What’s the difference between fireplaces and inserts?

Can you tell the difference?

Many times, someone will come in and say they are looking for a gas fireplace, but, after a few questions, we figure out they are actually are looking for a insert. That always raises the question: “What’s the difference?”

Simply put: Fireplaces are built into wall while inserts are inserted (hence the name) into the existing fireplace. There are a few distinct difference in the details though.

Fire places can be factory built and placed into a masonry hearth and chimney or built strictly from brick/stone. They are framed or built into place. They are generally bigger than an insert and have more options in terms of style and size. Many older fireplaces are inefficient at heating the home, and the newer models are mostly classified as decorative. There are also fireplaces designed for looks and heat.

Inserts are great for home owners who want to use there fireplace, but don’t want to clean them, or can’t burn wood, or want to add more style to their room. Inserts are actually more efficient at heating than most fireplaces. Most fireplaces (with exception of more modern factory built ones) loose a lot of heat through the chimney. They draw oxygen from the room and, because heat rises, the hot air goes up and out. Inserts draw oxygen from outside and push the warmth out to your room. Many models have a blower which pushes the heat out even more, which lowers use of a heater.

Room transformation from firepalce to insert
Adding a insert can fill in the dead space in your wall and add more color and style to your room.

Many houses are built with fireplaces already, but most of them never get used, especially wood burning ones. All it becomes is a ugly hole in the wall that gets decorated for Christmas and a place to light candles in. The home looses the nostalgic “sitting by the fireplace” feeling. An insert can bring life to your fireplace, your room, your house, and your cold winter nights.

Upgrading to an insert is quick, easy, affordable, and even add more value to your home. A more efficient fireplace can be used your primary source of heat, saving you money on heating and electricity cost. If your home has a fireplace you may qualify for a $1500-$3000 cash back rebate towards the purchase of a gas insert. Our technicians are highly experienced at making the upgrade as smooth as possible.