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With more and more people turning to wood for heating it’s becoming more expensive to buy wood so trying to work out how to get free firewood is something that more people are asking. This issomething I can understand as we all are looking to keep the costs done and wood can be exuberant.
Thankfully there are a number of ways you can get free firewood but as with all of these types of things, it won’t always be a guaranteed find when you get there. This is why I will always recommend either having some finance put aside for a worst-case scenario and you need to purchase some firewood.
I wanted to share some of my experiences and tips to hopefully help even just a few people out which is why I have put this page together. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned wood user who is just looking to brush up on some tips there is something in this guide that can help almost anyone.
Quick Links To Info On This Page
Where To Find Free Firewood
There are a number of ways you can get firewood for free which is why it can get very competitive with the chance of missing out on some free wood being late by a minute. Which is always my first tip to most new people and that’s always be on the lookout as the sooner you find it the better.
Something that I think shouldn’t have to be said but I will say it anyway, that is you need to ask before you take the firewood. If you don’t get permission then you’re in the wrong when you take it so always ask for permission beforehand.
Is Online A Good Place To Look?
The internet can be an amazing place which is why it’s a good idea to search online for free firewood. There are a number of places you can look online that will help you in finding some freefirewood with places like Facebook and Craigslist being some of the most popular places that people look.
While personally I’ve never had much luck with the online ways of getting free firewood where I would show up to collect the wood and all that was left is this rotten wood that’s not very useful. I’ve known many who have had luck online so it’s something that’s worth a try but you will need to be quick and try to be the first person.
Ask Local Businesses Who Deal With Wood
In my opinion, this is one of the best ways to get free firewood and is how I’ve had the most success with getting some. There are a lot of businesses that deal with wood who often have to pay to dispose of it and are usually pretty happy if you will take it off their hands.
Some companies will even be happy to drop the wood off but this is something I wouldn’t rely on since it’s not guaranteed. Having a space prepared for where they can put the wood is something I would recommend doing since the last thing you want is for them to arrive and not have somewhere to leave it.
What About Shops That Don’t Deal With Wood?
Surprisingly the thing that a lot of people forget is that a lot of businesses get stock delivered and depending on the company they have to remove the pallets the stock comes on. Some of these companies can be willing to share these pallets with you which you can then use to burn.
The chances of this are fairly slim but it can happen so it’s a case of just trying and see how it plays out. It’s not something I would rely on in my opinion and it is the last resort option.
Look For Builders
Contacting local builders is something that you can do as they often have to remove trees before building a house. If you’re lucky you might find a builder who won’t mind you coming and taking the wood that they were going to burn themselves which costs them money.
Often job sites will have a lot of leftover timber that they aren’t going to use and just throw out. I would always recommend asking before taking this wood and remember that it has often been treated so it’s not recommended to use this for cooking food. It’s not a wood that I’m a fan of but it’s an option so I had to put it on this list.
Sawmills Can Be A Great Option
When you think of a company that is all about handling wood and logs it’s hard to go past a sawmill. With the amount of wood that they go through, there is a chance they will have some pieces around that you could use for firewood so it’s an option for you to try.
This can be a tough one and like a lot of these free options, there is no surefire way of getting some free firewood out of them. In most cases, they have a company that handles the disposal of this wood and your best bet is that you taking some will save them some money.
Has There Been A Storm Recently?
Personally, this is not something I’ve done since I don’t live in an area where we get a lot of bad storms but I have friends who do this. After a storm has been through the town they offer to clean up and take the wood to use for themselves which helps everybody involved.
I would just recommend remembering that some people can lose a lot in a storm so it’s best to try and pay attention to your surroundings while doing this. Most of the time people won’t have a problem with you helping cleaning up the neighborhood.
Somewhere You Might Not Know
I’m not sure if I’m the only person to have had this luck but I met someone whose job was in charge of the maintenance of a golf course who was telling me about storms and dead trees being on the course. On an off chance, he would say yes I asked if I could have the wood and to my surprise, they said yes.
