for the environment because they can be replaced more quickly.
Ash is one of best woods for burning, it produces a steady flame and good heat output. Birch produces decent heat but burns more quickly. Oak because of its density is a slow burner with a low flame. Oak needs to be seasoned for two years, before dry, it is best to buy kiln dried oak.
A mix of hardwoods is a good compromise to attain good heat output and a prolonged burn.
What is Moisture Content?
Wood contains water, the moisture content is the amount of water in the wood expressed as a %. Moisture content is important when choosing wood to burn. The more moisture the slower the wood burns, and the more smoke, tar and sticky residues it produces. This is not good for your burner or your chimney. Damp wood creates acids which can corrode your wood burner.
When a tree is felled it will contain a moisture content of around 60%. Seasoning wood for a year should lower the moisture content to between 20% and 25% depending on weather etc.
Legally only dry wood can be sold in the UK. Dry wood is usually around 20-25%. Kiln dried wood is usually below 20% and therefore excellent for log burning stoves.
To be sure of the moisture content of the logs you purchase or season then use a moisture meter. They are inexpensive and will save you the hassle of accidentally burning green unseasoned wood.
Are Heat Logs a Good Alternative to Wood Logs?
Heat logs, or fire logs, are manufactured to burn with more heat and for longer than traditional logs. They are usually made from recycled wood waste, which is good for the environment.
Heat logs will maintain a blue flame and not give off very much smoke when burnt. This means fewer toxic fumes. Heat logs also leave less ash because they burn through.
Heat logs are a cleaner, more environmentally friendly alternative to wood. They burn better and leave less ash.
Why Do I Need A Log Store?
Log burning advice is not just about burning wood but also storing wood.
A log store is ideal for storing wood for burning because it continually dries the wood and expels excessive moisture. Log stores are designed to provide a free flow of air through the logs. Here are 5 reasons you need a log store, and what are the alternatives.
One of the best ways to beat the cost of living crisis is to buy wood in bulk and store the logs until you need them. The difficulty when buying a log store is understanding the capacity of the store and comparing the price with similar log stores. Using a log burning stove every night and at weekends then the stove is likely to use one cubic metre of hardwood logs in a couple of months but need two to three cubic metres for the whole winter.
We have sorted log stores by size:
Self Build Log Store Plans
The alternative to purchasing a store for firewood is to build your own log store. Log stores are simple structures. Using old pallets is a favourite method and naturally, provides good circulation.
Once built where to position the log store in your garden to achieve the best air circulation is important.
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