Fuel Choice

Knowledgebase > OPERATION > Fuel Choice

Burning properly cured hardwood fuel will help your fires burn cleanly, which will minimize creosote buildup.  Moisture content in solid fuels consumes a significant amount of heat and results in cooler fires and lower flue temperatures.  The colder the flue temperatures, the more creosote will condense inside the flue.

Fuels like kiln dried hardwood and pressed logs (except the ones that contain wax) are relatively expensive fuel sources, but are ideal low-moisture fuels for your wood stove.  If you plan to burn low and slow overnight, using a more expensive low-moisture fuel during that time can help reduce creosote buildup.

Bulk cordwood is a good fuel option if you have the space to allow it to cure properly.  Most firewood dealers deliver wood before it is completely cured, so you should plan on ordering a supply at least a year before you need it.  If in doubt, using a firewood moisture meter is the best way to ensure your fuel is properly cured.

Softwood has a lower BTU content than hardwood, but it can still be burned cleanly as long as you keep your flue gases up to temperature.

Pitchy, resinous pines and “fatwood” make great firestarters, but can cause excessive creosote deposits if burned in bulk.  Avoid using resinous wood as bulk firewood if possible, and inspect and sweep your chimney more often when resinous wood can’t be avoided.

Scroll to Top