Wood insert questions

  • Active since 1995, Hearth.com is THE place on the internet for free information and advice about wood stoves, pellet stoves and other energy saving equipment.

    We strive to provide opinions, articles, discussions and history related to Hearth Products and in a more general sense, energy issues.

    We promote the EFFICIENT, RESPONSIBLE, CLEAN and SAFE use of all fuels, whether renewable or fossil.

ahbeguyeel

New Member
Dec 22, 2021
2
Western Massachusetts
We are having a heck of a time choosing an insert and have had very little help from the local stores. The dimensions of the existing fireplace opening are
46" wide
41" high
17" deep
back of firebox: 27" wide
Firebox begins to narrow toward damper 27" from firebox floor
Existing hearth is only 16" deep and improperly installed so we will be extending it while raising the floor of the firebox. My thought is to close the opening around the stove since it is so big and most of the panels for inserts we've looked at would not be big enough to cover it.
We bought this house this summer and will be slowly upgrading energy efficiency as money allows. It is a contemporary style built in the early 70's with a central 2 story chimney in the living room facing huge south facing windows. It is somewhat of an open concept with the kitchen behind the fireplace and the LR ceiling sloping up towards an open hallway and bedrooms. The current heating system is an oil boiler with baseboards. We do not expect to be able to heat entirely with wood due to the layout, but we'd like to heat about 1200 sqft primarily with wood. Any reduction in oil use would be great. We live in western MA, so winters see long stretches well below freezing. In keeping with the style of the house, we are interested in contemporary looking stoves, the more efficient, the better. We are leaning towards a catalytic stove but we've only had non catalytic stoves in the past (Vermont Castings and Jotul). Some of the models I'm considering are
MF Fire, Nova 2
Osburn Matrix or Inspire (I like the specs on these stoves, but not the look of them)
Rais QT
Regency Ci2700
Pacific Energy Neo
Stuv 16
Are there others I should be looking at? Does anyone know of any inserts that don't need blowers besides Stuv?
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
96,176
South Puget Sound, WA
Flush inserts depend on convection to move hot air around the firebox and into the room. Without a blower, most are more for show than go. There will be some radiant heat, but not enough for those below 20º days.
This is a large fireplace. Have you thought about putting in a freestanding stove in there instead?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Dix and PaulOinMA

ahbeguyeel

New Member
Dec 22, 2021
2
Western Massachusetts
Flush inserts depend on convection to move hot air around the firebox and into the room. Without a blower, most are more for show than go. There will be some radiant heat, but not enough for those below 20º days.
This is a large fireplace. Have you thought about putting in a freestanding stove in there instead?
We have thought about a free standing stove as well and haven't ruled it out. The Nova 2 or something similar that could sit right on the new hearth floor.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Dix

stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
6,153
Long Island NY
If you are leaning to a cat insert, Blaze King could be in that list too (if they fit). Check the aesthetics and specs on their website.
 
  • Like
Reactions: ahbeguyeel

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
96,176
South Puget Sound, WA

EbS-P

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2019
3,507
SE North Carolina
I think a PE neo 2.5 with a custom surround to makeup the extra room fits the modern aesthetic.


For stoves.

Drolet 1800



Osborn 2000

I’ll Throw out jotul f500 V3 with the disclaimer that is still new and has seem some issues and it’s still a yet to be determined if they have been fixed.
 

Dix

Minister of Fire
May 27, 2008
6,562
Long Island, NY
We have thought about a free standing stove as well and haven't ruled it out. The Nova 2 or something similar that could sit right on the new hearth floor.

That's probably your easiest way out.

You'll get more heat (usually). And will probably heat more of the house than you think. A floor plan, even rough drawn, will help.

Welcome to the Forums !!!!!