1. Welcome Hearth.com Guests and Visitors - Please enjoy our forums!
    Hearth.com GOLD Sponsors who help bring the site content to you:
    Hearthstone Soapstone and Cast-Iron stoves( Wood, Gas or Pellet Stoves and Inserts)

Wood Stack Against the side of house?

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by prajna101, Nov 19, 2009.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. prajna101

    prajna101 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2009
    Messages:
    137
    Loc:
    Portland OR
    I live in the city and dont have a very big yard. Seriously its only about 900 sq ft total. I have kids and a family, so I cant just take over the place, it still must look neat and clean. The best place to put wood is under a large overhang on the south side of my house. Its only about 3 feet to the neighbors yard. So I want to stack directly against the house, in one row about 30 feet long, 8 feet high. That should hold about 1.5 cords or so.

    Its kind of inconvenient to put it there, so I have been slowly filling it up with the wettest hardwoods that are fresh harvested. I figure it can sit there until next winter to season.

    My big question is that I am worried that it may infest my house with bugs. I got to thinking about it when I split a chuck of red oak that was filled with termites. I searched through the pile for other pieces of the offending tree and scanned for holes and such in pieces of wood that may be infested with little nasties. But I may have missed some.

    I have seen pictures of houses completely surrounded by wood stacks. How much of a danger is that to my existing home?

    todd

    Helpful Sponsor Ads!





  2. Gazdik

    Gazdik Member

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2009
    Messages:
    50
    Loc:
    NE Ohio
    Myself I would say not to do it...Two reasons..The bugs and the fact that you should get air movement and sun all around your wood to season it properly. I do see people put it all around their house around here...I live in a development so my space is also limited but I put mine at the back of the yard in neat stacks....But hey if its all you can do then what the hell. I would try to stay about a foot off your house so some air gets around it. Just my two sense...Don't even know if its worth that..lol
  3. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2008
    Messages:
    6,207
    Loc:
    Carver, MA.
    Personally I would never do what you are doing! It's a bad idea to place anything right on top of a house including shrubs etc.. Moisture will be trapped and could lead to a host of problems from mildew, rot, termites, carpenter ants etc.. If you can provide an air space it would probably also help the wood season better.. I am sure others will disagree with me but this my opinion..

    Good Luck,
    Ray
  4. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2008
    Messages:
    6,770
    Loc:
    Syracuse NY
    My two sheds are right against the house. However, wood only gets stacked in them after it is dry. If you go ahead and stack wet wood 8 ft high, be careful as it shrinks to make sure the stack remains stable. That is a lot of mass that high off the ground that could do damage to loved ones and property.
  5. Tony H

    Tony H New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    Messages:
    1,156
    Loc:
    N Illinois
    There is definitely a good chance you will attract bugs and mice to the house. Many of the bugs are just a nuisance spiders and earwigs but the termites and carpenter ants can certainly do a number on the house. I had a couple of buddies rent a place where the owner and downstairs neighbor that had wood stack all along the back of the house and the mice they had were incredible. Most times they call for keeping the wood 30' or further from the house to reduce the chance for infesting the house.
    What are the possibilities of stacking the wood along the fence line ? Do you have or could you put in some privacy fence to hide the wood.
    If you can't find any other location I guess making a barrier of some type would help. Concrete and stone seem like the best possibility. I would think if you dug down 4 -6 inches and filled with stone from the foundation out about 36" and leave a 6 to 12 " space from the exterior wall of the house and use some block , cement board or ? to build up a 6or 8' tall barrier of non wood material. You probably also would have to extend the wall out on each end to prevent any critters going around the end. The space between the exterior of the house and back of barrier you could dump some bug killer and maybe some yummy mouse treats to help keep anything from getting to the house.
    I am sure some others will have some ideas that will help.
  6. PeteD

    PeteD New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2008
    Messages:
    184
    Loc:
    Northeastern MA
    I vote "no way", moisture and bugs as the others said.

    Pete
  7. prajna101

    prajna101 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2009
    Messages:
    137
    Loc:
    Portland OR
    There is a fence on the property line, so I think that if the pile collapses, it would get slowed down by that, if not stopped all together.

    I have been dumping rocks in this space for some time. So there is about 6 inches of depth of baseball sized and smaller rocks between where the wood is and the ground. Perhaps some mouse killer stuff there would be good. We have rats in the area but that is just life in the city. Every once in a while I find a dead one that climbed into a bucket full of water. Yuck, but my house seems to be empty of little critters. I guess I dont really care if there are furry guys in the crawl space but its really clean. Spiders and earwigs dont really bother me or my family. Its just carpenter ants and termites and things that will eat my home that I dont want. I am not a fan of chemicals but have thought of spraying something along that side of the house before the big stack goes in.

    I know its not ideal drying place, but its in the sun, out of the rain, and we have MASSIVE wind coming out of the columbia river gorge. Even with one side against the house stuff will dry eventually. I have a small stove so my splits are short and tiny anyway and that certainly helps.

    I may have to give up this idea, but that pretty much limits me to about two cords stacked at any time. Augmented with some bearbricks, I can barely get through a winter let alone season for next year. I really need to find a friend with some storage space to help scrounge with.
  8. quads

    quads Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2005
    Messages:
    2,746
    Loc:
    Central Sands, Wisconsin
    I wouldn't stack unseasoned wood against the house. I keep one month's worth of seasoned firewood on the porch during the winter for easy access, but that's bug-free and it's freezing most of the time. Plus, no single split stays there for more than a month before it goes in the stove. Otherwise, my closest firewood stacks are 50 feet away and the farthest ones are nearly a mile away stacked out in the woods where it was cut.
  9. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2007
    Messages:
    27,815
    Loc:
    Michigan
    Neither will I stack wood next to the house. Like quads, we stack some on the porch during the winter but that is all. If some wood is still there in the spring, it gets moved back to the regular stack.
  10. Wood Duck

    Wood Duck Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2009
    Messages:
    4,164
    Loc:
    Central PA
    Assuming you HAVE to stack wood against the house, I think you should try to leave at least a narrow gap between the wood and the house. Can you create some sort of rack that would leave a space of even 8 inches or a foot? Maybe you'd get some air movement, and you would create a gap that termites and carpenter ants would hav to deal with instead of them just chewing from the firewood directly into the house.
  11. prajna101

    prajna101 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2009
    Messages:
    137
    Loc:
    Portland OR
    OK, since I must squeak out every inch of space I can, how about this.

    I think I may make a rack to get the wood entirely off the ground by a foot or so. I have some left over treated wood that I can use. Then I also have a stand off from the house by a few inches. Finally I think I will divide my stacks into sections, so to single bundle of wood will be too much mass touching any other bundle of wood.

    Think of it as racks that are 6 ft tall, 6 ft wide and one row of 1 ft splits elevated off the ground by 1 ft. Not touching the house or the fence or the ground or the other racks.

    That way I can hold 36 cu ft of wood in each rack.

    If I am very careful which wood I put in there, ie stuff that looks healthy and clean. Do you think this would cause much concern.

    I agree with everyone here, I would rather not put the wood there, but I dont have much choice if I want to get a year ahead. So what are the ways of reducing my risk?

    todd
  12. kalevi

    kalevi Member

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2007
    Messages:
    167
    Loc:
    Ottawa Ontario
    I have stacks against both my north side wall and south side wall. I have a 1' space between the stacks and the wall. I put patio stones down on which I put either bricks or 2x4s on which the splits go to keep an air gap under the stacks. Here we don't have termites and my house is brick and concrete on these two walls. The wood on the south side of the house dries really quickly in the summer.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page