burning green oak

ahoy30 Posted By ahoy30, Jan 28, 2018 at 1:38 PM

  1. ahoy30

    ahoy30
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    Hey all. So my girlfriend seems to be under the impression that it's ok to mix green and dry wood in the stove, whereas I've always thought burning wet wood really isn't that great of an idea. I mean, yeah you can burn anything.( She's afraid she's going to run out ). Thoughts?
     
  2. jetsam

    jetsam
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    Been there, done that. You can, but you shouldn't.

    If you have to, you're going to have lower firebox temperatures, and more creosote. Inspect and sweep frequently, and expect disappointing stove performance. Reserve an extra half hour to light a new fire with green oak. :p

    I plugged a mesh chimney cap in three days once, burning very low with green wood.
     
  3. venator260

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    The thing that bugs me about burning green wood is that it doesn't put off as much heat per unit of wood.

    Cutting, splitting, stacking and hauling wood is hard work. I don't want to do more because the wood was wet. So I (and many others here) put in the work to get ahead and to always be burning dry wood. It's an investment of time whose interest is much less time cutting in the future, as well as the aggravation of slow starts, less heat, more frequent reloads and the effort of cleaning the chimney more often.
     
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  4. begreen

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    Some have done it in a no-choice situation, but it's going to cool down the fire and make a mess of the chimney. If this is already a cold chimney it could cost more for cleaning out stage 3 creosote or a chimney fire than using the main heating system.
     
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  5. Sailrmike

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    How green is the oak? In a pinch, I've burned 4 month seasoned oak..... The wood was cut, split, stacked, and covered for that 4 month period ( it was a warm winter and I uncovered the wood on sunny days, recovered before night). I used the small and medium splits from the top half of the stack. It was surprising to see that the wood didn't hiss or have water coming out of the ends when burned. Burning hot also helps with wetter wood.
     
  6. ahoy30

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    It's really awesome wood.... for next year. For the last few years I've been burning red oak with two years on the pallets. Kinda hurts my head to see such nice, yet not ready wood go in the stove. I'm going to insist she take some of my stash.
     
  7. begreen

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    When was it split and stacked? Oak needs a couple years.
     
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  8. Marshy

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    You'd probably have better luck burning green ash. People swear it's seasons in the time it takes time it the ground. Moisture is moisture in my opinion, dont matter the species. Find the driest wood and burn that, even if you have to go buy some that's drier. if you can get below 25% burn that instead. Green oak could be 30% or more depending...
     
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  9. JotulOwner

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    Burning unseasoned wood is never a good idea and, if it was absolutely necessary to burn unseasoned wood,Oak would not be my first choice.
     
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  10. Tar12

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    Make her read this...:)
     
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  11. Ctwoodtick

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    i remember seeing a YouTube video with this guy who talked very authoritatively about wood heat. He was big into using part seasoned part dryvwood on purpose.
    I remember thinking that his chimney must be a mess.
     
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  12. ED 3000

    ED 3000
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    Well, this would be one solution. Once she sees the company that ahoy is keeping online, he'll be able to burn whatever wood he wants... all by himself.
     
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  13. Tar12

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    :)
     
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  14. Nick Mystic

    Nick Mystic
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    Nobody seems to be actually addressing the OP's question, which was, "burning some green wood mixed in with well seasoned wood." I've wondered this myself. I have a four year supply of oak, so I don't need to burn green wood, but I've been curious what would happen if a person mixed in, say one split of green wood, with a load of well seasoned wood. It seems to me that if the green wood was positioned in the center of the load it might well get enough moisture cooked out of it to burn clean without compromising the overall burn.
     
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  15. ED 3000

    ED 3000
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    Why not just try it out, see for yourself?

    A hot fire will dry out the split. The water vapor coming out will cool the hot fire. Some additional creasote might form. Not the end of the world.
     
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  16. begreen

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    I thought I did in post #4 Nick but we have no idea what mix she is trying to burn with.
     
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  17. Ctwoodtick

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    I don’t think one wet split in a load would cause a big impact. Half a load would I think.
     
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  18. Rearscreen

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    That's been my experience BUT I do know oak is a bit of a different beast. If I were in your position I'd take small splits and bring 'em inside around the fire for a few days before tossing them into the inferno. Here's what happened with a maple tree - parched spring and summer in CT, half the tree looming over the kitchen with little or no leaves, the other half appeared to be more healthy. Decision to fell it in August before the possible crash into my coffee cups. I started to burn it in Sept and monitored the sizzle factor. None. That tree yielded my winter heat with no issues. By luck, I believe that the dying tree along with the drought summer gave me a good wood to burn. But again, if this was an oak tree, I bet things would have not gone so smoothly. There is nothing worse than "the sizzles".
     
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  19. jetsam

    jetsam
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    Depends on a lot of stuff. How low is the burn? How dry is the dry wood? Are we starting with a hot stove? How much creosote does the stove make with dry wood?

    Even the OP can't answer all those questions, so my answer remains at "Try not to, but burn hot and inspect and sweep frequently if you do have to."

    If that's what it takes to keep the house warm, that's what it takes. And the punishment of dealing with that wet wood will teach you not to get behind on your CSS again. :)
     
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  20. Ctwoodtick

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    Very true, all good points. I like your response better than mine now that I think about it.
     
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  21. Woody5506

    Woody5506
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    I have some red oak that's seasoned one year in log form and one year split and it's still miserable to burn. Smokes a ton and just ends up smoldering. Needs another year still. I don't consider it "green" either so I can't imagine trying to burn actual green oak, or rather why you would want to. I wouldn't even consider it an option.
     
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  22. RFarm

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    I find myself in that situation every now and again, especially as the season starts to come to a close. I need to conserve the dry stuff for startups and end up mixing partially seasoned wood with the dry to stretch it out because once the dry is gone the hopes of starting a hot fire reliably and quickly are gone with it. You can start up on greater than 25% wood but it is a horrendous and filthy experience. The only caveat in my experience is that I do not burn much oak. I will opt for partially seasoned poplar or pine which seems to dry out faster than the sweet gum, hickory, and oak I cut on my property. I do on occasion toss a fresher big chunk of sweet gum on the fire at night to slow it down and stretch out the burn without overheating the house, this causes the same results as mixing. Having the ability to sweep my pipe and doing so on a monthly bases during the season offers peace of mind and keeps my system running at peak efficiency. I would not even attempt if I could not sweep out the pipes regularly because it does create a mess that could lead to bigger problems if not managed.
     
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  23. ED 3000

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    Tulip poplar is your friend in this situation. Been burning poplar that's been seasoned barely one year all winter. Throw in a piece of oak that's less than 2 years, no problem.
     
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  24. mellow

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    You would be better off buying some red stone wood bricks from TSC and mixing them in with your current wood.
     
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  25. electrathon

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    If someone has said this I missed it. The two reasons I know of for burning partial dry wood in the mix are:
    1- Not enough dry wood to make it through the winter.
    2- It will lengthen out the burn time. If you are tired of your fire being gone in 6 hours of less, a piece of partially green wood will help stretch out the burn time so you still have coals left in the morning. I know the trade off here, but it will lengthen your burn times.
     
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