How to Split Firewood Efficiently

Start splitting even the stubbornest logs more easily and efficiently by using this reader’s nifty trick – remember, work smarter not harder.

  • Splitting Firewood
    Next time a log doesn’t want to split, try this reader-submitted tip.
    Photo by Fotolia/Alessandro Capuzzo

  • Splitting Firewood

I have a great tip about how to split a large chunk of firewood using steel wedges, a chainsaw and a sledgehammer. This method is especially useful if the log doesn’t have any cracks (or “checks”) to put a steel splitting wedge into.

With your chainsaw, cut two shallow grooves — about 2 inches deep and parallel to each other — into the face of the log. Place a steel wedge into each groove and pound both in with a sledgehammer. Usually, the log will split readily.

Phil Wallace

10/23/2020 12:22:14 AM

At 62, I don't split much wood, but I still have my Sotz Monster Maul I bought in the 1970s. You don't swing it like an axe. You lift it head high and it works decent on firewood size pieces. As for splitting with wedges, I have pounded two steel wedges into 6 1/2 foot cedar posts and then had to work at getting the wedges unstuck. I found that if you split wood when the temperature is well below freezing, one wedge will split a 6 1/2 foot cedar post cleanly with just a good hit or two from a 10 pound sledge hammer. To me, the trick is not the tool or technique, but the temperature. Dave



Fall 2021!

Put your DIY skills to the test throughout November. We’re mixing full meal recipes in jars, crafting with flowers, backyard composting, cultivating mushrooms, and more!


Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 64% Off the Cover Price

50 Years of Money-Saving Tips!

Mother Earth NewsAt MOTHER EARTH NEWS for 50 years and counting, we are dedicated to conserving our planet's natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. You'll find tips for slashing heating bills, growing fresh, natural produce at home, and more. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.95 (USA only).

You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.95 for 6 issues.

Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
International Subscribers - Click Here
Canadian subscriptions: 1 year (includes postage & GST).

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter flipboard

Free Product Information Classifieds Newsletters