A Guide to the Best Trees for Firewood

    A Guide to the Best Trees for Firewood

    All trees may be burnt as firewood, no matter what. However, the trees are not all the same. Some are hotter, and some are slower; while some are clean, some are smoky.

    So, which are the best trees for firewood?

    In this guide, this is what we will go through. Below are the answers to frequent inquiries regarding the many types of firewood that people have.

    Let’s delve into to find out which trees are your stove or chimney’s finest and worst wood. However, of course, we will end up with some seasoning advice from firewood too.

    Moreover, every timber burns, but not every timber burns the same. Some people burn hotter, slower, and cleaner. Furthermore, some people smoke a lot, and some people have plenty of sap or resin to smoke your stove fast. 

    The best trees for firewood are those who generally constantly burn to generate more heat and usually burn entirely. Moreover, these woods are more likely to be hardwoods. Furthermore, they can be hickory or ash rather than pine or cedar forests.

    The Best Trees For Firewood – Hardwood vs. Softwood:

    The Best Trees For Firewood Hardwood vs Softwood

    Flowering plants are hardwoods. All hardwood trees produce flowers and fruit seeds.

    Hardwoods have a cycle of life during the season. Therefore, they are the best trees for firewood.

    During the autumn, their leaves fall, and they sleep in the winter.

    Most of them have large and flat leaves. They are also slower than softwoods.

    Softwoods produce no flowers, and cones contain their seeds.

    Usually, Softwood is always green. Their leaves resemble scales or needles and don’t shed in the cold seasons.

    They are rapidly growing and typically less thick. These two diverse wood kinds, however, have various advantages. They are mutually complementary.

    Softwoods generate a fire better, whereas hardwoods maintain fire better.



    The most excellent woods that give you a warmer, longer burn-time are the hardened forests like maple, oak, ash, Birch, and many fruitwoods. These forests contain the slightest pitch and sap and are usually cleaner. But hardwoods typically cost more than softwoods and are more likely to leave clinkers, which are a complex and rocky residue, in the remaining ash. 

    Be mindful of thick inner brown bark called phloem while you are burning birch firewood. This bark keeps a lot of humidity and might prevent even drying of the wood. Therefore, it is better to combine Birch with a different kind of hardwood for cleaner burns and smoke. Smoke creates a growth of creosote, which is essentially a wood combustion by-product of tar, which usually causes fires in the chimney.

    Types of Hardwood for Burning:

    We can keep the list of diverse hardwood varieties indefinitely, but we’ll concentrate on only three of the most popular:


    A favorite since it’s practically everywhere, Oak is incredibly thick and may burn for a long, long period. It’s the slowest wood in the season and is utilized most effectively in several logs. If you have a fire burning on at night, it is fantastic. You may anticipate paying around $110-130 a cable.


    Thanks to the capacity to burn fast, even unseasoned, Birch is a fantastic choice for fires. There are various Birch species with different efficiencies (such as Black, Yellow, and White). Moreover, you can utilize the bark as a starting natural fire.

    It works best combined with woods with slow fires such as Oak, and a cable will cost around $200. Birch is the best trees for firewood due to their capacity to burn fast.


    A choice for burning wood since it burns alone creates consistent flame and excellent temperature performance. However, you should expect to pay approximately $170 if you want to get a split and complete seasoned cord.

    Hardwood Burning:

    Hardwood Burning

    The easiest method to recognize a hardwood is often by the kind of leaf. Moreover, hardwoods have a large sheet, and usually, they shed their leaves in the autumn.

    The group comprises many different species of trees, but the Oak, maple, beech, ash, and Elm are more frequent and popular varieties.

    Hardwoods are typically seen as preferable firewood compared with hardwood because of the thick wood. Therefore, these are the best trees for firewood.

    Without too much smoke or chips, the thick wood generates a hot, long-lasting fire.

    The wood also produces hot coals, which have a longer duration of radiant heat. 

    When purchased with a cord (128 cubic feet), hardwood produces more BTUs than equivalent softwood cords.

    However, it is not usually an essential choice because the tree should be hardwood.

