By Andrea Wichterle. Fireplace. Published at Sunday, September 30th, 2018 - 00:28:55 AM.
When people think of fireplaces, they commonly think of a mahogany structure with a hearth and a mantel. While very beautiful, that’s not the only kind of fireplace there is. There certainly are plenty of materials to make a fireplace and each lends itself to a certain style or design. Of course, rock structures are a common type of fireplace. I grew up with one in the basement. It was a great place for the family to gather through the winter months, especially just before Christmas. There are plenty of Christmas pictures of me opening gifts with that beautiful fireplace in the background. To this day, when I see a similar fireplace it takes me back to those wonderful moments.
I have been in this situation many times and the answer is often gas logs. I have had clients with damage to their chimney flue inside a wall and believe they can put a gas log fireplace kit into their wood-burning fireplace instead of repairing the damaged flue. This is a mistake, and a dangerous mistake. Gas logs use liquid propane or natural gas instead of wood for fuel. When gas burns, oxygen is burned and carbon monoxide is created. If there is damage to the flue, a typical gas log fireplace is not the answer because the fresh air ventilation is still necessary to pull out carbon monoxide. The answer is ventless gas logs. Vent free gas logs do not have to be vented. When a client wants to design a custom outdoor fireplace but they do not want to build a chimney and cut through their patio roof, a vented gas log kit is the perfect solution because no ventilation is necessary.
For instance, a homeowner decides to build a marble mantle seven feet wide and four feet high. The budget takes into account the marble tile to finish the design and the firebox, structural materials to build the fireplace and labor. Most people do not look at a chimney and think "Wow, that is a great looking chimney" so we do not always account for the ventilation when we design our perfect outdoor accent. The ventilation cannot be skipped just because there is plenty of ventilation outdoors. The proper flue will "pull" the fumes and smoke up and away from the fireplace. Without the vent gas fumes will flow from the front of the fireplace and the area usually reserved for sitting in front of the fire will be hot and smelly. The homeowner contacts a contractor who explains the chimney, flue and roof termination will double the budget.
Isn’t it funny how small things like that can take you back to your childhood when it was much simpler times? The thing is that wasn’t the only fireplace in the house. My father loved them and it grew on me too. We had a brick fireplace in the living room. The wall was brick and the fireplace matched. The other walls were wood and I could sit in that room for hours just looking out the window or reading a book. It was like the fireplace made all the difference in the world. A room without a fireplace was boring. A room with a fireplace came to life and invited you into it. Hot cocoa and picture puzzles are memories associated with the fireplace in the living room. But, we’ve kind of grown up a bit in our design of the fireplace. The other day, I helped a friend decide on a pyramid shaped fireplace. It sits on a base that is about a foot high and three feet wide by three feet long. The pyramid has four sides so it will sit square on the base. That’s a nice design.
Any content, trademark’s, or other material that might be found on the Fireplace website that is not Fireplace’s property remains the copyright of its respective owner/s. In no way does Fireplace claim ownership or responsibility for such items, and you should seek legal consent for any use of such materials from its owner.