Different types of wood have different heat capacities and do not burn the same way.
Wherever possible Hardwood is best – it burns slower and hotter.
Wood should be really dry. Damp wood provides a great deal less heat and releases a lot of smoke , produces few flames and causes the stove, its glass door and the chimney to get dirty and soot up – risking chimney fires and damaging the stove and chimney liner. Big logs should be split prior to storing.
Store the wood well, in a shelter off the ground and well ventilated.
If you are burning wood correctly on a good stove there should not be much smoke. We are aiming for a hot, dry burn producing little smoke. A smoky fire is an inefficient one.
Which wood should you use?
Ash – Considered the best wood for burning; it produces a steady flame and strong heat output.
Oak – The density of the wood produces a small flame and very slow burn but will need at least 3 years to dry.
Beech – Burns similar to Ash.
Birch – Produces a strong heat output but can burn quite quickly.
Hawthorn – A traditional firewood with a slow burn and strong heat output.
Horse chestnut – This wood is burnt well in wood stoves as it can spit. It produces a good flame and strong heat output.