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Gas and Wood Fireplaces: What Are the Differences?

For many people, a home just isn’t complete without a lovely fireplace to serve as a centerpiece for gatherings, parties and relaxing evenings. After you’ve decided to add a new fireplace, the next step is to select the type of fuel you want your fireplace to burn. Hudson Valley Chimney of Poughkeepsie, NY, would like to cover some of the differences between gas and wood fireplaces to help in your selection.

Gas Fireplace Repair Professionals in Brewster NYA quick fireplace overview

An open masonry fireplace is the image that comes to mind for most people when thinking about fireplaces. As beautiful as these units are, they’re not very efficient and can cost quite a bit to operate. Modern manufactured fireplaces, made for either wood or gas fuel, are designed for high efficiency. The result is better combustion, fewer emissions and more heat for your home. Manufactured fireplaces are pre-built and ready to be installed within a wall in your home.

Gas vs. wood

With either style of fireplace, you’ll be getting unmatched beauty and elegance. Modern fireplace designs feature an array of attractive styles, sizes, finishes and colors to make accenting your home’s décor easy.

But there are some differences. Here are five of them.

1. Operation

Gas fireplaces connect to a gas or propane line, and a switch or remote is all you need to get them working. Wood fireplaces require the loading of firewood and manually starting the fire with kindling and a match.

2. Firebox visuals

Both fireplace styles feature genuine fire in the firebox, but for many people, nothing beats real burning wood with its leaping flames and crackling sounds.

3. Efficiency

A gas fireplace is the peak of efficiency, typically retaining as much as 85% of its heat and making it available to the room. A wood fireplace holds on to a little less heat than a gas unit, but it’s a lot more heat than a typical masonry fireplace. Masonry fireplaces lose as much as 80% of their heat right up the chimney. Manufactured fireplaces are designed to solve this problem.

4. Safety

When operated correctly, today’s manufactured wood fireplaces are quite safe. Gas fireplaces are ultra-safe, with no burning objects (logs, embers, sparks, etc.) that could exit the fireplace. Both model styles are heavily insulated to protect nearby combustibles.

5. Maintenance

Chimneys connected to wood-burning fireplaces must be swept regularly to remove built-up creosote, which is highly flammable. Gas fireplaces require annual inspections to make sure the gas connection is secure and the components are in good working order. Wood fireplaces should also be inspected once a year.

Fireplace Insert Installations in Fishkill NY

Do you know about fireplace inserts?

If you don’t want to use wall space for a new fireplace, consider adding a fireplace insert to your existing masonry fireplace. Inserts are available in gas and wood models and offer many of the same features as their wall-installed counterparts. They’re like fireplaces in a box that instantly transform an underperforming masonry fireplace into a gorgeous heat producer.

Get the perfect new fireplace

Hudson Valley Chimney can help you select the perfect wood or gas fireplace or insert for your home. We’ll then professionally install it, meeting all state and local fire safety and building requirements. Since 1976, we’ve been New York’s go-to fireplace experts, beautifying homes and making our customers happy. Learn more about getting your ideal fireplace by calling (845) 471-1071. You can also reach out with our contact form.

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