If you’re new to wood heating, you’re probably wondering “how much does firewood cost?” Inquiring about cost is always a good question for those of us engaged in frugal living.
The cost of firewood depends on how you get it, so let’s look at the ways in which people obtain firewood.
For many people, heating with wood means paying for a load of wood to be delivered.
For others, they get it themselves. No matter what kind of wood we use to heat our home, it is going to cost us something.
Prices of wood vary according to who you buy it from, the local economy, how much you order, the type of wood, your distance from the supplier (if you’re having it delivered), and your distance from the supply.
Expect something in the range of $125 to $200 for a full cord.
Wood is usually sold by the cord. This is the standard unit of measure. A cord of wood is 4 feet wide by 4 feet high by 8 feet long.
Be aware that lots of folks sell a face cord (or half cord), and that’s usually 4 feet high by 8 feet long, but the width of the wood pile isn’t necessarily 2 feet (half of 4).
How much does firewood cost? More than it should if you don’t know the difference between a full cord and what some are calling a “cord” of wood.
Always ask about the full cord equivalent when buying firewood so you can compare prices using “full cord” as the common denominator.
When heating with wood, a cord of wood has a certain fuel value, based on the type of wood, but for this discussion let’s avoid getting into such technical detail as hard wood, soft wood, etc.
After learning about the cost of a cord of wood, you might ask, “how much does firewood cost?” as if you didn’t hear it the first time.
So, for those that aren’t happy with the cost of cord wood, let’s look at other options.
I’ve seen wood sold as small as a bundle at the grocery store, and as large as a semi load.
As you can imagine, the larger the load, the better the price (per cord).
If you’re into frugal living, you’ll be very disappointed in the price of wood sold at the grocery store – it’s about 50 cents a piece/stick.
Just walk on past that wood at the grocery store. Any form of home heating is less costly than what the grocery store has to offer.
For a nominal fee, you can cut your own firewood at a National Forest.
Usually the fee is about $25 or less and you are limited as to where you can cut, but it is a low cost source of firewood.
It’s labor intensive and might not be very convenient to where you live.
You can also buy wood by the truck load which means a pickup truck load. I’ve seen prices that range from $75 to $90 a truck load. T
hat price usually includes local delivery.
Be aware that the term “firewood” can mean just about anything, so ask if it’s split wood or scrap wood, and what kind of wood.
A neighbor of mine used to get a semi load of logs delivered for about $600 at a time when a cord of wood was costing about $75.
He would then cut and split the wood himself and get about 18 cords out of a semi load. That’s about $33 dollars a cord – half the going price at the time.
It’s an option, but cutting and splitting all that wood will also be a big job. How much does firewood cost? In the case of a load off of an 18 wheeler, it will cost you time, labor and will require special equipment and lots of room to store the wood as well.
Okay, so heating with wood is going to cost me. Is there such a thing as free or nearly free firewood? Yes there is.
With respect to free firewood, you’ll still have to ask the question “how much does firewood cost” because it often will cost you time, labor and fuel, but it’s nearly free.
Let’s explore how we might get free firewood as part of our approach to frugal living.
As part of my frugal living plans, I started Wood Rescue and collected 10 years of free firewood one summer.