Q&A Stove or Insert in a Heatform (Heatilator) Fireplace?

QandA Posted By QandA, May 26, 2007 at 6:07 PM

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  1. QandA

    New Member 2.
    Staff Member

    Nov 27, 2012

    I have a house that was built in 1977 that has a masonry fireplace with a Superior Fireplace "Heatform" in it. The box measures 46" wide by 29" inches tall at the opening and is about 28" deep. My goal is to better heat the house with a secondary source as my home is electric heated. I would like to add either a wood insert or, preferably, a Waterford wood stove in a simi-alcove installation. The stove would pushed into the fireplace to allow a straight shot for the liner. The current hearth will need to replaced with a wider one that is about 1-1/2" lower to match the level of the firebox and to allow clearance for the simi-alcove install of the stove.

    1. Can I put an insert or stove in this fireplace?
    2. Is my fireplace too small for my simi-alcove plan? Should I be concerned about clearances between the stove and the heatform?
    3. There are four air tubes that pass in front of the existing damper. It looks like I would have to cut-out one of the tubes to get a 6" fireplace liner through. Do you know if this would cause any problems?
    4. While I am doing this work, would it be worth the trouble to install a fresh air vent through the heatform and outside masonry. The current fireplace drafts well except when the fire is just smoldering.


    1. Yes, as long as it has a masonry chimney, which I assume it has.
    2. No, the stove can be as close as you like to the heat form.
    3. If you cut it out, you'd have to seal it off somehow..best way would be to weld it shut.
    4. Probably would not pay to bring outside air in unless the house is very tight.

    One note on the air tubes. Even though it does not meet the letter of the code, I've installed stoves and inserts into fireplaces such as this without passing the pipe pass the tubes. We installed a sheet metal plate below the tubes and run the pipe through it..but terminated below the tubes. If your draft is good, this may just work. Seal the plate well.
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