Fireplaces are some of the most beautiful things you can incorporate into your home, especially when used as a living room focal point or next to an inviting reading nook. They offer a nice heating solution, but more importantly, they can give your home style and sophistication, as well as a relaxing and serene ambience. And, while they used to be a luxury, nowadays there are many affordable options to choose from. If you are thinking about bringing something as exciting and big as a fireplace into your home, you should get familiar with the options you have.
Types of Fireplaces
There are many types of fireplaces for your home, which are not only running on different fuels but also work in different ways, look differently etc. This means that there is a lot of criteria by which you can choose, including your budget. Furthermore, this means that regardless of the one you decide to go with, you can find any replacement fireplace part easily. One of the ways in which you can divide fireplaces is by the fuel they use, and the main ones are wood, electricity, gas and ethanol.
Probably the first association when we hear the word fireplace, for many of us, is the old school wood-burning fireplace – one in which you can end up gazing for hours, enjoying not only the mesmerising flames, but also the lovely smell, and the crackling sounds. There are several types of wood-burning fireplaces: open masonry fireplaces, fireplace inserts, wood stoves, wood-burning fireplaces.
If you don’t own a home with an open masonry fireplace, there are two main ways to have a wood fireplace – a freestanding wood fireplace, or a wood stove, or a wood-burning fireplace or a firebox that you can frame into the wall. Freestanding wood stoves can be a great heat source for your home, even in very harsh weather conditions, because they can provide a lot of heat.
If you want something that will look like the typical fireplace dropped into the wall, one great solution is a wood-burning fireplace. Unlike an open masonry fireplace, they don’t require a chimney and instead, they use venting, like fireplace inserts and wood stoves. However, wood-burning fireplaces aren’t a great solution if you don’t want a big renovation. This is why they are considered to be best suited for a new home or for large-scale renovations.
Open masonry fireplaces are typically made with brick, stone or masonry. Even though they are many people’s favourite because of how lovely they look, the fact is that these are the least efficient fireplaces when it comes to heating your home. Furthermore, they produce a lot of smoke inside, which means that aside from the smells, they also vent a lot of harmful gasses into your home.
If you already have a masonry fireplace in your home, a much more efficient way to heat up your home, while still enjoying the visual benefits of a fireplace, is to instal a wood fireplace insert. They are simply inserted into the existing masonry, which they framing. Also, they use the chimney to run venting. All of this means that they are relatively cheap to instal. Because wood burning releases carbon monoxide, it’s considered to be the least eco-friendly option. Nevertheless, the newer types of wood fireplaces implement a secondary, or even a tertiary burn, in order to reduce emissions.
One of the most important advantages of gas fireplaces is how much easier it is to maintain and clean them in comparison to wood fireplaces, because they don’t produce ashes or soot in the chimney, and they are quite easy to install. Furthermore, you can light them faster and easier than a wood fireplace.
While both wood and gas fireplaces are a great way to reduce your electricity bills during winter or fall, gas fireplaces are less expensive to run than the wood-burning ones, mainly due to the fact that gas is a more inexpensive fuel. Gas also burns cleaner, producing fewer polluting emissions.
While it’s been said that nothing can really replace the beauty of wood-burning fireplaces, gas fireplaces offer many stunning contemporary designs which can add a lot of style to your home. Another important thing that makes this cost-effective heating solution very convenient, is that you can find natural gas fireplace parts much easier than you could a wood fireplace part.
One of the most convenient options, electric fireplaces are low maintenance and they don’t produce any pollutants or by-products. They are also one of the best options when it comes to ease of installation. While a gas fireplace is fairly easy to install as well, you either need a gas line or you’ll have to use a propane tank. Furthermore, like the other types of fireplaces, the ones that run on electricity also come in a variety of designs and styles, which makes them ideal for any contemporary home.
Using bioethanol as a renewable fuel, a by-product from plants, ethanol fireplaces are considered to be a great eco-friendly heating solution. They are cost-effective, reducing the electricity bills, they are clean, they require minimal maintenance, and they are very easy to instal. Like with gas and electricity fireplaces, ethanol fireplaces don’t produce any smoke or odour. Ethanol fireplaces offer a lot of beautiful stylish designs and they don’t produce carbon monoxide. They are vent-free, so they don’t need to be installed into your home’s structure.