Traditional fireplace brings the charm of enjoying warmth on a cold winter night of bygone eras in the modern era. However, due to increase in pollution and global warming, it is now not as highly recommended to use traditional fireplaces. Moreover, the fate of chimney sweepers, as described by William Blake in his Songs of Innocence and Experience, is not something anyone will desire. Modern day fireplace inserts are completely utilitarian and are designed to enhance not only the warmth of a room but also the overall aesthetics of your home.
Simply speaking, a fireplace insert is an enclosed combustion firebox that can be installed into an existing fireplace. The term ‘insert’ is thus justified, and it increases the level of efficiency and heating capability of the fireplace significantly. (Info Credit: www.theoriginalflame.com/fireplaces/fireplace-inserts)
Basically, there are three types of fireplace inserts—wood inserts, gas inserts, and pellet inserts. Let’s take a look at each…
- Wood Inserts
Wood, being a renewable source of energy, can be used as an alternative to power consuming electrical fireplaces. You should consider using a wood fireplace insert if you are living in an area where there is no shortage of wood logs. A country setting is a likely place for wood burning stoves, wood burning fireplaces and thus fireplaces with wood inserts. Many proclaim that the heating efficiency of wood insert is above 70%. Wood inserts come with fans that help in the circulation of warm air inside the room and prevents the heat from flowing outside, through the chimney. The newer models of wood fireplace inserts are designed to reduce emissions thus, causing less pollution. Depending on the model, the heat generated by wood fireplace inserts can be adjusted using remote controls and thermostats.
- Gas Inserts
There are two types of gas fireplace inserts that are broadly used. The vent pipe of direct-vent units can be installed through the wall. It is enclosed in a fire-caulked flange. The direct-vent unit can be fueled by natural gas as well as propane. This type of gas fireplace inserts usually does not face any installation issues as the vents can also be placed through the roof. They have the capability of attracting air from outside to have a continuous flame.
Vent-less gas inserts are also widely available in the market. As this type of gas insert does not require the installation of vents, and heat cannot get out through the chimney. Therefore, the heat efficiency of vent-free gas inserts is generally above 90%. Another advantage is that the vent-less gas insert can be installed anywhere in the house. The consumer need not drill holes in the walls or chimney, keeping the walls spotless. Unlike wood fireplace inserts, gas inserts can be switched on and off whenever they are required.
- Pellet Inserts
Pellets made from wood chips, sawdust, and organic wastes are used as fuel in pellet fireplace inserts. They require electricity to operate but some of the models nowadays also have battery backup in case of a power outage. They are known for their work efficiency. However, these tend to be higher maintenance fireplaces. Consumers need to pay more attention to the electronic components of a pellet insert rather than the ash cleanup.
Be it a wood, gas or pellet insert, these heating devices come with glass doors that provide an extra layer of insulation. These fireplace inserts are available in an extensive array of designs that will add to the aesthetics of the room.