If you buy your logs from Bertie’s you will know that your firewood is guaranteed to be nice and dry and ready to burn, but are there are a few simple checks that can help you decided if a log is dry or still damp.
1. Dry wood is lighter than damp wood, the more it dries out the lighter it will get.
2. Dry wood tends to shed it’s bark and the end grain has cracks or splits.
3. When stuck against each other dry logs ‘ring’ and wet logs tend to ‘thud’.
4. Dry wood when split feels warm and dry, wet wood feels cool and damp.
5. Dry wood lights easily, burns brightly and gives off lots of heat.
6. Damp wood is difficult to light, hisses, spits and smokes, giving out little heat.
If in doubt you can always check how dry firewood is by buying a moisture meter. Ideally your firewood should have a moisture content of around 20% to make sure you are getting as much heat for your money as possible.
At Bertie’s we often get asked if you can save money by switching to wood fuel from other forms of heating. The answer is yes you could, but how much will depend on what fuel you are currently using for heating, how often you use your stove instead of other forms of heating and the quality of the wood fuel you use.
The latest figures from the Nottingham Energy Partnership, an independent body that monitors and compares energy prices, shows that the cost per kilowatt for seasoned logs is currently around 5.3p when the efficiency of the stove is taken into account. Given that Bertie’s logs are kiln dried to an average moisture content of 20% we would like to think that Bertie’s kiln dried logs should work out cheaper than ordinary seasoned logs. Here’s a list of common fuels with the price per kilowatt after the efficiency of the appliance is taken into account, prices relate to December 2014.
Electricity – 16.0p
Mains gas – 4.2p
Oil – 6.5p
LGP – 6.6p
Smokeless fuel – 9.2p
Seasoned logs – 5.3p
If you would like Ed to artfully stack your firewood for you then we would be pleased to quote. Owls are Ed’s favourite images at the moment, prices start from only £2000.00 (logs extra).
If you don’t need your logs stacked quite so artistically, don’t forget Bertie’s offer a Log Stacking Service to take all the strain and pain away from this chore.
At Bertie’s we try and keep our environmental impact as low as possible, we only use locally sourced coppiced timber for firewood production and use the waste wood from our log processing line to fire our log drying kilns. We use software to map the most efficient route for our delivery trucks to take each day and all the timber hauled into the yard is brought on the largest possible vehicles, thus reducing lorry miles. All our packaging is returnable and reusable or recyclable.
Every Summer Bertie’s likes to give you the chance to get your log store all stacked up and ready for Winter.
This year you can order a delivery of Bertie’s Kiln Dried Logs at last years prices, plus receive a Jumbo bag of kindling, a net of wood chunks, a bag of wood briquettes and a bag of natural firelighters for FREE.
This offer applies to deliveries made before31st august 2014, for more details or to place your order please go to http://www.bertieswoodfuel.co.uk
Coppicing Chestnut by Hand
When you are out driving or walking around the Kent countryside you might come across a bit of woodland that looks like a Hurricane has just ripped through it. Don’t worry about that though, as it’s probably just a bit of coppicing, a centuries old wood land management technique that helps our local woodlands and wildlife thrive.
The Romans originally brought Chestnut over from Spain to provide fuel for the iron industry in the Weald and the woodlands they planted have been used by generations in Kent to supply everything from hop poles to fence posts, pit props, the raw material for paper production and of course firewood. Bertie’s helps carry on this tradition by using locally coppiced timber for all our firewood production.
When a wood is coppiced the trees are cut down to about a foot of so from the ground and this allows them to regrow (think of pruning roses on a giant scale). Coppicing usually takes place every 12 – 15 years in blocks around the wood and this allows many types of flora and fauna to flourish during the coppicing cycle. If the trees are not cut back regularly they tend to grow too large and can ‘topple’ over and die, so coppicing is a very important practice that helps keep our Kent woodlands healthy.