Is there a way to measure the moisture content of my firewood without specialist equipment?
It can be possible using drying piece of sample wood,
Dry pieces of wood in the oven or in another way . Make sure that pieces should be well cut. Logs have varying moisture contents, depending on tree age, time since felling and position in the seasoning pile. The moisture content also varies from the middle of the log to the ends. You should use 3 to 5 pieces logs, of varying cross sections and Densities/”weights”. Cut each piece straight across the middle and split down the length. Discard everything except one small piece from each log.
weight 1=Take the pieces, weigh them on accurate kitchen scales and note the total weight Weight 2=Place in a low oven (less than 100 deg c) overnight. Weigh again and note the total weight. The calculation for moisture content is as follows: Weight of Water=Weight 1 – Weight 2 Then: Moisture (%) = Weight of Water / Weight 1 x 100
Here is a worked example:
Weight 1 = 1.7 Kg Weight 2 = 1.36 Kg Therefore 1.7-1.36=0.34 0.34/1.7x100=20%
As said elsewhere, you can experiment with moisture from 25% down to 19% and see what works best in your stove, fire or burner.
Here's an example of a device that measures the moisture of wood electrically, via resistance. While the electrical measurement will bequick, I'm sure that the procedure described by Yadav Chetan provides a far more representative result.
I suggest the following:
1) Take a jug with a scale and fill it with water water. Measure the amount of water. That's the starting value.
2) Put a piece of wood inside the jug and let it swim. Measure at the scale the new volume. That value minus the starting value is the weight of the peace of wood.
3) Press the piece of wood under water an measure again the value at the scale. Thats the volume of the peace of wood.
4) Divide the weight and the volume to calculate the density. The density is directly connected to the content of moisture.
So let the water games begin :)
Wood can be "too dry" . It loses waxes and esthers that contribute heat (energy)
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take one sample of that firewood then burn it, a burning firewood which is moist will tend to produce a bubbles at the other end caused by the combination of the moisture content of wood and the gases it accumulated during the burning process .