Henriette Fireplace February 15th, 2018 - 10:15:54
Fireplace Inserts If you have a masonry fireplace but dont like the associated, draftiness, energy costs or overall inefficiency, you should consider purchasing a fireplace insert, sometimes referred to as a fireplace stove insert. A fireplace insert is basically a wood stove designed to fit into a fireplace. Fireplace inserts are usually constructed of cast iron or steel just like wood stoves. Installing a fireplace insert will typically require the installation of a chimney liner. The chimney liner essentially narrows and insulates the chimney vent and connects directly onto the fireplace insert creating a closed highly efficient system. No more opening and closing the damper. Fireplace inserts can use various fuel options and are clean burning (minimal smoke and particulate emissions). Fireplace inserts like wood stoves are heavy, usually weighing upwards of 300 pounds. This means delivery and installation are better left to certified installers or professional chimney sweeps.
If you decide that cleaning your chimney from the top will work better for you, you will need to have a long piece of rope and some type of weight attached to the bottom of the chimney brush. Again, as you work the brush through the chimney, use a back and forth motion to be sure you are scraping off as much creosote as possible. If you do choose to use this method, make sure that you do it with safety precautions in place. Falling off the roof is never a good idea! Chimney sweeps are another excellent option for cleaning your chimney. These professionals can make sure that all aspects of your chimney are up to safety standards. Look for a CSIA Certified Chimney Sweep in your area to ensure that your fireplace is properly cared for.
The best reason I have saved for last and that is, your fireplace is costing you heat loss all day and night even when your not using it. The reason is that your damper in your fireplace is not airtight they are made that way to maintain a certain amount of clearance even when they are closed. So If you have a fireplace that does not have a glass-door you are wasting energy, up and out the chimney. In this article its easy to see how you can get more heat out of your fireplace with just a few small changes, that will let you burn outside air instead of the air that you already paid to heat, and by installing glass-doors to stop heat loss.
The next step is to clean those well-used fireplace tools and fireplace grate. Black soot and resin can easily build up on your tools and can make them unsightly and grungy-looking. Here are a few simple steps to help bring back their original luster and shine. Take your fireplace grate and tools outside and give them a good hosing down. This will quickly remove all of the loose soot and dirt from the surface. For the fireplace grate, fill a bucket with hot water and a small amount of abrasive cleaner. Scrub with a steel wool pad to remove the caked on resin and soot. You may need to use a stiff-bristled brush to get the really bad parts. For the fireplace tools, use hot water and a small amount of ammonia cleaner. Avoid using abrasives, as these may scratch the finish on your tools. You may use a scrub brush to get the stubborn dirt particles, but use caution so as not to damage the surface.