Important Factors To Consider In Fireplace Installation

Installing a fireplace in your home is an investment in improving the comfort and look of your living space. There are many factors to consider when choosing your fireplace; size, shape, style, where you want the fireplace to go, and so forth. This short article will help you through each aspect and simplify the fire installation process. Regardless of the fuel source, there are certain common design elements of factory-made fireplaces which should be considered when planning a DIY installation

 

One of the first things you’ll need to decide is if you want an open, or enclosed installation. The obvious difference is in how much heat you get; open fireplaces are a lot hotter. You’ll also need to consider electric fireplace installation costs, which will vary based on brand and model. If you decide to use an electric fireplace, you may also want to consider the cost of installing a thermostat; some models require one and can be very expensive per hour.

 

Another aspect of fireplace installation which shouldn’t be ignored is the type of wood you’re going to use for your burn. Some people prefer to use soft woods like pine and cedar, while others opt for hardwoods like cherry or maple. You can significantly reduce installation costs by purchasing the right type of wood, as most are already seasoned and ready to burn. Some manufacturers will mark hardwood exterior wood as having not been treated with chemicals, so this is another area where shopping around is paramount. Softwoods, on the other hand, may require that you treat the outside of the wood for protection against the elements. Treating the wood will make it easier for the fire to burn properly; some manufacturers recommend treating the outside of the wood with a mineral water base if using softwoods.

 

Another important aspect of fireplace installation is the height of the flue. Some homes have traditionally used low iron or clay tile flues installed in the wall, whereas more modern installations use stainless steel or aluminum flues installed on the inside of the walls. The advantage of having a high flue is that you can choose the perfect diameter for your home, and in many cases to install a wood burning fireplace within the confines of your roof. Because of the design of a traditional fireplace, the smoke is forced up through the chimney and out through the roof (known as a tube) – the disadvantage of this design is that it requires constant clean up, and that you can expect your chimney to need occasional repair due to constant firing.

 

Fireplace installation is generally completed using one of three methods – either gas wood, or vent-free gas. Each of these provides a different level of heat and atmosphere delivery and will require different amounts of setups and maintenance. Gas fireplaces provide less room for stray embers to drift into your room, necessitating more frequent chimney sweeps. Wood-burning fireplaces require regular maintenance and burning, as well as having to be vented and sealed against dampness. Vent-free gas fireplaces are completely airtight and allow direct-vent installation where applicable.

 

When planning for fireplace installation, you should consider the location of your fireplaces. Because they are designed to work over a cold open area, many people install their fires below their houses or around other structures. You can also place an insert in any of your existing fireplaces, providing them with even more square footage. Whether you choose to install your fireplace inserts directly into your current fireplace or build a new freestanding unit, there are several factors you should consider:

 

The most obvious factor is safety. Direct-vent fireplace inserts require the highest levels of fire safety equipment, such as special vents and smoke detectors. Since gas fireplaces produce no residual heat, you should ensure that your chimney is kept clear of debris and loose flammables. Smoke alarms are also a good idea, even for wood-burning fireplaces. They can alert you to potential dangers such as carbon monoxide poisoning and contract fires from combustible objects such as logs and papers.

 

Another important factor when considering fireplace installation is convenience and budget. Fireplace inserts may be less expensive than factory-built fireplaces, but they also require more work. If you’re putting a fireplace inside a house, you’ll have to figure out the space for the insert, build walls for ventilation and get rid of existing doors and windows. On the other hand, factory-built fireplaces come preassembled, and all you have to do is put them together. They are also less convenient, especially if you have an odd-shaped room or need to install them near a wall.

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