Wood Heat- how much wood for a season? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 20 Old 12-07-2010, 10:27 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I grew up in homes that used primarily wood heat in NC. Being the oldest girl I usually helped with the littles and other chores while my Mom/Dad and brother took care of the fire, though we all helped to stack firewood : ) Now it is my first winter in my own home with me DH and DS (5.5 mo). We put a woodstove insert in the masonry fireplace this fall and got 3 cords of wood (two hardwood logs and one pallet compressed hardwood blocks). 

 

We live in NE and use oil-fired, forced hot water as backup (set at 50 to protect the pipes if we're away). We are going through the wood pretty fast. Just wondering how much wood other families use to heat their home in a season? I love the fire, and am the primary fire-keeper in our home. I like to keep it going almost always, anyone else?

 

Our wood stove can put out 79,000 BTU and heat 2000 sq ft. We have 1600 sq ft and only really heat 2/3 of it.

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#2 of 20 Old 12-07-2010, 10:47 AM
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We go through about two pick-up truck loads a winter. But we are in a warm climate.


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#3 of 20 Old 12-07-2010, 06:57 PM
 
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this is our first winter with a wood stove as our only heat source and we live in a southern but damp climate so it does get quite cold. i'm not sure how much we are going to go through but it's already way more than i had anticipated.

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#4 of 20 Old 12-07-2010, 07:04 PM
 
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We use about 4 cords.  Wood is our main source of heat, but our house is quite small.

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#5 of 20 Old 12-07-2010, 09:40 PM
 
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8 cords easy without a blink of an eye, but can burn up to 10 if we keep the back half of the house warm.

 

However, we have 2600 sqft, and it's all choppy, so some rooms will be 75 degrees and others 60, even using fans to move the heat around.

And the biggest difference I would think is we burn pine, so not nearly the BTU's that hardwood will put out

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#6 of 20 Old 01-25-2011, 08:09 PM
 
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New England, only burn hardwood and heat a large drafty home with oil back up overnight. I would be comfortable starting the season with 5 cords. We are planning a move right now and running our supply out and I didn't realize how unsettling it would be to see wood reserves low in the height of the cold.

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#7 of 20 Old 01-26-2011, 04:53 AM
 
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I heat with wood.  This is my first year doing it and it has been a learning experience to say the least! smile.gif  I live in northern PA, so it get's very cold...last week the wind chills were below zero.  My home is slightly less than 1000 sq. ft. and I'm estimating that I'll end up using around 7 cords this year by the time all is said and done in spring.  

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#8 of 20 Old 01-26-2011, 05:42 AM
 
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We plan to burn four and are right on track. It's averaged -14 this week but generally hovers between 0 and -4. A friend of ours down the road burns 20 cords and I cannot comprehend that. In order to burn that much, I'd have to be refilling every two hours and running it hot. It would be like a furnace in here.
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#9 of 20 Old 02-01-2011, 12:38 PM
 
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We heat solely with wood (wood boiler) and will go through around 16-18 cord this winter. We live in Western NY, so we need heat from October - April (sometimes May).

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#10 of 20 Old 02-05-2011, 10:42 PM
 
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I've had wood stoves as a primary (but not only) heat source and used 8-10 cords of oak/cherry mix.

 

I've had a wood finance for my only heat source and water heater and used 15 cords of well seasoned oak. 


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#11 of 20 Old 09-22-2012, 08:31 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by omamasmama View Post

this is our first winter with a wood stove as our only heat source and we live in a southern but damp climate so it does get quite cold. i'm not sure how much we are going to go through but it's already way more than i had anticipated.

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#12 of 20 Old 09-25-2012, 03:36 PM
 
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jason45 -  Please refer to our User Agreement.  Your post has been edited because personal attacks are not permitted. 




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#13 of 20 Old 09-27-2012, 08:43 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Denvergirlie View Post

8 cords easy without a blink of an eye, but can burn up to 10 if we keep the back half of the house warm.

 

I'm so glad you said that! LOL

 

I was feeling out of place. We use 8 to 12 cords. We also heat our workshop with wood, as well. Not all of the time, but when we're working. House is small, but it's imperfect, and the climate is harsh.

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#14 of 20 Old 10-15-2012, 04:17 PM
 
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When we heated exclusively with wood (my dad put in a geothermal system a couple yrs ago now), I think we'd go through ~7-9 cords of wood - which meant that we liked to have a minimu of 8-10 on hand in the fall... We're in NE OH ftr, and the house is ~1800sq feet. I think.

