backyard fire pit

The Benefits of Using Kiln Dried Firewood in Fire Pits

A fire pit does more than just improve the aesthetics of your patio or outdoor living space; it opens the doors to new social activities. Rather than staying cooped up inside your home during the evenings, you can gather around the fire pit with family members and friends. You can even use it roast marshmallows or grill food. From spring to winter, a fire pit will allow you to take full advantage of your home's patio or outdoor living space while encouraging social interaction in the process. Whether you choose a portable or stationary fire pit, though, you should consider using kiln dried firewood in it. Characterized by an exceptionally low moisture content, kiln dried firewood is processed in a drying kiln. As the wood bakes in the kiln, moisture is released from its pores. While fire pits support most types of dry hardwood, kiln dried firewood is superior for the following reasons.

Hassle-Free Lighting

You can easily start your fire pit using kiln dried firewood. The same can't be said for other types of firewood. Green, fresh and air-dried firewood are oftentimes difficult to light. They contain more moisture that inhibits the combustion process and, therefore, prevents the wood from lighting. The low moisture content of kiln dried firewood, however, allows for hassle-free lighting. You won't get stuck blowing on a barely lit newspaper while your friends anxiously watch in the cold. As long as you properly arrange it so that air can flow through the center, kiln dried firewood should light using nothing more than some dry tinder and kindling. There's no need to douse kiln dried firewood in lighter fluid. Just arrange the logs over some tinder and kindling, at which point you can start it with a single match.

Less Smoke

It's slightly embarrassing when you invite guests over to gather around your fire pit during the evening, only for thick clouds of black smoke to bombard them. As the smoke billows in their direction, it may force guests to play a game of musical chairs in which they constantly move around while trying to avoid the smoke. For a more enjoyable atmosphere with less smoke, you should use kiln dried firewood. All wood produces at least some smoke when burned. Kiln dried firewood, however, produces the least amount of smoke of all types of firewood. Smoke is essentially a byproduct of the incomplete burning of wood or fossil fuels. Jargon aside, smoke is produced when wood doesn't fully burn. Several factors can affect the amount of smoke wood produces when burned, one of the most influential being its moisture content. The more moisture a wood log has, the more smoke it will produce. Moisture prevents the wood from burning completely, resulting in the production of more smoke. Of course, kiln dried firewood is characterized by an exceptionally low moisture content, so it doesn't produce as much as smoke as other types of firewood when burned. As a result, guests can lounge around your fire pit without fear of being smoked out. Guests can relax and unwind close to the fire, resulting in a better experience for everyone involved.

No Sticky Smell

Not only does kiln dried firewood produce less smoke than other types of firewood; it doesn't produce a sticky smell. It's no secret that some wood-burning fires produce a lingering smell that sticks to your clothes. If you've ever been camping and used locally gathered wood to build a campfire, you may have noticed this strong and sticky smell. The odor-causing smoke compounds literally stick to your clothes and skin. With kiln dried firewood, there is no sticky smell. The "stickiness" of smoke odors is the result of moisture. By itself, smoke doesn't adhere well to clothes or skin. Rather, it needs the assistance of moisture to stick. If you burn wet or damp wood with a high moisture content, the moist smoke will stick to your clothes and skin. If you burn wood with a low moisture content, on the other hand, it will produce less smoke -- and the minimal amount of smoke that it does produce won't stick to your clothes or skin.

Better Heat

If you're planning to use your fire pit during winter, you can rest assured knowing that kiln dried firewood produces the most heat. Regardless of where you live, you'll probably experience some chilly evenings during winter. With kiln dried firewood, however, you won't have to pack up and head indoors when the mercury drops. Its superior heating performance will allow you to use your outdoor living space all year round, regardless of the temperature. Once lit, kiln dried firewood will produce strong heat that radiates throughout your patio or outdoor living space. Even during the otherwise bone-chilling winter evenings, it will create a comfortably warm climate for you and your guests. You can always experiment with conventional air-dried firewood, but it won't produce as much heat as high-quality kiln dried firewood.

Less Maintenance

Kiln dried firewood allows reduces the amount of work needed to maintain a fire in your fire pit. It's difficult to enjoy a fire when you're constantly having to get up from your chair to gather and add more firewood. No type of firewood lasts forever. Eventually, all wood will burn to ash. But kiln dried firewood tends to burn noticeably longer than all other types of firewood, thereby reducing the number of trips you'll have to make when adding more firewood. You can also store any unused kiln dried firewood either inside or outside your home. If you have some kiln dried firewood leftover from an evening around your fire pit, you should save it for future use. While some people believe that firewood should always be stored outdoors, this isn't necessarily true. Assuming you have kiln dried firewood, it's perfectly fine to store it indoors. Kiln dried firewood is free of mold, mildew and pests. And with its dry properties, it won't attract pests, nor will it develop fungi, when stored inside your home.

Enhances the Flavor of Food

You can cook better-tasting food over your fire pit when using kiln dried firewood. Whether you're roasting marshmallows or grilling hamburgers, it will inject your food with deliciously flavorful smoke compounds. As the kiln dried firewood burns, it will release clean, flavorful smoke. There are different types of kiln dried firewood, each of which produces a different flavor when used to cook foods. Regardless, all high-quality hardwood varieties of kiln dried firewood will enhance the flavor of your food. Other types of firewood can have the opposite effect by harming your food's flavor. They emit thick carbon-filled smoke that coats food with a harsh-tasting film. For the best flavor when cooking over a fire pit, you should use kiln dried firewood. Along with the other benefits listed here, better-tasting food is another reason to choose kiln dried firewood for your fire pit. Experience the difference kiln dried firewood makes in your outdoor fire pit by trying our premium firewood today. Cutting Edge Firewood is the Southeast's premier vendor of high-quality kiln-dried firewood. We offer a variety of the industry's finest firewood, including oak, hickory, cherry and more, all of which you can use in your outdoor fire pit.

About The Author

Leroy Hite

Leroy Hite is the founder and CEO of Cutting Edge Firewood, an ultra-premium firewood and cooking wood company located in Atlanta, Georgia. Leroy's mission is to give people the experience of the perfect fire because some of life’s best memories are made in the warmth of a fire’s glow. He founded Cutting Edge Firewood in 2013 with a goal to provide unmatched quality wood and unparalleled customer service nationwide. The company offers premium kiln-dried firewood, cooking wood, and pizza wood in a wide variety of species and cuts to customers around the country.