Issue #37 Fireplaces & Stoves December 8, 2004

Contents: Issue #37 Fireplaces & Stoves

  1. The Basics: Glossary, History, Overview Of Types
  2. Planning: Choosing, Pictures, Fuel Options & Costs
  3. Fireplaces: Gas, Unvented, Product Ratings, Electric
  4. More: Wood Fireplaces, Masonry, Pellets, Chiminea
  5. Parts: Chimney Overview, Masonry Chimneys, Mantels
  6. Woodburning: Wood Stoves & More, EPA, Installers
  7. Issues: Safety, Energy Efficiency, Insurance
  8. Kenís Top Pick: If You Have Time To Surf Only One Site

1. The Basics: Glossary, History, Overview Of Types

Glossary Of Hearth & Heating Terms
Baffle is more than a politicianís answer to a question. Hearth Net offers this glossary that gives you explanations for words and terms used in the hearth (fireplace & stove) industry.

The Fireplace Through History
Most of the basic design features of fireplaces and stoves were developed centuries ago, as Steve Thackery outlines in this brief history (with pictures) of fireplaces.

Stoves & Fireplaces Overview
Check out this Rona site for a quick overview (with pictures) of the many common types of solid fuel, gas & propane, oil and electric fireplaces and stoves available on the market today.

2. Planning: Choosing, Pictures, Fuel Options & Costs

Choosing Whatís Right for You
To help you and/or your homeowner decide which product will best serve a specific projectís needs, the Hearth Patio & Barbecue Association lists 10 key questions you can ask.

Picture Gallery Of Fireplaces & Stoves
Are you looking for ideas? Hearth Net has a picture gallery of fireplaces, wood & coal stoves, gas stoves, antique stoves, pellet stoves, and outdoor stoves for your viewing pleasure.

Fuel Options
Choosing which fuel to use may depend on cost, availability, efficiency, output, maintenance, appearance, or local air quality regulations. HPBA gives an overview of options.

Fuel Cost Comparison Calculator
If the cost of operation is high on your priority list, taking the time to use this online fuel cost calculator from Hearth Net may be worthwhile. Be sure to read the directions first.

3. Fireplaces: Gas, Unvented, Product Ratings, Electric

All About Gas Fireplaces
Hereís an online booklet from NRCan with information on gas fireplace types, venting, efficiency, controls, location, use, safety, and problems with gas logs and unvented units.

Unvented Gas Appliances: Industry Viewpoint
For some good background on why Canada prohibits the use of unvented gas appliance products, read through this article from inventor Lance O'Hearn.

Gas & Propane Fireplace Product Listings & Ratings
The Office of Energy Efficiency lists gas & propane products with their brand name, model number, fuel, configuration, ignition & venting types, input/output and efficiency ratings.

Electric Fireplaces (PDF FILE)
Becoming increasingly popular, electric fireplaces are simple to install, and the flame is surprisingly real. This HPBA fact sheet covers features, benefits and selection.

4. More: Wood Fireplaces, Masonry, Pellets, Chiminea

Choosing A Wood Fireplace
Written by Canadian wood heating expert John Gulland, this Mother Earth News article covers different types of wood fireplaces, problems, solutions and buying recommendations.

Masonry Heaters
The Masonry Heater Virtual Mall, although a little hard to navigate (be sure to scroll over to right hand side), is a good place to find technical information, products, and installers.

Consumer Guide To Pellet Heating
The Hearth Education Foundation and the Pellet Fuel Institute prepared this overview (with drawings) to help you understand pellet fuels, and what to look for in pellet burning appliances.

As Mexican-style chimineas (outdoor clay fireplaces) become much more popular you may get some value from this John Ansart article that explains how to use and care for them.

5. Parts: Chimney Overview, Masonry Chimneys, Mantels

How Chimneys Work
Chimney types, parts and their functions, how they work (draft), checking operation and safety, chimney fires, and maintenance are detailed in this chapter of Burning Secrets.

Masonry Chimneys
Rumford is a famous name in masonry fireplaces, and their site has great info on chimney types and history, plans and instructions, products, stories, pictures, links and more.

Mantels: Simple Site-Built
Do you want to build elegant, affordable mantels on-site? Well-known carpenter Steve Katz explains how in this article from the Journal of Light Construction (Click on ďView HTMLĒ)

6. Woodburning: Wood Stoves & More, EPA, Installers

Wood Stove & Woodheat Website
The Wood Heat Organization covers wood stoves in detail, and you can click on the top logo to access even more on chimneys, planning, air supply, firewood, safety, and tips.

EPA Certified Woodburning (PDF FILE)
Wood heaters that are EPA certified may be acceptable for use where other units are not. This fact sheet from the HPBA gives details on EPA standards and products.

Certified BC Wood Energy Technicians & Installers
To ensure that your residential wood heating systems are designed and installed safely and effectively you should consider using a WET-BC Certified Wood Energy Technician.

7. Issues: Safety, Energy Efficiency, Insurance

Safety Issues & Articles
The Chimney Safety Institute of America offers good articles on carbon monoxide, chimney fires, proper venting, gas logs, waterproofing, chimney liners, inspections and more.

Energy Efficiency & Environmental
Home Energy magazine carried this report from Skip Hayden on energy efficient, environmentally friendly, and safe alternatives to conventional fireplaces for todayís homes.

Insurance & Wood Heating
Your insurance policy may be affected by installing or upgrading your wood heating system or chimney, as explained here by the Insurance Bureau Of Canada.

8. Kenís Top Pick: The Hearth Net Site

The Hearth Net Site
Hearth Net has lots of good information for both consumers and industry. It includes products, articles, Q & A, forums, stove ratings, picture galleries, links and more. Itís hot!

Dittie For Today: On Living Our Passion

The choice to live our passion is not dangerous; it is much worse, it is unknown. But what is known can never be new or creative. If we die in our passion, at least we have lived, if we live in the known we have already died. - Steven Harrison

 © Copyright 2004               Ken Farrish               All Rights Reserved
ISSN: 1703-5597 - National Library of Canada