How Big Is a Cord of Wood?

big-cord-wood Credit: eren {sea+prairie}/CC-BY 2.0

A cord of wood is four feet wide, four feet high and eight feet long by standards. When sold for firewood, the cord is typically reduced to a stack that contains wood pieces shorter than four feet. These stacks are usually called rick or face cords.

The amount of wood purchased in a cord varies depending upon how tightly the pieces of wood are stacked. Split wood can be stacked tighter than wood that has not been split, meaning that a cord of split wood contains more potential energy than a cord of unsplit wood. This energy difference and the expense of additional processing usually increases the cost of the split cord.