The Cozy Flame's Blog

How to Choose a Fireplace Insert

Fireplaces are more popular than ever in the housing market and among homeowners who are remodeling or constructing new homes. In today’s fireplace industry the possibilities are nearly endless when it comes to what is available, efficient, and safe.

Fuel Type

The first thing to consider when choosing a fireplace insert is what type of fuel you’d like to burn. Many homeowners prefer the ambiance of a wood fireplace, but today’s technologies allow for beautiful flames with other fuel options. At The Cozy Flame we offer pellet, wood, and gas inserts. They’re all beautiful, efficient, and versatile in design, function, and installation.How to Choose a Fireplace Insert Image - Milford, CT - The Cozy Flame

Location

When you choose an insert you have the option of retro-fitting it into an exiting masonry fireplace, or installing it in another place entirely. If you choose to install your insert in a room or location where there isn’t an existing fireplace you are limited to a direct-vent gas insert, but these inserts are beautiful and highly efficient.

You can choose a wood, pellet, or gas insert and the appliance will be attached to the existing chimney. The chimney should be thoroughly inspected by a certified chimney sweep for safe operation and the chimney liner should be appropriately-sized for the insert and should be rated for use with the fuel that you choose.

Size

When you’re choosing an insert for an existing fireplace, a fireplace expert from The Cozy Flame can walk you through the whole process starting with measuring your space. Any of our models can be appropriately fitted into an existing fireplace. Inserts come in small sizes, useful for zone heating and ambiance, large sizes, and everything in between. The important thing is to size the flue liner appropriately so that it vents properly.

Design

At The Cozy Flame we specialize in hearth design and fireplace aesthetics. Not only do we have an easy-to-find showroom just minutes off the I95 turnpike, but we also have online galleries of all of our best products. View our gas insert designs, our pellet inserts, and our wood-burning inserts. We proudly offer Regency products because of their warranty, customer satisfaction, and flawless designs.

If you’re ready to put together your dream fireplace, The Cozy Flame is ready to help. All of our fireplace experts are familiar with Regency inserts and specialize in hearth design and sales. We let our partners at Total Chimney Care focus on the installation, maintenance, and repairs so that we can focus on helping you find your dream fireplace.

Call 203-283-4459, contact us online, or stop by our show room Tuesday through Saturday 9am-4pm.

By Steve Sobczak | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

Choose a Wood-Burning Insert

There are many reasons to upgrade your fireplace. You might be new to the property, and would like a new, beautiful fireplace. Maybe your fireplace is damaged, needing a complete fireplace rebuild, or maybe your home has a stove, and you’d rather have the traditional feel of a wood fireplace.

Why Choose the Insert

Higher Efficiency—When you choose a wood-burning insert you increase efficiency by up to 90%! Because they aren’t drafty or open like a traditional fireplace, they still retain the ambiance of one, without the waste.

Lower Labor Cost—You don’t have to pay for an expensive and lengthy fireplace rebuild. A wood-burning insert can be retrofitted into the existing fireplace and connected with your flue liner, as long as it’s appropriately sized.

An Easy Fireplace Face-lift—Wood-burning inserts come in a variety of designs. Since they’re a good choice for a remodel, your fireplace can change the look of an entire room.

Tax Credit—All Regency wood fireplace inserts are EPA certified and qualify for the U.S. Biomass Tax Credit. This is a $300 tax credit!

Regency Wood-Burning Inserts

At The Cozy Flame we sell the best wood-burning inserts on the market. The Regency wood fireplace insert is designed for a range of styles and sizes. Also, they can be installed into an existing stone/brick or factory-built/zero-clearance fireplace. All Regency fireplace inserts are high efficiency—featuring the most premier technologies to meet the highest standards.

Professional Installation

Your experience will only be as good as your installation. Therefore, only a certified chimney sweep should install all of these products in your home. It’s imperative that inserts are professionally installed and that the system is thoroughly inspected to insure that the chimney is in the best working condition to support the new wood burning insert.

The Cozy Flame partners with Total Chimney Care for professional installation of all of our products. With the help of our fireplace experts at The Cozy Flame and the certified chimney sweeps at Total Chimney Care, you can have the fireplace of your dreams today. With a wood-burning insert the fireplace of your dreams can be more efficient, produce more heat, and burn less wood.

You can view our wood-burning insert products here. For beautiful products and professional services, contact The Cozy Flame today. A fireplace expert is standing by.

Have A Wood Burning Insert? Only Burn Seasoned Firewood!

Only Burn Seasoned Firewood Image - Milford CT - The Cozy FlameWhen most of us think about fireplaces we imagine cozying up in front of a roaring wood fire. Unfortunately, open hearth masonry fireplaces are among the least efficient heating appliances, with as much as 90% of the heat produced by the fire going straight up the chimney. For homeowners who want the look and feel of a real wood fire – without the extreme inefficiency – a wood burning insert is often the perfect solution.

