Beware of fraudulent firewood sellers

Beware of fraudulent firewood sellers
Beware of fraudulent firewood sellers

Old tricks with fraudulent prices on the Internet

An old familiar and well-worn song. The price on the Internet does not correspond to reality. With this experience began the story of our reader, Mr. Peter, who needed to order firewood for the winter. In simplicity, he made a comparison of sellers on the Internet and chose a supplier with a reasonable price and a guaranteed delivery time. It was possible to order via the website, but no one answered the e-mail, so he called the seller with a request to import 8 cubic meters of loose wood at the prices listed on the website. But it emerged from the interview with the seller that the tent prices on the website no longer apply and the waiting time is no longer a few days, but about a month. It was also explained to Mr. Peter during this discussion that he might be happy at all to have some of the wood delivered to him at the present time. Despite this negative connotation, Mr. Petr decided to accept a 65% price increase and placed the order by phone.

Long waiting time with firewood price increase just before delivery

After several weeks of waiting, the wood was still not delivered to the customer. Based on the umpteenth emergency, we finally managed to agree on a fixed date. But the seller announced on this phone that the price of the wood will “unfortunately” be higher than previously agreed (and that he has no forests and that he is also a customer and that if he doesn’t want the wood, someone else will be happy to take it). Given the several weeks of waiting and the idea that Mr. Petr would have to go through this whole process again, he agreed to the price (although he was very reluctant).

Photo gallery:

ⓘ Photo: Petr N. (with permission), Petr N. (with permission)

Check that the delivered amount of firewood corresponds to the order

You are Mr. Peter ordered a total of 8 cubic meters of loose wood. However, a van arrived at the delivery location with a container that was suspiciously small in size. Despite the transporter’s protests, Petr remeasured the dimensions of the container. You were 2 x 0.9 x 3.4 m, which corresponds to roughly 6 cubic meters. The internal dimensions were, of course, somewhat smaller, and the load of firewood was not filled to the brim. “I measured the container several times and there was a maximum of 5 cubic meters of wood,” says Peter. However, the carrier wanted to pay the full amount.

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After a telephone consultation with the dispatcher and arguments that he does not own the forests and that he is just a customer like him, he was informed that there is guaranteed to be 3 m in the container3 full gauge = pure wood without any gaps. “I was told to look at the lumber charts, that it was really right. Coincidentally, I studied woodworking and m3 I can still count. Even if there were those 3 full meters, the coefficient between the space meter poured would be 2.66. I disagreed with his information and assertion that it was so correct and that the quantity was certainly not claimed by anyone, and the driver took the wood away.’

We have prepared instructions on how to proceed correctly for you in gallery.

A simple procedure for verifying that the seller has brought me the agreed amount of loose wood

If you order loose firewood, you can simply check whether the delivered quantity corresponds to the entered order by measuring the container. Always measure the internal dimensions of the container (length, width and height) and multiply the individual side lengths. You can also use our online calculator to calculate the volume of a cube.

Also check the amount of wood in the container. Based on a conversation with a verified wood seller, we were informed that it is possible that during the trip the wood can “shake off” up to 0.5 m in the truck3. But it is not possible for 8 cubic meters of bulk wood to fit into 6 m3 of a large container, which, moreover, is not aligned all the way to the edge. So that 8 cubic meters fit into 6 m3 container, it would have to be precisely laid out, and not poured. Simply follow this advice:

If the volume of the container is significantly smaller than the ordered amount of loose firewood, the ordered amount of wood does not correspond to reality.

Space meter of wood and its conversions

Space meter loose is a unit of measurement used in forestry. It represents logs poured into a cube with dimensions of 1 × 1 × 1 meter.

The basic unit of firewood is one plenum (1PLM), which represents one cubic meter filled without gaps with wood material. In practice, however, it is not possible to achieve such storage, which is why the units were introduced:

Leveled (folded) cubic meter of firewood (1PRMr) represents split wood into logs efficiently stacked into one cubic meter with minimal gaps between individual logs.

Bulk fuelwood cubic meter (1PRMs) it represents loosely packed wood up to one cubic meter, where the gaps between the individual logs are not minimized in any way.

Source of information: Wikipedia

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5 basic recommendations to avoid possible fraud

1. Always check online reviews before choosing a firewood supplier. You can find reviews in the ratings on sites such as Firmy.cz or on Google.cz in the company tab. After a cursory survey of the websites of several companies, it is immediately clear who customers have had a good experience with and where it is good to be careful.

2. Always request a confirmed order in writing or by email. In the order, the company must be mentioned, including all the details, the amount of wood and its price. Beware of mere agreements “on the word” over the phone, as was the case with Mr. Peter.

3. After the delivery of the wood, always measure the container with a meter to see if its internal volume is greater than or equal to the volume of the ordered firewood. Also check the distribution of the wood in the container.

4. In the event that the volume of the container appears to you to be underestimated at first glance, clearly document its contents with photographs and measurements of individual sides. These can subsequently serve together with the order form as evidence for the Czech Trade Inspection.

5. It is also worth being on the lookout in case of arrogant behavior on the part of the seller. Sentences like “be glad that I can deliver anything to you at all” show that this is probably not a fair supplier. A serious supplier will rather inform you that they currently do not have wood in stock or that they cannot guarantee a constant price of wood in the coming weeks/months for certain reasons due to current developments.

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What is your experience with ordering firewood? Share your experience in the discussion.

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Photocredit: Petr N. (with permission)


The article is in Czech

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