How to check if your firewood is dry enough to burn - Using Moisture Meter

So hey guys! This week on wood heat Wednesday we're going to take a closer look

at a moisture meter and how it can really help you when it comes time to

dealing with firewood

so a moisture meter is a relatively new thing in the grand scheme of people

heating with firewood is it an item you must have no you can definitely survive

without it but I really do you think they're worth their weight in gold

especially with technology advancing the price of things coming down and these

things becoming very affordable I really think they do provide a lot of great

value if you're someone that purchases your firewood you can check the moisture

of that firewood make sure it's nice and dry long before it ever gets unloaded

off the truck or money's ever exchanged if you're someone that cuts your own

firewood you can do a lot of different experiments and figure out if some of

the things that you're doing are really worth the effort is play around with

different ways of stacking you would maybe the direction your wood you know a

lot of times the wind's coming out of the west and headed east or are you

better off facing that wood going north-south a little bit more of a

sun exposure on that wood and it allows you to tie solid numbers to your

different experiments it's not just taking a stab in the dark or sort of

that old classic method of checking whether your woods dry and banging the

two pieces of wood together let's do a little experiment here in this video I

got two pieces of wood here I just split it open we're gonna take our

moisture meter reading right on the nice freshly exposed piece of the one I just

split open here you can see it's got real nice darkening that's happening out

of there there's check-in happening on the ends of the boards so it's got all

the telltale signs of this piece of wood has been sitting around drying for a

long time and then on the other side of things we got a piece of wood that is

very light and color all the way around like I said I just split this one open

as well so we'll take our reading on the inside here no checking happening really

at all on the ends of this board and as we bang these together we're sort of

looking for that that hollow sound here

so which piece of wood do you think is gonna be a little bit drier here we'll

take a reading here just in a few minutes so without one down the rabbit

hole too much here I thought show you guys our two moisture

meters I have I have an md-814. Not even a brand

name associated with this thing I bought this thing years ago paid $13 bucks for

the thing there wasn't a lot of information out there about there about

this thing there's a couple reviews and they seem to be really split some people

said they absolutely love the thing and other people said they'd end up running

into problems where they'd bend the prongs on the thing and they aren't

replaceable or I even saw a couple reviews out there talking about how

inaccurate the machine was but for the price as it I thought I can't go wrong with

stuff like that so I ended up ordering up not a bad little device has been very

nice for me doesn't have any backlight or anything like that when you power it

up just a simple hold button and the power on button but that idea of the

thing not being very accurate is always stuck in my head it's not very easy to

check how hackers something that is you can take away to the piece of firewood

stick in your oven for several hours drag out that way pull it out take

another weight and this little bit of a mouthful minute to figure out actually

the moisture content of that to be able to compare it against that I think

they've reworked this device quite a bit I've noticed like the newer version of

this has got the buttons more off the side the price has gone up quite a bit

20 bucks or something like that I just say just to get another moisture

meters for like a testing purpose type thing and I broke down and I went with

this one here there's general mm d4e partly reason I selected there was a lot

of very positive reviews on it on Amazon pretty big meter out in the woodworking

community. A great little meter I've really enjoyed using this thing I powered up

it's got a nice backlight so you can work in low-light just a simple little

two prong type deal. The nice part about this one is if you actually look right

here on the cap at the very top there's two little tiny holes that you see and

that's actually a little thing to see calibration of the thing so I don't

remember what it was eighteen point two or eighteen point four give or take you

know a couple but it allows you to plug it into that

and you can see I'm getting 18.5 on my bounce back to four so it gives you a

little reassurance be able to test that thing out I guess when I had a low note

on this one is it does have two different options got wood mode then

there's also a building material so obviously you'll put out wood mode when

you check in your your firewood and stuff you can put it in building

material so if you get a musty basement or something want to check the the

moisture content of your drywall or something you can put it in that hole so

ideally the way you do this is you split your piece of firewood open so that's

what we did here so we get this nice freshly clean exposed area and the way

these meters work is offer resistance between the two pins so obviously

there's a lot of different variables that can skew the numbers even

temperature can play a factor in this this one here says it's rated for 32 to

122 degrees Fahrenheit or 0 to 50 degrees Celsius a lot of times these

things are calibrated for 70 degrees so I haven't noticed a big huge swing if I

take a temperature reading a reading between the temperatures like 50 degrees

Fahrenheit and about 90 degrees seems like things don't fluctuate too much and

of course like I mentioned that works off resistance so when you're taking a

reading and a piece of wood you want to go with the grain of wood because

there's less resistance than going across so this would be going across and

this would be rolling with so after you split your wood open you know stick your

meter in there

and this one is like calibrated so it

16.6 it's got like a little warning alerts low medium and high

but when you're dealing with firewood you're looking for something that's 20

percent moisture I've even seen some stuff say 25 percent moisture or less

but ideally 20 percent moisture or less so this nice darkened piece of wood

we're getting a moisture reading of 16.6 on this you can see so if we grab the

other piece of wood that I just recently split so it's set up like this split it

so we'll take our reading right on the inside here and we get in ten point six

so you would think just by the looks of things obviously that other piece of

wood would appear to be a lot more seasoned rice oh look can definitely be

deceiving of course I did pick a piece of wood you know I got a piece of ash

here that I knew was gonna be really dry even though it had the look of like it

was just freshly cut here but this stuff's been sitting around for a long

time so very very valuable to a really neat little tool for running different

experiments and can really save you a lot of frustrations but I should hear

someone that purchases firewood some guys will cut wood and they'll come drop

it off at the door that same day and say it's been sitting around seasoning just

allows you to that get burned on something like that especially with a

lot in the newer stoves and being really dependent on actually nice dry firewood

really nice so anyways hopefully you guys learned something new about

firewood or maybe not firewood but moisture meters I guess great little

tool hope you guys enjoyed the video and we'll see on the next one thanks for