While there are more than 100,000 hardwood and softwood species, not all types of wood are suitable for firewood. The best types of firewood offer superior density and dryness, which is why these types tend to burn better, hotter, and for longer! Many people have wondered whether silver maple trees are good for firewood.
Despite being classed as a type of soft maple, silver maple trees still produce decent firewood when the wood is correctly seasoned. Silver maple firewood has a heat per cord of 19 million BTUs, which is slightly lower than sugar maple, a type of hard maple with a heat per cord of 23 million BTUs.
We’ll discuss everything you must know about using silver maple trees for firewood, including how hot it burns compared to other types of wood.
We will also discuss the different uses of silver maple trees, which kinds of wood are the best for firewood, and some tips to use silver maple firewood properly!
Do Silver Maple Trees Make Good Firewood?
While many types of wood would work better as firewood, silver maple trees can be used for firewood when it is appropriately seasoned.
Silver maple trees are abundant in North America and Canada due to their many uses, which is why many people have questioned whether these trees make good firewood.
When discussing the suitability of silver maple trees for firewood, it’s important to note that these trees are classified as a soft maple variety.
Hardwoods are generally considered better for firewood than softwoods because they have a lower moisture content, allowing them to burn much hotter and longer.
BTU Values of Different Soft Wood Species
For every type of wood, you can rate its suitability for firewood by looking at its BTU rating, which refers to how much heat is in a cord of wood.
Below is a BTU chart of the different types of wood used for indoor and outdoor stoves.
|Tree Species||Scientific Name||Million BTU’s Per Cord||Pounds Per Cord Dry||Pounds Per Cord Green|
|Sugar Pine||Pinus lambertiana||19.6||3820||2270|
|Eastern White Cedar||Thuja occidentalis||12.2||1913||N/A|
|Western Juniper||Juniperus occidentails Hook||26.4||5420||3050|
|Silver Maple||Acer Saccharinum||17.4||2,805||N/A|
|Port Orchard Cedar||Chamaecyparis lawsoniana||23.4||3075||5050|
|Ponderosa Pine||Pinus ponderosa||21.7||2580||4520|
|Jack Pine||Pinus banksiana||17.1||2669||N/A|
|Rocky Mountain Juniper||Juniperus scopulorum||21.6||3112||N/A|
|White Fir||Abis concolor||21.1||2400||3190|
If you’d like a more in-depth chart, the chimney sweep site has an enormous list to help you choose the right wood.
What Is The Best Wood to Use for Firewood?
Oak trees, one of the best types of firewood, have a heat per cord (million BTUs) ranging between 26 and 31. Silver maple has a heat per cord of 19 BTU per cord, which is still suitable for firewood use.
Many hard maple trees, like sugar maple (23 BTU per cord), make excellent firewood – which is also why many assume all maple trees make excellent firewood.
While there are better maple trees to use for firewood, silver maple is perfectly okay if you only need occasional firewood. There are also some ways to ensure your firewood burns properly!
What Is The Heat Output Of Silver Maple Firewood?
Silver maple firewood is a softwood with a low to medium BTU rating of 19.5 million BTUs per cord. This isn’t bad, but it is much lower than those of other maple trees such as; birch, white oak, and red oak.
Which Type Of Wood Makes The Best Firewood?
As a golden rule, hardwood makes the best firewood. Hardwoods like oak and hickory have lower moisture content than softwoods, which allows them to provide a higher head output.
Hardwoods can burn hotter and longer than softwoods, making them the more efficient firewood choice. Since hardwoods have lower sap content, they’re less likely to pop and spark.
Silver maple trees are often used for maple syrup production, which means they have a higher sap content than other trees – which is another reason this wood doesn’t make the best firewood.
Softwoods also tend to burn faster, which produces less heat overall. However, regardless of their type, most woods can be used for firewood when they’re dry and well-seasoned.
Best Uses For Silver Maple Trees
Besides being used as firewood, silver maple trees are used in many other ways today!
- Erosion Control: Since silver maple trees grow quickly and create deep root systems, these trees are often used for erosion control, which helps preserve nutrient-rich topsoil and helps prevent nutrient pollution.
- Landscaping: Silver maple trees are a popular landscaping choice in many urban and suburban areas due to the large size of the tree, which creates some much-needed shade and acts as a natural privacy screen.
- Maple Syrup Production: Silver maple trees are one of the main tree types used to produce maple syrup. The tree sap is collected and boiled down to create the syrup.
- Paper Production: Silver maple tree wood is widely used in the paper industry to produce writing paper, newsprint, and other paper products.
- Timber: Despite being a softwood, there are some timber uses for silver maple trees. For example, these trees are commonly used to manufacture flooring.
- Wildlife Habitat: Silver maple trees offer a habitat for many wildlife species, including birds, insects, and some mammals. The tree’s leaves and seeds are also a food source for many of these creatures.
Tips For Using Silver Maple Trees For Firewood
Here are some helpful tips for using affordable silver maple firewood!
Burn Silver Maple When It’s Cool Outside
Silver maple is often referred to as a good shoulder wood, which is a type of wood you burn when it’s cool outside but not very cold.
Furthermore, shoulder woods are ideal for burning during the daytime, while harder woods are ideal for burning at night.
Mix Silver Maple With Other Firewood
You can effectively increase the heat output and how long the silver maple firewood burns by mixing it with other types of firewood. Oak and hickory are two excellent types of firewood you can mix with silver maple firewood.
Properly Season The Silver Maple Firewood
Since silver maple trees have a higher moisture and sap content than some other types of wood, it’s essential to properly dry and season silver maple firewood.
As a golden rule, a small silver maple tree takes around three months (ninety days) to season. So the longer you leave your silver maple firewood, the drier it will be.
Start Fires Using Silver Maple Firewood
Due to its lower heat output, silver maple shouldn’t be your primary heat source. However, silver maple firewood is ideal for starting fires. You can then keep going by mixing other hardwoods with your silver maple supply.
Use Small Pieces Of Silver Maple Firewood
Silver maple firewood will burn faster than other types of wood. Due to this, burning smaller pieces of silver maple will allow you to keep your fire burning for longer!
Although silver maple trees are technically a softwood variety of maple, they still make decent firewood.
Silver maple firewood has a head per cord of 19 million BTUs, which is slightly lower than sugar maple, a hard maple variety. However, properly seasoning silver maple wood will ensure it burns appropriately!