Built In Fireplaces

Written by Robert Mac
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Built in fireplaces are a treat to a home-owner; I just bought a house and one of the deal makers was the quaint fireplace in the living room. Unfortunately, there is some damage on the chimney outside and a few cracks on the interior. A hot ash or smoke could, in theory, make it through the crack to the dry wood of the roof--setting it on fire. Not so quaint.

The dangers of built in fireplaces are mostly due to their age: anything that isn't sealed well can allow smoke, ash, or even flames to escape. Stiff regulations are in place to combat these potential hazards. Consider a blocked flue: your house can quickly fill with smoke, jeopardizing your health and life. When you're dealing with built in fireplaces, you're playing with fire, literally.

Electric Built in Fireplaces Reduce Risks

We haven't decided yet whether or not to have a chimney specialist fix our chimney and let us know if it's up to code. It would be wonderful to enjoy a night or two in front of a blazing fire, but not if there is any risk to us or our home. Luckily, electric fireplaces provide the same "cozy factor," but none of the danger of wood- or gas-burning fireplaces.

In fact, an electric fireplace is much more versatile. Because it plugs in and works just like a lamp, there is no need to vent dangerous smoke or gas fumes. You can adjust the realistic flames and even make it radiate heat or not--try that with a live fire. And it runs on a few pennies per hour, so your wallet won't get burned either.

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