    A low-grade hardwood, for example, is softer and less dense than Softwood of excellent quality.

    Does Hardwood Have Harmful Effects?

    Typically between 1-2 years, the thick wood takes longer to season and dry out and is more brutal to light than Softwood.

    You can also anticipate having more hardwood than the same quantity of Softwood.



    The lowest-cost wood kind you may buy is Softwood. Douglas fir is the finest choice, although pine, balsam, baby blossom, cedar, tamarack, alder, and poplar are other softwoods. In comparison with hardwoods, softwoods burn faster and produce finer ash. They may also be messy to manage, mainly pine, spruce, and balsam since they make creosote grow faster. Therefore, these are the best trees for firewood.

    Popular Softwood Types for Burning:

    When it comes to Softwood, the alternatives may not be as abundant as hardwoods. Particularly if you are searching for a low heat performance wood:


    Unseasoned, little bits can be burnt and usually produce a lovely fragrance. With a small fire and a powerful crackling sound, cedar will offer you excellent, enduring heat. You’re going to pay around $220 per cord.


    Lights readily and burns quickly with a good fire but must be fed more regularly—a fine starting fire, but only outside as it has a high percentage of sap and resin. You may purchase a complete cord for $160 as an excellent alternative to blend with other firewood.


    It must be seasoned very well and burn very hot as the harshest of all softwoods and more challenging than certain hardwoods. Perfect for combining with hardwoods and furnace good (you’ll lock the door or have a filled area with smoke). Popular because the upkeep is very minimal. You might have to pay $160 for a complete cord.

    Softwoods Burning:

    Softwoods Burning

    Their unique needles and pine fragrance help identify softwoods such as perennial trees or conifers.

    All the best trees for firewood categorized as softwoods are cedar, red pine, and fir.

    Compared to most hardwoods, Softwoods develop incredibly rapidly, which results in a much lighter, less dense piece of wood.

    Typically, this lightweight wood is highly resinous, making it easy to fire up and burn quickly and fiercely. Moreover, a softwood fire generally has big flames that crack and ignite.

    Softwoods have a quicker and light season than hardwoods, making them a popular option for kindling. In addition, cedar is one of the most excellent accessible sources of enamel. 

    One of its disadvantages is the quantity of smoke they produce and leave little or no coal behind fine ashes.

    With weak charging, Softwood is not ideal for a wood stove overnight because it will remove the fire without any warm coals to reignite it.

    In addition to burning, softwoods are ideal for campfires, as they burn fast and create a big fire. It is also wonderful to help refresh a slow-burning fire when combined with hardwood. You may anticipate being burning longer with seasoned, softwood firewood if you have a contemporary stove. Modern stoves are more efficient and decrease emissions of particulate matter than previous burners.

    What is the Value of Heat?

    As far as the heat value of wood is concerned, this is the quantity of heat generated by wood blazing. Here are the divided values:

    High heat value equals heat generated when you burn 200 to 250 gallons of fuel oil.

    Medium heat value – equal to 150-200 liters of fuel oil in the combustion

    Low heat value – equivalent to the heat produced when you burn fuel oil between 100 and 150 liters.

    The Best Trees For Firewood – The Heat Energy Compared with Firewoods: 

    The Best Trees For Firewood - The Heat Energy Compared with Firewoods

    The quantity of heat energy they generate per wood cord is the heat output of firewoods. The best trees for firewood provide 200 to 250 gallons of fuel oil with a heat energy equivalence. Includes the following:

    1. Apple
    2. Beech
    3. Beech
    4. Hickory
    5. Ironwood
    6. Maple 
    7. Oak 
    8. White Ash
    9. White Oak

    The next heat energy group is between 150 and 200 liters per cord of firewood. Included here are: 

    1. Birch 
    2. Cherry 
    3. Douglas
    4. Elm
    5. Maple
    6. Tamarack

    Each wood cord generates around 100 to 150 liters of fuel oil in the lowest heat-energy category:

    1. Alder
    2. Cedar
    3. Aspen 
    4. Cottonwood
    5. Pine
    6. Hemlock
    7. Spruce 
    8. Redwood

    Wood Should Be Dry:

    Wood Should Be Dry

    The wood you can not mark “green” or not dry enough because it produces less heat and more smoke than well dried or sawn timber (and eventually creosote). You should stack your wood for adequate air circulation, covered just at the top, to ensure it is scorched before burning for correct storage. A good thumb rule is to rotate your firewood, to minimize wood rot or waste, such as burning the older drier wood first.

