The Pros & Cons of Wood – Gas – and Electric Fireplaces
Fireplaces are consistently popular amenities and even more so these days, when you can have a wood-burning, gas-fueled, or electric fireplace in your home. Each of the options has its benefits and its setbacks, making fireplaces in general ideal options for virtually any lifestyle. Below are pros and cons of wood-burning, gas, and electric fireplaces.
Burning wood in a fireplace is a luxury and at the same time an activity that mankind has enjoyed since prehistoric times. In modern times, emission standards have caused fireplace requirements to change, in order to reduce emissions. The following are benefits and disadvantages of wood-burning fireplaces:
Benefits of Wood-Burning Fireplaces
- There is nothing to compare to the aroma of wood burning and the crackling of logs in a wood-burning fireplace.
- Even if the utilities go out in winter, you can stay warm, have light, and cook using the fireplace.
- There are different types of wood that you can choose from, from quick-burning softwoods to long-burning hardwoods.
Disadvantages of Wood-Burning Fireplaces
- Firewood needs to be chopped, stored, dried, and finally carried into your home, which many find to be too laborious a process.
- It can be unsafe to use your fireplace without regular inspections and maintenance.
- A fire should not be unattended until the ashes are cold.
- Dampers seem to rarely seal sufficiently, which means the chimney is like an open window in the home year-around, causing utility bills to be higher.
- Traditional masonry fireplaces are terribly inefficient. Adding a fireplace insert converts the fireplace into an efficient appliance, however.
Busy families can very much appreciate the incredible convenience of a gas fireplace. It’s tough to beat the pleasure of an effortless fire to cozy up to on a cold day. The following are benefits and disadvantages of gas fireplaces:
Benefits of Gas Fireplaces
- Lighting a gas fireplace is instant, whether using a switch, a thermostat, or a remote control. The immediate gratification makes it a favorite fireplace for many homeowners.
- Maintenance of a gas fireplace is simple, especially compared to wood-burning fireplaces. Annual inspections are important, to ensure that everything is operating properly.
- Gas fireplaces are efficient appliances. You can zone heat with them easily, which means you only use the heat from the gas fireplace in the room you are in, as opposed to heating the entire home with the central heating system.
- Gas fireplaces will still keep you warm if the electricity goes out.
Disadvantages of Gas Fireplaces
- Ceramic logs are very realistic, especially as compared with the logs originally used in gas fireplaces. For those who love the aroma and crackling of a real wood fire, a gas fireplace misses the mark.
- Especially if you need to have a gas line installed, installation of a gas fireplace can be very high.
Electric fireplaces utilize digital technology by projecting images of moving flames. These may be the most flexible option, providing plenty of heat without much upfront cost. The following are benefits and disadvantages of electric fireplaces:
Benefits of Electric Fireplaces
- The least expensive among the three types of fireplaces is the electric fireplace.
- Installation is simple and the fuel source is very handy.
- All that is needed is to plug in an electric fireplace, making them extremely portable.
- In tight spaces where other types of fireplaces may not be practical, an electric fireplace works perfectly.
Disadvantages of Electric Fireplaces
- There are no actual flames.
- Because they are essentially space heaters with additional ambiance, the heat provided does not come cheap.
- Electric fireplaces won’t work in a power outage unless hooked up to a generator or another alternate source of electricity.
- There are limited styles available, especially as compared with the many options of wood-burning fireplaces and gas fireplaces.
Our professional chimney sweeps can help with installation, annual inspections, and maintenance of your fireplace, no matter which kind of fuel is used.