There’s no doubt that authentic or traditional fireplaces are very charming. With this type of heating system installed in your home, you are not only provided with a source of heat but with a romantic and cozy environment too.
Who doesn’t want to look at a dancing flame? The sight alone provides warmth; and the crackling embers and woodsy smell add to its overall appeal too.
Are There Disadvantages to Traditional Fireplaces?
There are disadvantages to having an actual authentic fireplace, however, which make it quite impractical for today’s modern style of living. First of all, you need to have a good supply of chopped wood; and you can either buy logs or chop them yourself (if you have time for that). And let’s not forget about the pile of ashes that needs to be cleaned frequently.
There are also safety risks when you’re operating a real fireplace in your home. This can pose hazards to your children and pets especially when left unattended, not to mention your property. So it really requires that a person is always there to attend and manage it.
As for heating efficiency, traditional fireplaces are actually not that efficient in heat distribution because most of the heat is released through the chimney. Therefore, only residual heat is left to be distributed inside one’s home.
It is for the above reasons why the popularity of wood burning fireplace inserts and stoves has boomed through the years. By replacing a real fireplace with an insert, a home’s heating system can become more efficient and money-saving as well.
But wait. Don’t just immediately replace your traditional fireplace with a wood insert without finding out more about it. A wood burning fireplace insert does come with its own pros and cons too; so you should be aware of its overall performance before making a decision.
Taking a Look at the Pros of Fireplace Inserts
Compared to a traditional fireplace, a wood burning insert is more efficient because it comes with an enclosed firebox. As the amount of heat released through the chimney is reduced, more heat is left for distribution inside the house. Distribution of heat is also made to be more efficient when there’s a blower or fan incorporated in the unit’s design. Studies show that this method allows for up to 90 percent efficiency rating versus an authentic fireplace.
Another advantage to installing a wood burning fireplace insert is that it still uses real wood, so the charming characteristics and aesthetics all remain intact. Yes, there’s still that crackling sound when wood logs are being burned. And yes, there’s still that all-too-familiar woodsy smell too.
Owning a fireplace insert is also more environment friendly than if you were running a traditional fireplace. Since an insert has a hot firebox, logs can burn efficiently, thereby reducing smoke emission and allergens that are typically released from a chimney. And note that a wood-burning insert also comes with controllable fire levels.
Now, let’s talk about the design of wood burning inserts. You won’t believe it, but the choices on the market are almost unlimited; and you can get real-looking fireplaces that are actually “inserts.”
What About the Cons?
When you compare the cost of a fireplace insert with other types of heaters, it can be said that it’s quite expensive. The unit itself can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000. And if you are not capable of installing it yourself, you’ll need to spend extra money for installation when you hire a professional.
Another disadvantage to having a wood burning insert is that it still makes some mess. It uses wood for fuel, so you also need to clean ashes just like on a traditional fireplace. And yes, you might need to chop your own wood too, as wood logs are not always available for sale.
Should You Get a Wood Burning Fireplace Insert for Your Home?
Considering all the pros and cons of having a traditional fireplace and a wood burning fireplace insert, we can say that an insert is indeed better and more practical than the authentic one. Although a fireplace insert has some disadvantages, its advantages far outweigh these factors.
Because of the heating efficiency of a fireplace insert, you and your family will be provided with a more comfortable and cozy environment come winter time. Furthermore, these efficient qualities will help you save money too.