Fireplaces are sure to get frequent use in Middle Tennessee in the colder months. When designing a custom home, you might be forced with deciding between a gas or a wood-burning fireplace. Both options have their unique benefits – the choice ultimately depends on what you value most as a homeowner.
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A gas fireplace is hands-down much easier to get started than a wood-burning fireplace. Eliminating the need for wood means you don’t have to store large amounts of bulky firewood anywhere. With a gas fireplace, lighting a fire is as easy as pressing a button. The same goes for extinguishing, the fire in a gas fireplace can be put out instantly whenever you are ready.
Lack of wood means no heaps of ash to clean after using a gas fireplace. Gas fireplaces still require regular cleaning, but it is absolutely minimal in comparison to a wood-burning fireplace. The aftermath of a roaring wood fire is a pain to deal with; soot, ash, and remaining log fragments can cause a massive mess if not dealt with carefully. Wood-burning fireplaces will also create problems for your chimney and will require you to have professional to inspect it each year before use.
While gas fireplaces don’t necessarily have the visual appeal of a natural fireplace, they are much more effective in terms of heating power. Heating efficiency the metric used to determine how well a fireplace can heat up a room. Whereas most of the heat produced by a wood-burning fireplace is lost through the chimney, gas fireplaces produce radiant heat that spreads throughout a room.
A wood-burning fireplace creates an unequaled experience that a gas fireplace just simply cannot replicate. The ritual of gathering wood, arranging it in the fireplace, then lighting tending to the fire is an extremely satisfying experience that harkens back to a simpler time. Once a fire is lit, the unmistakable sounds of sap popping and wood crackling are almost as comforting as the heat being produced.
Generally speaking, operating a wood-burning fireplace is very inexpensive considering its fuel is free. Obtaining wood for a fire can be done in many ways, with some options costing much more than others. However, if you take your time and do your research you will most likely always be able to find someone looking to get rid of a large stash of wood.
Wood is readily available and is also a renewable resource. If you live on a large piece of property or in a rural area, odds are you are surrounded by fuel for a wood-burning fireplace. Natural gas is not an expensive fuel for a fireplace and burns very clean, but it is not a renewable resource like wood.