No other type of heating offers the kind of cosy warmth that you get from a fire. Fireplaces offer a cheerful place to gather with family and friends, to read a good book, or to play indoor games. You can save on electricity and still keep warm in the event of power failures.
A fireplace can have a major impact on the ambiance of a room. And with the countless options available, no homeowner has to be without one.
In your quest for the perfect fireplace, there are a number of factors to consider.
Wood or gas? Or electric?
There is nothing quite like a real wood fire. You cannot get that earthy smell and crackle from anything else.
But a wood-burning fireplace can be a fire hazard and a proper installation is non-negotiable. There should be prober ventilation and you need to make sure that the fire is always properly extinguished before leaving the room. Kids will also need to be supervised.
A wood-burning fireplace is not cheap to add to a home: it essentially requires that you make a hole in your home and build a chimney to go with it. A less expensive option is a “factory-built” fireplace, which is an insulated steel box that lets you burn real wood, with the smoke escaping via a small hole leading to the roof.
When it comes to ease of use, a wood-burning fireplace is more demanding than a gas or electric fireplace. Not only do you need to buy and store the wood, but you have to work to build the fire. And you have to clean up afterwards. But many purists enjoy the craft of building their own fire and see that as a perk. So if you are one of those, go for it!
A gas fireplace can offer the look and warmth of a flame, but you won’t get the sounds or smells of wood-burning fireplace.
Gas fireplaces have their own set of risks: they require proper circulation and ventilation, they get quite hot to the touch, and there is the risk of a gas leak. Proper installation and maintenance are important.
A gas fireplace is still an investment, but will cost less than installing a wood-burning fireplace. If your home already has a gas supply, a gas fireplace can be installed just about anywhere. Exhaust fumes from the burned gas are redirected outside. The price of a new gas fireplace will vary greatly depending on the style you choose.
An electric fireplace will emit heat, but it won’t be from real fire—in fact, an electrical fireplace will provide an illusion of the fire, but not the real thing.
Electric fireplaces are the safest, given that there is no real fire.It is also the least expensive option. The only requirements are an outlet and space to put the fireplace. You can even put one in a mobile home!
Electric and gas fireplaces are both very easy to use: simply flick a switch to turn it on, and do the same to turn it off. Aside from ongoing cleaning and maintenance, both types are relatively effortless to operate.
Whichever style you choose, note that fireplaces are most effective when paired with a cozy blanket, a warm beverage, and a good book!
For more information on fireplaces and the best option for your home, contact Heatwave:
East Rand +27 87 806 6808
Randburg +27 01 001 8373
Bloemfontein +27 51 001 0150
Pretoria +27 12 001 1775