So I went to the golf course and collected the wood and was particularly careful when removing that he was impressed with the work and now calls me when it needs to be done. This is something you could try by ringing a local golf course and seeing if you could do the same.
Word Of Mouth Will Always Be King
In my opinion. the best way to get free firewood is through word of mouth which is a lot easier then you might think. Just dropping that you remove wood and trees in conversations with people has gotten me more free firewood then anything else. So much so that I get people asking me to come to collect it nowadays.
Asking friends, family, and neighbors is a good way to get a start into getting your name out there. It may take a little time but it’s possible that this can be your best way of collecting firewood for free and save you thousands over time.
Some places have local boards that you can put an advertisement on which can help with getting your name out there. If you have some actual proper skill with removing trees you could even get paid to get the wood that you would normally pay for yourself.
Forgot The Big Stores
Big box stores often deal with a lot of stock which sounds like they would be perfect for getting some pallets for free. I can understand why people think this is a great idea and why a lot of people suggest it to people even tho, in my opinion, it’s a mistake.
The reason I don’t recommend going to big box stores is that they often return the pallets or have some company already. In my many decades of experience, I have never gotten any pallets and neither has anyone within my social wood circle.
So, going to these big stores is something I don’t recommend as most likely you will only waste your time. But as with most things, you’re welcome to try but just keep expectations low.
Important Tips To Remember To Get Your Firewood For Free
There are a number of things I recommend people learn before they try and get firewood free. The simple things that people often forgot will often lead to most people actually missing out on getting something for free and can often cause many others to not get anything as well.
The Most Important Thing
I hate that I have to say this but that’s just the world we live in, manners are extremely important when trying to get wood for free. You’d be surprised at how aggressive people get when they’re told no they can’t have the wood and they kick up a massive stink about it which means no one else gets any.
The number of times I’ve been told no but got a callback several months later saying there is some wood I can no have is something I’ve lost track on. This is why I always recommend being polite and if they say no, ask if you can leave your number for a future possibility.
I’ve shared stories with friends down at the bar where some people just won’t take no for an answer on the job site when they’re trying to get some of the excess timber. So I recommend don’t be that person and be polite if they say no.
Always Be On The Look Out
Something I mentioned up above is that I’ve never had much luck with online and getting free firewood. Often I would get there after several people have been through it with there being only bad wood left with an owner looking at me like why don’t I want it.
There are times that I recommend taking bad wood that might not be very useful as this can lead to potential leads in the future. So why it can be frustrating at times, quality is something that you sometimes have to sacrifice for the chance at getting something a bit better later.
Speed is often the difference between getting the good wood or bad wood and is why it’s important that you’re always on the lookout for firewood. The quicker you see an ad for free firewood the better your chance you have of obtaining the wood.
The same can be said if you see an ad on a public board of someone wanting there wood gone. As soon as you see it you should try calling them to try and book yourself first! The quicker the better in all of these cases in my opinion.
Be Careful And Clean
One thing I can’t stress enough is once you’ve convinced someone to allow you to take their firewood is to be careful when picking it up and to leave little mess as possible. Leaving a mess is a good way of never getting any free firewood from that person ever again so it should never be done.
From my personal experience, this is even more true with the local golf course where the maintenance manager was so impressed that they call me when they have some for me. If I left a mess and did a bad job I find it unlikely that I would have gotten any extra from them.
Try not to damage anything on the property by trying to cut corners since this will only lead to more issues down the track. I feel this should go without saying but just to be safe I felt I had to put it on here.
Final Thoughts On Getting Firewood For Free
The one thing that I think most people need to remember is that there is no guaranteed way of getting firewood for free with a lot of it coming down to luck in my opinion. Quality is something that you won’t get much a say in and accepting that will make life easier for you.
I would suggest always having some spare wood stored at your house for a worst-case scenario and you can’t get any free firewood. This way you will be prepared and won’t need to go out and pay for wood when it’s at the height of its cost which will help keep the cost down.