There is nothing like snuggling by the fire on a chilly winter night in Nor Cal. That is probably why so many homes have existing fireplaces. The problem however, is that while the age old concept of open fire heating provides some warmth and definite ambiance, fuel burning technology has since come a long way. For those wishing to increase the efficiency of fireplace, adding an insert is a great option.

Inserts are available for operation with natural gas, propane, wood, pellet and coal. The insert is installed into an existing wood burning fireplace and is made from cast iron or steel. Many have self-cleaning glass doors that allow for the dancing flames of fire to also warm the ambiance of a room. Inserts are often used in main living areas where the family spends much of their time. This can allow for turning down the thermostat in the rest of the house.

Replacing an older wood burning fireplace with a new insert will save wood fuel and protect air quality indoors and out. Older fireplaces usually have efficiency ratings of just five to ten percent according to the HBPA. An open fire in an old fireplace allows an abundance of heated room air to be drawn into the fire, causing the fire to burn too fast, wasting energy.

A fireplace insert contrasts as a closed-door system that slows down the fire while increasing its temperature to facilitate more combustion. Generating efficiencies of above 65 percent in many cases, it simply equates to more heat output. More good news: a new EPA-certified wood burning fireplace insert can also reduce emissions from wood burning to almost zero!

fireplace30Benefits of a Fireplace Insert:

• Increased fireplace efficiency.
• Clean, convenient and easy-to-use.
• Ideal secondary home heater helps
save money.
• Cost-effective fuel consumption and
multiple fuel options.
• Reduced fireplace emissions help
protect winter air quality.
• Provides heat when the power goes out.

Source: Hearth Patio & Barbecue Association (HBPA)