12 Jan 2023 | Heaters

What are insert fireplaces?

In winter, who doesn’t love the sound of a fire crackling, the rise and fall of flames, that comforting heat. There is nothing like an inbuilt wood heater to create that sense of warmth and comfort.

Old fashioned fireplaces are not very efficient, they actually pull warm air out of your room and into the fire, and a lot of the energy they create – the heat – is actually lost up your chimney. If you live in an area where the temperatures drop below freezing that open fireplace is sending out more energy than it creates. Those old-fashioned fireplaces work at only 5 to 10% efficiency. This means you are literally wasting money burning more and more wood to build/create an inefficient fire.

Today, fireplace inserts have been designed to increase a fireplaces efficiency.

A fireplace insert is basically a fireproof box this is surrounded by cast iron or steel with a front/door of insulated glass to create a closed combustion system. The steel or cast iron used in the construction helps trap in all the heat. Some inserts come with a blower, this pushes hot air back into the room through front vents. When installed properly inbuilt wood heaters and inserts are much more efficient when it comes to heating your home than older traditional fireplaces.

The good news is fireplace inserts can be powered by electricity, wood or gas, which allows you to choose the type of *fuel* you want. Electric and gas inserts offer owners a big, time saving advantage.

When it comes to a wood heater you have to buy your wood, depending on how much you buy at a time, you then have to store the wood. Once you have your wood, you then have to prepare the fire, this involves bringing some of the seasoned wood inside, along with some paper and kindling to get it started. If you forget to open your flue, you may have to deal with getting smoke in your eyes, you then have to ensure you tend to the fire to keep it going, afterwards, you then have to clean all the ash from the firebox to be able to use the fireplace again.

If a real roaring wood fire is what you want, and you are prepared to deal with setting up and cleaning, an inbuilt wood heater is for you. Alternately when you buy an electric or gas fireplace insert, all you have to do to get the flames started is push a button, then, depending on the actual model of fireplace insert you buy – it might even come with a remote, literally sit down and push a button for instant heat!

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