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  1. #1

    Question re: maximizing heat from Fireplace

    Hi-

    I recently became a home owner for the first time and the house has got a fireplace in the fam room. The past week or so, i've been making some fires and i was wondering if anybody has some suggestions how to get the most heat from it. With oil bills skyrocketing, i'd like to use my fireplace more as a source of heat for the family room, but it seems as though in order to get warm, you need to sit in front of it. It doesn't radiate much at all. With the flue open, it seems to take a lot of our warm air away so it's more counter productive and about ambiance then about productivity

    Anybody have a simlar problem? If so, how did you improve it?

    Thanks so much for your suggestions

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    4
    There is a wealth of information in the existing threads.

    Suggestions?

    Read and learn. These guys know what they're talking about!

    (No offense intended but, it's similar to not reading the Instruction Manual when you buy a product. If you have parts left over and then open the instructions then you've wasted your time...times 3).

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Madison, WI
    Posts
    1,078
    Get an insert, period.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Posts
    1,383
    Just what jtp1081 said.

    Conentional fireplaces were the latest technology in the 12th century. The one you have boasts about the same efficiency as the ones built then.

  5. #5
    thanks, but what type of inserts do you reccomend? obviuosly i've never had a fireplace before.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    manitoba canada
    Posts
    153
    I also have a wood burning fireplaceplace in my family room and yes these units do not heat worth a dam, most wood burners installed as builder units are so ineffiecent that they actually draw heat from the house and what you feel is only radiant heat, there are vented, vent free and direct vent inserts to chose from, go here and check some out http://kingsmanind.com/index.cfm?pageID=78 , these units are reliable and produce lots of heat.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    manitoba canada
    Posts
    153
    Oh yah I should know how they heat because I live were temperatures go to -40f-c for at least 1 month if not more.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Madison, WI
    Posts
    1,078
    I assume you want to continue burning wood? Here is a place to start

    http://www.quadrafire.com/Products/W...od_Inserts.asp

    Basically you just need to find one that is approved for your type of situation, and that fits into your existing firebox.

    Some other brands are: PE, Jotul, Regency, Hampton, Lopi

    You can also get a Gas Insert or a Pellet Insert.

  9. #9
    Thanks so much for your suggestions, i will definately look into it.

    Can't believe this whole time, i see on tv people nestling by a roaring fire, while it's snowing outside......what a crock!!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    S.E. Pa
    Posts
    6,292

    Cool feel the heat?

    Don't you feel the warmth when you step out from the shade into the sunlight on a chilly day? Infrared energy otherwise known as radiant heat. When you sit in front of an open Fp, the radiant heat warms your front side. Meanwhile, the convection and evaporation of your perspiration cools your body as the breeze heading up the stack rushes by you. There is an old wives tale this is where the wing backed chair came from. Colonial thinking was that air rushing past your face caused illness. The wing backed chair supposedly shielded your front and sides while allowing your front to warm up. And here I thought it was to hold my head as I sat side-saddle reading with one leg over the arm rest....

    Many good brands out there as named here. Do your homework. Find out who will be servicing it and what their qualifications are. Properly installed inserts, esp. gas and pellet are hard to beat. I'm replacing my boiler right now so my 85 y/o 3 story brick house is being heated by a Quadrafire Castile pellet stove insert. Sure, I have small electric space heaters in the kitchen ( for my greyhound who has zero body fat--the beagle lies on the sofa next to the pellet stove) and in my bedroom but that stove is doing a fine job and burning about 1/2 bag per day for the last 2 weeks and it has been chilly in Philly.

    Depending upon your floor plan, construction, and lifestyle, a good fireplace insert can zone heat a large portion of the home instead of your main heat thus saving a few bucks. If you stand in front of a forced hot air supply register or hot water radiator then stand in front of a hearth insert, you will be more comfortable in front of the Fp.

    Just do your homework.
    Warmest regards,
    Hearthman

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    The Twilight Zone
    Posts
    2,964
    Quote Originally Posted by hearthman View Post
    Don't you feel the warmth when you step out from the shade into the sunlight on a chilly day? Infrared energy otherwise known as radiant heat. When you sit in front of an open Fp, the radiant heat warms your front side. Meanwhile, the convection and evaporation of your perspiration cools your body as the breeze heading up the stack rushes by you. There is an old wives tale this is where the wing backed chair came from. Colonial thinking was that air rushing past your face caused illness. The wing backed chair supposedly shielded your front and sides while allowing your front to warm up. And here I thought it was to hold my head as I sat side-saddle reading with one leg over the arm rest....

    Many good brands out there as named here. Do your homework. Find out who will be servicing it and what their qualifications are. Properly installed inserts, esp. gas and pellet are hard to beat. I'm replacing my boiler right now so my 85 y/o 3 story brick house is being heated by a Quadrafire Castile pellet stove insert. Sure, I have small electric space heaters in the kitchen ( for my greyhound who has zero body fat--the beagle lies on the sofa next to the pellet stove) and in my bedroom but that stove is doing a fine job and burning about 1/2 bag per day for the last 2 weeks and it has been chilly in Philly.

    Depending upon your floor plan, construction, and lifestyle, a good fireplace insert can zone heat a large portion of the home instead of your main heat thus saving a few bucks. If you stand in front of a forced hot air supply register or hot water radiator then stand in front of a hearth insert, you will be more comfortable in front of the Fp.

    Just do your homework.
    Warmest regards,
    Hearthman
    Good post, Hearthman. I am originally from South Philly.

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