Just as the source of your firewood matters, so does the type. Unfortunately, most commercially-available firewood can be a mix of hard and soft woods, leading to uneven burning times and unpredictable fires. While, in general, hardwoods make better fires than softwoods, what specific type of wood is best for you depends on what type of fire you want to make.
- For an indoor fire, it’s best to choose a type of wood that is easy to light, long-burning, and doesn’t produce much smoke.
- Oak is one of the best-performing woods in this category, as its dense structure leads to long burning times and good heat output.
- Wood from the hickory family (such as pecan wood), is also a great choice.
- Ash is another popular wood for home fireplaces, as it is naturally low in moisture and easier to split than other, denser woods.
- If you buy your wood pre-split, however, this may not matter that much, and ash firewood can bring a risk of transporting the emerald ash borer.
- Fruit woods, while harder to find, can give off a nice aroma when burning that make an indoor fire particularly charming.
While more smoke can be acceptable in an outdoor setting, no one enjoys a fire that produces too much smoke.
- Hardwoods, like oak, are always a safe bet for fires – indoor or out.
- Softer, more fragrant woods, like cedar or pine, can often be used in outdoor fires to give off an attractive aroma, but using too much can lead to overwhelming smoke production.
- If you intend to cook over your campfire, avoid soft woods that may not produce enough heat or acceptable coals.
- As with other types of fires, reliable hardwoods are always a good choice for cooking fires.
- Cedar and pine can impart undesirable flavors to food if not used sparingly.
- For smoking, choose a neutral-flavored wood, like oak, or use a fruit or nut wood (like pecan wood) to give your food a unique character.
While not all types of wood are readily available in all areas, a reputable firewood supplier should have a steady stock of properly-seasoned hardwood suitable for all types of fires. Ask your wood supplier if they have any more exotic woods or fragrant woods that you can use for accenting an indoor fire or making a tasty outdoor meal!
At Burn This Firewood, all of our firewood, kindling, and mulch are sustainably-sourced from waste wood that would otherwise end up in landfills. Our primary partner is Texas Tree Surgeons. Questions about our process or products? Let us know!