If you’re looking to have a fireplace installed in your home, one decision you’ll have to make is the type of fireplace you want to have. Here we will review the pros and cons of gas and wood fireplaces.
Pros: If ambiance is top priority for you, a wood fireplace is the way to go. No type of re-creation will quite simulate the snap, crackle, and pop of a real, live fire. Wood fireplaces give you that real fire smell, and you have the added benefit of being able to use the fire for, say, roasting marshmallows.
Cons: Unfortunately for those of us who love a good fire, there are quite a few drawbacks to having a wood fireplace in your home. First, even though the fire itself produces a great deal of heat, the heat mostly escapes up through the chimney. Not only that, but the draft created from the escaping heat also pulls the air from other rooms in your home, making them colder rather than warmer. So you’ll be warm right next to the fire, but everywhere else in your home will be chilly. You’ll also need to keep the chimney open for 12 hours after the fire has burned out to properly vent your home, which also allows warm air to escape.
Second, wood fireplaces require quite a bit of maintenance. Every time you light a fire, you’ll have to clean up all the ash and soot it produces once it’s burned out. You’ll also need to get wood every time you want a fire, either chopped yourself or purchased. Burning wood also creates creosote, which accumulates on the chimney and becomes a fire hazard. Your chimney will need to be cleaned routinely to keep it safe. Third, the burning wood creates indoor home pollution. If you are especially susceptible to allergens and pollutants, this probably isn’t the best choice for you.
Pros: Gas fireplaces are becoming very realistic and can almost trick you into thinking you’re having a real wood-burning fire. Gas fireplaces provide heat that stays in the room. They are energy efficient. Gas fireplaces offer better air quality than wood fireplaces. There are far fewer emissions from a gas fireplace.
They also offer the convenience of easy maintenance. Generally, gas fireplaces only need to be dusted occasionally. They do need to be serviced on an annual basis just to be sure they are running properly and safe to use. They are also convenient to operate. It requires little more than the flick of a switch or the push of a button to start or turn off a gas fireplace.
Cons: You miss out on the magic of a real wood fire.
It may seem that the gas fireplace is the obvious winner, but if you are the type of person who enjoys the sensation of a wood fire and don’t mind the clean-up, then wood fireplaces are still a great choice. Either way you decide, we are excited to help set you up the fireplace you have been dreaming of.