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Zero Clearance issue

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Tristan73, Oct 4, 2013.

  1. Tristan73

    Tristan73 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2013
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    Hello All,

    I'm new here on the forum, though I've been reading posts during the course of my research, and have found them to be very informative. It's nice to have a place where experience could be shared. I've run across an issue that I'm sure that I'm not alone in experiencing.

    I have a fireplace that my father built about 30-40 years ago...brick chimney...flagstone veneer fireplace that's the width of the room (13.5 feet). He put a heatilator type heat exchanger steel box in it that is huge. The front of the fireplace has a 43" opening and the back is at approx 34" wide. I've talked to a couple of dealers about inserts. After explaining what I had, one dealer said they don't install inserts into manufactured fireplaces.
    Another dealer would not consider putting a Lopi Freedom Bay in the fireplace because it's considered zero clearance and the Freedom Bay is not rated for zero clearance. I really don't believe that this is a zero clearance firebox.

    I am looking into a fireplace insert and I'm going for the largest unit that I can since the fireplace can more than handle the size. I've narrowed my selection down the 3 models the Lennox C310, the QuadraFire 5100, and the Lopi Freedom. The Lennox, while seeming to be good units, don't appear to have much dealer support in my area, so I can't get an answer on them. The Quadrafire dealer didn't seem to think that my setup would be an issue, but the Lopi sales rep said the Freedom Bay would not work because it's not rated for zero clearance and of course their concerned about liabiltiy.

    I was strongly leaning toward the Lopi, but I don't understand, how one unit can be ok, and another not. Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

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  2. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

    Joined:
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    South Puget Sound, WA
    Greetings and welcome. This is not a zero-clearance fireplace. You should be fine putting an insert in it. However, if it is really large you may want to consider putting a freestanding stove in it instead. That may increase your options and can look sharp.

    For inserts I would also look at the big Osburn or Regency, the PE Summit and the Enviro Kdiak 1700.
  3. Tristan73

    Tristan73 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2013
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    begreen, thank you for the reply. I really didn't think it was zero-clearance, but a couple of the dealer/reps I spoke to on the phone, couldn't be convinced.
    I looked at those models, but am going with a larger firebox(2.9-3.0) as I think it will provide more flexibility.
    Thank you again and thank you for the Welcome!
  4. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    They are all large stoves. The PE Summit is a 3 cu ft box. Enviro is 2.5, Regency I3100=2.9 cu ft and the Osburn 2400 is 3.2 cu ft.
  5. Tristan73

    Tristan73 New Member

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    Thank you! I'll look at them!

    I just had a rep call me back about the Lopi Freedom Bay...according to a phone call that they made to Travis, the Freedom Bay did not pass the zero clearance test. It's hard to convince them that I don't have a zero clearance fireplace.
  6. webby3650

    webby3650 Minister of Fire

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    I would use a different hearth store just because of this. They don't seem to know whats what!
  7. Sprinter

    Sprinter Minister of Fire

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    Maybe they just need to look at it in person. Or take some detailed pictures to take to them. It sounds like they just don't know what you have. In any case, if the fireplace is big enough to support one, a freestanding stove may really be your best bet anyway.
  8. Tristan73

    Tristan73 New Member

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    Thank you for the reply! I like the one store and am still working with them and will be sending them pictures. The other store I don't think that I'll do business with as the person I talked with was convinced that I had a manufactured fireplace and really wasn't going to be convinced otherwise.
  9. Tristan73

    Tristan73 New Member

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    Oct 4, 2013
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    Thank you for your reply. That's why I'm still working with the one store. The salesperson asked me to send pictures and the owner was supposed to call me. I'm really like the Freedom Bay, but it would be easier to go with the Quadra 5100i as I spoke to the sales rep there about what I had and he didn't seem to think that there was an issue at all. In fact without seeing it, he was 95% sure that it wasn't a zero clearance item. Go figure! LOL! Apparently, he WAS listening to me!
  10. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    These heatform fireplaces have been around for years. Is this a new shop? They sound inexperienced.
  11. Sprinter

    Sprinter Minister of Fire

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    Here's an article with a picture explaining this type of device. Does this look like what you have? Maybe you can take this to that dealer. It may still be worth the effort to convince them if they have what you want.

    http://www.hearth.com/talk/wiki/heatform/

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