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Gas fireplace inserts -best choice?

Post in 'It's a Gas!' started by xpresd, Dec 13, 2011.

  1. xpresd

    xpresd New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2011
    Messages:
    2
    Loc:
    Eastern- MD
    i am looking to purchase a gas firepalce insert. my choices are Regency, Avalon, Mendota Kozy Heat, Heat & gloor Vermont casting. Which brands are best to choose from and which one should i definetly stay away from.
    i am looking for a direct vent for a family room 12x15. Would 22,000 BTU's be sufficent?
    Any help would be appreciated.
    Thanks,

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  2. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2005
    Messages:
    12,384
    Loc:
    Western Mass.
    For that size of a room, 22K BTU (I'm assuming you mean input) would be more than enough...in most cases. Obviously, the heat load of the particular room comes into play. A good way to test your assumptions is to consider the amount of heat that an electric plug-in heater puts out. Most of these are 5500 BTU. So a 22,500 fireplace insert would be the equiv of 3 of these (when efficiency is taken into account)...

    As far as brands, they are all well known brands - but consider the following. First, check to see if they are tested for efficiency....ask the dealer for proof or check online at the Canadian Standards site:
    http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/residential/business/manufacturers/search/fireplace-search.cfm

    Consider the style you like - as well as the particular dealer who is installing the unit. You should have trust in the dealer and a clear idea of how the warranty works. Also ask them about their take on the BTU's you need.

    12x15 is a small room - it's important not to oversize the unit.
  3. Ironhorse74

    Ironhorse74 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2009
    Messages:
    230
    Loc:
    The Great Pacific North Wet
    I don't like square footage heat ratings. It does nothing to take into account tight versus loose houses or cathedral ceilings. I like to use cubic feet. Generally figure 4 btu's per cubic foot in new tight construction 6 btu's per cubic foot in older construction. I also like units with large turn downs. I would rather size the unit depending on what fits in the fireplace and has the largest viewing area.

    As far as your choices in brands, to put it in car analogy you have everything from a Yugo to a Maserati listed. Mendota is the Maserati. Biggest viewing area, best built, largest viewing area and best flame. IPI with a SIT proflame would be my choice for valve and control.
  4. xpresd

    xpresd New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2011
    Messages:
    2
    Loc:
    Eastern- MD
    Thanks to both of you. i am going this evening to narrow down my choices and ask some addtional questions. I have spoken to 4 dealers and only 1 of them was very helpful. He was the one selling the Mendota. that one is the most expensive. But as you pointed out it appears to be the best one out of all my choices.

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