Sunday, November 1, 2009

How to Choose the Right Fireplace by Matthew Summers

Who doesn't like walking into a home and discovering a cozy fireplace? This fixture is almost a must when one thinks of a nice holiday story, or reminiscence of older times. Not to mention that since the beginning of time, people have been comforted by the many benefits of a fire.

A wood burning fire place is a quick way to add value, not only monetary, but also aesthetically to your home. The crackling sound of the firewood as it slowly burns can calm anyone walking into the room and combining with the smell, feel and look of a burning fireplace not only calms the soul but allows relaxing warmth to penetrate the room and home.

All you need is to make sure you have a fireplace tool set to help keep the hearth area clear of ash and keep a good blaze going.

Other Fireplace Options

If you enjoy using your fireplace but don't like the associated energy costs, you might want to consider purchasing a fireplace insert. Depending on your preferences, there are many options you can choose from.

Wood Burning Fireplace Inserts are great for people who want to keep all the charm and ambiance of their wood fireplace, but reduce heat loss. For most gas fireplace inserts, you'll still need a functional chimney to allow for exhaust. Ventless gas fireplaces do exist, but you should follow the installation instructions very carefully to ensure that you protect the air supply inside your home.

Electric Fireplace Inserts, the least powerful of the inserts put out about as much heat as a space heater. The benefit of most electric fireplaces is that you can plug them in just about anywhere, even in homes without an existing fireplace.

You can consider, switching to wood stove inserts if you want to cut back on cost of heating your home. Pellet stove inserts are also an option you can consider. These pellets are very clean, unlike loads of wood that often leave bark, leaves, and shavings behind. They come in bags, and can be easily stacked and stored indoors or in a shed or garage. They take up less space than wood also.

For Your Patio, Backyard or Pool

An outdoor fireplace can be an attractive centerpiece. They create a relaxing gathering place, where family and friends can spend time on winter and chilly nights.

Stone is the most preferable material for constructing an outdoor fireplace, as it is long-lasting and non-combustible. This versatile material can be well-shaped and designed to suit any outdoor setting, both contemporary and classic.

Outdoor stone fireplaces can reduce overheating and thus prevents fire hazards and are easier to install and clean when compared to other outdoor fireplaces. Even though wood burning stone fireplace is cheaper and attractive, it can cause air pollution due to the excess output of carbon monoxide and other hazardous gases. The outdoor gas fireplace is using propane or natural gas is gaining popularity.

Once the design has been decided and your fireplace is up and running you'll be able to enjoy the many benefits of it for years to come. Just imagine all the fun you can have either a relaxing evening alone gazing into the fire, a romantic evening for two, or cozy evening with family and friends.

About the Author
Thinking of heating up your home for the chilly months? Here are some tips on how to choose the right fireplace.

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