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Our ultimate fire logs guide will elevate your flame game

Several fire logs burn red hot in a fireplace

There’s a good reason you don’t see any paleontological evidence of Velociraptors making campfires with fire logs. Humans are the only species to have been able to control fire at will. Not only has this unique attribute thrust us to the top of the food chain – past the Velociraptors and chimpanzees. It’s also given us the terrifyingly awe-striking power to fuel all kinds of endeavours.

Since our ancestors learned how to make and preserve fire many millennia ago, we’ve used flame for food, light, fuel, heat, as well as more nefarious uses – flaming arrows anyone? Fast forward to the present day, not many people would know how to kindle a flame without a fire-spitting gizmo, but there’s seldom a human who would pass up the opportunity to enjoy the warmth of a log burning fire. However evolved we may be, there will always be a primal resonance with dancing flames. It’s this instinctive inclination that still makes us enjoy gathering around a log fire to this very day.

If sitting next to a log fire ignites the inner caveman in you, it will delight you to know that making a fire these days is a breeze. If you haven’t used a fire log before, you’re in for a treat. So the next time you are pondering on how to light a fireplace – you have something more than regular wood as an option. Fire logs burn longer and hotter, emitting up to 80% less smoke than ordinary wood. As dedicated pyro experts, we think it’s time we fired up the flaming torch of discovery to take you on a walk through the world of fire logs as we brace ourselves for the impending seasonal shivers.


Big K compressed heat logo fire logs burn with glowing red and orange flames


What Is a fire log?

A log is a log right? Common sense would say yes but the reality is a little different. The differentiator lies in the production process. You see a fire log is manufactured using compression, rather than being produced via a natural seasoning process or a kin drying process. The results? Fire logs are inexpensive, easy to ignite, and burn longer and more efficiently than firewood. These neat combustibles are traditionally manufactured using two methods:


a product shot of Big K compressed heat log fire logs against a white background


The Compressed Sawdust Fire log 

As its name implies, this kind of fire log is made out of compressed sawdust. Thanks to the wonders of high-pressure compression, the majority of internal moisture is removed from the fire log, creating one super dry and super hot tamale. The Big K compressed sawdust heat log leads the fire log charge with a miniscule 8% or less internal moisture level. Our compressed fire logs are densely structured with a uniformed shape, leading to a longer, cleaner and more consistent burn. All about eco? No problem. Each Big K compressed sawdust heat log is 100% natural and made from 100% choice recycled wood without any pollutants or chemicals.


Advantages of compressed sawdust fire logs

There are several good reasons to go fire up some compressed sawdust fire logs. Generally speaking, they have a purer burn due to the very low moisture content. Less moisture means less smoke, impurities, and tar, which also means more fuel for the fire – making it burn hotter for longer. Let’s get into some specifics.

  1. These fire logs are environmentally friendly because they are made from a by-product of wood itself. Also (due to the manufacturing process) compressed sawdust fire logs burn in a more controlled manner, meaning that you use less fuel overall.
  2. Versatility is key. You can use these compressed fire logs in literally any stove, fireplace, fire pit, chiminea or wood stove. You can also mix and match these fire logs with any logs for fire or firewood – giving you the best of both worlds.
  3. Uniform shape, size, and density produce a consistent burn, releasing heat evenly. This consistency gives more control on every burn.
  4. Clean up will be easy and quick as compressed fire logs produce much less ash than firewood. Only a minimal 3% of the fire logs total density will be converted into ash. This will ensure your wood-burning stove won’t be clogged up with excess ash, keeping it nice and clean.


a product shot of one of Big K’s instant light fire logs set against a white background.


The Instant Light Fire log

The second type of fire log uses sawdust and wax, which is mixed and extruded into a log shape. The extruded fire logs are individually wrapped in paper packaging and this packaging acts as your fire starter – no kindling needed. The wax functions like the initial fuel and the sawdust acts as the burning element. Our Instant light fire log will warm you up in no time.


- A product shot of Big K instant light crackle fire logs set against a raging background of fire and flame


There are many benefits of instant light fire logs. They are easy to burn, approved for use in smoke controlled areas and they deliver up to a 2-hour burn time. If you are worried that you might miss out on the authentic crackle of a normal fire, fear not.  Our Big K instant light crackle log produces a soothing sonic symphony of crackle when it burns away!


How to light an instant fire log?

Igniting an instant light fire log is as simple as lighting the wrapper and that’s it…no seriously that’s really it.


How to light a log fire? How to light a log burner?

Whether you are using fire logs, fire pit wood logs or regular logs – the principles of fire lighting remain they same. These are fundamentals hat have stood the test of trend and time: basic pillars of process that bring guaranteed incendiary success.


How to light a fireplace?

  1. Begin by placing a few pieces of firewood on the grate or base of your fireplace or wood burner
  2. Now crumple some newspaper, or grab some natural firelighters, which acts as your tinder.
  3. Place your chosen tinder between the logs.
  4. Add your kindling on top.
  5. Add a few more pieces of firewood on top of the other logs, ensuring that you leave enough room for air to circulate around the logs.
  6. Light your tinder and sit back.


More options for your log fire

Now that you understand how to choose your preferred fire log for your log fire, we can dive into other options you may want to explore when preparing for your next flame fest. We at BIG K have you covered with delivery to your doorstep within 48 hours for all orders above £30 and on all pallet orders!


Kiln Dried Logs for fire

In a nutshell: kiln-dried logs are wood chunks that have been dried in a kiln. This process is a much quicker way to dry out wood, compared to traditional seasoning, plus it delivers a sub 20% internal moisture level. Less moisture means more efficiency as these kiln dried logs are easy to light, and they burn hotter than seasoned logs, taking comparatively less wood to give out the same amount of heat. Kiln-dried logs are best used in fire pits, open fires, chimineas, or outdoor fireplaces. The high heat output paired with the low moisture content gives a long and consistent burn on those cold evenings. BIG K kiln-dried wood has been carefully dried to maintain a consistent moisture content level.


How to make a Swedish Fire log

One of the coolest logs for fire hacks is making a Swedish fire log. With a few materials, you could have your own DIY stove, or just an isolated log on fire, burning from the inside out. Here is a simple guide for you to make your own and have the perfect camping trick.


Materials Needed

  • A dry log at least a foot in diameter with a flat base so it can stand up
  • Chainsaw
  • Tinder, kindling, or dried grass
  • Lighter or matches



Keep the log upright and fire up your chainsaw. Cut ¾ of the way down, making 3 cuts separating 6 equal sections of the log. Think pizza slices in a pizza. When you’ve made the cuts, the face of your log should look like an equally divided pizza! Also, make sure you don’t cut all the way down to the base of the log or you will end up with a bunch of wood chunks instead of a Swedish fire log.

Next, add kindling in between all slices of your sliced up log. You could also use newspaper or any organic flammable material like dry twigs. Don’t pack it too tight as there needs to be sufficient airflow through the log for the fire to keep burning.

Build a small tipi fire on top of the log and light it up. Continue to feed the fire with dried twigs or small pieces of kindling until the kindling inside the log catches fire. As the fire burns downward it will get bigger and the inside of the wood log will also provide the fuel for this fire.

You now have a portable fire you could carry around or stand in one place and put a saucepan or small grill grate on top and cook some food!

As the icy embrace of winter moves ever closer, you will be equipped to bring so serious heat into the equation. Fire logs are the future you lovely people. Stay safe. Stay warm.