A Look at the Best Time of Year to Start Planning for Your New Fireplace
As the temperature starts to drop, marking the end of summer and beginning of fall, this is when most people look into installing a new fireplace to warm their home during the colder months.
But that doesn’t mean it’s necessarily the right time to do so. While the idea of installing a fireplace doesn’t often spring to mind during the spring and summer months, this is actually the most optimal time to have it done.
Here’s a look at what to expect from the fireplace installation process and why it should be done earlier in the year compared to later on.
What the Installation Process Entails
The installation process varies depending on the type of fireplace you choose.
Wood and gas fireplace inserts are well-insulated appliances that fit in an existing masonry fireplace and are vented up and out of your existing chimney. Before installation, the technician will inspect the flue lining to make sure it is compatible with the insert appliance.
Pellet stove inserts are another type of insert that can be installed in an existing masonry fireplace. Pellet stoves burn compressed wood pellets that are very efficient to burn.
If you want to install a free-standing wood, gas, or pellet stove, a technician will need to install a flue pipe up through the ceiling and out the roof.
Linear gas fireplaces are installed in a wall and vented through the wall or up through the ceiling.
If you want a traditional wood-burning fireplace, it will require extensive renovations since the installers will need to build a chimney as well as the hearth and firebox.
Electric fireplaces can be standalone or wall-mounted. These fireplaces don’t require any venting and only require hookup to an electrical outlet to run.
Things to Consider Before Planning Your Installation
With so many fireplace options to choose from, consider the following to help you find the best fireplace for you and your home.
Usage and Needs
What is the main purpose of installing a new fireplace? Are you planning to install one to increase the aesthetics and value of your home? Or do you want to benefit from the supplemental heating and decreased energy bills in winter?
Do you want to build and stoke your fires? Or do you want an easy, low-maintenance fireplace that turns on and off with the push of a button?
Here are what the different types of fireplaces can offer, depending on your fireplace needs and purpose.
Gas vs Wood vs Electric
Gas fireplaces are low-maintenance, easy to use, aesthetically pleasing, and energy-efficient, providing a good heat output, helping you save on heating costs in winter, and offering a well-insulated option to also save on energy costs year-round.
Wood-burning fireplaces are aesthetically pleasing and offer the sounds and smell of a traditional fireplace. But these are more expensive to install if you need to construct a chimney. And due to the loss of heat through the chimney and the low heat output, these fireplaces are not the best for heating a large area of your home.
Electric fireplaces are low maintenance, easy to install and use, and are a great alternative if you don’t have a gas line hookup. They provide a moderate amount of heat and come in a variety of designs.
Design and Aesthetics
The design of your fireplace and hearth should be aesthetically pleasing and match or complement the interior décor of your home.
Design options include traditional styles for fireplaces and hearths made with stone, marble, or iron.
There are also modern, sleek, and minimalist designs with glass, such as the multi-sided gas fireplaces that can be viewed from both sides of a wall.
Fireplace inserts can increase the heat output of your fireplace by 70%, and improve the energy efficiency of your home year-round.
An insert has a closed combustion system and glass doors that prevent heated and cooled indoor air from escaping through the chimney. So installing a fireplace insert in an existing masonry fireplace will help reduce your energy bills for heating and cooling in every season. And the heat output can be easily controlled with the touch of a button on its thermostat.
Free-standing stoves burn fuel more efficiently since they have a closed combustion system. These stoves also create the highest heat output by radiating heat on all four sides. So in winter, you can turn down your home’s central heating and use your stove to zone heat a large area of your home.
When Is the Best Time to Install A New Fireplace and Why?
Since few people are thinking about fireplace installation during the warmer months and the weather is nicer, spring and summer are the best seasons to install a new fireplace. Not only will you have more options to choose from, but you also won’t have to wait long for installation and chimney sweep appointments.
Ensures Enough Time to Perfect the Look and Design
If you start shopping for your new fireplace early in the year, you will have plenty of time to choose the best fireplace for your home.
During this time, you can review available models and combinations of options, work with a technician to find a model that works well for you and your home needs, and schedule an installation on a day that works best for you.
And once the installation is completed, you will still have plenty of time to make adjustments to the finishing work—i.e. mantel, hearth, and surrounding wall paint colour—instead of rushing to have it look perfect before the holidays.
The fireplace you choose may take a few weeks to arrive once ordered. And waiting for your new fireplace won’t be a big deal during the warmer months since you won’t be using it right away.
But if you wait until the cold weather arrives to order your fireplace, waiting for it to arrive and be installed means missing out on using your fireplace when you really need it.
Since there is a higher demand for fireplace installations during the fall and winter, the wait time for your installation will be longer during the colder months.
Installation technicians are in less demand during the spring and summer, so you can schedule an appointment during a time that works for you and have your fireplace installed without having to wait a long time.
Get a Head Start and Have Your Fireplace Completed in Time for Cold Weather
By beating the fall rush for fireplace installations, you can be rest assured knowing your fireplace will be ready to use and looking great before the cold weather arrives. So instead of wishing you had a working fireplace come the first chill, you can actually use your fireplace. And you will also have the luxury of using it in time for the holidays.
With the warm, sunny days of spring around the corner, a new fireplace may be the last thing on your mind. But you will be happy you beat the fall rush when you can start using your new fireplace the moment the first chilly days of fall arrive.