    Only 15 to 25 percent of wood should have a moisture content for burning. Wood is difficult to ignite with humidity above 25 percent and burns slowly and effectively and generates too much water vapor and smoke.

    Woods That You Should Avoid:

    Woods That You Should Avoid

    Recovering firewood or other leftovers may save you a great deal of money in your house’s heating with wood. However, for health and safety concerns, certain wood products and other goods should be avoided. Many of them will create dangerous interior gases as well as environmental pollutants from chimneys. There are also hazards for your stove metals or a hazardous creosote build-up in your stove.

    One frequent myth is that any old object you can burn, but it isn’t. However, whether you plan to use a fireplace, cast iron fireplace, or a stone stove, a few wood planks are unlikely to burn.


    If wood is more than a few kilometers distant chopped and stored, say it. The first technique to introduce invasive insects or illnesses to a new area is to use firewood that has traveled too far. Even an infected wood may jeopardize a whole forest.


    Freshly sliced bodies have a high concentration of sapphire and humidity and are difficult to ignite. It will smoke awfully and burn after it’s burned. Ask the vendor if you’re unclear whether it’s the greenwood or not.

    Painted Wood:

    Elderly treated woods get treated with arsenic, and arsenic is released into the air when you burn this wood. This simple test can prevent inorganic arsenic from being burned. Furthermore, when burnt, painted forests emit toxins.


    Because of its salt component, chlorine can become carcinogens you don’t want to expose. So even if the salt can generate lovely flames, it is preferable to avoid it.

    Big Wood:

    You should recall logs with a diameter of more than 5 inches before use. However, it is a waste of time to put massive logs on a fire and divide the logs for optimal efficiency—an excellent tool to assist you in doing the job.

    Identifying your fire and the species accessible in the region are essential steps in selecting the finest firewood for you.

    The Best Trees For Firewood – Firewood Seasoning:

    The Best Trees For Firewood - Firewood Seasoning

    Now that you know the best trees for firewood, here are some recommendations about seasoning the wood and how to burn it.

    A 16-inch chainsaw is, of course, a long length for firewood chopping. Therefore, if you haven’t got that size instrument, go for my top sixteen-inch chainsaw reviews to find a lot.

    Firewood is well-spiced wood, which has eliminated the great bulk of humidity. As a result, if you see the wood-burning or hear the wood-burning or burning, there’s a great deal of moisture there. Overall, well-experienced firewood has darker extremities and noticeable spits and splits. Also, when you would place two pieces together, it will produce a characteristic “clinking” sound.

    The Best Trees For Firewood – Safety Tips:

    Carefully and sensibly use your wood stove to feed. While you need some paper to ignite your stove, just use it to fire. The overuse of initial paper will just add to the creosote accumulation.

    Of course, the safety of wood-burning appliances is a big concern. Always comply and protect the flooring with a fire-resistant floor pad with all necessary lights. In addition, make sure your house contains active carbon monoxide alerts and smoke alarms in the vicinity. 

    Frequently Asked Questions:

    Is Ash Good Firewood?

    Ash is one of the best trees for firewood because it generates a durable flame that pushes a lot of heat out of the fire. In addition, Ashcan burns well even if it’s moist or damp, which makes a fire an ideal choice.

    Is Birch Good Firewood?

    Birch is not a terrible choice when it comes to firewood, as it creates a lot of heat. So it is that untreated Birch can leave sapphires in your fireplace or stove if this choice is inconvenient. However, these might be hard to remove, so you might consider them if you have other wood choices.

    Is Cedar Good Firewood?

