Friday, October 16, 2009

Fireplace mockup

Left: current fireplace
Right: mockup

My home can get quite chilly in the cold winter months, especially in the living room/ dinning room area. We do have this beautiful fireplace that we use often, but every time we burn wood it looks cozy and warm, but all that hot air just gets sucked up the chimney making the room even colder!

We started looking into modern looking pellet stoves and at fireplace inserts for just burning wood. I don't think we have many options finding a modern looking pellet stove for our type of fireplace but I think we can get a simple and sleek insert that blows the hot air back into the room. I'm not sure which is better to get yet, we still need to go to a fireplace store and talk to someone about it. Have any of you updated your fireplace? And was it worth it?


Brian Everett said...

I have not updated my fireplace, because it is in such great shape. Plus the room it is in is fairly small, so it has no problem heating the room.

FYI - I was told by a chimney sweep never to burn whole logs in a fireplace. This might be true or not. I do know that burning whole log, because of the added bark, will make your chimney dirty much more quickly than without the bark. It can cause quick suet buildup.

Shane Hood said...

i can see trying to get better production out of the fireplace and you should definitely talk to someone, but the option shown on the right looks a little awkward. i like the simplicity of the brick and the void in the brick instead of the extra chubby contemporary look of the fireplace insert. It looks forced and out of place.

Leah@Storybook Ranch said...

I have the same problem with our fireplace, it's barely functional. Our neighbors installed a blower (?) that blows the hot air out, that may be an option.

50s Pam said...

Our basement was very cold when we moved in eight years ago. We did a variety of things to warm the room up. One of them was adding a gas fireplace insert to the "hole" that was the existing fireplace. I could not find a cover that had a mid century look. The one we have has an arts and crafts feel. Ugh. But: The fireplace effectively works like small furnace. It has made all the difference.

One suggestion. I tend to be suspicious of pellets - they just require more processing, don't they? What about a wood fireplace insert? My dad had one of those in our basement and oh my, did they every heat up the place.

Kristine said...

I had a pellet stove in the basement of my old house. When we moved, I was happy to never see it again. I find them noisy. They aren;t loud, but there is enough noise to make you turn the TV or stereo up. PLUS, the pain of buying the pellets, and storing them somehwere in the house. WE used to buy 10 40lb bags at a time, and they took up a fairly large space in the basement to store. ALSO, it takes a few hours for it to heat the room. The salespeople say that you could leave it running unattended, but we had a back up in ours that led to a fire in the reserve pellets. Not good.

Overall, I would say go with a propane or natural gas fireplace. Easy to maintain, quiet and they really kick out the heat. Good luck!!

Beth said...

My husband made a blower out of a squirrel cage fan that sits in our utility room (below the room with the fireplace) and piping, based on a plan my brother-in-law constructed. Works well.

Anonymous said...

I was considering the same thing for my new house. We happened to get lucky with a free energy audit courtesy of the State of Maine and found out that pellets cost the same per unit as oil does right now and pellets pollute the environment with particulate matter. Lots of it. Wood burns much cleaner. As for the cost of wood, I'm not sure because I didn't ask. But if you simply want to know whether it will really help make your fireplace a much more energy-efficient source, the answer is definitely 'yes'. All of this according to Erik North, energy auditor. I, too, am looking for something very sleek and metal. If you find one, please share the source! I have searched the internet, but can't seem to find anything like what is in your mock-up~ which is exactly what I want, too.