Free standing stove or Direct Vent Fireplace for heat

johng_growSeptember 14, 2006

Could we use a free standing stove in our basement remodeling project for heat (large ranch basement)?

Would that be a better choice than a direct vent

fireplace? We have ruled out ventfree. How do they compare in price? Any downsides to a stove? Thanks in advance for any responses! This site has been much more helpful than the salesman at the three stores that we have visited so far.

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Stoves are considered direct vent appliances also. Stoves all use ceramic glass, and typically are rated higher in efficiency then fireplaces. Fireplaces sometimes need the help of a blower, stoves rarley need the help because all the surface area is in the living space. Stove are less money in alot of cases, and they do a better job in most cases. The exception would be a 30K btu fireplace that has ceramic glass, and a 30k btu stove. They would both do about the same with out a blower. Were it would greatly differ, is a fireplace with tempered glass vs a stove. the stove would always win IMO. Stoves are less to install, and use generic direct vent pipe. Stoves dont need special framing, and can be is some cases more space efficient then building in a fireplace. Fireplaes use propritory pipe, and some manufactures charge alot for there own brand. You can get a 30k btu gas stove with ceramic glass for ~$1300 bucks (the quadrafire castille gas) you can buy a fireplace with the same specs for about $1000 more. Stoves and fireplaces, alot of times are hard to compare apples to apples.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2006 at 2:14PM
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Thanks! Once again, very helpful information!

    Bookmark   September 14, 2006 at 4:38PM
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You welcome, glad i could help :) good luck with your decision, what are you considering? FWIW, i would be looking at the 40,000 btu range for stoves. I was basing comparisons on the more common 30k units, but in a large basement, i would go bigger. You can put them all on a thermostat, so you realy cant buy to much. When i say 40k size, that means anywhere in the 35,000-42,000 range. Prices should be between $1800-$2400 range.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2006 at 8:29PM
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We would like to go for the fireplace instead of the stove, because of the looks. So, should we be looking for the 40k size for that also? Ceramic glass and go with a blower, right? We have found two dealers who sell the brands you recommended on my earlier post. (jotul, quadrafire, heatilator, heat n glo, mendota). That's the plan, anyway!

    Bookmark   September 15, 2006 at 7:40AM
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How big is that basement again? I would buy the biggest ceramic FP that you can afford. It goes on a thermostat anyway, you can always turn a high input one down, you can never make one thats two small bigger. 30k just might do the trick, but its hard to say. 40k is more then enough in most applications.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2006 at 10:30AM
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I second going for the bigger unit.
For what its worth, I added a 40K btu gas stove (heat n glo) to my 1000 sq ft. basement. My basement is also tied in with the central heating system, but temps usually only reach the mid 60s during winter (thermastat is upstairs).

I lite my stove when we go down there to watch movies. It makes the space so much more comfortable.
Good luck with your decision.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2006 at 2:49PM
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Well, our upstairs is 2200 square feet, so at leat half of that. We do have some supplemental heat from the furnace. I know that a stove would be a better a choice, but we really want a fireplace. I am printing off all your advice and wish us good luck tomorrow. I know nothing about this and my husband is a computer geek, but with your help, I think we can make an informed choice. Thanks and I will get back soon!

    Bookmark   September 15, 2006 at 9:21PM
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If you basement is insulated, then a 30k would be just fine, if its not, then get the 40k. Insist on ceramic glass, and shop around untill you find someone knowlageable. I would say the dealer is more important then the brand you choose. Go early, weekends are busy, and you will get the most attention during the first hour they open. Buy a thermostat, the wall ones are the most reliable, the remote ones are problematic. Good luck tommorrow, and please report back on what you found.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2006 at 10:00PM
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We are back from our fireplace shopping...we had some informative help this time. Looks like it is between these two.
Kozy Heat Minnetonka
40,000 BTU/hr Input -NG & LP
High Efficiency: Natural Gas - 80% LP Gas - 81%
Canada P-4 Top Vent AFE - 62.06% LP Gas - 66.12%
High Quality Borofloat Glass (35" x 26")
Quick-Latch Glass
Refractory Brick Lining
Accepts DuraVent or Selkirk Metalbestos Or Kozy Heat Flexible Vent Kit (Part #TRF-WPT required for ALL horizontal terminations)
High-Low Regulator
Minnesota Energy Code Compliant to 50 pascals
Limited Lifetime Warranty __________________________
or Heat and Glo 6000GLX
Suggested Retail Price: $2565 - $3564 US*
Our exceptional luxury model, comes standard with all the Series' features: 3-burner system with dual Flame-Out-of-Log burners and the fully concealed Mystifire® burner, our patented accent lighting system and our most advanced wall control, the IntelliSwitch300.

3-burner system (Mystifire burner plus dual Flame-Out-of-Log burners)
Independent control of main burner and Flame-Out-of-Log burners provides best-in-class heat management capabilities
4-piece brick refractory in choice of Stratford or School House Red
IntelliSwitch300 wall control with thermostat
Adjustable accent lighting
Fan (thermostatically controlled and manually adjusted)
Most mature fire with lots of flames and glow

Have you ever heard of Kozy Heat brand before? Any input or suggestions? Thanks! Just starting our remodeling project and already over budget!

    Bookmark   September 16, 2006 at 3:43PM
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both are well known quality units. I tend to like heat-n-glo personaly, but at that point its a total personal choice. Both will heat the space, and both look good burning IMO. Sory i cant help much with that one.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2006 at 11:04AM
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