There’s no question that adding a fireplace to your home makes it more desirable. It provides a central place in your home for your family and your guests to gather and enjoy an evening. They look great and they add a little bit of extra warmth to your home when you need it.
Traditional fireplaces are obviously a bit tricky to install if you don’t have a chimney. While you can certainly take on the project of installing a full chimney, it’s no small feat. Luckily these days there are some alternative options you can consider if you want to bring the benefits of a fireplace to your home.
In this article we’ll take a look at traditional fireplaces and their alternatives so you can have a better idea of which option is best for your home improvement project.
Is The Real Thing For You?
If what you really want is a no-frills, real-deal fireplace, then you don’t have many options. You’re going to need a full brick chimney properly equipped with everything you need to safely burn a fire in your home. If you already have a chimney then you’re in good shape, you’ll probably just need to make sure it’s up to par and fully operational before you use it. It can be a good idea to call in a chimney sweeper to give it a clean and a look over.
If you don’t have a chimney already, then you’re going to have to install one. This isn’t the end of the world, people do it all the time. It’s going to be a bit of an expense though, and it’s certainly going to take up a bit of a footprint in your home. If you’re not willing to compromise when it comes to having a real fire in your home, then you have no way other way to go. However, if you are willing to compromise you might want to consider one of the alternative options.
Electric Fireplaces – The Best Option For Convenience
If your main concern is that you have something that is aesthetically pleasing as a centerpiece for your room, then an electric fireplace may just be the way to go. They aren’t the most realistic alternative you’re going to come across, but they are still quite realistic and will certainly do the trick in many cases.
The great thing about electric models is that you don’t need any chimney or really any ventilation at all. They can be installed just about anywhere, and you have a range of styles to choose from – BEFR by Tim Arnold breaks them down quite nicely. Better yet, they work at the click of a button and you don’t even need to set them to put out any heat at all if you don’t want to. They are a modern, stylistic, and convenient fireplace alternative. Just don’t expect truly real flames if you go this route.
Gas Fireplaces – A Nice Compromise
If the idea of an electric fireplace just doesn’t quite seem authentic enough, but you’re all on board with avoiding a chimney then a gas fireplace is probably a good compromise for your situation. You’ll still need a way to adequately vent the heat and fumes that are generated by it’s operation, but with simple ducting this can be much easier to install.
One thing to keep in mind if you want to go this route is how the gas is going to be supplied. If you already have a natural gas connection in your house then it can likely be tapped into to supply the fireplace as well. If you don’t then you’ll probably need a propane tank to hold the fuel. Otherwise, gas fireplaces are a great option. While they don’t look 100% real, they still have real flames and can be quite pleasant.
Hopefully by now you’re on your way to choosing the perfect fireplace for your home. Any questions please go ahead and ask!