There are so many creative ways to create a firewood rack to store wood outdoors, depending on the size of the wood you’re storing and what type of look you’re after. However, some plans you’ll find on the internet will require purchasing tons of materials and hours of your time to finish the project. These firewood rack plans will teach you how to make an outdoor firewood rack using wooden pallets that you may already have lying in your garage, leave you with an impressive and functional DIY firewood rack and more money in your pockets.
Making Your Own Rack for Firewood
A firewood storage rack is handy for people who need a place to store their firewood off the ground, ridding their yard of an unsightly mess and organizing firewood into a clean and maintained storage spot.
The beauty of this project is that, if you have used wood pallets laying around your yard, you won’t have to spend a dime purchasing wood for the firewood rack. Additionally, the only other materials you’ll need are some wood glue, a drill, and some screws, which are all things you likely have on hand already.
As a bonus, this firewood rack will also have a roof, so it’s perfect for outdoor use to keep your firewood safe from the elements. All you need for the roof is a slightly larger pallet than the ones you used for the walls and some weatherproof material, like a heavy-duty tarp. The roof transforms this storage rack into a handy storage shed for a convenient way to store your wood.
Where Can I Find Used Pallets if I Don’t Have Them?
Not everyone has used pallets lying around, but fortunately, they’re easy enough to find. Small businesses around your neighborhood should be your first stops. They often get deliveries on wooden pallets. Check your local grocery stores, hardware stores, and furniture stores, which are the likeliest to have pallet deliveries.
You might even notice some pallets laying near dumpsters of local businesses. If that’s the case, feel free to ask the business owner if you can take them. However, don’t take them without permission, as some businesses have contracts with private companies or individuals for pallet pickups.
Alternatively, you can sometimes find free wooden pallets through the Classifieds section of your local newspaper, or on Classifieds websites, like Craigslist. Or, do a quick internet search for “wooden pallets [your town/city and state names here]” to find places that might give away pallets in exchange for a free pickup.
How Can I Make This Rack Safe for Use Outdoors?
If you want to keep your storage rack outside, you’ll need to weatherproof it. Even if it’s on a covered porch, your rack can still get hit with some angled rain and wind, which can warp it and make it brittle over time.
Before you start assembling your pallets according to our instructions, be sure to weatherproof your wood so that no part gets left untouched. Purchase a water-based wood sealer. You can use a spray or the kind that comes in a container. If your pallets have been painted or finished in some way, use a spray stripper and scraper to remove the previous finishing. Sand the pallets with a medium-grit sandpaper until they feel smooth, and then finish sanding with a fine-grit sandpaper.
Use the sealer according to the manufacturer’s directions. Be sure to get every part of your wood pallets with a sealer to prevent weak spots and rotting in the wood. Allow the sealant to dry for the required time, which usually is about four to five hours. You might want to apply two to three coats for a longer-lasting weatherproof seal.
Prepare to refinish your storage rack every year or two, depending on your area’s weather patterns.
Instructions for a Do-It-Yourself Rack for Firewood
This DIY project is about as simple as they come, especially if you already have wooden pallets on hand. Our rack for firewood requires minimal assembly and tools, and you can likely put it together within a couple of hours at the most. You may want to ask a friend to assist you when it’s time to place the roof on the rack. Otherwise, you can complete this project on your own.
This rack can store outdoors with the addition of the weatherproofing steps we mentioned, or you can omit the steps to add the roof if you plan to store it indoors, like in a storage shed or garage.
- Four standard 48×40 wooden pallets
- One larger 48×48 wooden pallet for the roof
- Weatherproof material, such as plastic tarp or a pool cover, cut to the size of the larger wooden pallet
- Four 2×4’s, two of them about 5 feet in height, and two of them about 5 ½ to 6 feet in height
- Drill and 2-inch screws
- Hammer and 1 ½-inch nails
- Weatherproof paint or stain, if desired
How to Make It:
- If you plan to use your rack outdoors, you should be sure to follow the instructions provided above for weatherproofing your wood before you start. It’s a good idea, too, to stain or paint your pallets with weatherproof materials before assembling to ensure that you don’t miss any spots.
- Lay one of the standard 48×40 pallets down on the ground. It should be a flat surface so that you have a steady place on which to build. Also, you might want to consider making your rack in the place where you’ll store it, as it can be cumbersome and difficult to move later.
- Place one standard 48×40 pallet on one side of the base. Use your drill to drill two screws from the ends of that pallet into the base pallet. Be sure to use an angled approach to get a good grip on the base pallet. Now, drill two more screws on the other side of that pallet, again angled from the side into the base pallet.
- Repeat these steps with the other two sides. Check that each side is sturdy. If you notice any movement, double check your screw placement and re-drill if necessary.
- Now, you’ll take a longer 2×4 and place it at one of the front corners. The bottom of the 2×4 should touch the ground, flush with the base, and the 2×4 itself should sit flush against the side pallet, reaching up above the top of the sides. Drill two screws from the 2×4 into the side pallet, one near the top and one near the bottom.
- Repeat these steps with the four corners. The two longer 2×4’s should be at the front edges, and the shorter 2×4’s in the rear to create a sloping roof.
- Prepare your roof by laying the larger 48×48 pallet on a flat surface. Take your tarp or other weatherproof material and put it on top of the pallet. Cut off excess material if there is any. You can use a weatherproof craft glue to adhere the material to the wood for a waterproof seal. Or, use your hammer and nails to attach the tarp to the roof pallet, using several nails on each side and one in each corner.
- Lift the roof pallet onto the four 2×4’s with the assistance of a helper. It should sit on the posts at an angle to allow precipitation to travel off the roof. Position the roof so that it’s centered on the posts. It should overhang the front and back of the rack evenly. Have your helper hold the roof in place as you drill screws from the roof and into each of the four posts at an angle.
Once you’ve finished your assembly, check the sturdiness of the rack by giving each side some gentle pressure with your hands. If you notice any wobbling or movement, double check your screws. You can add a few more to the pallets to more firmly secure them to the base or the corners if needed.
If you want to protect your rack from the elements further, you can use tethers and rope to secure a tarp over the full rack. This is especially useful for people in areas of heavy rain or snow. You can always remove the tarp when you don’t need it.
If you have a lot of small logs to store that might fall through the slats of the wood pallet, you can further customize your storage rack by adding some wood shelving toward the top.
Conclusion: DIY Outdoor Rack for Firewood
We hope that these instructions for creating your rack on which to store firewood helped you create the perfect storage space for your cut wood. This rack can complement your rustic outdoor scene, especially when stored near a firepit and outdoor seating. You can use whatever material you’d like for the roof and a weatherproof paint or stain to ensure that your rack fits your design and make it a one-of-a-kind piece.