I love using a Duraflame log to light a fire and chase away the chills on a cold winter's night.
They’re a great alternative to firewood in many cases because they’re safer, cleaner, and can be more cost-efficient. They are also much easier to light than a standard wood fire and they got for up to 4.5 hours for just a single log.
One issue many people encounter, though, is that they don’t want to burn an entire log in one sitting or you don't need all the heat of an entire log.
So can you cut the log in half and save the unused part for another occasion?
Yes, you can cut a Duraflame log in half but it's a little tricky and there's no perfect way to do it. It can also lead to flare ups as the product can begin to fall apart during burning.
Duraflame logs are made from sawdust and a blend of natural fibers (such as seeds, nut shells, etc.) held together by wax. This grainy composition means that the log will easily disintegrate when pressure is applied.
Duraflame logs are designed to burn all the way through as a single log. While the company doesn't advise cutting the logs in half it is possible to do.
However, cutting your Duraflame log in half may lead to reduced burn times and less complete burning and can potentially even lead to the log falling apart during burning and flaring up quite significantly.
Duraflame customer support responded to this question here:
Our firelogs are designed to burn as one whole log. If they are cut in half, it can affect the structural integrity of the product. This in turn will affect its performance, making it more likely for the product to break apart while burning and perhaps flare up. Therefore, we don’t recommend that you cut the firelogs in half.Duraflame Support
Another user stated that burn times can be reduced from hours to just 30 minutes when they are cut in half.
So while it is possible using the whole log and putting it out when you are done is usually a better solution.
How to Safely Cut A Duraflame Log
There a few ways to safely cut a Duraflame log, minimizing the mess that comes from cutting it.
First things first, any cut to the Duraflame log will need to be width-wise and not length-wise. The composition of the log and the available methods of cutting make clean length-wise cuts extremely difficult.
Keeping the log in its paper wrapping also helps minimize the mess.
The logs are extremely densely packed and so cutting them is by no means easy. It's much harder to cut a Duraflame log than it is to cut a regular wood log.
With A Hatchet And A Hammer or an Axe
The most efficient method is to use a sharp hatchet and a hammer (preferrably a one-handed sledgehammer).
Simply place the edge of the hatchet halfway down the log and strike it with the hammer.
The suddenness of the strike makes for a clean cut, minimizing the flaking Duraflame logs are notorious for.
You can also use an axe to cut your Duraflame log just like you would with regular firewood. However, don't expect it to split easily like regular firewood does.
With A Saw
The other way to make the cut is to run the log through a band saw.
The fineness and sharpness of the band saw blade combined with its speed helps to minimize the mess that hand saws make.
If you don't have a band saw then you can use a regular saw but it'll likely make more mess.
However, because Duraflame logs contain wax this wax can melt onto your saw and this can be difficult to clean up and can dull your blade.
Of course, the main problem with this method is that not everyone has a band saw. The wax will also rapidly dull the blade, so it’s not the best method in the long run. Not everyone has a hatchet and hammer handy in all circumstances, either.
Instead Of Cutting Your Duraflame Log Just Put It Out When You’re Done
There’s a better way to get the most out of your Duraflame log, though.
Instead of going through the hassle of cutting the log, simply put it out when you are done.
There are several easy ways to put out a Duraflame log and all you need for some of these methods is water or sand.
The Duraflame log should then be fine to light again for a second time.
This way you get all the heat of a Duraflame log but you can spread the burn time over multiple evenings.