There has been a great debate over the centuries, a feud passed down from braai master to braai apprentice, staining the fireplaces of many a living room with ashes that will never truly be swept away.
How will the fires that warm our homes and sear our pork chops, be fueled? By the quick lighting, short burning softwoods, or by the long-burning hardwoods. Today we put an end to this debate once and for all.
Benifits of softwoods
- Softwoods, such as black wattle are very easy to break apart and light up, there's often very little work involved in getting this wood to burn.
- You'll often find that burning softwoods produces a lot of resin, and while this can also help the wood burns faster, it will smoke a lot and buildup will clog you chimney.
- Softwood burns very fast. If you light up a decent-sized log of softwood, it might last you as long as an hour, that's not really a lot of time to get all your stakes cooked to that lovely point where it's just juicy and cooked enough to be perfect.
- Because of its low density, most softwoods burn right to ashes instead of coals, so there'll be no gazing into those warm embers once the flames have died down.
- The smoke. Softwood, as a general rule, smokes a lot, that's fine if you've got some good ventilation but if you're outside and the wind turns, or your chimney is blocked, you're going to be coughing by the end of the day.
Benifits of softwoods
- Hardwoods take some work to get lit, this is because they're very dense and there aren't a lot of loose layers to catch the flame.
- Hardwoods tend to be much dryer than softwoods, less resin makes them less messy, but you might not get that nice crackling, popping noise you can get with softwoods either.
- Hardwoods burn hot and long, once you've gotten that fire going you won't need to put very much work into maintaining it. A few logs a little poking and your fire will burn all through the night.
- High density hardwood will leave burning coals at the bottom of you fireplace or braai, keeping you warm long after the flames have gone out. Whether you want to cuddle in front of the dim embers or grill some last minute tidbits, that's up to you.
- Many varieties of hardwoods are completely smokeless, this means that it's alot better for both you and your health and that of your chimney if the fire is indoors.
So now, that we have all the facts we can come to a final verdict and put this debate to to rest. Hardwoods are better in general than softwoods, they burn hotter, longer and those that smoke do it a whole lot less. It's easier to store and you can get a lot more use out of a lot less. Softwoods are just so much easier to get lit, and lets face it, sometimes you want little smoke and resin. Here at Joburg firewood, we say: Why choose? You can have the best of both worlds. For every thirty bags of high-grade hardwood we'll give a bag of softwood kindling to get your fire started absolutely free of charge, or if it's just a quick blaze you're after, you can buy yout softwood seperately at great rates. We're not here to judge.