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How much wood do you burn in a day?

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by Slow1, Dec 6, 2008.

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  1. Slow1

    Slow1 Minister of Fire

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    OK, I know this is going to vary quite a bit depending on a LOT of factors, perhaps we can lay them out when folks report out. I'm new to wood burning so I'm trying to figure out if my burn rate is anywhere near "normal". So - here is what I'm looking at for the last few days - note that I'm not yet up to "loading it chock full at night and letting it rip" so I would guess I'm burning somewhere near 18hrs a day.

    Stove: VC Encore NC
    Day1 high/Low 43/27 splits burned: 25
    Day2 high/low 54/34 splits burned: 27

    Note that I actually burned a few bio-bricks in there that I count as a single split each but I'm trying to keep this somewhat simplified... if folks are interested in that level of detail I can give it too...

    Thanks in advance for any info!

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  2. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa Minister of Fire

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    Splits vary in size so about an armload or two.
  3. Slow1

    Slow1 Minister of Fire

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    Yeah... too many variables. Armloads vary too eh? Weigh it and then folks will say "water content affects weight"... measure it by volume and objection will be "how tight is it stacked" and "how long are they"... I'm just trying to find some sort of objective baseline here... Is it totally hopeless?
  4. Jersey Fire Bug

    Jersey Fire Bug New Member

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    I have a small Regency Fireplace insert and I load approx. 4 times daily with 4 splits.
    So lets see, that would give us about 16 splits per day. This is with outside temps averaging about High 45/25 low.
    As soon as I have a roaring fire going I damp it 1/2 way and let it go to coals from there.
    I usually maintain about 73 deg inside the house except when I go to bed.
    I hope this helps you alittle. I am also in my first yr of doing this so I also have no idea if I am burning too much or not.
    I've found that you just have to experiment during the weekend on getting better burn times. It seems to me like you are
    burning alot.
  5. Diabel

    Diabel Minister of Fire

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    25 splits :bug: oh I see bricks...

    3 splits (cord wood) 3 times (24hrs cycle)

    3 splits (cord wood) 4 times (24hrs cycle) when winter comes :)
  6. stockdoct

    stockdoct New Member

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    There are so many variables, its hard to compare anyone's results with anyone elses......and I too am new to this game and learning what my stove can do.

    But here I go:

    When we were in temps of 40/20 in Illinois, I was loading my firebox with a full armload of wood, about 30 pounds of dried mixed wood, letting it die down, varying my firebox temperatures from 600 down to 250 at the point I reload. And I reloaded about 3 times each day. So I'd estimate about 90-100 pounds of firewood each day, about enough to fill a wheelbarrow as full as it gets.


    This week in Illinois, the temps are peaking out at 20 degrees in the day and 2 degrees each night. Darn cold! I'm constantly throwing logs into the firebox, and when I wake up to pee at 4 am I fill 'er up again. To keep the house warm with minimal assistance from the furnace, I'm keeping my firebox temperature CONSTANTLY at around 400-600 degrees and the fan blowing just a little louder than I'd like. Even then, my kids have opted for an electric space heater next to their beds upstairs, cuz their rooms are too cold. I'm burning 150+ pounds of wood each day, probably close to 2 wheelbarrows full of wood per 24 hours.

    But a disclaimer from a newbie: I may be throwing too much heat up my chimney. Initially, I recognized that to achieve the highest temperatures, you can keep the damper wide open and thats how I keep my stove going most of the time. I never considered that I might achieve similiar stove temperatures with the damper 25% -50% closed with a slower burn rate, so I'm trying that now to conserve a little wood, admittedly with a little lower stove temperatures.


    Generally, if we want to compare burn rates, I think the metric that works best is "pounds of dried wood". Certainly, wet wood will be heavier, but who is really burning wet wood? Most of us here will be burning wood with a water content of probably 20-25%, so the poundage will only vary (at most) by 25%. "Splits" or "armloads" or "wheelbarrows full" may vary much more than that. I took a cheap bathroom scale out to the wood pile and am learning a little about how much I burn that may help me estimate better for future winters how much I'll need.

