Steve's Insert Build Thread & Recommendations

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Steve Mate

Dec 27, 2016
Ottawa, Ontario
I'm working on choosing a NG insert. I'm learning, but it's a work in progress.

Steve's  Insert Build Thread & Recommendations

Steve's  Insert Build Thread & Recommendations
Steve's  Insert Build Thread & Recommendations

Here are my specs:
- Opening 36"W x 26" H, Depth 22", 23" Wide @ back
- 18" Hearth, flush with floor.
- Room is 20' x 13' = 260 sq. ft.
- Two "double" doorways.

Brands I'm looking at most closely: Regency, Valor, Pacific Energy

Decisions / Concerns:

1) Large Insert: I'd like to get a large insert, because it the visual is much better, but concerned about over heating. Can I get a large insert without a higher BTU? I saw a Valor that can be turned way down, but at the low settings, there are no flames to watch.

2) "Log Set": going to go with stones, driftwood, glass beads, rather than log set. So far, I liked Valor stones the best, but partly because of what was available. Does anyone ever mix between companies? PE stove with Valor stones? (The PE stove is compatible with stones and glass)

3) Micro-Mesh: I was able to view a Pacific Energy with micro-mesh, dramatic difference. Why don't more manufacturers use this fine mesh?

4) Turn-Down: The "Turn Down" seems quite significant; For example, a Regency has turned down from 38,000 BTU to 24,000 BTU; I'm sure that will still be too much for my room, and the insert will be turning on / off a lot.

5) Auto Flame-Level Control: Seems that Valor will change flame levels with temperature, where as others will only turn on-off at whatever the current flame level is set to.

I'm curious about Pacific Energy, but it's harder to view the models here in Ottawa. I'm more easily able to see Regency and Valor. Other options are available. I will search again for more info on Pacific Energy for NG.

Any commentary is appreciated.
FYI - I'm looking most closely at a Valor G4 unit. They seem to have the best finishes, and good turn down.

Still trying to find out about the micro mesh screen. I'll report back ;)
The micro mesh is pretty nice, the new insert from Empire uses it.

My Mendota has great turn down using 2 burners, both modulate. There's a wide range of output. All controlled by the thermostatic remote.


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