Fireplaces have evolved over the years from traditional wood fireplaces to gas, ethanol and electric fireplaces. These different fireplaces serve different purposes though and not every kind of fireplace can be installed everywhere. Their use, utility and installation can greatly vary.
Some of the common misconceptions about wood fireplaces are that they are too costly; have to be pre-conceived at the time of construction and/or require major modifications to the house structure. These notions deter prospective buyers from opting for wood stoves and seek out alternatives such as gas, electric or ethanol fireplace. Though every type has its own advantages and disadvantages, none can replace the beauty, charm and features of a wood fireplace.
Contrary to popular perception, wood fireplaces can be installed without major modifications to house structure; do not burn a hole in your pocket and can in fact increase your profit over a period of time (due to the low maintenance and input costs)
During power outage, wood fireplace continues to give heat and light and helps cooking. The modern wood fireplace inserts are more efficient and adhere to the emission standards set by Environment Protection Agencies in Europe , United States and Australia. Nothing can match the aesthetics of a real fire, the beauty, comfort and the crackling sound of wood burning.
Firewood is always sourced from sustainable sources and mostly firewood is harvested from plantations or has died back or been felled for clearing of land for crops or building. Wood is a renewable and sustainable source of energy. The wood burnt in a fireplace releases the same amount of carbon as naturally decaying wood. The old wood fireplaces were however less energy efficient. The heat generated was lost up in the chimney or absorbed in sub-zero temperatures. The result was that they burnt up more wood than required and churned out less heat. Fireplace inserts were designed to improve fireplace’s efficiency. Inserts basically create a closed combustion system enclosed by cast iron/steel and insulated glass. The blower pushes the hot air back into the room through vents thus increasing their efficiency. Modern fireplace inserts emit less than 1 gram of smoke per hour, which is well within the parameters of ‘Clean Air Standard’ specified by EPA.
With overall efficiency improved, it naturally follows that these fireplaces are cost effective too. The cost of heating a room is drastically cut. The glass enclosures also prevent downdraft, a problem created due to pressure variance.
Finally, a Wood burning fireplace can cut the costs associated with chimney cleaning and frequency of repair and maintenance. To sum up, a wood stove can be placed anywhere without any major brick work; they are less expensive; energy efficient and eco-friendly too.