    Cedar burns slowly, producing good heat; thus, firewood is a suitable choice. However, it tends to divide when burnt, thus sapping might build up in your fireplace or stove if you are using this choice many times.

    Is Cherry Good Firewood?

    Cherry is an excellent choice in the season for firewood. It has an unbelievably warm long-lasting flame. If, however, the cherry does not generate good firewood in the season, it creates a significant amount of smoke and produces a high sap level.

    Is Chestnut Good Firewood?

    Chestnut is not excellent for firewood as it creates a tiny flame and does not put much heat out. Instead of chestnuts, it is recommended that you locate other forests to burn, especially when the weather is frozen if you want to warm it.

    Is Douglas Fir Good Firewood?

    It is another option for firewood which is not the proper selection. However, there is no considerable flame or heat. 

    Moreover, it does not create a large flame. Furthermore, if used frequently, you leave deposits in your stove or fireplace behind, which can be unbelievably tough to clean.

    Is Elm Good Firewood?

    If you become fully dry, Elm can be good fuel. 

    The problem is that the wood has a high humidity content, which allows it to be dry until two years before the wood is good enough.

    Is Hickory Good Firewood?

    Hickory is one of the best trees for firewood you can discover. 

    It has extremely low humidity, which means it burns and heats up for an extended period. 

    It frequently burns more warmly than maple, Oak, or other common hardwoods.

    Is Locust Good Firewood?

    You’ll want to black locust if you’re seeking another nice wood for burning. 

    It burns slowly and generates a great deal of heat and a long bed of coals, maintaining warming in every room.

    Is Maple Good Firewood?

    Maple provides good burning firewood and puts a lot of heat. It’s slow-burning. However, it can be an excellent alternative for sugar maple because it doesn’t smoke or ignite other wood selections.

    Is Oak Good Firewood?

    When Oak is seasoned well, it’s a wonderful firewood alternative. It is slow-burning, and so it lasts long and throws away a lot of heat. Moreover, it might be worth waiting for this season since many feel that oak fires can’t beat.

    Is Pine Good Firewood?

    When used as kindling, pine is better than the primary fuel. Unfortunately, it contains lots of sap; therefore, it’s unbelievably chaotic. Although it has a lovely scent, it may offer something special to your fire by adding it to a wood choice.

    Is Poplar Good Firewood?

    Poplar isn’t very thick, so it’s burning quickly, but it’s heat-burning. So it might be an excellent option to make fires at moderate temperatures early or late in the season. It can also be an ideal wood to combine with other hardwoods of quality to create a fire.

    Is Spruce Good Firewood?

    Spruce’s a softer, less solid wood. It’s burning fast and doesn’t heat much. So when it comes to adding it to your fire, it’s not an excellent idea.

    Is Sycamore Good Firewood?

    As long as sycamore has dried up thoroughly before adding it, it may be an excellent alternative for firewood. It is also likely to burn rapidly even when it’s thoroughly dried, although it throws a lot of heat away.

    Is Walnut Good Firewood?

    Walnut is a reasonably easy burning medium-density wood. It is quite aromatic, cleanses, and produces a good quantity of heat. It’s neither very fast nor too slow, and many consider it to be a central road choice because it performs a very decent job of heating a space.

    How much moisture is a lot?

    In general, if the wood is wet (also called green), it should not be placed on the fireplace or wooden plinth. It contains more than 25% humidity. It often has about 50 percent moisture if you cut fresh wood. You should season the wood before burning. However, the recommended amount is less than 25% moisture. 


    I hope you’ve discovered this if you came here to seek information on what are the best trees for firewoods.

    Many people ask, is firewood poplar? Is oak good? Is spruce good?

    So, now you got the answers and may decide which kind of trees to utilize in your house for firewood.

    Moreover, if you take a closer look, you will discover that firewood-suitable trees are abundant and that this lovely tree in your front yard is not essential to heat your home in winter.

    However, once you have selected the best tree for firewood, learn how to chop and divide the wood.

    On chilly winter nights, you will receive a warm, sparkless, smoke-free fire when you acquire a supply of Oak, hickory, maple, cherry, or black locust firewood.

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