    Good luck!
  7. Slow1

    Slow1 Minister of Fire

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    Ok to clarify - I put in 3 bricks and counted them as splits so it was actually 22 splits and 3 bricks to get to 25 total (I have started using the bricks for startup). I suspect that I'm burning too much wood here you see... thus the core of my questioning. I see you have the same stove so I'm really interested in your experience here.

    I have tried to slow down the burn rate, but even with the air fully 'off' it chews through the wood darn fast. I get a good bed of coals going (nowhere near the 3" suggested btw) then put three splits in, and in about 2hrs they are basically gone to coals -and not a lot of them really. Peak temps in stove are around 550 range (center of griddle). I engage damper as soon as it reaches 450 and get a nice rumble IF I have put coals near the back. If I don't have coals near back I get smoke it seems.

    Edit: one more thing - I'm now almost 2 weeks into wood burning so... take that into consideration here! :)
  8. Prada

    Prada Member

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    Well I have no clue about how much my wood weighed that I burned but I can 'guesstimate' that I put around 24 splits in during a 24 hour burn. Dang that's a split an hour! I can't hold my stove down either. No mater what I do. We just replaced the door gasket too to be sure of no air leaks. Since we just got the stove during the middle of last winter, we haven't got all that much wood on hand yet and at this rate we are going to run out of wood before the season is over.
  9. Diabel

    Diabel Minister of Fire

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    I would post a question "extending my burn" :lol: (sorry I had to laugh) or something like that in the hearth forum, lots people with these stoves post there & regularly contribute with great info.

    Honestly, you s/b getting decent heat from this stove for at least 5-6 hrs between reloads. Hint...ash is great insulator...only remove every 4-5 days if burning 24/7. Also, search "everburn" or look at Traders video with his DW...it will help ;-)
  10. TMonter

    TMonter Minister of Fire

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    I generally burn about 4-6 large splits in my 3100i which is about 1 to 1.25 24" rounds 16" long when the weather is below 30 degrees. Above 30 the wood goes slower than that depending on how hot I want the house.
  11. joesat78

    joesat78 New Member

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    I'm burning close to 9-10 splits medium sized (few might be small and few large ones) everyday with temperature averaging between 40/30. But, I start burning only at 5:15 in the evening and the home temperature is around 50 then. It takes a couple of hours to get to 68 and I throttle a little bit to 72-73 before going to bedIn the morning the room temperature is around 63. This effort takes 9-10 medium sized splits.

    I dont know whether I'm burning too much or not... any ideas from experienced wood burners would help.
  12. Jersey Fire Bug

    Jersey Fire Bug New Member

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    I have the Regency I1100 and your schedule sounds exactly like mine except I start my stove at
    3a.m. when I get home from work. I burn about 16 splits a day during weekends but about 9-10 splits on work days.
    So I would say we are about right !!
  13. chad3

    chad3 Feeling the Heat

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    With the Oslo, getting a wheelbarrow full every other day. When we are here, getting about 3 hours per 2 fairly good splits. Overnight is 2 large (1/4 rounds out of a very good 12+ log) and a few to add in. Will have coals in the morning.
    Not the same stove by any means, but figured I would tell you about bigger stoves.
    As a side, the room is off of the true house and it is usually about 90+ degrees.
    Chad
  14. Slow1

    Slow1 Minister of Fire

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    Thanks for the info folks! This is exactly the sort of discussion I was hoping to read. It helps me get a feel for what is sort of "normal".

    I just did the "$ bill test" on my doors on a whim and found interesting results - no resistance at all on bottom of doors. I'm going to post info in the Hearth Room and see what folks think/suggest about this. If this is resulting in a lot of extra air that may explain faster burn rates eh?

    Additional note - when I first posted this I thought I was in the Hearth Room (oops, forgot where I was reading) but it seems to fit here too...
  15. Rockey

    Rockey Minister of Fire

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    I burn probably about 25 or splits a day also between two stoves in order to heat with 100% wood heat. It has been unseasonably colder so far this year. The 25 splits was an estimate but I am going to keep track tomorrow and actually count the number it takes to keep our hous in the lower 70's.
  16. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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  17. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    Wright now its pretty darn cold running 17 cu ft in 24 hrs. Almost a cord a week!
  18. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa Minister of Fire

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    Of course, whatever unit of measure you use someone will take it to a finer granularity.

