Help choosing between three wood inserts

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grundiy

New Member
May 31, 2021
2
Seattle
Hi all,

I've been lurking on this website since we moved into our new home last December and have been reading up on wood burning inserts on here since. It became apparent pretty quick that our open fireplace in the living room wasn't doing much to heat our home. After talking to the dealers in the area I got my selection down to three different wood burning inserts. Here's our home situation:

- 2 story, 3100 sq ft. 1988 home fairly well insulated.
- Large open masonry fireplace in the living room. Size of the opening can fit just about any insert.
- 16" masonry hearth. 16" hearth is the minimum required by local building code.
- The main goal is to use the insert to supplement heating in the cold months as much as possible to supplement the forced air gas furnace.

The three inserts I've narrowed the search down to:

Quadra-fire expedition II.
- The few reviews I've seen on this unit have mixed things to say about the ACC and auto blower system.

Pacific Energy Neo 2.5

Pacific Energy Super Insert LE
- This one protrudes and I will most likely have to pay extra for the platform + extending the hearth since the bottom of our fireplace opening is 8" off the ground.

The Pacific Energy dealer could order other inserts but the Quadra-fire dealer can only order the Expedition II right now because of availability. I'm mainly torn between the flush vs protruding inserts. The protruding inserts seem like they would put out more heat since without the blower running since more surface area is exposed to the room. Installing the protruding insert would also add additional install costs to meet the 16" glass to edge of hearth building code requirement.
Appreciate any advice.

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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
89,495
South Puget Sound, WA
Sounds like you are leaning toward the PE Neo 2.5. It's a good insert.

How will you be using it? Mostly nights and weekends or for 24/7 heating?
How large is the stove room and how open is this room to the rest of the house?
 

grundiy

New Member
May 31, 2021
2
Seattle
Sounds like you are leaning toward the PE Neo 2.5. It's a good insert.

How will you be using it? Mostly nights and weekends or for 24/7 heating?
How large is the stove room and how open is this room to the rest of the house?

Thanks for the input. The Neo 2.5 was at the bottom of the list but I'll definitely give it serious consideration.

The goal is to use it as the primary heat source for the home and use the gas furnace as little as possible.

The stove room is in the living room where we spend most of our time. The living room is open to the kitchen and dining area where we spend most of our time. The stairs are on the opposite side of the house which probably isn't great for radiating the heat evenly. Our master bedroom is directly above the stove room. My hope is that whichever insert we get will keep the master bed warm throughout the night.

I should also mention the night time lows typically don't go below 15-20 degrees in our area during the heating season.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
89,495
South Puget Sound, WA
Did you look at the PE Summit insert? We have the same firebox in the freestanding Alderlea T6, in a 2000 sq ft old house, same climate just south of Seattle. It has worked out well for us.
 

Solarguy3500

Member
Dec 3, 2020
166
Western MA
Have you looked at the Osburn 3500 insert? Since you say you can fit just about any insert in your fireplace, the Osburn could work for you. 3.5 cu ft firebox, non cat stove.