With the fall winds howling and rain coming down in buckets, now is the time of year when the familiar sights and smells of fireplaces begin to appear.
At least with wood-burning fireplaces. The crack of the wood as it burns is a comforting sound as the room fills with warmth during the next several months of dark and gloomy weather. Unless you have or are interested in a gas fireplace. If you don’t already have a wood fireplace, a gas-operated model might be your only choice. There are pros and cons with both types, including cost, upkeep and efficiency.
As far as ambiance is concerned, it’s hard to beat a wood fireplace. Just the act of getting a wood fire going is part of the charm, from crumpling the newspaper, adding just the right amount of kindling, and placing the logs just so. And, depending on where you live, the supply of logs is a pretty cheap way to go help heat the room.
Newer gas fireplaces try their best to mimic the look of a wood-burning fireplace, down to the “charred” logs and glowing embers. While the heat of a gas fireplace gives off is similar, the overall feel isn’t quite comparable.
All that natural aesthetic comes at a price, however: the leftover ashes need to be cleaned up, the wood may need to be chopped and the chimney needs to be cleaned on a regular basis. The gas fireplace has none of these concerns, although the periodic check of the chimney is always recommended.
There are other advantages to a gas fireplace as well. If you don’t have a boy scout on hand to start your fire, operating a gas fireplace can be as easy as flipping a switch. And, when you’re ready to call it a night, a gas fireplace can be turned off with that same switch. A wood-burning fire needs much more attention to make sure the fire is out and the embers have cooled to safe degree.
Installing a gas fireplace is also much easier, either on an existing home or if you you are involved in new construction. Where a wood-burning fireplace needs a vertical chimney, many gas models can employ horizontal vents that give an added versatility to where you place the fireplace. Although you still need run a gas line to the unit.
The crackling wood fire certainly has an advantage or two. But, with advances being made constantly, ease of use, and versatility, gas fireplaces are much easier to include in any home design. Contact Performance Building Products for more information on gas-powered fireplaces today.