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Recommendations

Posted by gtvr6 (My Page) on
Tue, Feb 26, 08 at 15:51

Hi,

I'm new to this forum and I'm looking for some advice. Im remodeling my home and Im including a fireplace. I dont much about fireplaces, but my wife has her heart set on a wood burning unit. Ive narrowed it down somewhat between:

-Martin - BILTMORE SERIES SB4800(HB)
-Fireplace Xtrordinair - FPX 36 Elite Fireplace
-Quadra Fire 7100 fp

Anyone have any thoughts or recommendations? Id appreciate any help I can get.

Thanks in advance.

GT


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Recommendations

Noting that you selected some fireplaces with cast iron facings, you might check out the Jotul line as well.


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RE: Recommendations

A good contractor is a vital part of a successful fireplace. After you have selected the fireplace you like, make sure the dealer who sells it to you is experienced and competent, and is very familiar with the building codes in your area. Ask for references and follow them up.


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RE: Recommendations

GT

I have a Fireplace Xtrordinair wood burner - the FPX 44 which is the larger verson of the 36. I love this thing. My only regret is that i didn't put two in my house (i have a FPX 864TRV gas unit too and it is nice, but not as nice as the wood burner).

This FPX wood burning fireplace is not cheap and it also has a lot of venting requirements - so you need to make sure that your chase can accomodate the thing. It has two intake vents for combustion. It also has another vent (connected to the blower fan) that draws air from interior space OR outside and blows that heated air into the room. I had the blower vent placed on a exterior wall of the chase so I can suck in feash air, heat it, and push it into the room.

One thing you have to watch - they recommend that any combustable mantel must be installed 23 inches above the top of the arched doors or it will void the warranty (this was for the FPX 44). When we looked at the 23 inch requirement - the mantel was going to be too high and would not have looked right. So we ended up making a non combustbale mantel out of stone veneer - topped with blue stone which looks great.

The blower fan speed is adjustable, and it is tied to an internal thermostat so the fan will not come on until the firebox is hot enough. They also offer an optional summer switch (which I did not get) so that you can turn the blower fan on even when no fire is burning.

The fireplace has a cataytic converter in it so that you get a cleaner burn. After burning logs for 24 hours, I usually get no more than a 2 gallon bucket's worth of ashes (usually it's about 2/3 of a pale) - so it burns very efficiently.

Make sure you read the instructions very carefully on this unit if you get it. There are a few things you need to do differently (like bypassing the catalytic converter when you first start a fire - as well as when you open the doors to add logs) that were not obvious. Also - the windows of the fireplace will get blackened a bit after a fire and I leanerned on the GW to use white vinegar and water dipped in residual ashes to clean it off - and that works great.

On your very first burn - you must do this with the windows in your house open because of the special paint they use has some burn off. I opened some windows - but not enough - and my smoke detectors went off. So plan your first fire when it is warm enough outside that you can get the right venting.

I selected this unit because I use it as my backup heat source and the literature said that the FPX wood burners can generate a lot of BTU's - and they do indeed! I originally was going to put in the 36, but decided on the 44 becuase I wanted to handle bigger logs. I am very glad I got the 44 - the 36 would have been too small for the room we have it in.


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RE: Recommendations

there are two clasifications of pre fab fireplaces high effeciency and decorative if you are looking for feat then spend the money to purchase a high effeciency epa tested and aooroved unit. If all you want to do is watch flame then any cheap ass builder special will work most of your heat will exit up a chimney. you really need to select a model or fireplace first. read the installation requirements and build it in to meet the manufactured specs of the listing.

I would post this question on Hearthtalk.com

Here is a link that might be useful: Hearthtalk


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