If you own a wood burner or an open fire in your home you will know that even once burnt kiln dried logs can still leave behind some ash. Even the most efficient firewood, such as kiln dried firewood, can result in plenty of ash. However, the ash doesn’t always need to be thrown straight in the bin.
So what should I do with it?
A lot of people would think to throw the ash away or even hoover it up when cleaning out their stove but we have some ideas for making the most of the ash. Below are a few ideas to help you make use of the excess ash left in your stove!
Clean the glass in your wood burner with it
Not a lot of people know this, but you can actually use the leftover ash to clean the glass in your wood burner! The ash doesn’t have all the cleaning properties your branded cleaners do, however, the ash is a great abrasive that can remove all of the built-up soot on the glass.
All you need to do is get a damp cloth or some screwed up newspaper you might have lying around, dip it into the ash and work it through the soot and dirt on the glass.
If you’ve got all the soot and dirt off the glass and it still isn’t clear, you should be able to take a damp or wet paper towel and wipe the glass clean.
Feed it to your garden
Another great idea is utilising your excess ash is using it in your garden! The ash leftover from the kiln dried logs is a great natural source of potassium and can help to take some acidity out of the soil.
If you have a compost bin or heap, add your ash into the compost and then use it for several different uses around the garden
Remember though, with this step, you want to be careful to not add too much ash, as an excessive amount can also be bad for the plants. Adding little bits at a time to your garden and compost will provide a whole host of great benefits to your garden.
Keep it for the cold weather
As mentioned above, firewood ash is a great source of potassium, which comes in super handy when the roads are icy in the colder months.
There’s nothing worse on a cold winter morning than waking up and thinking you’re not going to be able to get off the driveway because of the snow and ice. Well, firewood ash is a surprisingly great way to get rid of that problem! Ash helps to melt snow and, when put down on an icy driveway, it gives the tires on your car something to grip onto. We suggest always keeping some firewood ash in a bucket in your garage or even storing some in the back of your car.
Get creative and make some soap
If you like to do some DIY and craft, why not make some soap with your firewood ash? When mixed with water (rainwater is ideal) it creates lye which is used for soap making!
There is a bit of work involved in doing this but it is a really good way to recycle your firewood and create something new out of it. Remember though - when you’re making soap with ashes, ensure you do it with the leftovers from hardwood instead of softwood.
When your fire has died out and you are left with the ashes from kiln dry logs in the wood burner or open fire, you should always put them to good use rather than chucking them away. You’d be surprised just how many things you can actually do with the ashes from firewood. Not only are these ideas good for the environment but the ashes have various practical benefits as well!