ODA gives firewood buying tips

Staff report

As people look to firewood to help heat their homes, the Ohio Department of Agriculture is offering basic tips to help when purchasing wood:

• Non-packaged firewood must be sold by the cord or by fractions of a cord. One cord, when properly stacked, should be eight feet long by four feet high and four feet wide – 128 cubic feet.

• If sold in bulk, firewood must be sold by in terms of price per ton. This must be weighed on a certified scale. In no case can a scale be used for net loads that weigh less than fifty minimum divisions.

• It is illegal to sell firewood by any other unit of measurement such as a rick, rack, face cord or truckload. If a consumer believes that a seller did not comply with these rules and regulations, the person should immediately contact the seller.

• If non-packaged firewood is purchased, the seller must present the consumer with a delivery ticket or sales invoice that includes contact information of seller and purchaser, date of delivery, quantity, quantity upon which the price is based, total price of the amount delivered, and terms and conditions of the sale.

• If the firewood is advertised and sold, a representation may include a declaration of identity that indicates the species group. (Example: 50 percent hickory, 40 percent oak, 10 percent ash). Such a representation shall indicate, within 10 percent accuracy, the percentages of each group.

• Be aware of different firewood movement regulations in place concerning invasive species such as gypsy moth and Asian longhorned beetle. For more information on specific regulations, visit ODA’s invasive pests webpage. Never move firewood long distances, and buy and burn local.

• When burning firewood for heat, the state fire marshal advises to follow all necessary safety practices to avoid any serious problems.

If there are questions or concerns with a firewood sale, and the seller will not correct the problem, contact the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s Division of Weights and Measures at 614-728-6290 or contact the county auditor’s office.

Staff report