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Feedback on insert considering purchase.

Post in 'It's a Gas!' started by newguy09, Feb 8, 2014.

  1. newguy09

    newguy09 Member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2009
    Messages:
    35
    Loc:
    Central IN
    Looking to install a gas insert into our zero clearance fireplace to use as a zone heater and reduce our heating costs. The main room is about 28-18 with 10 foot ceilings and is the location of the fireplace. We would like to keep this room warm with a little bit of heat transfered into the master bedroom and kitchen/dining room which are attached (see floor plan). The opening height if our existing fireplace is only 19 inches so we have limited options. We meet with the fireplace store today and they recommended the archgard 22-dv124n. It's output is 17-24k btu per hour. Will this be sufficient to meet our needs?

    Our quote was 450 for install and 3000 for the insert, liner, surround, required adapters and a thermostat remote. Is this a good price?

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  2. DAKSY

    DAKSY Patriot Guard Rider Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Messages:
    5,394
    Loc:
    Averill Park, NY, on Burden Lake II...
    Are you sure that's not the INPUT? Most units don't list the output & you will have to multiply the input X the efficiency to determine the output.
    That's a pretty BIG room & if you don't have the insulation to keep the heat in there, that insert may be too small.
  3. newguy09

    newguy09 Member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2009
    Messages:
    35
    Loc:
    Central IN
    I over guessed on room size. It is actually 16x26
  4. JimR1998

    JimR1998 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2013
    Messages:
    9
    Loc:
    Philadelphia, PA
    I'm a newbie here and I've only had a gas fireplace for about a month, so take my advice with a grain of salt...

    If your main concern is financial and unless you have really cheap gas, your best bet is to properly zone your existing system and/or size it for your room. Obviously, also look into where the heat loss is. $3500 goes a long way there.

    Our fireplace is in a basement rec room, roughly the same size as yours. Our LOW (input) is roughly the same as your MAX-- granted, we use it as a primary heat source NOW but it'll be a secondary once we add baseboard. Regardless, I think you'll find the area nearest the fireplace very warm and 10 feet into the room will feel much cooler even with a good fan setup. With tall ceilings the difference will be even more dramatic, especially if you're laying on something low like the couch or floor. In a room that size I doubt you'll notice a difference in adjoining areas.

    I have not priced Archgard units but it seems a bit high for a small unit. That could depend on what kind of surround you're getting or other options.

    Be aware the fireplace salesman will likely tell you it's the perfect choice for your situation. Based on your short message, I'm not so sure.
  5. newguy09

    newguy09 Member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2009
    Messages:
    35
    Loc:
    Central IN
    We currently have a heat pump with electric resistance backup up heat only which runs a lot when the temp is under 30 (which is quite often). The whole house is about 2400 sf but we pretty much don't use the upstairs during the winter.

    The idea with the gas fireplace would be to hear the living room where we spent 95% of waking hours. I would think this would be cheaper than heating the whole house with electric.

    The unit itself was 2050. Another 450 for the direct vent pipe system, plus extras to upgrade to 4 sided surround, lp conversion, and remote with thermostat

    The house is tight with high quality casement windows, well insulated walls, and well insulated with blown in insulation in attic.


  6. JimR1998

    JimR1998 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2013
    Messages:
    9
    Loc:
    Philadelphia, PA
    My gut feel is the unit will be too small. With a room that size and the high ceilings, I don't think it's going to have the strength to circulate heat in a meaningful way. If you're laying near it, fine. Otherwise I think it will be on full blast for hours until you notice a difference($$). I'm basing that on how my larger Regency performs in a slightly smaller space with 7ft ceilings. I can't imagine having gone with a smaller unit.

    Did you see the actual fireplace in the store? We started looking at the Valor G3 insert which may be comparable in size to yours. Seeing it in the store vs. online was an eye-opener-- it's SMALL compared to what I normally think of as a fireplace. And I was NOT impressed with the heat! You're really stuck b/c of the opening size. I ended up enlarging mine to fit what I wanted, but it cost some bucks. Not sure if that is an option for you.

    Did you check w/ an HVAC guy with options for the heat pump? There may be more bang for the buck in that area, unless you're really after the fireplace.

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