Skip Top Navigation
image: Click here to return to the Yuba County home page.

Agricultural Commissioner

Weights and Measures

915 8th. St., Suite 127, Marysville, CA 95901

Office: (530) 749-5400  Fax: (530) 749-5404

Frequently Asked Questions


What is a cord of wood?

Firewood is sold by a measurement called a "cord." A cord must equal 128 cubic feet. To be sure you have a cord, stack the wood neatly by placing the wood in a line or a row, with individual pieces touching and parallel to each other. Make sure that the wood is compact and has as few gaps as possible. Then measure the stack. Multiply the width times the height times the length of the stack and if it equals 128 cubic feet, you have a cord of firewood.

A cord, like other measurements such as a foot, gallon, or ton, is defined by law. A seller may not legitimately use terms such as "truckload," "face cord," "rack," or "pile" because these terms have no legally defined meaning and, therefore, you have no way of determining how much firewood you are actually receiving. If a seller uses such terms, it should alert you to a possible problem. Wood can only be sold by the cord or by fractions of a cord.


How can you make sure you are getting what you pay for when buying firewood ?

When you buy firewood make sure to get a receipt which shows the seller's name and address, as well as the price, the amount, and kind of wood purchased. If possible, get the seller's phone number and write down the license plate number of the delivery vehicle.


What should I do if I think a wood seller cheated me?

In order to determine if you have been cheated, the wood will need to be stacked and measured. You may ask the seller to stack it (you may have to pay extra for this service) or stack the wood yourself . Measure the wood when it is delivered or as soon after purchase as possible. If the cubic measurement indicates that you did not receive the correct volume contact the seller before you burn any wood and see if the seller will correct the problem. If the problem continues, contact the County Department of Weights and Measures before you burn any wood.


How often does the County Weights and Measures Department check commercial weighing and measuring devices and gas station pumps?

The Yuba County Department of Weights and Measures inspects these devices annually. When a device successfully passes inspection a seal (or sticker) is placed on it which has the date it was last tested.


I have an 18 gallon gas tank, but the pump says I put 18.5 gallons into my empty tank. Is this possible?

Yes. The capacity of your gasoline tank found in your owners manual is only an estimate. The actual volume it holds can be higher or lower than the stated capacity. If you still feel that you are being cheated, contact the County Department of Weights and Measures to file a complaint.


What is tare weight?

This is the weight of all wrapping, packaging, or any other material used to contain or transport the product. Items must be sold by net weight (the weight of the product itself). Selling a product by gross weight (net weight plus tare weight) is illegal.


What should I do if I think I have received an under weight packaged commodity or received less than I paid for at a gas station or store?

The first thing to do is to get as much information as possible. If at a gas station, write down the pump number and grade of gas. If at a store write down the check stand number or the aisle number where the item is located and the address of the establishment. Gather any other information you think might be pertinent. Call the County Department of Weights and Measures with this information. The inspector will ask for your name, address and daytime phone number since this information will assist in the investigation, however, you may remain anonymous if you wish. Complaints are vital to our department. We take all complaints very seriously, and we respond to each complaint as quickly as we possible.


When are the pesticide use reports due?

Use reports are due in by the 10th of the month following the month in which the work was performed.


Do I need a certificate, permit or license before I can purchase a pesticide for use on my own property?

Generally, if you purchase pesticides labeled for “home use” you would not need a certificate, permit or license. If you are growing an agricultural crop or commodity then you will most likely be required to obtain a certificate, permit or license in order to purchase a pesticide and should contact your County Agricultural Commissioner's Office to find out what the requirements are.


Does your department have a fee schedule?

Agricultural Commissioner & Sealer of Weights & Measures Fee Schedule

Helpful Web Links


California Department of Food and Agriculture

California Dept. of Food and Agriculture - Division of Weights and Measures

California Law California Law consists of 29 codes, covering various subject areas, the State Constitution and Statutes.

Feather River Air Quality District (FRAQMD) serving Yuba and Sutter counties.

USDA Farm Service Agency California

US Department of Agriculture - Census of Agriculture





©2009 County of Yuba, CA