Is a Fireplace Really Energy Efficiency?
A fireplace is the most desirable amenity to about 80% of buyers who purchase a home valued over $200,000, and who doesn’t like warming next to a cozy fire on a cold day? A study shows that a fireplace can increase your home’s value by 130% of whatever it cost to build. But does all this mean that fireplaces are energy efficient and do a good job of helping to warm a home? Well, it depends.
The traditional masonry fireplace, while beautiful, loses up to 100% of the heat from the fire plus another 10% of heat that’s in the room. The great news is that a fireplace insert can be placed inside a masonry fireplace and transform it into a beautiful and efficient appliance. With the designs available today, fireplace inserts can still allow you to see the alluring dance of the flames while providing a heating system that pleases the energy conscious.
Factory-built fireplaces are highly efficient, and a fireplace insert will transform a masonry fireplace into just as efficient a heating system. With a factory-built appliance, a full masonry chimney is unnecessary. Metal flues made with lightweight stainless steel can efficiently move combustion gases outside, even when channeled straight out through a nearby wall. Another benefit of these fireplaces is that they can be placed as near as ½” to 2” away from walls and other combustible materials without creating the danger of a house fire.
The design of these modern appliances is impressive. They are extremely well insulated and available with fans and blowers. A room can be warmed quickly with a fire in a fireplace insert or a factory built fireplace. Sometimes blowers and fans are used to better circulate the warm air into the room.
Many fireplace inserts and factory built fireplaces are approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The renewable materials that can be burned in fireplaces today, such as cord wood and pellets, can provide long-lasting heat. The amount of ash and combustion by-products are dramatically reduced in EPA-Approved appliances, which means the environmental impact they make is minimal.
There is a safety feature to clean-burning appliances in that there is a lot less of a creosote buildup. Because creosote is highly flammable, there is a reduced risk of chimney fires with a modern clean-burning appliance.
In addition to their wonderful efficiency, which means that utility bills will be lower in wintertime, modern fireplace designs are remarkable. Contemporary fireplaces sometimes have a whole new look, with no trace of the appearance of a traditional masonry fireplace. Panoramic displays of dancing flames on black onyx and colored glass is one type of popular European design. There are modern fireplaces with a two, three, or four-sided view of the flames. Some modern fireplaces are installed at a level similar to wall paintings, which transforms the appliances into living art.
We think it’s a wonderful thing to be able to have your fireplace and heating efficiency, too. If you are ready to use a more environmentally friendly form of heating system that will help you lower your utility bill, stop by our showroom in Toronto ON today. We can help you choose the fireplace insert, wood stove, or factory-built fireplace that is ideal for your home.