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Preparing Your Fuel Supply for the Fireplace

Homeowners in Minneapolis are nearly ready to start their fireplaces and feel the cozy warmth they can bring. But first, they’ll have to make sure they have the right fuel for the job. Is your firewood ready for use in your fireplace? Check out our guide for preparing your fuel supply, and don’t start your fireplace unless you feel confident you have properly sized, well-seasoned firewood on hand.

Chopping it down to the right size

Of course, you’ll have to make sure the firewood actually fits in your firebox. Chop the length of the firewood down to no less than about 3 inches shorter than the length of your firebox.

Then, you’ll need to split the wood. A maul and a chopping block will work best for this job, and you’ll want to bring down the maul from overhead straight through the firewood. Split it into halves or quarters, or so that the widest part is no more than 6 inches.

Stacking firewood

You’ll need to stack your firewood to give it proper time and space to dry. We recommend putting it in the sun and ensuring it’s exposed to wind, which means you shouldn’t use a cover that’s too tight. Allow for proper air circulation by stacking in single well-spaced rows.

Giving it time

You should wait about 6 months before using fresh firewood, so it has time to dry, or season. Firewood that has not been seasoned can be unsafe, allowing creosote, a flammable substance, to build up in the chimney, which means a higher possibility of fire spreading to the home.

Not sure whether your firewood is already dry? You can try a visual test—checking to see if there are cracks at the end, which likely mean it’s dry enough. Or you can test wood over a flame for 15 minutes. If 3 sides burn successfully in that time, it’s dry enough.

Contact 2nd Generation Chimneys, Inc. Get a chimney inspection in Minneapolis this fall!

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