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a cord of wood stacked in two rows at about four feet high and 8 feet long by four feet wide

Cord Of Wood

Originally contributed by Jeff Butler • last updated 1/21/2021

Believe it or not, firewood for sale is big business. But piles of loosely thrown firewood can be nearly impossible to count or weigh, which is why, in most areas, wood is measured by the cord.

Definition

The phrase cord of wood (sometimes called a cord of firewood or a full cord) can refer to a legal unit of measurement for a set volume of seasoned firewood at 128 cubic feet. In most cases, it should be roughly equal to two properly stacked piles of wood, side by side, that are 4 feet tall, by 4 feet deep, by 8 feet long, with individual pieces typically cut between 12 and 16 inches in length. In addition to a cord of wood (full cord), there are other non-official, often regional, terms that are also used for measuring seasoned firewood, such as a face cord, a long cord, a bush cord, a rick cord, and a Sheldon cord.

How Much Is A Cord Of Wood, Really?

Buying a cord of firewood may seem simple enough but, in reality, you might not always get what you think you’re paying for. Here are some things to be aware of:

  • Firewood delivered loosely in the back of a truck or trailer can be difficult to accurately measure, which could mean you’re not actually getting a full cord. If possible, purchase your firewood from a reputable seller who will guarantee the correct amount.
  • A face cord of wood (sometimes called a stove cord or furnace cord) is probably the second most common measurement for seasoned firewood. It’s typically a single row of firewood, measuring 4 feet high and 8 feet long with a no standard length for a width (but commonly cut at 12, 16, 24 or 32 inches).
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