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Direct Vent Fireplace vs. Fireplace Insert. Which one is right for you

Direct Vent Fireplace vs. Fireplace Insert. Which one is right for you

February 27th, 2017

When looking to update or replace your current fireplace you may at some point, run into the question about which Fireplace option is right for you.  At first glance they look very similar right?  They both have similar finishing materials, burn natural gas or propane – truth is there is a big difference.  Hopefully we can help you out in this blog!

Direct Vent Fireplaces are Factory built fireplaces in a metal box, and their venting can be routed through a wall directly outside with flexible or ridged venting.  They are usually installed in framed walls and cladded with non-combustible materials while the home is being built.  You can easily install a fireplace after your home has been built; it just requires a little bit of a renovation. You can either build a cavity for the fireplace to be installed into, or the fireplace can be placed directly on the floor and then finished around it.

A fireplace insert is inserted into an existing masonry fireplace. If you have a masonry fireplace that is outdated, an insert is there to fill the gap and update the look of your home. This means that it will exclusively take the place of your masonry fireplace, by connecting the insert to the chimney and flue leading outside. We know it looks very similar to a fireplace, but it is definitely not the same thing. While you may not see the difference at first glance, there are many styles that make inserts and mason fireplace look very similar.  Inserts can be considered a low-cost option compared to a complete renovation to install a gas fireplace, or completely replace your existing masonry fireplace.

Free Standing Stoves can also be considered inserts because they are sometimes vented out of your existing chimney.

Which one is best for you?

Quick Reference Guide

 

Get a Direct Vent

Get an Insert

My Home does not currently have a Fireplace

X

 

My Home has an older wood burning fireplace

 

X

My Home has an existing Fireplace

X

 

My Home has a chimney but no fireplace

X

X

My Home is being built now

X

 

I am looking for a low cost option

X

 

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Stan Blay on May 14, 2017 @ 9:12 am said:
I have a basement apartment that was rented to a friend, there was a wood burning free standing stove that since I've taken out, that tenant has gone and I will be renovating but I want to install a propane free standing stove. the basement floor is about 4 1/2 feet below ground, the stainless chimney is still in place but I doubt it can be used. I have the option of placing a new propane stove where the vent would be well away from any windows or doors. I'm looking for a cost friendly propane stove and would like to get a couple of options to choose from and to know the cost out the door including a wall thermostat.. The house is in Barrie but I am living in Parry Sound so I can get in to see any options to give me an idea of the cost and installation implications. The area to heat is about 550 square feet Thanks Stan Blay

Stan Blay on May 14, 2017 @ 9:12 am said:
I have a basement apartment that was rented to a friend, there was a wood burning free standing stove that since I've taken out, that tenant has gone and I will be renovating but I want to install a propane free standing stove. the basement floor is about 4 1/2 feet below ground, the stainless chimney is still in place but I doubt it can be used. I have the option of placing a new propane stove where the vent would be well away from any windows or doors. I'm looking for a cost friendly propane stove and would like to get a couple of options to choose from and to know the cost out the door including a wall thermostat.. The house is in Barrie but I am living in Parry Sound so I can get in to see any options to give me an idea of the cost and installation implications. The area to heat is about 550 square feet Thanks Stan Blay

Gaslink Complete Home Services on May 15, 2017 @ 11:03 am said:
Hi Stan, Thanks for contacting us, we have sent you an email directly to answer your questions. Thanks! Gaslink Complete Home Services Team

john on August 11, 2017 @ 8:14 am said:
A bit of confusion arises to everyone, whether to choose direct vent fireplace or fireplace insert. But in my opinion, a factory manufactured fireplace has a limited lifetime not more than twenty years, so it is better to opt masonry fireplace as it would last for long and speaking to its appearance it enhances the look of your house.

Gaslink Complete Home Services on August 11, 2017 @ 10:37 am said:
Hi John, thanks for taking the time to read our blog. Many of our customers like the convinence and warmth a Gas fireplaces brings to their home, but in the end choosing what works best in your home and your lifestyle is what matters most!


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