Most of the heat that a fire generates within your fireplace is lost up the chimney. Not only does this prove to be issue when it comes to the comfort level in your home, but it also creates a dilemma as far as heating costs are concerned. Many homeowners have found a simple and affordable solution to this problem. Adding a heat exchanger to your fireplace can lower your monthly heating bill significantly, while keeping your home and loved ones cozy and happy!
Heat exchangers are an efficient way to deliver greater warmth to your home. They are designed to draw in cool air from the home, heat it up, and then disperse this warmed air into your living space. There are many different styles available that can help maximize your masonry fireplace. Some models are easily mounted to the top of the fireplace opening. Others, known as grate heaters, are designed to fit within your firebox. Then of course, there are decorative, welded steel fireplace doors that are designed with a blower to circulate warm air into the room.
Let's take a look at the different types of heat exchangers that are available today!
These particular heat exchangers can be easily mounting to the top of your firebox, sitting just behind the filigree (decorative overlay) at the top of the fireplace door. These devices draw in the heat that is generated from the fire (wood burning or gas log set), and then force the warmed air into your room with the help of a blower fan.
Fireplace inserts and doors with an integrated heater are another way to incorporate a heat exchanger into your application. Basically, an insert is a metal box that fits into an existing masonry fireplace. Inserts have built-in heating chambers that produce warm air from the cool temperatures that enter the firebox. This option is certainly effective, but not quite as affordable as a mounted heat exchanger or a grate heater.
There are many varieties available to suit your particular fireplace type.
A different take on the grate heater, this sleek design is capable of producing more heat for your home with less power! Installation couldn't be easier: attach the motor box to your hearth area with a screw and then plug the unit in. The attached grate is made from heavy duty steel, while the dual air jets are super quiet. Cool air is drawn in through the fan box and warmed within the heating chamber before being delivered back into the room. This is perhaps the quickest working heat exchanger available today. In addition, it promotes fuel efficiency by cutting back on the amount of wood needed to maintain a comfortable temperature in your home! It is most effective when used with fireplaces that have glass doors, although it can be used in masonry units that do not have doors.
Fireplace grate heaters (or heat exchangers) are compatible with most masonry fireplaces, and do not present much difficulty as far as installation goes. However, it is extremely important that determine the exact measurements of your firebox before obtaining the heater, and that you follow the product instructions for setup and operation to avoid damage or injury.
A heat exchanger or grate heater is a terrific way to efficiently use the heat generated from your fireplace. Cool air is drawn in from the room, heated by the wood-burning fire, then delivered back into the room as comfortable warmth. While each grate heater is different and will require you to follow the specific manufacturer's guidelines, we can give you some helpful hints on how to install the more standard device. Please keep in mind that these directions do not apply to all grate heaters/heat exchangers! They are just general directions.