I think I need more wood

Until we started heating with wood, I had no idea what a cord was. Until recently I thought ‘cords’ were funny looking pants with lines on them I wore as a teenager, unaware of their role in guaranteeing my prolonged virginity.

In firewood terms a cord is neatly stacked pile of split wood that measures 4′ x 4′ x 8′. I’m not sure how much wood it will take to heat our earthbag home through the 6 months of winter, but I’m pretty sure I don’t have enough. Lots of people tell me they use anywhere from 3 to 6 cords a year to heat their homes. Ours is different than most homes, so I won’t know for sure how much I need until we gain experience. I do know I will be scrounging wood anywhere I can. I have a bunch of old fence posts from pastures and about 50 pallets on hand. A couple weeks ago while on a trip to the mountains, I bought half a chord of dry, split pine. Forestry permits are available in this province for individual homeowners for only $5. That’s a really good deal since you can remove 5 cubic metres of wood. The only problem is that the closest forestry area where I can get a permit is about a four hour drive from here. Winter driving conditions in that area can get pretty treacherous. But since I am the one mostly responsible for the heat around here, I’ll do whatever it takes to keep things warm. Otherwise I may as well just being wearing corduroys.

3 thoughts on “I think I need more wood”

    1. Greg,
      It’s not as easy to find small square bales around here as a person might think. Plus, the thermal mass offered by the earthbags has definite advantages. In summer it stays pretty cool in here. This is our first winter in here, but with a good woodstove and berming up the north side we are quite comfortable in here at the moment while it is -40C outside.

  1. Wow -40! And here in MI I thought -25F was cold. I had a Harmon excaliber wood stove that heated most of a huge house with really good insulation. (I live in a small house now) I used 20 cords per winter in the big house. This current house with the same stove will use less. -We’ll see next winter.

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