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Wood Burning Inserts – More Efficient & More Environmentally-Friendly

Wood Burning Inserts – More Efficient & More Environmentally-Friendly

There may be no simpler pleasure during the cold, winter months than relaxing next to a warm, crackling fire in your fireplace. But with increased awareness of our carbon footprint, you may be concerned about the environmental impact of the wood you are burning this winter. Thankfully, eco-friendly alternatives to traditional open fireplaces are available to reduce emissions and increase efficiency.

Wood Burning Inserts are becoming a very popular environmentally friendly alternative to traditional fireplaces. Wood-burning inserts not only increase the efficiency of your fireplace, they also reduce emissions. An open-burning fireplace produces 100 grams of particulate per hour with wood with a moisture content of 25%. With the same wood, a modern wood-burning insert produces 1.4 to 5 grams of particulate emission. This is a 95% or greater reduction in fireplace emissions.

Open Fireplace vs. Wood Burning Inserts

The biggest issue with traditional, open fireplaces is that there is no way to control how much air is going into the fire. More oxygen reaches the fire creating a faster burn. hen wood is burning too fast, it cannot dry out quickly enough. The more moisture content in the wood, the more smoke is produced.

Wood-burning fireplace inserts, on the other hand, tightly control the amount of oxygen that can reach the fire. Wood-burning inserts feature a gasket-sealed door and air intake control damper that is no larger than the size of a nickel. These factors dramatically reduce the amount of air going into the fire creating a slower burn with adequately dried wood. The result is a nearly smokeless fire and a minimal amount of ash.

Less Wood, Less Mess

While reduced particle emissions are a key benefit of wood-burning inserts there are a few others that can be considered. With a slower burn, wood-burning inserts will use less fuel over the winter allowing you to use a renewable energy source more efficiently.

A cleaner burning fire doesn’t just mean fewer emissions, it also means less ash and soot. A wood-burning insert only needs to be cleaned after every 10-15 uses versus a traditional fireplace which requires cleaning after every use. Additionally, less creosote will build up in the chimney. Creosote is one of the leading causes of chimney fires.

More Efficient Heat Source

Open fireplaces are not very efficient heat sources. Most of the heat generated from the fire can be lost up the chimney instead of radiating throughout the room. It’s not uncommon for open fires to result in negative efficiency and cause your heater to turn on increasing your gas and electric usage.

Wood-burning inserts feature a blower that takes in room-temperature air, pulls it under the insert, and blows the warm air back into the room. With a blower, a wood-burning insert can heat up to a 2,000 sq ft space.

Whether you are interested in minimizing your environmental impact this winter or would like to increase the efficiency of your fireplace, connect with the Chimney Scientists to discuss wood-burning insert options for your home.

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