Valcourt or Quadra Fire for fireplaces?

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New Member
Feb 21, 2022
New York
Should I replace my two open fireplaces with high-efficiency Valcourts or Quadra Fires? For Valcourt, I'd get one Lafayette II and one Waterloo. For Quadra Fire, it would be one Pioneer II and one Pioneer III.

These will replace two Majestic fireplaces that were put in when the house was built in 2003. I have geothermal heating a cooling, and a pretty much endless supply of firewood. I'll use the fireplaces to assist with the heating in winter (New York) and keep the geothermal system's electricity use down. I doubt the upgrade will pay for itself, but my wife wants to replace the stone veneer around the fireplaces anyway.

A few considerations:

-The Quadra Fires would arrive well in time for next winter. Availability on the Valcourts is less clear.

-Prices on the two brands seem similar, but the dealer says the Valcourts use insulated chimneys that would cost $4,000 apiece, whereas the Quadra Fires would use air-cooled chimneys that cost only $1,500 apiece. So for two units, that's a potential $5,000 savings. But then, the dealer also says that the air-cooled chimneys might require me to insulate my chimney chases, if they're not already insulated. So that could eat up the savings. I have air-cooled chimneys now, and I don't know whether the chases are insulated.

-We like the look of the Valcourts a little more. Since both fireplaces will be on the ground floor, it might be nice if they roughly matched. The only way to do that with the Quadra Fires is to get the rustic faces, which have a dimpled pattern. It seems OK but it's difficult to tell. The Valcourts seem to have a cleaner look in pictures online.

-I'm not crazy about the thermostat that comes with the larger Quadra Fire. It seems like an added complication that I could live without. Also, this is nitpicking, but it looks like the four older beige thermostats that we just replaced with black Ecobee 3s.

Thanks for reading,
There are many good units on the market to choose from. While you are shopping, look at the ZC fireplaces from FPX, RSF, PE, too.