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See through fireplace insert?

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by seethru, Dec 11, 2011.

  1. seethru

    seethru Member

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    Feb 5, 2011
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    Chester Co., PA
    My husband loves the large two-sided "see through" fireplace in the diningroom and livingroom of our open plan house, but the energy auditor said not to burn it when the weather was cold! I've been searching for a way to make it more efficient without destroying it's aesthetic appeal to both rooms. I've found only a few two-sided inserts--ones by Acucraft (expensive), Fuego Flame, and Don-bar.
    Does anyone have any experience with any of these? Are they significantly better than just installing ceramic glass doors on both sides? Are there any other choices? Thanks for any help!

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  2. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Welcome to the forum seethru.

    Did the auditor say why you should not burn it? Seems to me that when the weather is cold would be prime time to use the heat.
  3. Doing The Dixie Eyed Hustle

    Doing The Dixie Eyed Hustle Minister of Fire

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    Welcome to the forums, See !!! And welcome to DaSistahood, here's your card :)

    Can ya park a wood stove in that FP, or some where else in the house?

    Add your location to your profile, so's we can help you out .
  4. tfdchief

    tfdchief Minister of Fire

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    Seethru, Most on this forum burn EPA certified, very efficient wood stoves and inserts, none of which are "see through". I checked all the "see throughs" you listed. It looks like you have done your homework. None appear to be EPA certified which is what most of the forum members are burning. However, all of them seem to claim "high efficiency" which most fireplaces are not. Now, as for the auditor, I would burn it when I wanted heat and see how it does. True, most fireplaces aren't very efficient, but then I don't know what you have.
  5. seethru

    seethru Member

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    Chester Co., PA
    The energy auditor said burning the fireplace was sending most of the already heated air in the house up the chimney.
    Maybe just a tighter, more controllable damper, and ceramic glass doors on both sides? Or would a Fuego Flame or Acucraft be better?
    Anyone tried either of these?

    I'm in SE Pennsylvania. It's 18 out now.

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  6. DAKSY

    DAKSY Patriot Guard Rider Staff Member

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    Loc:
    Averill Park, NY, on Burden Lake II...
    You're not gonna like the price of the doors with Pyroceram in lieu of tempered glass.
    For ONE airseal door with Pyroceram, I bet you're gonna be in the $2K range.
    I know it's tough losing one of the openings, but if you want an EPA rated heat source,
    I'm afraid you'll hafta pick one over the other, install an insert or wood stove on one side
    & maybe put an inexpensive set of doors with darkened glass on the other...
    My $.02...
  7. mellow

    mellow Resident Stove Connoisseur

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  8. madison

    madison Minister of Fire

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  9. seeyal8r

    seeyal8r Feeling the Heat

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    My inlaws have exactly the same setup. It is very inefficient because of the immense draft. The only time they burn it is when the power is out and then it only heats the rooms attached to the fireplace. With the draft that large it pulls cold air in through windows and their garage further cooling the non attached rooms. Those fireplaces are for aesthetics only. For holidays they usually start a small fire but keep their electric heat running. The rest of the year they keep some fake logs in it.
  10. Dairyman

    Dairyman Feeling the Heat

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    Around 30,000 BTU.
  11. madison

    madison Minister of Fire

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    Thanks
  12. mcollect

    mcollect Member

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    Three years ago we were where you are now. The architect designed our home with a see through fireplace because my wife hates to leave the living room and go to the dining room only to loose the view of the fire. The fireplace would decrease the house temp about 10'. For Christmas I gave her a card saying she could have a wood stove. We went to a local dealer and she found a Jotul 550 that she wanted. We had it installed and never looked back. The living room has the insert in it and the dining room has a blacksmith made screen with tempered glass. So it still looks like a fireplace. We heat with the insert 90% of the time, both of us are happy with the new look.
  13. tfdchief

    tfdchief Minister of Fire

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    There you go! That is what I would do. Although it seems there are some alternatives out there.
  14. rwhite

    rwhite Minister of Fire

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    How wide is the fireplace from one room to the other? How big is the flue? Hate to say but the auditor was correct. I lived with a fireplace for 4 years before I got an insert. You might feel the heat if you stood in front of it but I swear you could feel the air getting pulled out of the room and up the flue. I loved the ambiance but the heating ability sucks.

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