A fireplace can be a great addition to a room, and makes for a great focal point. It is also nice to think of cozying up to the warmth on cold nights, whether for a romantic interlude or family game night. You are probably in need of some tips for picking the right one, and here are just a few to get you started:
What is the Purpose?
What is driving the decision to purchase a fireplace? Are you hoping to increase energy efficiency in your home, or is it purely for aesthetic purposes? Or, is it a little bit of both? Be sure to determine why you want it, and this will help narrow down your options, whether you are working with a salesperson or perusing online retailers.
Don’t Look to Heat More than One Room
Fireplaces can be great for saving on energy costs, but if you intend to heat more than one room, it probably won’t work out so well. You will end up overheating the main room, and having to leave it turned off for much of the time, which means none of this heat is traveling to the intended spaces.
Optimizing Heating Efficiency
If you are buying a fireplace for the purpose of energy efficiency, you might want to look into a self-modulated, thermostat-controlled, model. These fireplaces can automatically turn up and down, keeping the room at a temperature you prefer.
If you are getting a fireplace primarily for aesthetics especially, be sure to research all the trim options so you can find a fireplace that best fits in with your current décor. If you are buying a fireplace in a store, once you know what specific insert you want, be sure to ask the salesperson to go over all the trim designs available. The brochure often contains options not seen in the showroom.
Look at the Fireplace when Flames are Inactive
Clearly, you will not be operating the fireplace 24 hours a day. Be sure you check what it looks like when the flames are inactive to be sure you like how it looks when it is not being fired up. Even if you are getting it for utilitarian purposes as opposed to serving as décor, you probably still want to make sure you actually like how it looks overall.
Considerations for Inserts
Steer clear of heating inserts that use fans to push the hot air out into the room. The best fireplaces can accomplish this task quite efficiently without one. Fans may improve heat output overall, but only marginally, and you will have to deal with the noise. If you do buy one with a fan, be sure it comes with a separate control to adjust speed, or turn it off completely.
Decorative Log Set
The decorative log set is one of the important elements appearance-wise, and there are a couple of things to keep in mind. Make sure you choose one that fits in easily, and has some room around it. Not only will some space around the log set look more attractive, it will keep the valve from overheating.