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#15 of 20 Old 02-18-2014, 06:27 AM
 
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We here in md use about 2 .. maybe 2.5 cords in a 1900 sq ft rancher if I really burn constantly and that's if I keep it hot.. hmm. have a woodstove insert hearth with killer blower that is pretty heavy duty and efficient. I also at same time use my alt heat sometimes at night when it gets cold.. 5 to 15 degrees.. this winters been cold one.. a cord is a lot of wood. 4 to 8 cords.. that's an awful lot.. something's inefficient.. cut my own from woodlot on property burn mostly white oak black locust and hard maple. passionate on burning wood.  8 cords for a 1800 sq hm.. wow... if you keep it hot and with seasoned wood, you shouldn't burn as much. if you let it go out. and restart, it often takes twice the amount of wood.. time of reheating stove and getting house warm. my trick is to keep hot and good bed of coals going all the time.. stop  once every other week to check chimney and such.. your answer is to make sure you have good alt heat first, buy 2 cords 4x4x8 ricked.. and let season for at least 9 mo even if the guys says, its seasoned and then burn it.. and see. every home is different.. thnks

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#16 of 20 Old 04-05-2014, 06:22 PM
 
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Last winter my family went through some 80 cubic metres of logs, these being seasoned hornbeam and ash which I'd logged and chopped at least a year before. Seasoned hornbeam and ash as you girls probably already know burn very hot, so once our wood burning stoves reached heat, only a couple of logs were needed to maintain a nice warm cosy room. Properly dried wood means less water, so burning green wood is totally out of the question. For example, green wood is 50% water, so for every kilogram of green wood one burns, one is effectively adding around a pint of water! We have central heating, but it's expensive to run all day every day. I love a nice log fire anyway. Nice and romantic, but always with a sturdy fire guard all around.

 

For kindling I split what's known as "hot pole". These are old telegraph poles that we obtained locally. Made from straight grained Nordic pine and creosoted down the years, once chopped to a desired length, they would split straight and neat - perfect for fast fire lighting. And finely cut tapers were just lovely for our parents lighting their Christmas cigars. Cough cough!

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#17 of 20 Old 04-06-2014, 10:04 AM
 
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Last winter my family went through some 80 cubic metres of logs,

 

Wow, I just did the math and that's 22 cords. That seems like a huge amount! Do you live in a castle? :rotflmao We are a family of 5-6 living in the mountains in Canada in an 1800 sq.ft. home and use just over a quarter as much (about 6 cords). And we only use about 50% hardwood since we don't have many hardwood species growing around here. We have a high-efficiency airtight woodstove, which is pretty standard around here. When we bought it twenty years ago it cut our wood consumption in half, and thus it paid for itself in about 2-3 years.

 

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#18 of 20 Old 04-06-2014, 11:25 AM
 
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Wow, I just did the math and that's 22 cords. That seems like a huge amount! Do you live in a castle? :rotflmao We are a family of 5-6 living in the mountains in Canada in an 1800 sq.ft. home and use just over a quarter as much (about 6 cords). And we only use about 50% hardwood since we don't have many hardwood species growing around here. We have a high-efficiency airtight woodstove, which is pretty standard around here. When we bought it twenty years ago it cut our wood consumption in half, and thus it paid for itself in about 2-3 years.

 

Miranda

Yes, Miranda, said house is enormous; embarrassingly so. :eyesroll  It's in Gloucestershire, a Grade II listed property belonging to my aunt. The property has 3 wood burning stoves in its 2 reception rooms plus one in the lounge. The property has - needs - its own wood. Hahaa - it's said 'The Englishman's home is his castle', except we're all wimmin'.  :rotflmao(By the way, aren't these emoticons just fun?!). All three stoves are built by Hunter,  real bigguns. Last time I was there I risked aunty's wrath and did a fry up on the top of it. Best bacon and eggs I ever ate! :D

 

Far away down south in the West Sussex Downs is our farmhouse. There it's lovely and cosy with just the one stove and we love it. I dislike the Gloucestshire house. I think it's haunted. Perhaps if I could train its resident ghost to cut the logs, then maybe it could stoke all the fires and bear the backache without complaint. 

 

I have a close friend, Lilly, whose parents live in the mountains of Canada. I can only imagine the harsh winter you've recently had. It must have been horrendous as Lilly's winter was and her parents are almost off-grid. Do you also burn coal?

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#19 of 20 Old 04-06-2014, 12:37 PM
 
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I can only imagine the harsh winter you've recently had. It must have been horrendous 

 

Our winter out west here wasn't unusual at all, not like the harsh cold experienced in the eastern part of North America. No one burns coal here: the alternative is typically either electric or propane. We have a back-up propane furnace for when we're away: it keeps the pipes from freezing. 

 

The take-home message is that the amount of wood one needs depends on several variables: to a great extent on the size and insulation of one's home, to a great extent on the climate one lives in, and to a lesser extent on the type of wood being burned and the type of wood burning appliance it's being burned in. Anywhere from 4 to 22 cords in this survey.

 

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#20 of 20 Old 04-06-2014, 01:58 PM
 
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Yes, Miranda, said house is enormous; embarrassingly so. :eyesroll  It's in Gloucestershire, a Grade II listed property belonging to my aunt. The property has 3 wood burning stoves in its 2 reception rooms plus one in the lounge. The property has - needs - its own wood. Hahaa - it's said 'The Englishman's home is his castle', except we're all wimmin'.  :rotflmao(by the way, aren't these emoticons just fun?!)

 

Far away down south in the West Sussex Downs is our farmhouse. There it's lovely and cosy with just the one stove and we love it. I dislike the Gloucestshire house. I think it's haunted. Perhaps if I could train its resident ghost to cut the logs, then maybe it could stoke all the fires.

 

I have a clopse friend whose parents live in the mountains of Canada. I can only imagine the harsh winter you've recently had. Do you also burn coal?

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