Best firewood species

Not all logs are created equal. If you’re an experienced user of firewood, then you know that already. But if you’re newer to wood heating, then this might come as a surprise.

You might not know this, but the type of logs you use can greatly affect your wood-burning experience. 

There are three tree species that are regularly heralded as the best options for firewood in the UK. Those are oak logs, birch logs, and ash logs.

Oak burns the longest, has a great heat output, and is the only type of log you’ll find used in authentic Italian pizzerias.

Birch is incredibly easy to light, burns with beautiful flames, and is stunning to look at.

Ash is considered the gold standard of logs, combining the ease of lighting of birch and the heat output of oak.

The choice between ash, oak, and birch firewood depends on your specific heating needs and preferences, but if you need further advice we have trained staff ready to answer all of your questions!

Wood Advice

The Log Shop stock only the best quality hardwood logs. We specialise in kiln dried logs at fantastic prices. We provide our customers with a choice of kiln dried hardwood logs, enabling us to meet your needs.

For the best heat output it’s important to always buy firewood that is as dry as possible and produced from a good quality hardwood species. You should always buy firewood by volume and not by the ‘load’ or by weight, as this will help you compare prices and ensure you receive the amount of logs that you ordered.

Any reputable firewood merchant will be pleased to tell you the moisture content, species and volume of the logs you are buying

Log Moisture Content (MC)

The moisture content of wood has the biggest effect on the amount of heat that your firewood will produce. When trees are felled, they typically have a water content of 50% or more. If you burn wet logs, much of the energy locked up within the firewood will be used to dry the wood and produce steam, rather than heating your room.

Typically you will need to burn 3 logs with a moisture content of 50% to get the same heat output as burning 1 log with a moisture content of 20%.

Timber Species and Density

The density of wood also has an effect on the amount of energy contained within firewood and therefore the heat output produced. Hardwood species like ash and oak tend to grow more slowly than softwoods like pine and therefore have more energy contained within them for the same volume. This means that if you burn hardwoods instead of softwoods you will use less logs for the same heat output.

Typically you will need to burn 4 softwood logs to produce the same heat output as 3 hardwood logs, assuming the same moisture content.