Avocados aren’t the only great thing that comes from an avocado tree! In fact, the wood from an avocado tree has many fantastic uses. It is used very commonly as wood for woodworking projects, building furniture, smoking meat, and doing many other activities.
One of avocado wood’s many uses is as firewood. All wood burns, but every kind of wood burns a little bit differently. Avocado wood is no exception, and its unique way of burning makes it solid firewood for any occasion.
Still, avocado wood isn’t perfect firewood and has its issues when compared to some woods. Still, it is quite a serviceable wood for burning, and shouldn’t be avoided if it is easily accessible or cheaper in your area.
How Does Avocado Wood Burn?
One of the main characteristics of avocado wood is the speed at which it burns. Avocado wood burns extremely fast. Not only does it burn extremely fast, but it also starts burning very easily.
Although this might make it not an ideal candidate for burning wood in your fireplace all day, it is absolutely perfect as a firestarter. It lights quickly and easily and won’t smother the flame. This makes avocado wood extremely valuable when you pair it with woods that burn very hot for a long time. Examples of these kinds of wood are oak and ironwood.
This isn’t to say that avocado can’t be used as standalone firewood. In fact, it is often used as standalone firewood in places where it is very abundant. If you don’t mind throwing logs on the fire a little more often than most, then using avocado is actually pretty great. It burns hot, is efficient, and doesn’t produce any major smells.
This is especially true if there is an abundance of avocado wood in your area. If it is cheap and you have a lot of it, this pretty much completely negates any problems that the speed of avocado wood’s burn presents.
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Heat by BTU
Avocado, while not the hottest burning wood around, still burns fairly hot. It burns at 20.8 BTUs which is above average for wood, but on the lower end of some of the hottest burning hardwoods.
BTU stands for British Thermal Unit. It is the standard measurement used for determining the heat at which different kinds of firewood burn. 1 BTU is the amount of energy it takes to increase the temperature of one pound of water in liquid form by one degree Fahrenheit.
Getting the most BTUs possible will create wood that burns hotter, and longer as well. As a side note, it is very important that your firewood is seasoned in order to get the most BTUs out of it. Don’t burn it when it is freshly chopped. A good rule of thumb is to have it chopped a year in advance, so by next year, it will burn very hot.
This is even more important with avocado wood as although it burns hot, it burns very quickly. This means if it isn’t seasoned, it will still burn hot, create a lot of smoke, but won’t create very much heat due to burning at a low temperature and being gone quickly.
What Does Avocado Wood Smell Like When It Burns?
One of the main reasons people like to burn avocado wood is that it lacks a scent. The wood itself is scentless before it is burned, which is nice for when it is stored in your home, as smelly wood could ruin the atmosphere of a whole room.
Avocado also has a mild and pleasant smoky aroma when compared to many other kinds of wood that are common in home fireplaces. This relative lack of scent is attractive because while the wood burns, it won’t overpower your home with an unwelcome smell.
A producer of soot
One of the less attractive things about avocado wood is that while it doesn’t leave much of a smell behind, it does leave a good amount of soot in your fireplace and chimney if that is where you are making your fires.
Avocado is hardwood, but it is relatively soft for a hardwood. This means that while it is good for burning, it produces a good amount of smoke. Wood that makes more smoke usually makes more soot, so you may need to sweep your chimney a few extra times if avocado is your main fuel source.
Is Avocado Wood Good for a Campfire?
Avocado is a fantastic wood for camping for a number of reasons. Firstly, its ability to start burning and burn quickly makes it great for getting fires set up in unpredictable conditions. Campfires are often subject to wind, rain, cold, and other conditions that make the initial setup and lighting of a campfire often difficult.
Having a quick starting and quick-burning wood such as avocado makes this process a lot easier. It is often paired with slower, hotter burning woods like oak, but can be burned on its own as well. This flexibility is another reason avocado is great as firewood.
Avocado is also quite abundant in the western United States, specifically in California. If you live or are camping in or around California, it is likely that avocado will be one of the cheapest and most widely available kinds of wood you can find. This is another, less thought-about reason that avocado wood is a great option.
The fact that avocado wood burns with very little scent also benefit it as wood for burning in campfires. After all, a campfire isn’t only for telling ghost stories and playing singalong songs. The heat from your campfire is often used to cook food, roast marshmallows, and dry clothing, among many other things.
Woods that burn with a smokier or more unique scent will allow that smell to cling to your food, clothes, tent, and all of your other belongings for days or even weeks. Avocado doesn’t completely lack a smell, as it is still burning wood that produces smoke.
However, its smell is far less pungent than most other kinds of wood, making it easy to deal with for cooking, drying clothes, and not dealing with that smoky post campout smell clinging to everything you own!
Avocado wood is good firewood. Is it the absolute best? Well, by the numbers, no. Ironwood and oak are both more efficient in both heat by BTU and by burn speed. However, avocado is a solid wood in its own right that presents its own benefits.
It doesn’t smell, it burns quickly and with relatively high heat, and it is absolutely great for making campfires. It is a fantastic wood for starting a fire and is more than serviceable for keeping one going. Lastly, in many places, avocado is extremely abundant and can be bought for cheap.
So, there you have it. If you have some avocado wood that you wanted to burn but weren’t sure if it was worth it, now you have your excuse. If you’re looking to purchase some and weren’t sure if it was a good enough firewood to be worth using, rest assured it is just fine.