How Much Wood Chips Do I Need?
From Cubic Meters and Liters to bales
Buying wood chips means you’re getting lots of small pieces of wood as opposed to one easily-measurable plank. Because of this wood chips are measured in volume; generally in liters or by cubic meter for larger orders.
This has the benefit of making it easy to know the exact amount of wood you’re getting when shopping online . Although it can be hard to translate these measurements into a picturable amount.
If you are put off by measurements of cubic meters and wondering ‘how much wood chips do I need?’ hopefully this post can help assist you.
What are the wood chips for?
The first step when figuring out how much wood chips you need is knowing what you’ll be using the woodchips for. Mulching large flower beds, for example, would require far more wood chips than powering a household boiler for a day.
Some reasons you might purchase different quantities of wood chips include:
- Boiler fuel
- Other biofuel needs
- Smoking food*
- Animal bedding
For consistent purchasing – such as when heating your home with a biofuel boiler – you probably won’t be thinking ‘how much wood chips do i need?’ Since buying in bulk is almost always cheaper.
Alternatively, for one-off purchases like bordering the paths in your garden, there are equations that can assist you. As long as you have a decent idea of the surface area that you’ll be covering. Mulch, for example, needs a thicker layer to be effective as touched on in a previous post .
Although most good quality wood chips are seasoned, you should take care when using them for cooking. If unsure, always buy chips designed for smoking food for human consumption; like applewood or hickory.
Using Your Maths… Or Our Handy Calculator
When answering the question “how much wood chips do I need?” the scenario is important. For the purpose of this explanation we’re going to use a flower bed as an example.
Imagine you’ve planted bulbs in a flower bed roughly eight meters by five meters across. You’re buying wood chips to mulch the bed in autumn before the frost comes in. You want to apply the mulch across the whole flower bed in a thickness of 4CM.
The formula to figure out how much wood chips you need is to multiply the length and width of the bed with the thickness of the layer. So:
8 x 5 = 40
40 x 0.04 = 1.6
It is important to keep the unit of measurement consistent. Here we’ve used meters which is why 4CM became 0.04 and gave us 1.6 cubic meters.
Alternatively, on our Man Coed online shop we have included a wood chip and mulch calculator in our product description . This means if you’re browsing our selection of high-quality wood chips, you can simply scroll to the bottom of the page and have it worked out for you. Telling you exactly how much wood chips you need.
If you are after high quality, seasoned wood chips – dried to a variety of moisture contents – then Man Coed’s recycled tree waste wood chipping has you covered! If not then we at least hope we’ve been able to answer your question of “how much wood chips do I need?”
Wood Chips Volume Calculator
Residential or commercial work?