How much is a cord of wood ?

Measuring Firewood

When you’re buying seasoned firewood for your fireplace or wood stove, it is usually sold in measurements called cords. So what is a cord of firewood and just how much is a cord of wood? The simplest way to define a cord of wood   that it is 128 cubic ft. of split and stacked fire wood. in other words, if you were to stack a load of firewood that measured  4ft wide by 4 ft tall by 8 ft long, that would be a full cord.

Measurment of a cord of firewood

Cord of wood

An important detail to be mindful of is that the firewood is tightly stacked with no large gaps between rows of wood. Obviously any empty space in your stack is not going to add up to 128 cubic ft of wood. Also, you should keep in mind that a cord of firewood that is loosely tossed into the back of a truck will take up more measured space of that truck than 128 cubic ft. in other words; if you took a truck bed that happened to measure 4x4x8 ft and loosely filled it with firewood you would not have a true cord. Once stacked that amount of firewood would equal less than a cord. At Forest Keepers, we keep this in mind and have measured out our truck beds to deliver a true cord of wood to every order.

a cord of wood should be tightly stacked

Notice how this wood is nicely stacked with only small gaps between the pieces. A 4x4x8 stack like this would measure to 128 cubic ft of wood.

Naturally, a half cord would be half of this amount. 4x4x4 or 64 Cubic ft. And, likewise a quarter cord is half of that again. 2x4x4, or 32 cubic ft.

Other Units of Wood

When talking about firewood, you may hear other terms tossed around, such as, “face cord” or a “rick” of wood.

These terms are a bit more abstract as there is no officially recognized standard for these measurements. Generally speaking, a face cord is a stack of wood 4 ft tall by 8 ft long and one 16″ piece of wood deep. This is what is commonly understood as a “rick of wood as well.  Most often what is called a face cord, or a rick of wood measures out to be 1/4 to 1/3 of a cord. Keep in mind that the only officially defined unit of measurement for firewood  is the cord. So if your are buying firewood and the seller is offering you a face cord or a rick, find out what he means in terms of cubic ft. If the seller does not know the cubic feet of what he is selling as a face cord, then how do you know if you are getting your money worth?

As far a buying a pick up truck bed worth of firewood…..well, what make and model? How many different sized truck beds are there on the road. How could you put an, across the board, price on  that unit of measurement? Always deal in cubic feet or cords of wood, when buying firewood. Then you’ll know if you are getting a good deal or not.