Proportions are tricky when placing a new fireplace with a home. You don’t want the fireplace to make the home look smaller by installing one that is too big for the setting. In the same right, you don’t want your fireplace to look too small for the space that you are installing it in. When looking at size as a matter of efficiency, it is important to think about the size of the space you are heating. Remember that you can always create a fire that is smaller than the fireplace can hold, but never the other way around. Opting on potentially a little large will likely be better for you in the long run.
What type of fuel are you wanting to use in your new fireplace? The answer to this question plays into your overall design more than almost anything else on this list. The types of fuel range from electricity to gas to wood. The type of fuel plays into the budget for your fireplace both before and after installation. Wood fireplaces and stoves are by far much less expensive to operate than gas and can stand alone allowing for more options in placement of your new fireplace. However, the installation of a wood-burning fireplace will likely cost more than that of a gas-burning fireplace. Deciding between these two fuels really comes down to personal preference; how much work you’d like to do to get your fireplace going, and whether or not you want the smell of burning wood to be a part of your warm experience.
It is extremely important that your fireplace be easily accessible from the house and other attractions that your home may have to offer such as a pool or hot tub. The location needs to offer a good drainage line if outside, and be close to storage for whatever fuel type you’ve chosen. This is pretty specific to a wood-burning fireplace. You wouldn’t want your wood storage to be too much of a walk from the fireplace. If the fireplace is gas, then that will likely be piped into the unit, leaving you with no worries about fuel storage.
An important question to ask yourself when choosing a fireplace setup for your home: What will be the main purpose of the fireplace? Will it be purely decorative or will my family be using it to stay a bit warmer in the wintertime? Attention to detail for an efficient design will be necessary if you will be using the fireplace almost strictly for warmth. An efficient fireplace will cut down on costs because it will be designed to lose heat only to the areas that the heat is desired. If the fireplace is a decoration and conversation piece in the home, then there is more freedom to create an elaborate piece of work that isn’t necessarily as efficient as one that is strictly utilitarian.
Are you expecting to have your fireplace outside? If so, the design must hold up in the elements. It needs to be able to constantly withstand sunlight, rain, and high wind scenarios. A good way to go with design is to match the fireplace exterior to that of the house it is standing next to. It will let the fireplace blend in a bit more and will surely be made of durable materials.
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