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Choosing an Indoor Fireplace to Increase Your Comfort

Indoor Fireplace blazing log on fire

If you’re interested in enhancing the look and feel of your living space, an indoor fireplace is a great addition. This installation adds welcome warmth as well as a charming ambiance that’s sure to elevate the comfort and appeal in any part of the home. Here are some options you need to know about.

Wood Indoor Fireplaces

Wood fireplaces are the most traditional option for heating your home. They offer all the ambiance of days gone by with their distinctive smell of wood smoke. Since wood fireplaces need no electricity, they make a great backup source of light and heat in the event of a power outage. Wood-burning fireplaces are also more affordable to operate than most gas or electric options, particularly if you have a ready source of wood on your property. 

A wood fireplace is only a cost-effective option if you have an existing chimney in place. If you’re adding the entirety of the fireplace to your home, you’ll need extensive masonry to create a wood-burning fireplace. You should also consider a fireplace screen or doors to keep stray embers from jumping out. Although the masonry work can be expensive, this type of fireplace adds great value to your home should you choose to sell it.

Gas Fireplaces 

A gas fireplace burns propane or natural gas instead of wood. This type of fireplace often features a faux log to create the same look as a wood-burning fireplace, but you won’t have the crackle of the wood burning or the distinctive smell of wood smoke to accompany your fire. For some, this is a welcome change. Gas fireplaces are safer and easier to control than wood-burning ones. If you want a particularly modern look, you can even opt for a gas fireplace that burns on a sleek flat surface rather than a fake log.

Gas fireplaces produce more heat than wood-burning or electric fireplaces, making them the best option if you want to functionally heat your home with this type of installation. If you have a chimney in your home, you can install a direct-vent gas fireplace. This sends all smoke out of the home. If you don’t have a chimney, you’ll need to opt for a ventless gas fireplace. This will release a small amount of smoke into the home, but far less than a wood-burning fire. You should limit burning time for a ventless gas fireplace to six hours a day.

Electric Fireplaces

Electric fireplaces provide fast, efficient heating much like an electric heater. Electric fireplaces attempt to mimic the look and feel of a fire using faux logs, digital flames, and colored lights. However, there is no actual fire involved. Instead, electric fireplaces feature coils that heat up when electricity passes through them.

Electric fireplaces are quick and easy to install. They’re an incredibly affordable option because you don’t need to worry about vents or chimneys. You don’t even have to install this fireplace permanently in your home. Some stand alone and simply plug into the wall. Unfortunately, an electric fireplace has a shorter lifespan than a wood-burning or gas fireplace, but their affordable upfront cost offsets much of this inconvenience.

Fireplace Inserts

You can get a fireplace insert that’s wood-burning, gas, or electric. The insert itself is an iron or steel box with a glass door that fits inside your existing fireplace to increase energy efficiency. Gas and electric inserts are the easiest to use, as they require minimal maintenance and provide warmth at the push of a button. A wood-burning insert is more high-maintenance.

Design Considerations

You’ll find an abundance of fireplace designs to choose from regardless of the fuel source. A traditional fireplace sits within the wall with a hearth in front and a mantle above. These have a distinctly rustic look and feel, offering the traditional charm that people typically expect from a fireplace. If you’re interested in something more modern, however, you can choose options like a:

  • Multi-view fireplace to see the fire from two or more sides at once.
  • Firebox-only fireplace that lacks the typical glass found with gas fireplaces.
  • Contemporary fireplace featuring gas or electric fire over stones, rocks, or a smooth surface.

Adding an indoor fireplace to your home can truly change the atmosphere, providing warmth, ambiance, and even a woody smell if you go with a real wood-burning option. Shop our selection of fireplace accessories to create the ideal aesthetic for your new home installation.