Fireplaces have long been a popular house feature, not only for their warmth but also for the comfortable and peaceful atmosphere they create. On a chilly winter day, nothing beats sitting next to a roaring fireplace, drinking a cup of hot chocolate or a glass of red wine.
But, with so many different types and styles on the market, how can you determine which one is right for you? Here are the factors to consider when selecting a functional and gorgeous fireplace for your abode.
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Different models use different fuels, so one of the first decisions you should make is to pick an option that is most suitable for your home and lifestyle. The wood, gas, and electric fireplaces on the market all have their advantages and downsides. To choose, you’ll need to examine a variety of criteria, including installation method and look, as well as maintenance and fuel needs.
Here’s a rundown of each type.
When the word “fireplace” is mentioned, most people envision a traditional stone chimney with burning logs. Wood-burning fireplaces are just that—they mimic the appearance, sound, and odour of a genuine fire. They are possibly the most beautiful option, but the natural look comes at a cost.
This type is the most complex and expensive to construct. The expense of installing a new chimney is in addition to the cost of keeping it clean. Installation is significantly less expensive if you already have a chimney. In any event, the final product is well worth the investment and will last for decades.
In addition, wood is a less expensive fuel. You could even find some for free in your backyard. Wood fires must be closely managed for safety reasons, but they are helpful in an emergency, such as a natural disaster. In the case of a power outage, you may use your fireplace to heat and illuminate your home.
Look for wood-burning fireplaces that are large enough to heat your room without making it feel stuffy. Wood fireplaces come in several layouts, so you’re sure to find something that fits your needs.
Gas fireplaces mimic the appearance and feel of wood fires but with a lower price and less mess. The flames are fuelled by natural gas or propane rather than wood. Decorative ceramic logs, glass rocks, fireballs, and stones aid in the recreation of genuine wood.
There are two types of gas fireplaces: vented and vent-free. Direct-vent fireplaces produce a limited quantity of smoke, which must be vented. You may install a direct-vent gas insert inside your home if you have a chimney. If not, go for a ventless gas fireplace, which emits no harmful emissions. But both options must be linked to your home’s existing gas supply or an external source.
Gas fireplaces are the most efficient and provide the most heat. They are also more convenient and eco-friendly. They allow you to control the temperature by turning the knob up or down. Simply turn off the gas to extinguish the flames. Because they operate on gas, they can provide light and heat even during a power outage.
The electric type is the simplest of the three alternatives to install. There is no actual fire, despite the appearance of a fireplace. It connects to an outlet and functions as an electric heater, blowing heat into the room. It requires no ventilation or maintenance because it emits no fumes or soot and can be turned on and off with the push of a button.
Electric fireplaces simulate real fire by putting fake wood in front of digital flames. Flames can be exhibited without heat or with heat but no flames. This allows you to experience the mood of a flickering fire at any time of year. Some even allow you to change the style and colour of the flames.
As long as you have electricity, you can install an electric fireplace in practically any living area. All you have to do is choose the size and style that would work best in your house.
Contemporary and Modern Fireplaces
It seems logical that if you have a sleek modern home, your fireplace should reflect it. In a minimalist contemporary home, a classic-style fireplace with all of its magnificent design and workmanship would appear out of place. Something a little simpler will be more appropriate.
Styles in black and chrome match most decors and colours and work well in modern settings. Choose a wall-mounted or hole-in-the-wall fire for a more fashionable look.
Traditional and Period Fireplaces
A modern fireplace isn’t always a suitable fit for an older property. Not to worry, there is a wealth of options for people searching for a fireplace that suits their historical design.
An open fire is the most conventional choice, especially if you have a chimney. If an open fire isn’t feasible, consider a class 1 full-depth gas fire with a class 1 brick chimney.
Knowing which qualities are most important to your family can assist you in deciding which fireplace to purchase. Consider the following critical points:
With a wood-burning fireplace, the flames need to be created by using logs, kindling, and matches. This implies that constructing a fire to heat your home takes time and effort.
On the other hand, with an electric or gas fireplace, you can start a fire in seconds by pressing a button or switching. Some electric fireplaces even have remote controls, allowing you to start the fire from across the room. You’ll also be able to control the heat with electric and gas options to maintain a comfortable temperature.
Alternatives for Venting
Venting is an important factor to consider when purchasing a fireplace for your house. Wood-burning fireplaces and certain gas models require a chimney to expel smoke and gas. If you don’t already have a chimney, you’ll need to construct one or choose a ventless alternative. Electric and ventless gas fireplaces do not require chimneys and keep more heat.
Alternatives to Logging
There aren’t many alternatives when it comes to firewood for a fireplace. However, you may dress up your gas or electric fireplace with fake wood and other fire-resistant materials. Ceramic logs are the traditional choice, but driftwood, fireballs, natural stones, glass beads, and fake pine cones can also be used to create a unique design.