Fuel Type Breakdown
Natural Gas Burning
Natural gas is one of the cheapest forms of energy available to the residential consumer. In fact, natural gas has historically been much cheaper than electricity as a source of energy. If you’re replacing an existing gas fireplace, stove or insert, this is the easiest way to go. If you don’t have natural gas but have access to it, it’s an easier option than getting a large propane tank installed on your property if you don’t already have one.
An electric fireplace is a simulated gentle wood fire, but without a chimney or venting system. Electric fireplaces have a built-in heater to provide the right amount of warmth controllable by the flick of a switch. These appliances can be installed into a mantel or simply hung on a wall. They are ideal for apartments, town homes, offices or even hotel lobbies and rooms.
A by-product of natural gas processing and petroleum refining, it is commonly used as a fuel for barbecues, fireplaces, stoves, inserts and residential central heating. A propane appliance can provide all the advantages of gas heat when you don’t have access to a natural gas pipeline. On average, tanks can range in size from 200 gallons to 1000 gallons.
When people think of a fire on the hearth, they think of burning wood, which is natural. Wood is the traditional fuel. It grows locally, is abundant in most areas and is one of our few renewable sources of energy. For many, nothing beats the warmth and beauty of a true wood fire. Burning wood has become less polluting and more efficient over the past decade. Sophisticated new designs have doubled the energy efficiency of stoves, helping to reduce overall heating costs. Even better, the amount of smoke emitted by wood stoves has been reduced by an average of 90 percent. Quality wood burning fireplaces, stoves and inserts sold today are certified by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and clean-burning.
Pellets are a fuel option that answers the need for clean-burning, renewable energy. Pellets are made of compressed sawdust that might otherwise end up in landfills. The fuel is consistent in size, and comes in forty-pound bags. Simply pour the pellets into a hopper which feeds automatically into the stove or insert. Pellets are available at hearth specialty stores, home improvement stores and feed stores.