If you have a wood burning insert, it is important to use the right kind of firewood to keep it burning safely and efficiently. For inserts – and for all wood burning appliances – seasoned firewood is the best choice for firewood.

What is seasoned wood?

Seasoning wood isn’t about salt, pepper, or your favorite spices! Instead, it refers to the process by which wood is cut, stacked, and exposed to the elements to dry. While the seasoning process can anywhere from six months to a year – or longer – it is the only way to get the best wood for your fireplace.

The primary purpose of the seasoning process is the removal of moisture from the wood. When wood is cut it contains as much as 40-50% water. The water content in freshly cut or “green” firewood makes it difficult to ignite, burn sluggishly, produce greater amounts of smoke, and creates additional creosote. After seasoning, the moisture content in wood is as low as 10-20%. This lower moisture content helps the wood ignite and burn quickly and at higher temperatures, making a better fire and a more enjoyable experience for you and your family.

Tips for finding the best firewood

Unless you cut, chop, stack, and store your own firewood, finding properly seasoned wood can be a challenge. When shopping for firewood, the following tips can ensure you are getting the best seasoned firewood for your wood insert.

  • Find a reputable seller. Ads for firewood can be found online, in newspapers, and even posted in local hardware stores. Before purchasing, make sure to ask questions about the wood: What kind of wood is it? When was it cut? How long has it been seasoned for? Reputable sellers should be able to easily answer any questions about the firewood they are selling.
  • Decide how much to buy. Unless you are buying a few logs at a time, firewood is typically sold by the cord and can be broken into sections of half, quarter, or third cords. Because cords are not measurements typically used in everyday life, it can be difficult to visualize how much wood this is. A cord of wood will measure four feet high by four feet wide by eight feet long. The amount of wood you use will depend on the size of your home and fireplace, how often it is used, and whether or not it is used as a primary heat source.
  • Only burn seasoned wood. Wood or wood products that are prefabricated, pre-treated, or painted are never suitable for use in an fireplace insert. This includes plywood and fencing and decking materials. The coatings on these kinds of wood can release toxic chemicals into the air when burned.

Choosing the right firewood can help you get the most out of your wood burning fireplace insert. For more information on the importance of seasoned firewood or to find a new wood burning insert for your home, contact The Cozy Flame today!

By Steve Sobczak | Tagged with: Tags: , , , | Leave a Comment

Let’s Talk About Fireplace Inserts

Update your old fireplace and make it more energy-efficient by adding a fireplace insert.

Update your old fireplace and make it more energy-efficient by adding a fireplace insert.

Not all fireplaces are created equal. Depending on the age of your home and/or the overall condition of your fireplace and all of its parts, you could be sending some serious money right up the chimney during the heating season; it’s estimated that a typical homeowner can send up to 8% of valuable heated air flying straight out the chimney.

If reading this statistic has you even the slightest bit scared about using your fireplace as a heating source when the weather turns cold, don’t write it off just yet. The good news is you can transform your fireplace into an efficient room heater simply by adding a fireplace insert.

What can a Fireplace Insert do for me?

An insert is the answer to making your old fireplace more efficient without having to replace it, and, most of the time, they can be retrofitted to your existing wood-burning fireplace seamlessly. Adding an insert will only slightly (in most cases) change the overall look of your fireplace; however, it can take it from a net energy loser to a helpful tool in keeping those skyrocketing heating costs at bay during the winter months.

Can I Afford a Fireplace Insert?

You’re probably sitting there wondering how much an insert is going to set you back. To be completely honest, they are far from cheap. Nevertheless, they are affordable. Inserts can run anywhere from $2,000 to $4,000 depending on the time of year and your geographic location. This is an all-inclusive price, which includes installation and a new specialized chimney liner.

Are there Different Types of Fireplace Inserts?

If you’re considering a fireplace insert, there are a few options available to you. Choosing the type of heater that best meets the needs of your particular application is as simple as deciding what’s most important to you—burning real wood and having heat even if the power goes out (choose a wood-burning insert), burning a bio-fuel without the hassle of wood in an attempt to minimize your carbon footprint (choose a pellet insert), or flipping on fast heat in a particular portion of the home (choose a gas insert).

Because fuel prices are in a constant state of flux, any savings measurements are really just a moving target. Generally speaking, a homeowner who opts to have an insert installed is looking at an annual savings of anywhere from $75-$250 dollars. While this may not sound like a tremendous amount of savings considering the upfront costs of the insert itself, the savings over the long haul can and will really add up over the lifespan of the insert.

Your home is an investment, and, as such, any decision you make needs to include at least a small measure of foresight. Whether you prefer the convenience of researching products online or getting up close and personal to compare products, the Comfort Consultants at The Cozy Flame have you covered. Give us a call today at (203) 283-4459 or stop in and visit our showroom to see all we have to offer.

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The Cozy Flame | 116 Research Dr. Suite Q, Milford, Connecticut 06460