Many homeowners know that a wood-burning heat source is a great choice for heating their home. Not much can beat its look and feel, but homeowners often find it difficult to decide between a wood fireplace and a wood stove. To help you make the best choice for you and your home, let’s take a look at some of the key features as well as the differences between the two.
There are some inherent dangers that come along with wood-burning. In general, burning wood can cause creosote buildup inside a chimney, posing a risk of possible house fires. Since both units rely on wood for fuel, oftentimes pests or mildew can find their way inside the logs. However, these problems can be managed with regular cleaning and maintenance of your chimney.
Fireplaces are often open with a mesh curtain for minimal protection. As a result, sparks can fly out into your home. On the other hand, stoves are enclosed by a glass door. A closed door will protect you from sparks flying into your home and harming your family.
However, closed doors mean that the unit itself will become hot and shouldn’t be touched to avoid burn risks. For that reason, the safety for both fireplaces and stoves are reasonably equal.
Fireplace and Stove Efficiency is Important
Although fairly cheap to fuel, fireplaces are the lesser efficient heating source. The level of efficiency depends on how much firewood is needed to produce an equal amount of heat between a stove and a fireplace.
Traditional fireplaces are very inefficient because they draw heated air up the chimney. At the same time, they pull cold outside air into the home, causing the main heating system to work harder. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, a stove is potentially 50% more energy efficient and uses ⅓ less wood for heat.
Unmatched Environmental Friendliness
Unlike most fuel sources, burning wood is carbon neutral and environmentally friendly. In general, the wood stoves available today produce only a small amount of harmful emissions because of their closed combustion burn system. As a result, they are more efficient and better at providing heat. A fireplace, on the other hand, has a greater chance of hazardous fumes entering your home instead of ascending the chimney.
The Appearance of a Wood Fireplace or Wood Stove
Oftentimes, wood stoves are big metal units that add little beauty to a room. There’s arguably no comparison to the beauty of a masonry fireplace. With so many endless design possibilities, it will undeniably be the centerpiece of any home. Wood fireplaces add a certain ambiance to a room that a wood stove just can’t match.
When it comes to your home, we understand that you want the best. No matter what you’re looking for, we can help. The Chimney Expert has over 20 years of experience servicing Milwaukee chimneys with comprehensive care. We offer chimney sweeping, installation, and inspection services throughout the Milwaukee area. Contact us today to receive a free estimate.