When you set out to light a roaring fire this winter, it may be an expensive and inefficient endeavor. Traditional fireplaces are an energy loser as a primary heat source since they tend to pull heated air out of the house and up the chimney.A fireplace sends most of the heat in your house straight up the chimney resulting in nearly 25,000 cubic feet of air per hour to be released to the outside. There are many ways that you can minimize energy loss around your fireplace this winter:
- Caulk around the hearth. Plug and seal the chimney flues of fireplaces you never use.
- Reduce heat loss by opening dampers in the bottom of the firebox. Check the seal on the flue damper and make it as snug as possible.
- Use grates made of C-shaped metal tubes to draw cool room air into the fireplace and circulate warm air back into the room.
- Keep your fireplace’s damper closed when not in use. Use a chimney draft guard to stop heat loss.
- Consider a gas fireplace if you are planning to install a new one. Gas fireplaces can be 60% – 70% more efficient than traditional fireplaces.
- Cover the firebox opening with tight-fitting metal or glass doors.
- If you burn wood, use aged firewood for a hotter and cleaner burn.