Log storage – how to store your firewood correctly and safely

Log storage is something that can easily be overlooked; it is tempting to pile them up near your stove or open fireplace for ease of access. However, like all combustible materials, logs should be stored safely away from sources of heat as storing wood near a stove or open fireplace can lead to combustion. There have been incidents of house fires occurring directly as a result of improper log storage; keeping firewood too close to an ignition source is extremely dangerous and should be avoided at all times.

Do not store any combustible materials on the hearth.

It does not matter what material your fireplace foundation is composed of; combustible materials should not be stored on it. Wood logs should not be stacked on top, beside, or against an appliance. Whenever logs are stored in the same room as your wood burner, they should always be stored correctly and safely.

Good practices:

  • Only bring wood into your home that will be burned over the next two days.
  • Keep your main stack of logs dry and, if possible, within sunlight.
  • Ensure the wood being used is aged/dried and has a moisture content of 20% or less. You can use a moisture meter to check the moisture content of your logs.
  • Store your firewood off the floor; preferably in a firewood rack or in a log basket a suitable distance away from your stove or open fireplace.

When storing logs outside, keep them:

  • Protected from the elements (rain, sleet, and snow undo prior drying and increase moisture content); a quality tarp is a good solution.
  • Elevated, with plenty of airflow between the logs.
  • Off the ground, preventing pests or moisture from entering.

When logs are stored outside, the primary aim is to keep them dry. Wood with a moisture content of 20% or less enables a more efficient, safer, and cleaner burn.

Appliances with an integrated log store

Some appliances incorporate an integrated log store; this allows for ease of access and adds to the aesthetic of your stove.

Always follow the appliance manufacturer’s instructions when stacking logs below a fuel bed. If the instructions do not detail how to appropriately store logs in the dedicated log store, please contact the appliance manufacturer for more information.

Always look for the Ready to Burn certification mark when purchasing your wood logs and manufactured solid fuels.


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