You’re thinking about updating your home and wondering if you can add a fireplace without an existing chimney. That is a great question and we are here to give you some answers. Yes, it is possible to add a wood burning stove or a fireplace without an existing chimney, but you do need to install a chimney in the process. All wood burning fireplaces have to have a way to allow smoke and dangerous gases to exit your home.
Installing a Wood Burning Fireplace with Minimal Invasion
You can’t install a completely vent-free wood burning fireplace because the smoke and gases have to have a way to exit. But you also don’t have to build a large brick or rock fireplace. Your chimney can be a special metal pipe that extends from the stove through the roof and topped off with a chimney cap. This does require cutting some holes through the ceiling and roof, but it isn’t a difficult process.
You will need to keep in mind that burning wood requires preparations ahead of time and the right type of wood. You want to make sure that you cut your wood 6 months to a year in advanced to give it time to cure or season in a well-ventilated area.
If you don’t have what it takes to cut your own wood, then you can purchase firewood from a local market or supplier. You need to choose wood that is seasoned and not green if you plan to use it right away. Green wood will burn more slowly but produce a lot of smoke-which is a potential fire hazard.
Ventless Gas Fireplace
If you want to go a little bit cheaper way and would rather have a natural gas or propane fireplace, then a ventless system is another option. Although saving money is always nice, it’s very important that you know how a ventless fireplace works. A ventless fireplace does not require a flue or a chimney. It is designed to rely on indoor air for combustion and releases a low level of carbon monoxide into the room. Carbon monoxide is a very dangerous gas to your health when exposed. Take great caution to ensure that fresh air is readily available when using a vent-free fireplace.
Alternate Heat Sources
While you are thinking about your options for alternate heat sources when the power goes out – always keep you and your family in mind. We have several other blog posts about wood burning fireplaces vs. gas fireplaces and ventless fireplaces. Take a look through the blog if you’re looking for specific information.
The chimney sweeps here at Lou Curley’s Chimney Service are CSIA Certified and we have years of experience under our belts. We strive to continue our education as often as possible so we’re always in the position to offer you the best possible chimney services in Drexel Hill and all along the Main Line. Call us at 610-626-2439 to discuss your chimney needs or to schedule an appointment for a chimney cleaning, chimney inspection, or chimney repair.