Monday, May 2, 2011

OPERATION: Fireplace

One thing we wanted in our new house was a fireplace. Husband wanted to supplement our heating with the fireplace and I just thought they looked nice. We found our house and it had a fireplace with a propane insert. 

 (this is with the previous owners furniture and decorations AND the propane insert)

The chimney and fireplace wasn't part of our home inspection so I wanted to have everything checked and cleaned before the winter and we started burning wood in it. During the inspection we learned that our chimney was extremely clean, it looked like no one had really used it. For a home built in 1930, that is quite strange. There was a reason why the fireplace had never been used, the chimney was too small for the actual fireplace opening and wouldn't allow for correct ventilation. In other words, if we tried to burn wood in the fireplace our house would fill up with smoke. Of course we tried it and our home filled up with smoke unless we kept the glass doors closed all the time, but that also limited the heat off the fire so it really was just for looks.

(One of the only fires our little fireplace had. It was beautiful.....)

So the search began for something to help us utilize our fireplace. We were looking for used small wood stove or fireplace insert, but we had no luck. We started shopping for new stoves and found one small enough to work in our space.

We found this small Vermont Castings stove in a local hearth shop. Luckily for us the US government was offering a tax credit for alternative heat and green options. The store was generous and sold us the floor model so we could qualify for the tax credit. Then Jonathan had to get to work on installing the little stove. 

(Trail lighting of the stove and it thankfully was a success)

He inserted stainless steel 8" pipe the entire height on the chimney. In the above photos you can see the steel pipe sticking out. We saved ourselves $1000 with installing the stove by ourselves.

Now here is the finished working wood stove. We cover the stainless steel pipe that you could see in the above photos with black stove pipe so it would blend in with the stove more. It makes a huge difference with the warmth in the room. Next fireplace project is to remove the white paint on the brick. Someone at sometime sponge painted the red brick and it is very ugly, but that will be another day.

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