The most common form of wood fuel at the moment is logs. It is important the logs are dry and well seasoned. Burning wet or unseasoned wood is less efficient and can cause harmful build up of deposits in the chimney over a very short time. Thick coatings of creosote or resinous material can cause chimney fires, or prevent the chimney functioning properly. This can allow harmful fumes to escape into the dwelling. Do not burn any painted or treated wood. Treated or painted wood will emit chemicals which are potentially damaging to health and the environment. This also applies to MDF and chipboard.

If you buy logs which have not been seasoned, you should store them under cover but open to allow free air circulation for at least a year. Some logs may take 3 to 4 years to fully season. Bring the fuel into the house a few days before you want to use it to get it as dry as possible.

Wood from different trees has different heat values. The table below provides a useful comparison. Wood fuel has typically less than half the calorific value of coal and smokeless fuel, so you must be prepared to use a greater volume of wood to heat your home or room, unless you use a combination of both wood and mineral solid fuel.

If you burn wood, you should have your chimney swept at least twice a year.

WoodWeight per m3 in KGGross heat value kw/kg% Moisture when greenSeasoning time in summers

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