what woods you should not burn in fireplace or wood stove

YWPD

Administrator
Staff member
Pressure treated lumber, railroad ties, particle board, plywood, or any wood that is treated with creosote, glue, or other chemicals, because that will be harmful to your health. Avoid wood that leaves a lot of creosote in the chimney (green wood, palm trees, evergreens.)
 

Bob Hedgecutter

Moderator
Staff member
Pressure treated lumber, railroad ties, particle board, plywood, or any wood that is treated with creosote, glue, or other chemicals, because that will be harmful to your health. Avoid wood that leaves a lot of creosote in the chimney (green wood, palm trees, evergreens.)

Heck, if I never burned wood from evergreens, I would likely freeze to death over Winter!
 

Nutball

Active member
Best to burn pine and similar dirty woods very hot with lots of extra air, or burn it very hot, but in very small amounts at a time. At least keeping the chimney hot enough with plenty of extra air too will keep the creosote from condensing, and help any buildup to oxidize.
 

Bob Hedgecutter

Moderator
Staff member
Trees must grow a whole lot different over that side of the Pacific- 90% of the wood I burn to heat our home and supply to heat others homes is evergreen, Pine or Cyprus usually- well seasoned it burns just fine, heats well and does not gum up the flues.
Dampeners open, closed and anywhere in between, firebox empties- you fill it up with more well seasoned Pine, so we burn it hot, we burn it cold and large amounts at a time- does not seem to harm anything nor clog anything up any worse than anything else you care to burn.
We don't have a lot of choice- we cannot legally go out and cut down native hardwoods or semi hardwoods any more.
 

Nutball

Active member
What model of wood burner do you have? Gov. regulations around here have required new wood stove designs that have a well insulated fire box to trap heat in for a hotter fire, and have air inlets up top that help better burn the wood gas. Most models are single burn rate design with no adjustments, or at least no real damper, so a person doesn't have to think how to burn properly, just toss the wood in. I have wondered how easily overwhelmed the secondary burn can be by very resinous woods like pine and spruce because just a single piece of such wood in my stove fills it with lots of sooty fire, but my stove is a model year just before any regulations started taking effect.
 

Bob Hedgecutter

Moderator
Staff member
Ah, good old clean air regulations- that is why they are phasing out domestic coal fires over here.
Heck no! No insulated fireboxes and unregulated air flow over here.
Plate steel welded fireboxes with glass front doors and asbestos rope gaskets, firebrick interior and grate bases for multifuel burners.
Get it going right, dim the lights and the top of the firebox will be glowing! :LOL:
 

Nutball

Active member
I have such a strong draft, that I don't have to worry much about buildup in the chimney, especially if I get a hot fire going occasionally, which I do. The steel pipe is chimney fire resistant anyway. I like to have slow long fires when I need to, so that means potential smoldering and dirty burning, but I do a cleaning cycle every once in a while, where I burn small wood with the damper open, door cracked open, and frequently spraying Anti Creo Soot, which does a great job of keeping the chimney very clean.

I like to think of the regulations this way: The government has a goal in mind, they need engineers to use science to find a solution. In the end you can forget the government part and enjoy new technology that can be used to make better wood burners, and perhaps the new 2 stroke port designs that help moderns saws make so much power could be thanks to such government funded engineers. It's possible right? Then you filter out the undesirable parts of the technology like non adjustable carbs, or non adjustable air/dampers, and end up with an enjoyable high performance piece of engineering.
 

YWPD

Administrator
Staff member
Examples of particle pollution (fine particulate matter or PM2.5) that is very harmful include
  • carbon monoxide;
  • Nitrogen oxides;
  • volatile organic compounds (VOCs);
  • black carbon;
  • air toxics, such as benzene;
  • carbon dioxide;
  • methane;
  • other pollutants.
Who knew (other than carbon monoxide)?

These are mostly outdoor pollutants from wood burning emissions, although I'm sure the health risks are indoors also.

Emissions from wood smoke can cause
  • coughing,
  • wheezing,
  • asthma attacks,
  • heart attacks,
  • lung cancer.
I read it on a lung site and on EPA site.

Instead of wood, EPA recommends solar panels and electric heat, or geothermal heat pumps. Isn't that expensive? I mean, I think the reason for wood burning for heat is due to ease, availability and affordability. Are we ruining the planet? Actually just by being here, we're ruining the planet, so what should we do? #scratchinghead
 
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