Can Bark Briquettes Really Burn 4X Longer Than Conventional Briquettes? (Updated Dec 2023)

Can Bark Briquettes Really Burn 4X Longer Than Conventional Briquettes? (Updated Dec 2023)

Tired of constantly having to add new logs to your burner just to keep the fire going? Want to find a longer-burning fuel source but don’t want to deal with harmful and polluting coal? Then Night Briquettes are the wood fuel you’ve been searching for.

This all-natural, coal-free wood briquette can burn for up to 8 hours, which is 4 times longer than conventional Sawdust Briquettes. But what’s the catch? How is it that they burn so long?

The secret lies in their composition. Night Briquettes are made from recycled softwood bark. This traditionally discarded sawmill byproduct burns far longer than any other wood material. It supplies steady heat throughout its entire burn time. And, what’s best of all, it’s just as affordable as regular old sawdust.

Read on to find out more.

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What Makes Softwood Bark Briquettes Last So Long?

Natural softwood bark is the unsung hero of this story. It turns out that this seemingly humble, traditionally discarded by-product of the sawmill industry has perfect properties for creating a long-burning briquette. And it is precisely this material that allows Night Briquettes to burn longer than any other wood fuel. 

So what gives softwood bark the edge over other materials? The answer is in its heat release curve.

Sawmill Sawdust vs Softwood Bark Briquettes

Softwood bark isn’t magical. In fact, it contains approximately the same amount of energy as traditional sawmill sawdust used for the creation of regular Sawdust Briquettes. The main difference between the two materials isn’t in the amount of energy they contain. It’s how they release this energy.

Regular sawdust lets go of its heat quickly, providing you with a lot of heat for for a moderate amount of time. This makes sawdust briquettes a great choice for colder weather.

Regular Sawdust Briquettes offer a good balance of burn time and heat output. Customers searching for maximum heat output should look at Hardwood Heat Logs, whose chimney-effect-creating shape allows them to release all of their heat rapidly.

Softwood bark, on the other hand, releases its heat very slowly. This allows it to release steady heat at a lower temperature but for a much, much longer time.

Who Should Use Bark Briquettes?

Wood briquettes made from softwood bark are perfect for people who are looking to save money by reducing their overall wood consumption. If you feel like you’re burning money with regular kiln-dried logs and briquettes, give bark briquettes a shot.

Night Briquettes can be used as your main fuel during milder weather. Just keep in mind that they cannot be used to start a fire. Instead, they need to be placed on top of hot coals in an already pre-heated stove and your airflow controls need to be set to their minimum.

They’re also a good option for nighttime use during colder weather as they can continue heating your home throughout the entire night. This is unlike traditional briquettes, which will go out after a couple of hours and leave your rooms cold by the time you wake up.

Are Bark Briquettes Hard to Use?

While it is true that briquettes made from softwood bark are slightly more difficult to use than regular sawdust briquettes, the difference isn’t night and day. If you’ve used regular wood briquettes before, you should have no trouble adjusting your technique for softwood bark briquettes. Consult our Ultimate Guide to Night Briquettes for more info.

How to Use Softwood Bark Briquettes

  1. Pre-heat your wood-burning appliance. Use kiln-dried logs or sawdust briquettes to pre-heat your stove to its optimal burning temperature.
  2. Place your bark briquettes on top of glowing embers. Once your stove is sufficiently pre-heated and your starter fuel has turned to embers, gently place a couple of Night Briquettes into your stove.
  3. Set your appliance’s airflow controls to the minimum setting. This step is crucial for helping your briquettes last for as long as possible. 
  4. Enjoy your long-lasting fire. Once you understand the heat output profile of bark briquettes, feel free to experiment with the number of briquettes you use and the airflow controls of your appliance to get the perfect mix of heat output and burn time.

Do Softwood Bark Briquettes Produce a Lot of Ash?

Yes. When compared with sawdust briquettes, softwood bark briquettes produce noticeably more ash. This ash is all-natural and compostable. It makes for great garden fertiliser. It can also be mixed with water to create an all-natural cleaning paste that is perfect for cleaning your stove.

What Is the Best Brand of Long-Burning Briquettes?

NIGHT® long-burning briquettes are by far the UK's most well-known and highly-rated brand of long-burning softwood bark briquettes.

Read our blog post about Great Uses For Your Wood Ash for more information.

This article was updated on December 11, 2023.