    I dunno... it still seems like you're comparing apples to oranges.

    Yes, I was deliberately vague with my armload measurement to prove a point. I could have used "sling" or "wheelbarrow" too but that's no better. Day/night temperatures, the size of your house (by tax assesment vs. real estate assesment), how well it is insulated, how warm the whole house is, whether wood heat supplements other forms, etc. are all variables to consider.

    For a fair comparison, cubic feet and species are a good start. I'm burning around 4 cu ft of Black Ash per day to heat 2055 sq ft (according to the tax man). I have a 1 - 1/2 storey home with R40 cathedral ceiling and R30 walls. Right now my wood isn't as dry as it could be so I'm losing efficiency there. I have a gas furnace that will come on in the morning before I get the stove back up to a good burn. If the wife is out and about during the day, the stove may starve and the furnace run more. I burn between 4 and 6 cord in a given year. I usually cull a couple of cord of lower grade wood off my property as well that goes into the stove.
  19. Prada

    Prada Member

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    I really don't know how to get any more specific about how much wood I burn a day. I mean I am estimating 24 splits of mixed hardwoods to heat an approx 3000 sq ft home. The only time the fire burns out is if we leave here for a really long time and that hardly ever happens. We have Propane as a back up source of heat but it has not come on this season at all. It's really been unseasonably cold and in the single digits outside right now, but a cozy 78 in the stove room. The farthest end of the house from the stove room has a couple of bedrooms that are around 68, but they are honestly pretty far away in this sprawled out single story ranch style home. I guess the amount of wood that is used would depend on the lengths of splits (mine are 16) and the diameter (not sure what mine are), what type of wood, how well seasoned it is and how tight our homes are (mine is insulated pretty good with new windows) vs. Temps outside etc. and how much space we are trying to keep heated at comfortable temperatures.
    I wouldn't know how else to calculate........
    :-S
  20. Slow1

    Slow1 Minister of Fire

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    I was trying to point out in the beginning that I recognize this is not a scientifically accurate data collection exercise. However, I think that there is some value to see trends - I'm getting a decent feel from reading this. If nothing else I am realizing that there is quite a wide variance.

    As an aside - I would imagine that for a given stove, there must be a maximum amount of wood that is run through it by experienced folks who have found the 'sweet spot' in terms of efficient heat output assuming the stove is functioning properly. I'm sort of hoping to get a feel for where that number may be as well...
  21. vtdavid

    vtdavid New Member

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    Currently, 4 to 6, 4" to 6" splits 18" long, three times per day. After the stove gets up to temp, I turn in down with the draft open just slightly more than fully closed up to half a lever width, about 3/8". When it gets real cold, it will get 6 splits (full) 4 times per day with the lever open one width 3/4". (Yes I measured it). Alderlea T6, 3 cu ft firebox, 97,000 btu's heating 1900 well insulated square ft. The stove is in the basement with an open stairway to the main floor. The chimney is a straight shot up through the house exiting close to the peak of the roof. Waiting for snow as the house is easier to heat with that blanket around the outside. Wood is two years split, stacked and covered.
  22. madrone

    madrone Minister of Fire

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    I've noticed over the years that I often run at a rate of roughly 1 per hour, 3"-6" size. If I load 5 or 6, I get 5 - 6 hours of solid heat. I still get warm coals after that, and it definitely varies by size and wood type, but I load as if it's one per hour.
  23. Kipstr

    Kipstr New Member

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    I weigh my wood befor burning, the past week and half about 60-70 Lbs. per day. Wood mouisture about 24%. I fire once a day to heat the storage and the house load (2450 sq. ft.) and a lot of hot water.

    I read somewhere 1 pound of wood = about 8000 BTUs. My wood is split on the small side, 5"-6" round split in half, a bigger wedge 4x4x5 weighing 6-10 Lbs. For me a big split is 5x5x7 weighing about 12+ Lbs.

    On Nov 27 I measured 1/4 cord of wood 32 cu. ft. I have had a fire every day and it should last Dec. 10 that's 14 days.

    That's how much wood I burn.
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