A fireplace can be one of the most prized and favorite things anyone can have in their house. There is something about heating up a room “the old-fashioned way” that brings more warmth than the flames do. This warmth and their architectural aesthetic appeal can make your home more vibrant, beautiful and cozy.

Benefits of a fireplace

  • Fireplaces create a more comfortable feeling in the house. Even the most effective heating systems leave some drafty spots in the house.
  • They provide additional warmth, which ensures that your home remains warm and cozy without putting a strain on your budget.
  • A fireplace can be quite helpful in lowering utility costs and provides substantial heat without having to use a heating system as much.
  • Fireplaces prove to be excellent décor elements. They make your house look inviting and welcoming. You will find guests gravitating towards the fire whenever you entertain.

The various fuel types in fireplaces

When selecting a fireplace for your house, you need to decide on which fuel type you want. There are quite a few options you will find.

Electric Fireplace

These fireplaces are currently the most popular ones. They are highly effective as the interior coils are heated with electricity to create warmth. Some of them are also provided with an internal fan to make sure that heat is distributed throughout the house.

An electric fireplace has a fake flame and is used to give the fireplace a real look. The heating element can be turned off if your house gets too warm while the fake flame would continue to flicker.

These fireplaces are quite cost-effective. They are highly affordable, and installation is not costly. Electric fireplaces are also easy to maintain.

Gas Fireplace

These are also cost-effective options that can be easily installed, as well. Gas fireplaces are quite efficient and can be pivotal in reducing heating bills.

Gas can be a favorite pick for many homeowners because of the convenience. All it takes to get the home fires burning is to turn the unit on, which can be done with remote control, switch, or a thermostat. Gas fireplaces make zone heating excellent cost-saving options. These fireplaces provide convective, radiant, clean, and efficient heat.

If you choose a direct-vented model, it will need a chimney as well, so this will depend on the structure of your house and if you need a chimney installed. Ventless models can be used if you do not want to have a permanent change to your home. You can use natural gas or liquid propane in these fireplaces.

Gel Fireplace

These are not as popular when compared to electric and gas fireplaces, but they do have some benefits to offer.

For one thing, they are easy to install and are freestanding, meaning they simply stand on solid flooring and do not require mounting to a wall. A freestanding fireplace is an appealing option for homes or small spaces where you cannot or don’t want to make permanent changes. No venting, pipes or electrical wires are needed. As they are self-contained, they are quite versatile as well. However, the heat output is minimal, and thus, these fireplaces cannot be used as the primary source of heat of a house.

Wood-Burning Fireplace

These are the traditional fireplaces that first come to mind whenever one thinks about a fireplace. As it is obvious, wood is burned to create heat in this type of fireplace. The thing that goes against this type of fireplace is that it is quite costly and requires quite a bit of maintenance as well (chimney maintenance and chopping/storing/hauling of wood).

However, despite this, they have a cozy, rustic look to them that people love. You get various options in terms of style in these fireplaces. Keep in mind that a pipe is required for venting out smoke in these.

Mounting options for fireplaces

Once you have decided on the fuel type you want, you can move onto determining the mounting option that works for you. Keep in mind that all mounting options do not work with all fuel types.

Traditional Open-Hearth Fireplace

This only works with a wood-burning fireplace. Made from stone or brick, these are built into the wall of your house and use the chimney for ventilation. This is perhaps the most expensive option as a lot of construction is needed to build it.

Free-Standing Fireplace

These mimic the look of a traditional fireplace but without the extra costs. The free-standing fire can be attached to a wall or ceiling or be free-standing completely depending on the fuel used. They are available in numerous designs.

Wall-Mounted Fireplace

This is a suitable option for small houses and apartments. It can also be used in outdoor spaces. The best thing about these fireplaces is that they can be moved from room to room as per requirement. Wall-mounted fireplaces might have to be connected to a chimney depending on the fuel you use.

Built-In Fireplace Insert

In this case, a built-in traditional fireplace is used. If your house features an open-hearth wood-burning fireplace, you can buy any type of insert and slide it into the current opening. Via this, you can convert your fireplace into a more efficient option.

Factors to consider when buying a fireplace

Apart from fuel type and design, there are several other factors that need your attention as well when it comes to fireplaces. Let us shed some light on these.

The extent of heat needed

You need to be clear of your heating needs while deciding on which fireplace to get. If you have a large house or room, you will need a fireplace that is capable of producing more heat. Will the fireplace be the sole source of heat in your house? This would decide the type of fireplace that would work for you.

Location of the fireplace

Where will the fireplace be located? This should influence your decision about which fireplace to buy. For instance, if you choose wood-burning fireplaces, they work best when installed near external walls. People usually want fireplaces in living rooms, but occasionally, some might prefer having a fireplace in the dining room and office as well.

Installation

Purchasing the fireplace is a first critical step but finding the appropriate contractor to complete the installation is equally important. The perfect contractor is one who will work with your budget, has experience in renovations and will do everything they can to provide you with professional experience in a timely manner.

Safety

Safety should never be compromised, and you need to make sure that adequate measures are taken for protection. You need to maintain wood-burning fireplaces regularly if you do not want them to become a safety hazard. Only choose this style if you think you can manage it.

Final words

There is no denying that fireplaces are important to your house décor. However, make sure that you pay adequate attention to all the relevant factors before deciding on what type of fireplace you want for your home.

Having one or more fireplaces installed in your home is good for more than simply heating a room, or creating an appealing aesthetic, fireplaces can help you increase the value of your home. Contact our contractors at Lifestyle Renovations to discuss your next renovation.