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zero clearance fireplaces and wood stove inserts

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by greythorn3, Oct 12, 2009.

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  1. greythorn3

    greythorn3 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2007
    Messages:
    997
    Loc:
    Alaska
    I have a few questions that have been on the back burner in my mind for some time now..I have a zero clearance fire place and was wondering why people buy inserts for them instead of takeing them out and putting in a insert?

    Is it not possable to put an insert into a hole where a zero clearance fireplace once existed?

    and why do i hear about people putting the chimeny inside an existing chimeny? inside a wood chase couldnt u just remove all the ZC fireplace chimeny and replace it with insulated chimeny pipe of the proper size you need?


    The reason i ask these questions is eventually im going to replace my ZC fireplace and would rather remove it completely and put in a Large insert or a woodstove in it place.. I would liek to use all new chimeny and remove all traces of the ZC fireplace and the ZC's chimeny and just utilize the chase it is in.


    Ray

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  2. weezer4117

    weezer4117 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2008
    Messages:
    251
    Loc:
    central In
    it sounds like what you are wanting to do is what i did 2 years ago. i had a zc wood fireplace that was converted to gas. i converted it into a freestanding wood stove. i left a majority of the fireplace in the house then removed one (smallest, 6in.) of the 3 pieces of the chimney. i replaced it with a class a, insulated chimney all the way up. the reason i left most of the existing fireplace is because of clearence issues. generally when a zc unit is installed it is held in place with combustible materials that will not stand the heat of a insert or stove. there are inserts that can be installed in these applications but your choices are very limited. after the chimney was installed using proper roof supports i built a hearth in front of the fireplace that met stove requirments. it is very important that you pay close attention to the minimal requirments outlined in the units manual. also different local codes and insurance agencies require proof of these installs. with most class a chimneys the minimum requirments to combustible material is 2in. therefor you could (depending on your chase deminsions) tear out the whole zc chimney and replace it with a insulated chimney. i left some of the chimney in tact just because it just offers more insulation for the chimney in the attic and so on. if you are wanting to totally take out all of the material in the zc unit then i would suggest that you rebuild the whole souronding. you will have to to meet your clearence to combustibles. i just left mine so i could meet those requirments easier. eventually i am going to rebiuld the whole thing but for now it works like a charm!!! good luck
  3. Corners

    Corners New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2009
    Messages:
    29
    Loc:
    Gardner, KS
    I think you'll find that you can't shove an un-insulated insert into a wooden hole (zero clearance means zero clearance for a reason ;) ). Try looking at the Lennox and Security Chimney BIS lines of fireplaces. Those are stoves masquerading as a zero clearance fireplace.
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