To know why this happens, we need to understand what happens when you place a wooden log on a fire. First, the wood starts getting hotter. Inside the wood are pockets of trapped water and tree sap, which is the sticky stuff you sometimes see on trees.
In the same way water in a kettle heats up and turns into steam, so does the water trapped inside the log. So as the fire gets hotter, the water and sap inside start to boil and turn into gas. As the fire gets even hotter, these gases start to take up more space and expand (get bigger).
We know wood comes from trees. And when trees are alive, they stay healthy by carrying water up their trunk through these tiny holes, which are called xylem vessels. When the tree is chopped down to make firewood, there is still water trapped inside these xylem vessels.
There's nothing quite like telling a few ghost stories by the light of a raging campfire. Its heat feels so good at the end of a long day when the temperatures start to drop. The smell of the smoke combined with the roasting of hot dogs makes our tummies tingle.
We also love the unique sound of a campfire. Sound might not be the first thing you think of when you think of a campfire, but burning wood definitely makes a distinct snap, crackle, and pop sound that many people find relaxing.
Before we look within the wood, let's first learn a bit about fire. Fire comes from a chemical reaction between oxygen in the air and a source of fuel, such as wood or gasoline. Luckily, most sources of fuel don't burst into flames spontaneously, since they're surrounded by oxygen all the time. Instead, fuel sources must be heated to their ignition temperature for the combustion reaction to occur.
The actual burning of the wood occurs when the volatile gases reach temperatures around 500º F, at which point the molecules break apart and recombine with oxygen to form water, carbon dioxide, and other products. This is what we think of as the process of burning.
When you place a log of wood onto a campfire, it begins to burn. Inside the wood, there are tiny pockets of fluids, such as water and sap. As the wood burns, the fire heats these fluids as if they were in a pan on the stove.
The heat from the fire causes the fluids within wood to first boil and then vaporize into steam. This steam gets trapped in the pocket within the piece of wood. The trapped steam begins to exert pressure on the surrounding wood.
Eventually, the wood gives way. The snap, crackle, or pop sound you hear is the wood splitting along a crevice and releasing steam into the fire. If you've ever tried to use wet wood for firewood, you've probably noticed that it snaps, pops, and crackles much more than usual. That's because of the excess water trapped within the wood!
Hi, Lilly Claire Lewis! Wood does turn into charcoal when it has been heated to the point where most of the volatile gases have been removed. You can also buy charcoal at the store. Thanks for joining the discussion and WONDERing with us! :)
That's a great question, Kaedyn! Have you ever seen a great big bonfire? We think it probably depends on how you build the camp fire and what types of wood and other materials you burn. It seems like long pieces of wood help make tall flames! :)
Reducing the moisture in the firewood will also reduce the crackling and popping sounds you hear when burning our wood. The crackling and popping can also be reduced with seasoning your firewood, however this process takes a lot longer (sometimes 1 - 2 years!) but it also helps to reduce moisture in the wood.
When burned, firewood undergoes a chemical reaction known as combustion, during which the wood matter is converted into heat. More specifically, the cellulose within the wood reacts to the oxygen to produce heat. When a fire has a poor combustion process, meaning only a minimal amount of matter is converted into heat, it will release more airborne particulate matter. Some of this particulate matter will manifest as thick black smoke, whereas others will manifest as embers that pop and crackle.
To minimize popping and crackling, use high quality kiln dried firewood to build your fires. As the name suggests, kiln dried firewood gets placed into a heated kiln. Some kilns are powered by electricity, whereas others are powered by steam or even solar energy. Regardless, they all expose wood to heat, which works to release the trapped moisture and create exceptionally dry firewood.
We pride ourselves on having the most stringent drying process in the industry, resulting in firewood that is as dry as possible for your enjoyment. Our commitment to excellence ensures that you will have the best fireside experience possible.
Stock up on premium kiln dried firewood by visiting our online store today, or you can view our most popular options below. We offer a variety of kiln dried firewood, including oak, hickory and more, that will help you build cleaner fires with less popping and crackling.
At Cutting Edge, we love a great fire. Wood burning fires are not only our passion, but also essential when it comes to gathering with friends, fighting off the winter chill and cooking the perfect pizza. Our unmatched Cutting Edge Kiln Dried Firewood, unparalleled delivery service, and local firewood showroom provide you with an unequaled fire experience.
A fire that pops and crackles can be partof a pleasant fireplace experience and ambience, but in some cases it may be occurringtoo much or you may simply want to hear more of these traditional fireplacesnoises.
Thesound of firewood popping and crackling are the noises made by gases escapingquickly when the firewood is being burnt. The amount of pops and cracklesproduced by a fire can depend on the type of wood, the moisture content of thewood and the efficiency of the combustion.
The noises created by fireplaces can be avery relaxing experience, but these traditional fireplace sounds can vary intype and frequency between fires, so what causes wood to pop and crackle whenburning?
The sap can expand and cause furtherblockages within the firewood, providing less of a means for gases and steam toescape. The increased number of pockets of trapped air inside softwood logs cancreate more popping and crackling noises as these pockets of air finally findtheir way out.
Firewood higher in moisture content canproduce more popping and crackling noises because there is more moisturecontained within the wood. This can lead to more pockets of steam escaping thewood and making pops and crackles.
You may find that hotter burning fires can produce more popping and crackling noises because the wood can be combustedand gases created at a faster rate, giving more opportunity for these gases toget trapped and force their way out with a pop and crackle.
Seasonedfirewood is the perfect choice of firewood for hearing the most amount of popsand crackles from your fires. Properly seasoned firewood will typically haveretained enough moisture for steam to escape and produce popping and cracklingsounds.
This amount of moisture in seasonedfirewood helps to keep the logs burning for a reasonable amount of time, but italso enough moisture retained that it can provide a greater opportunity for thefirewood to produce pops and crackles.
Toreduce the amount of pops and crackles from your fires look to burn kiln driedfirewood that is very low in moisture content. The typically reduced amount ofmoisture within kiln dried wood compared to seasoned firewood can lead to moreinfrequent popping and crackling noises from fires.
Properly seasoned softwood logs such asPine, Cedar, Spruce and Douglas Fir with a moisture content of just under 20% aretherefore the best choice for when you want the most pops and crackles fromyour fires
I love living in an old home with a wood burning fireplace listening to this popping wood sound. All the new homes here in Vegas have gas fire places with fake logs. Thank goodness ours is real.with no gas. Great burning wood started with kindling.and a match.
Sometimes sitting around a fireplace with friends and family can feel like the most comfortable place in the world. Other times, the firewood can start popping and crackling, and someone can end up with a burned arm or a blanket briefly lit on fire. The difference between those two experiences has everything to do with your firewood.
Fires pop and crackle because the moisture that is stored within small pockets of the wood fibers turns to steam in the lit wood. The trapped gasses eventually build up enough pressure to find a way to burst out of the wood. Firewood with a lower moisture content will pop and crackle much less than wood with a higher one.
Always follow safety protocols when lighting a fire in a fireplace to avoid any disasters, and you can sit back and enjoy the sounds and sights of a live burning fire warming you up from the outside in.
These can often be found as firewood for a fireplace, and there are many reasons for that. Most people prefer to find a wood that will not pop and crackle too much, simply for safety and convenience.
These are both in the category of wood called softwoods. Softwoods, as opposed to hardwoods, tend to pop and crackle much more than their counterparts. This has to do with the higher sap and water content. 2b1af7f3a8