Wet (or green) wood simply won’t burn very well and creates extra smoke. Energy lost through smoke means less heat from your fire. 

Breathing air polluted with wood smoke can also lead to lung and heart problems.

The best time to buy wood

  • Spring or early summer is the best time of year to buy wood and gives you 6-9 months drying time
    • Soft woods like pine and Macrocarpa take around 6-12 months to dry
    • Hard woods like gum and Manuka can take 18 months or more to dry

Stacking your wood

  • Stack your firewood loosely enough so that air can flow freely around it
  • Make sure you stack it safely – your wood will shrink and move as it dries
  • Split your wood – smaller pieces dry faster

Split wood stacked loosely for air flow

Keeping your wood pile dry

  • Use a sheet of plastic or corrugated iron or  other kind of water proof material to cover your wood
  • By allowing air flow around the sides, moisture can escape from the wood
  • Bricks, wood slats or pallets are a good way to keep your wood off the ground. This allows air flow under the wood and prevents damp from the ground

Split wood stacked loosely and raised up from the ground

Want to build a wood shed?

You can build a woodshed without a building consent as long as it is:

  • One storey high (ie, floor maximum 1m above ground and a maximum of 3.5m above the floor)
  • Less than 10m2 in area
  • Positioned at least equal to the shed’s own height from any boundary or residential building

For more information check out the guidelines on building work or contact your local district or city council.

Updated March 1, 2022 at 11:17 AM

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