Splitting Wood: 12 Tips

Splitting wood, the old saying goes, warms you twice--once when you split it and once when you burn it. There's no doubt about it, splitting wood can be hard work, but with the right methods and a few tips, it can be a lot easier. For many homeowners wood splitting is a chore, but with the right tools, it can become an art form, or even a relaxing way to spend an afternoon.

Tips For Splitting Wood

  • Sharpen your axe and hatchet frequently.
  • Bend at the waist and knees to get the best impact with the least effort.
  • Cut your logs to be split into shorter sections of 12 to 18-inch lengths for easier splitting.
  • Use a hard, solid surface, such as a flat-topped stump or wood surface to split wood.
  • Never split wood on a concrete or stone surface.
  • Spilt only seasoned wood.
  • Strike the wood off-center, not in the center of the log.
  • Stand slightly uphill of the log you're splitting to take advantage of the downhill angle.
  • Swing through with a decisive stroke.
  • Use a lighter maul--typically a 6-pound rather than an 8 or-10-pound maul.
  • Focus your attention on what you're doing.
  • Don't swat at the wood.