Not all fireplaces are created for you to enjoy them in the same way, so it is essential to know the different types of fireplaces out there before you decide which would be most suitable for your needs.
The traditional wood-burning fireplace is built with a chimney or flue used to extract or circulate smoke, gases, and fumes out of the home. This type of fireplace works by first having a setup where wood logs are placed inside the firebox, which is the central part of any traditional fireplace where all the burning takes place. When it comes to set up, wood-burning fireplace inserts have either an open design (widespread) or a more concealed one, with the surround and the interior panels acting as a containment field to prevent burning embers from leaving the fireplace.
Another type of traditional fireplace is gas-burning. This fireplace is very similar to wood-burning fireplaces, with one significant difference: it uses natural and propane gas to create the flames. Once again, this type of fireplace also has either an open design (widespread) or a more concealed one. The surround and the interior panels act as a containment field to prevent burning embers from leaving the fireplace.
As its name implies, electric fireplaces run entirely on electricity, which means that you don’t need to worry about chopping wood or having a gas tank installed in your home. This fireplace comes with built-in heating elements that work just like an electric heater and usually features flames that can be adjusted to your liking. Electric fireplaces come mainly in two different styles: the free-standing style where the unit is completely separate from the wall, or the Vent-free kind where it is built into the wall.
Features to Look for When Deciding Which One Suits Your Style
You want to make sure that you know exactly what you are looking for before deciding which fireplace style would suit your needs best. First and foremost, think about the design aesthetics you are looking for. Would you prefer to have one that is more open, or would you like it concealed? Or maybe something that is in between? And then there are the various styles of fireplaces (e.g., traditional, contemporary, rustic, modern), which can all influence your decision.
As far as installation goes, some units will need to be connected to an existing chimney or vent, just like a wood-burning fireplace, gas fireplace, and some models of electric fireplaces. Others may feature built-in vents that can get rid of fumes and smoke from home without the need for any such connections.
If you want something that looks more like a traditional fireplace but doesn’t require any chimney or vent connections, then you may want to go with a gas fireplace. If aesthetics are not that important to you and you care about having an efficient heating system, then an electric fireplace is the way to go.
Are you looking for something different? Then maybe a blower fireplace is what you are looking for. These units tend to cost more than the average fireplace but feature all of the same features as other types of fireplaces (gas-burning or electric), with the only difference being that they also include a fan.
This type of unit can emit heat just like other models, but it has an additional function to circulate air throughout your home. Since there are so many different fire styles, sizes, blowers, and brands available on the market, it is crucial to do some research before deciding which one would suit you best.
Today’s fireplaces have come a long way from what they used to be back in the day. Now they are built to be more efficient, use less energy than older models, and can even cut back on your heating costs while keeping you warm throughout the winter season.
And although many people love their fireplaces just because of how pretty they look, others may not realize that some types of fireplaces do require a little more maintenance than others. For example, wood-burning fireplaces usually need to be cleaned regularly (how often will depend mainly on the size of your unit), especially before you start using it for the first time during the winter season.
Again, since there are so many different types of fireplaces available on the market with separate price tags, it would be in your best interest to consult with a professional before deciding which one suits you best.
Wood-Burning Fireplaces vs. Gas Fireplaces vs. Electric Fireplaces
Now that you have all the necessary information to help you decide which one may suit your needs best, let’s compare wood-burning fireplaces, gas firepits, and electric fireplace heaters to understand their features better.
Gas fireplaces are a little cheaper than traditional wood-burning fireplaces but require a gas line hookup to work. These units can be found in either insert or free-standing models and come in various sizes, shapes, and colors.
In terms of efficiency, gas firepits tend to get the job done well enough, considering how cheap they are. Still, there is a possibility that your unit can become an energy hog (depending on which features it has and the BTU output).
On the other hand, electric fireplaces provide warmth without giving off any carbon monoxide or fumes. Some models come with built-in fans to circulate warm air through your home – and while some may think that these units aren’t as efficient as gas fireplaces, many would beg to differ.
Lastly, we have wood-burning fireplaces, which are the most popular of the bunch and tend to give you a more traditional look and feel. These units can heat your entire room (depending on its size) but also require a chimney and a little more maintenance than the other two types of fireplaces.
Remember that any fireplace can be a great addition to your home, as long as you know what you’re getting into and determine which one would suit you best. Once completed, the next time someone asks about your fireplace, they will better understand how it works and why it may or may not be a good idea to have one.