How to Dry Wood Chips

Updated February 21, 2017

Wood chips are more flammable when they are dried before use. If you are ordering wood chips direct from a lumber site, they may not be kiln-dried. If not, drying them will help their combustion rate. Wood is usually dried inside of a large kiln, however this process is a little too involved for the average person. There are safe, reliable ways to dry wood chips for home use which do not require additional fuel resources.

Fill a container with wood chips and weigh the container. Write down the weight.

Lay down a plastic tarp or barrier on the floor of your garage or basement. Any room that has direct access and enough room for the wood chips will do.

Store the wood chips on the tarp in a thin layer 1 to 2 inches deep. Cover the entire tarp with wood chips.

Seal the room by closing windows and doors leading into the room and keep them closed during drying.

Set up a portable dehumidifier in the room near the wood chips and operate it for three to four days.

Fill the same container with some of the dry wood chips again, and weigh the container. The total weight after drying should be between 40 and 150 per cent less than before drying. This shows a release of moisture content in the wood and proves that drying has occurred.

Continue to dry until there is no longer a significant decrease in weight.


Dry wood chips pose a risk of fire. Do not store near furnaces, flammable fluids or open flames. Do not store large piles of wood chips indoors.

Things You'll Need

  • 5-gallon bucket
  • Scale
  • Tarp
  • Dehumidifier
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About the Author

Steve Smith has published articles on a wide range of topics including cars, travel, lifestyle, business, golf, weddings and careers. His articles, features and news stories have appeared in newspapers, consumer magazines and on various websites. Smith holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and journalism from University of New Hampshire Durham.