Drying and storing firewood

What is the best way to dry and store firewood? I have some freshly cut firewood in my yard. I was going to dry and store them in large boxes in my garage. But I just read in a book that it is best to leave them separate from the house because of possible insect infestation. Also it recommended stacking the cut firewood off the ground and with nothing covering the top of the stack. I don't see how the wood is going to remain dry uncovered in the rainy NW. The author claims that the rain will not penetrate the wood once it is properly dried. What's your opinion and experience with firewood? thanks.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I'm in the NW, too.
Willamette Valley, OR.
Been seriously using wood for supplemental heat in a wood stove for about 20 years, played with it for about 10 years before that.
When I got serious about it, I built 4 homemade wood racks, after buying two commercial versions that I didn't like.
Mine have two 4" x 4" x 4' high end posts on each end. Those are joined by a 2" x 4" x 18" cross piece about 4 " above ground level. (Damn, I can build one of these faster than I can describe it.) (And I know I'm not describing it in a way taht anybody could follow.( : { )Another cross piece (2" x 4") goes at the top, and one more mid way between. These form kind of "tower units" that go on the ends. I used 3" deck screws for all fasteners.
A pair of 2"x4" x 5' rails connects the two tower units. I also put on a top rear rail and a mid rear rail.
Works like a charm with my wood, which I cut to 15" lengths to fit the wood stove with some clearance.
That space below the rails is real important for air circulation to dry the wood. In summer (Julky 17 through 21 each year wether we are ready or not -- this is the NW after all) I leave the newly cut wood uncovered. But when the fall (late September/ October) rains start, I cover the wood with a plastic tarp.
If I can decipher an E mail address for you, I'll try to take some pictures that might better illustrate what I am trying to describe.
--
Jim McLaughlin

Reply address is deliberately munged.
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
"Wet" or "dry" has to do with the water trapped in the wood fiber itself rather than a little bit of rain water on the outside.
The problem with green wood is that it takes heat to boil the water off. That's heat that you would prefer to keep for heating your room.
If wood gets too dry, it burns too quickly, like crumpled newspaper. Keep an eye on it and keep the air vent almost shut lest it roar and start a chimney fire.
tenplay wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Dead wood attracts TERMITES. not simply insects. Keep the wood pile as far away from you house as you can.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
tenplay wrote:

What works well in CT (with only about 55" annual precip): 1. Season wood well (couple years if possible) so "bound water" leaves cells. Partial splitting/buzzing speeds process. 2. Split, buzz, stack by early summer in relatively open enclosures, protected above from rain. On S side of house. Exposed to breezes.
Drying takes time, depending on species and dimensions, and you can NOT get the wood too dry. Not for a modern stove. IMHO
Except for powder-post beetles, insects infest moist wood, especially under bark. Another excellent reason to get it dry. And keep it covered above- rain will certainly wet the wood. If the first part of a stick you're trying to light is a soggy sponge, you've a problem right there. Not to mention generating steam to throw away.
J
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
tenplay wrote:

I go through 5-6 cord a year here in eastern Washington. We have a fairly dry climate.
The recommendation is to stack the wood for good air circulation and cover the top (not the sides). I don't cover it as rain/snow isn't that much of a problem over here. Where you are I would cover the top.
I stack mine right on the ground but in your area it should be off the ground. Used pallets that you pick up for free work well for that purpose.
Truth is that after wood has dried as far as it is going to, a bit of rain on it isn't going to hurt. Wood draws (and emits) water from the ends, not the sides, so wetting the outside of a stick of wood doesn't result in wet wood, only damp on the outside and then only those pieces on top of the pile.
Harry K
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

The author is obviously not from the rainy NW. If you don't cover the top, it will rot, and will never burn properly. And, the termites will love it.
Bob
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Up off the ground, away from the house, and covered on top. Check for varmints and insects from time-to-time.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.