What to Consider When Choosing the Right Fireplace for Your Home
Fireplaces are not one size fits all. So it’s important to have a solid understanding of what you are looking for in a fireplace and what your specific needs are so you can choose the right one for your home.
Here’s a look at the benefits and different types of new fireplaces, along with questions you should ask yourself before installing a new fireplace in your home.
BENEFITS OF INSTALLING A NEW FIREPLACE IN YOUR HOME
No matter the type of fireplace you choose, installing a new fireplace is sure to provide you with the following benefits:
The added warmth of a fireplace takes away the chill of winter and makes your home cozy even on the coldest winter days and nights. Many fireplaces are used for zone heating, so you can turn down the thermostat for the rest of your home and use your fireplace to heat the room(s) you use most often, such as the living room.
This zone heating helps reduce heating costs in winter without sacrificing warmth and comfort.
Increased Home Value
A fireplace is a major selling point for many home buyers. And if you install a new, energy-efficient fireplace that also improves the look of your home, you can enjoy a return on your investment with an increase in your home value.
The warm glow of a fireplace creates a soothing ambiance unmatched by any other home appliance or décor item. Whether you want to get lost staring into the flames or use your fireplace to set the mood for cozy winter nights and holidays, a new fireplace is an impressive focal point for any living area.
Improves Design Aesthetics
Whether you’re looking to upgrade an existing fireplace or install a completely new one, a new fireplace will enhance the design aesthetics of your home.
This attractive focal point can spruce up a living room. And replacing an outdated fireplace with a new one will help upgrade the appearance and curb appeal of your home.
TYPES OF FIREPLACES TO CONSIDER
Here are the three types of fireplaces to choose from:
Gas fireplaces are a popular option due to their convenience, low maintenance, ease of use, and high heat output. And gas inserts are an excellent option for updating existing masonry fireplaces.
Gas fireplaces have countless designs to choose from to suit any home décor. You just need a gas utility hookup and a vent installation through a wall to the outdoors.
Electric fireplaces are perhaps the easiest fireplace option since they can be installed almost anywhere in a home, and many can be brought with you when you move. Though they don’t have as high of a heat output as gas fireplaces, they still provide ample zone heating and are available in a variety of designs.
Wood fireplaces are the traditional fireplaces that typically require a masonry chimney installation. Though considered the least energy-efficient fireplace option, new models (such as inserts) have enclosed fireboxes with glass doors to improve heat output and reduce energy loss.
QUESTIONS TO ASK BEFORE INSTALLING A FIREPLACE
To help you choose a new fireplace, ask yourself the following questions so you can find the best fireplace for your home:
How Much Interaction Do You Want with Your Fireplace?
Fireplaces range from set it and forget it (gas and electric) to regularly tending to the fire (wood). If you enjoy sourcing, chopping, and hauling in firewood, building and stoking fires, and you don’t mind cleaning up soot and ash regularly, you can opt for a wood-burning fireplace.
But if you want to turn your fireplace on and off with the push of a button, especially on a remote control, opt for a gas or electric fireplace. These don’t require constant supervision to keep the fire going, nor do they need regular cleaning after each use.
What Is Your Budget?
With the wide variety of fireplace options to choose from, there are affordable fireplaces available that will likely suit your budget, whether you want to upgrade an existing fireplace or install an entirely new one.
Electric fireplaces are especially affordable to buy and install since they don’t require a chimney or ventilation system installation.
Is Energy Efficiency Important to You?
If you’re looking for a fireplace that will help reduce your energy consumption, look for energy-efficient fireplaces that have high heat output while limiting energy loss.
For example, direct-vent gas fireplaces use less energy compared to standard pilot ignitions because they use intermittent pilot ignition systems instead.
If you want a wood-burning fireplace, look for EPA-certified wood fireplaces that burn wood more efficiently and reduce outside air particulate emissions. Fireplace inserts also contain more heat and reduce heat loss to the outdoors compared to traditional masonry fireplaces.
How Much Maintenance Are You Comfortable With?
While all fireplaces require some level of cleaning and care, some are extremely low-maintenance compared to others.
Along with regularly cleaning ash and soot, wood-burning fireplaces also require an annual professional chimney sweeping and inspection to ensure they are safe to use. Gas fireplaces also require inspections but don’t need cleaning after each use.
What Are Your Expectations for Heat Output?
Some people want fireplaces purely for the aesthetics, while others want a supplemental heating source for their homes. If you want to heat the room(s) you and your family spend the most time in, you will need a fireplace that has a high enough heat output for the size of your living area.
A fireplace professional can help you choose the right type of fireplace with sufficient heat output for your home and room size.
If you want a fireplace that has a high heat output to provide effective zone heating, gas fireplaces are exceptional.
What Are Your Interior Design Tastes?
The type of fireplace you choose should complement your interior décor, whether you want a large, bold fireplace and hearth, or one that blends into the room. There are many designs to choose from to suit your tastes, from traditional to modern, including electric and gas fireplaces with real-looking logs or modern fire glass.
Installing a new fireplace is an excellent investment for your home. It can improve your home comfort and enjoyment, help reduce heating costs, and boost the aesthetics and value of your home.
But to get the most enjoyment out of your fireplace, it’s important to find the right type and style for you and your home. So consider asking yourself these questions before you go shopping for your new favourite fireplace. And ask the fireplace experts for help choosing the best one for you, your budget, and your home.