Pine firewood is not an ideal species for burning, but it can be serviceable if you use it right. Read below for ID, burning value and recommendations.
There are many different species of pine trees, but for the purpose of firewood it is not necessary to make a distinction between any of the species.
Pine trees are generally tall straight evergreen trees. However, when grown in the open, they will be more full and bushy. All species have both needles and cones. The best way to identify pine trees from other evergreens is to look at the needles as MOST pine species have fairly long needles (at least 3" long).
Heating Value & Ease of Processing
Pine has a very low heating value which makes sense when you realize how light the wood becomes when it is dry. Remember, firewood heating value is nothing more than a measure of density.
The wood does burn hot, the problem is that it burns very fast and therefore does not make a good species for heating your house.
The good news is that pine does split very easily. In fact, it's one of the easiest splitting types of wood that exist. Like any other species, splitting will still be difficult when dealing with knots. Split around the knots and you'll find it very easy.
Don't bother trying to heat your house with pine. It's a losing battle. Pine does, however, have its place.
It can be used as kindling to get a fire started or as campfire wood. It does burn hot and split easily, so for that reason I do recommend it for those two uses. Please take note that plenty of species fit the same bill, so don't cut down pine trees specifically for kindling or campfires.
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