Wood fellers risk hefty penalties

Wood fellers cut trees down in Plymouth

opportunistic wood fellers cut public trees for woodburners

Wood Fellers warned by Plymouth City Council

Wood Fellers Warned by Plymouth City Council
Plymouth City Council Post Public Notice

If you go down to the woods today, you’ll certainly be in for a big surprise. It would seem wood fellers have been cutting down trees for their wood burning stoves! Reports emerged last week suggesting that stove owners might be felling trees in Plymouth’s Central Park to fuel their stoves, with as many as 15 trees being cut down.

It is believed that an increase in gas and electricity bills, has made wood burning stoves a more desirable way to heat your home. However the price of logs has also increased, meaning people are looking to other ways of acquiring logs including felling public trees. Whilst cutting down trees for fuel may seem a thrifty alternative to buying logs, wood-burner owners run a high risk of incurring preventable costs in the future.

 

Fireplace Product’s Reece Toscani explains: “Burning wood that has not been correctly seasoned, dried and prepared for your stove is a very bad idea. Freshly cut or ‘green’ wood is full of moisture, and this can cause a build-up of creosote tar in your chimney, which over time reduces the diameter of your chimney and will require much more cleaning than burning season or kiln dried wood.”

creosoted chimney
The effects of burning green wood on a chimney

This tar-like substance is also highly flammable, and very likely to cause a chimney fire if it is not removed. So while chopping down trees, private or public may seem like a cheap option. It could lead to a very costly and even dangerous outcome.

Toscani adds, “The best type of fuel for a wood burner is kiln dried wood, which has a much lower moisture content and burns with greater heat compared against freshly cut or ‘green’ wood.”

 

Freshly cut or ‘green’ wood can be as much as 50% moisture, compared against seasoned wood that was been cut, stored and dried for up to two years which has a moisture content of around 20-25%. Kiln dried wood can contain as little as 16% moisture. If you are unsure of the quality of the wood you are buying look into purchasing a moisture meter so that you can test your logs before you burn them.

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