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    Pros and Cons of Direct-Vent Gas Fireplaces

    Written by guest blogger Sarah Duke

    A fireplace is an ideal way to keep your house warm during the winter. It will produce a lot of heat. Plus, the flickering of the flames will add more atmosphere to the home. But there are many types of fireplaces on the market. Let’s take a closer look at direct-vent gas fireplaces and whether it is the right choice for you.

    Rushmore direct-vent fireplace insert in a stone fireplace.

    What is a Direct-Vent Fireplace?

    The best place to start is by defining what makes a direct-vent fireplace so special.  The secret lies in where it draws air from. Traditionally, the air will come from inside the house. The exhausts then go up the vent to the outside. However, this is inefficient, sucking the heat out of the room. A direct-vent uses a double chamber. The interior sucks cold air from the outside, feeding it into the fireplace where it is heated. The inner tube removes the fumes. As a result, you won’t need to install a flue. Now that we know how this system works, let’s look at some of the pros and cons.

    Efficient Systems

    One of the biggest advantages is how efficient this system is. Compared to traditional models, more heat will be produced, and less will be lost. Usually, they will be sealed off with a glass door. This reduces heat loss. Because of this, you won’t need to use as much gas to heat your room.

    More Versatility

    Another benefit is that they don’t need a flue. The vent can be put through a wall. As a result, you’ll have a lot of installation options to explore. It comes in a wide range of shapes of sizes. As a result, you’ll be able to put it in almost any room of the house. If you want, you can use the existing fireplace infrastructure. This will make it easy for you to replace a wood-burning fireplace with a gas one.

    Tahoe direct-vent fireplace insert in a stone fireplace.

    Gas Can Be Expensive

    One of the reasons why some people are hesitant about purchasing a gas fireplace is the costs involved. Gas is an expensive heating material.  This is especially important when compared to alternatives, like wood. It’s also important to think about where you are purchasing your gas from.  

    Lower Maintenance Costs

    The next thing that you need to consider is how much it costs to maintain the system. The good news is that system excels in this area. Because there isn’t a flue, you won’t need to pay someone to clean it. Also, gas will build a lot cleaner than wood. As a result, most people who own this system will only need to pay around $125. This covers the annual check-up to make sure that everything is operating properly in the winter months.
    The installation costs are fairly reasonable as well. Usually, you will need to pay between $3,000 to $4,000. This will give you everything that you need to get the direct-vent fireplace up and running.

    More Environmentally Friendly

    Another benefit is that gas is an environmentally friendly option, especially compared to something like wood. Gas won’t produce any smoke or fumes. It burns relatively cleanly. Natural gas will produce 50 to 60 percent less carbon dioxide than coal or wood. Because of this, you won’t be having a big impact on climate change.

    Lack of Wood Flames or Aroma

    When thinking of a fireplace, you often conjure up the image of logs smoldering and the smoky aroma. But you won’t get this with a gas-burning fireplace. You will get some realistic flames, but the smell won’t be the same. Also, you won’t get to see the embers lifting off the log and going up the chimney. Whether this will be a significant problem will depend on what you are looking for in a fireplace.

    Convenient

    Another unique benefit of a direct-vent fireplace is how convenient it is.  You will be able to turn it on with the click of a button. Within minutes, your home will be warm. You don’t need to worry about chopping logs or setting the blaze. Depending on the model, you might be able to control it using an app on your phone. There might even be a timer, which you can use to determine when it turns on and off.

    Conclusion

    Some people will be wedded to the idea of a wood-burning fireplace. But there are plenty of upsides to switching to a direct-vent gas fireplace. It burns more efficiently, it gives you more installation options, and it is more convenient to operate. If you are interested in this and want to know what choices are available, check out this list of direct-vent gas fireplaces or you can see the variety of direct-vent fireplaces that Tarantin offers here and here.


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