Now that autumn is approaching, how about being warm by a nice fireplace? Sounds good right? Discover the keys to install one.
The first thing to keep in mind is that fireplaces cannot be bought randomly . First you have to ask yourself some technical and budget questions. It is convenient that you know that they are expensive pieces but that they print a lot of style to your home.
No one escapes the magic of the flames of a fireplace. Anyone who has one at home knows that watching the wood burn makes you lose track of time. When there is one present, it becomes the center of attention of all eyes .
Requirements to install it
Surely you are wondering : what conditions does the house have to meet to install a fireplace in it? Does it involve many works and a very high cost? Which type suits me?
The only condition to install a fireplace is that the house has a smoke outlet . This seems obvious but not all buildings have this duct.
In general, modern buildings do not have it and old ones do. Single-family houses are the most benefited in this regard . Although originally they do not have a smoke outlet, their construction is very simple in this type of building.
House with smoke outlet
If there is already a general smoke duct , it should measure about 20 cm in diameter; then, it only remains to install the fireplace hearth and communicate it with this outlet through a hood.
The works are simple: once the chimney is chosen, it takes a maximum of two days to complete the assembly and the installation companies will take care of the entire process.
House without smoke outlet
Opening a duct that goes from the house to the roof is not always possible. It depends on the characteristics of the building, although there are cases in which it can be installed in the inner courtyard .
Only if it is an attic or a single-family home, can the work be carried out without problems. In any case, you always need the permission of the neighborhood community .
Fireplaces: different types
When buying a fireplace it is very important to consider whether it is going to be used as a rather decorative element (lighting it on rare occasions) or whether it is to be used as a real source of heat.
When the fireplace is going to light little , you can leave the fireplace open. It will heat the room but of all the heat produced, only 20% will be used (80% will be lost through the smoke duct)
Also, it must be taken into account that placing a metal mouthpiece (an iron or steel frame) that protects the combustion zone will prevent the wood from overheating.
Within the most modern style fireplaces there are two clear trends : those that are perfectly embedded in the wall and those that are totally free-standing models, with the hood and the duct in sight.
The former are closed with a cassette . Thus, they adapt better to the current style of homes and are cleaner. The latter are normally made of cast iron , painted black, and their line is closely linked to the currents of design with round or triangular bells.
Their advantage is that they produce more heat because they have the entire structure visible, but they need more maintenance. Your paint tends to get damaged and you have to touch them up from time to time.
They are very open . In many models of fireplaces, the hearth has no or minimal side walls. The materials are very natural: stone in the openings and fronts, exposed brick and, sometimes, a wooden beam that serves as a shelf.
Fireplaces: essential accessories
An ideal complement to the chimney of an urban home is the firebreak or spark arrester . They are metal meshes that are placed in front to prevent sparks from damaging the floor.
The tools to control the fire (pokers, tongs or tongs, brushes and shovels for the embers) are usually hung on a support that is cleaner and more comfortable to move or place it in a corner.
Also, the traditional andirons are classic . They are a pair of metal bars with a support to stay upright, and they serve to store logs and prevent them from sliding.
Most of the accessories are made of iron , with simple lines or with ornaments. But we recommend that if the fireplace frame is already decorated enough, it should not be overloaded with accessories that are too elaborate or flashy.
Fireplaces: how and when to clean them
Fireplaces need regular cleaning so that soot does not clog the flue. Annual cleaning is recommended, but should be left to specialized companies.
These companies will present you with a budget according to the characteristics of the fireplace you have. Also, you should bear in mind that the interiors will not need special care .
So if you are lucky enough to be able to install a fireplace this fall , it will be very useful to follow these tips. What has been your experience?
check also in forsimplytech some other decorations tips and ideas