Seasoned vs Kiln Dried Firewood

Seasoned firewood is made from freshly cut wood often known as 'green wood' that has been air dried. During the air drying process, the logs are split, stacked, and stored under cover. The goal of wood stacking is to allow the maximum amount of air to pass between the logs to decrease drying time.

Softwood typically takes around 6 months to season, hardwood can take up to 24 months to season.

The advantages of seasoned firewood the natural air drying process makes seasoned firewood more cost-effective and eco-friendlier because it relies on nature to perform the drying process. Air dried seasoned firewood can burn as well as kiln dried wood if seasoned adequately.

People can season their own firewood by acquiring or purchasing wood, splitting it, and allowing it to dry.  Achieving consistent moisture levels for DIY enthusiasts can be challenging, leading to variations in burning performance. However, specialist would moisture metres relatively cheap to buy. DIY seasoning requires a method of cutting the wood an ample outdoor space for wood stacking and drying. Hardwood species need long term outdoor drying during summer to reach desired moisture levels.

Storing stacks of moist green lumber outside can attract insects and rodents. Conversely, indoor seasoning may lead to mould growth, spores and a damp problem.

Kiln dried firewood is made from freshly cut wood often known as 'green wood' that has been cut then dried in a kiln. A kiln being the name of a heated enclosure. Whilst kiln drying is faster the heating of the Kiln uses around 300 kg of wood to produce 700kg of kiln dried wood. Therefore, Kiln dried wood is more expensive and less eco-friendly.

However, kiln dried firewood offers excellent burning characteristics, lighting easily, producing minimal smoke, avoiding harmful creosote, and burning hotter. Maintaining consistent moisture levels, eliminating variations found in seasoned logs. Kiln dried logs are around 10% more expensive to buy than seasoned wood.

If you do not wish to make your own firewood you can ensure the firewood you buy is good quality by trying to buy firewood which is labelled ready to burn, woodsure approved or kiln dried.