The crackle of wood, the glow of the flames and the smell of the smoke. Everyone loves an open fire, a woodburning stove or a campfire. The smell, the warmth and the sound are thought to be the most relaxing that exist. There is however that doubt of what wood to burn, how much it will cost and how to make that wonderful heat last longer.
There is a reason softwood firewood is normally cheaper. Wood like fir, pine and cedar tend to burn a lot faster. Not only that but they create much more smoke and leave finer ash as opposed to coals. Not great for a woodburning stove if you want to keep the heat in overnight to restart in the morning. Perfect, however, for kindling and a campfire because, as they burn so quickly, they cause large flames. The best types of softwood to burn? Fir and pine.
From trees such as oak, beech and ash. They are much denser which allows them to retain and cause heat without sparks or too much smoke. Unlike softwood they leave behind hot coals rather than fine ash, meaning that not only does the heat last, but they are perfect to keep a fire going. Best types of hardwood to burn? Maple, oak, ash and birch.
Wood to avoid
Anything painted or varnished could be classed as a health and safety hazard. Not only can the fumes be harmful to those in the house but could cause dangerous chimney emissions. For the same reasons driftwood, pressure treated lumber and hardboard should also be avoided if burning inside. This being said, the difference in price between wood can be huge. And there is no need to break the bank buying the best hardwood you can find (unless you really want to). Both hardwood and softwood can be combined perfectly and efficiently to create the warmth you want in your home or your campfire. Softwood to get your fire started, hardwood to keep it going. Except if your toasting marshmallows in the woods, in which case softwood all the way!