Should logs crackle in a fire

9th Nov 2020

Should logs crackle in a fire

Should your logs crackle in a fire?

I’m sure we all conjure up an image of sitting by our open fire or wood burner on a cold night and listening to the crackling sounds.

Nothing sounds more cosy during winter and it creates a relaxing atmosphere too.

But is a crackling fire actually a good thing? If you have been searching for fire logs for sale near me and picked up some firewood and it doesn’t crackle - should you be disappointed?

Let’s have a look at what makes firewood crackle and pop and whether or not this is actually desirable.

Should your logs crackle in a fire?

What makes firewood crackle?

Most wood will produce a crackling sound to some extent however excess or constant crackling and popping is usually found in wood that hasn’t been dried properly.

When firewood is burned it goes through a process called combustion. To be more specific, it is the cellulose that is found in the wood mixing with oxygen to produce heat. This is what causes a crackling sound.

Logs that have a lot of moisture trapped in its pores will crackle when burned.

Will kiln dried logs make a crackling sound?

Kiln dried logs have a low moisture content.

This is because they have been dried out in a kiln over a period of days to ensure that the moisture in the wood is low. Our kiln dried firewood is Woodsure certified which means that it has a moisture content below 20%.

Reducing moisture and also the crackling and popping sounds you hear when you add wood to a fire can also be achieved with seasoning. This process takes a lot longer (sometimes 1 - 2 years!) but it also helps to reduce moisture in the wood.

Crackling firewood and efficiency

So, what’s wrong with burning wood that makes a lot of noise?

For one it means that the wood you are burning is high in moisture. Why is this bad? Well, it will create a lot of smoke and give off excess emissions too. It isn’t good for the environment and isn’t ideal for efficiency either.

Wood that crackles and pops will likely give off much less heat.

Another reason a crackling fire isn’t necessary a good thing is around safety. If you have an open fire, the crackling noise can cause bits of wood to jump out of the fire. This potentially causes safety issues especially if it lands on carpet or you have young children or pets at home.

Reduce crackling with kiln dried logs

While we all love the idea of a fire crackling and popping away while giving off a lot of heat, the reality is that it’s better left to the imagination.

Kiln dried firewood won’t produce a whole lot of noise when it is burned however what it will do is burn for longer, be more environmentally friendly and also produce more heat so it is more efficient as well.

If you really want the crackling fire sound in your living room you can find hours upon hours of it on YouTube. For a real fire, it’s best to have it (nearly) silently burning away.