How to Split and Stack Firewood

Wood burning fireplace

If you have a Massachusetts wood burning fireplace or woodstove do you have any interest in splitting and stacking your own firewood? If so, buying wood is not something that you are going to consider. Although you may not know the first thing about doing this, it is not rocket science. That being said, there are a few tips and techniques to keep in mind to ensure your success.

Above all else, you must make sure your firewood is dry when the cold weather finally arrives. If not, you are going to find it extremely difficult (if not impossible) to use the firewood to your advantage.

Typically, it takes firewood one season to dry out. For this reason, if you plan on using the wood to heat your home in the winter, it is important that you split and stack it sometime during the end of summer or beginning of fall.

If you are going to split your own firewood, you can do so by hand or with the help of a hydraulic wood splitter. Either way, the end result is going to be the same. However, if you are splitting by hand, it is going to take you much more time and effort.

The difficulty of splitting wood will vary based on the species. For example, White Ash splits relatively easily due to the fact that there are not many interconnecting fibers. On the other side of things, Hickory is extremely hard, which makes it difficult to split.

You should never burn green wood, as this causes an abundant amount of soot that leads to creosote sticking to the inside of your chimney. Along with this, green wood does not burn nearly as hot.


It is one thing to split firewood. It is another thing entirely to store it properly. As noted above, you don’t want to leave your firewood sitting out in the rain. If you do this, it will not be ready for you to burn when the time comes.

Your two best options for storing firewood involve keeping it in a shed or some other under roof storage. Either way, you are able to speed up the drying process and ensure that it does not get wet in the futureBurn dry firewood.

Also, you must get the wood off the ground. This is best done by stacking on wood runners or pallets.

There is nothing wrong with having an opening in the structure that houses your firewood, as this can help improve air flow on warmer days. For example, wood sheds are intended to be left open on the sides.

The first time you attempt to split and stack firewood, you may run into some challenges. However, once you are experienced, this will come more naturally.

At JB Mohler Masonry we build traditional hand crafted masonry chimneys and fireplaces. We build fireplaces in Massachusetts that are meant to produce heat!


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