Fireplaces, you see, have an efficiency issue. Sure, when you’re using it, it makes your room appear beautiful and warm—but what about when you’re not? Drafts may enter your house through gaps and cracks in your chimney, sending chilly air into your interiors.
We’re in for a lot more winter weather this year, according to Punxsutawney Phil. Fortunately for you, this means you’ll have even more time to curl up by the fire. And spending time in front of the fireplace will be much more delightful if you install a gas or wood-burning insert in lieu of your traditional fireplace.
These energy holes are frequently overlooked during a homeowner’s efforts to seal and waterproof their homes—and draft-creating culprits include old dampers, fractured brick and stone, and worn flashing.
Meanwhile, the design of your chimney is unlikely to assist. It’s designed to channel smoke and ash out of your interiors and into the atmosphere. But what happens when the fire dies out? According to the Department of Energy, your chimney may occasionally merely funnel warm air out of your home at a rate of up to 300 cubic feet per minute.
Meanwhile, the truth is that fireplaces aren’t particularly good at turning fuel into heat. According to some estimations, woodburning stoves only convert roughly 15% of a log’s potential energy into warmth. As a result, they are both inefficient in terms of energy use and in terms of heat production.
Nonetheless, we get the attraction. When the winter winds howl, nothing beats a raging fire. Fortunately, there is a solution to keep drafts out of your fireplace while also increasing heating efficiency.
Fireplace inserts are what they’re called, and according to some experts, if you use them regularly, they may cut your heating bills by up to 40%. Doesn’t it sound fairly good? Everything you need to know is right here.
Why are inserts more environmentally friendly than traditional fireplaces?
Inserts have various new characteristics that make them more efficient in converting heat and warming a space. They have a connected fan that pumps warm air into the room. It often include a ceramic glass door that transmits heat into your house while also creating a seal between the chimney and the inside of your home.
They also increase the airtightness of your chimney. To eliminate air leaks, a skilled installer will upgrade your existing chimney with a steel liner and insulation. The smoke from the fire is then expelling through a metal flange that goes over the insert and within your fireplace.
Keeping the door closed also helps to enhance the air quality in your house. Many fireplace inserts may attain efficiency levels close to 80 percent, which equates to an annual energy savings of $60 to $200 if used to counteract your furnace.
Professionals should install inserts.
Inserts, like other home repair jobs, for completed by a skilled professional, especially those that contain air sealing components. They are not suitable for do-it-yourself; normally, the installer must factory-train in order to guarantee that the insert is proper vent and seal.
Furthermore, the poor installation might significantly diminish the insert’s efficacy. According to the DOE, investigations have shown that installation makes all the difference with these devices. A skilled installer will also check your fireplace to see if it is a good candidate for an insert. You can visit the https://magikflame.com website for ideas about gas or wood-burning inserts.
Some chimneys, such as prefabricated ones, are unable to resist the high heat of an effective insert—chimneys must be certified for at least 2,100 degrees Fahrenheit in order to work properly with an insert. That is a lot of heat!
How much do they set you back?
Perhaps the only disadvantage of a fireplace insert is the price. They normally cost between $2,000 and $4,000 with installation. In fact, if your chimney has to improve first, the cost is high.
As a result, many homeowners prefer high-efficiency wood-burning fireplaces, which often include certain design characteristics to eliminate drafts, such as ceramic glass doors, as well as efficiency improvements, such as vents and air circulation systems.
However, high-end solutions for efficient fireplaces may be rather pricey as well. Another less expensive option is to install a free-standing wood-burning stove, which uses far less fuel than traditional hearths.
Look for a biomass-powered fireplace if you want to go the extra mile
However, natural gas and wood aren’t your only fuel alternatives. If you really want to reduce your home’s carbon impact, a fireplace that operates on recycled materials, such as a pellet burner, is an excellent choice.
Pellets are made from compressed wood waste, such as sawdust, which may purchase at any hardware shop. Is it possible to heat your home with waste materials? That’s a lot of green!