The benefits of a moisture meter

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Burning dried timber as fuel in your stove ensures a few things.

  • Greater heat output as temperatures rise fast.

  • Less staining of stove glass.

A moisture meter is a device that measures the moisture content in a log. Simply split a timber log open and insert the devices probes into the wood (not at the ends) and the moisture meter will give you a reading.  When using a wood burning stove it is recommended to burn logs with moisture content no more than 20%. When wood is freshly harvested wood has a high moisture content of around 50% it is important to season this wood before use.  Some suppliers of wood fuel such as Certainly Wood Kiln Dried logs will speed this process up by using Kilns which dry’s the wood very well.

A good wood fuel supplier will know the moisture content of their product and should have their own moisture meter to be able to demonstrate moisture content at time of delivery. However it is always useful to be able to check your own wood fuel and once you have sourced some well-seasoned wood to have a good log storage facility to keep them dry.

Stove and stove glass gets damaged when burning wet wood

All evidence shows  the higher the moisture content in the wood the lower the Calorific value which means less heat output and low efficiency. Not only is this less economically but also more damaging to the environment.

Burning wet wood will increase carbons released into the system and atmosphere meaning you will get tar build up. Tar build up will cause your stove glass to go black. Tar may build up around the door making it difficult to open & close. Tar build up can even cause chimney fires in the worst case scenario.  Using a moisture meter will prevent a costly repairs or stove replacements in the future and will also mean you will get the most efficiency out of your stove.

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