Choosing Between Gas and Wood Burning Fireplaces

January 20, 2016

A fireplace adds personality and value to your home. When homebuyers imagine their dream house, the house typically includes a comfortable home that keeps you and your family warm in the winter, either with a smoothly running heater or getting comfy around a cozy fire.

It’s hard to resist the temptation of of a crackling fire, but how do you choose between a gas or wood burning fireplace? There are many factors to consider when deciding how to heat your home.

Aesthetics and Efficiency 

  • Wood: A wood burning fireplace typically wins in the sensation category. You get the crackle. You get the pop. You get the opportunity to roast marshmallows indoors. Something you don’t get is an efficient heating source. Wood fires normally receive up to a 15% efficiency rating, considerably lower than a furnace that has consistent service performed. They do get very hot, but most of that heat is released up the chimney. Wood burning fireplaces not only lose the heat coming from the fire, but it also pulls warm air from other parts of the home up and out the chimney.

  • Gas: There have been many aesthetic advances in gas fireplaces. The flames have become more realistic and many versions offer different adjustments in height. The types of logs used in gas fireplaces now more closely favor the real thing and come complete with flickering embers, which don’t need you to wait while they burn out. You can simply switch your gas fireplace on and off, providing you more control over the temperature of you home and frees you from having to keep an eye on your fire. The lack of fire stealing oxygen gives gas fireplaces a 75% to 99% efficiency rating. Imagine the level of comfort you could have when you pair that with a fully serviced furnace. 

Air Quality and Maintenance

  • Wood: Air quality is crucial to all homeowners. Burning wood creates air pollution in and outside your family’s home and the smoky wood smell that a wood burning fireplace gives off could be hazardous to your health. Wood also creates a byproduct called creosote that lines the coating of the chimney and must be removed by an expert. Much like furnaces that should have furnace service completed regularly, gas fireplaces also require recurrent cleanings of embers and spent logs.

  • Gas: Gas fireplaces only require a bit of dusting every now and then and are just about maintenance free. It is recommended that you get your gas fireplace cleaned and adjusted every 12 months by a specialist to keep it working both safely and effectively.
If you want to find out more information about converting your wood burning fireplace into a gasfire place or you simply need to schedule your yearly furnace service, please call us at at 623-243-4517 or schedule an appointment on our website. Our experts will have you cuddled up by the fire in no time.
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