Tuesday 27 September 2011

What Do You Need To Know Before Buying A Fire

It's always the way, you try and turn your gas or electric fire on or try and light your stove after not using it since March or early April and the worst happens, it breaks and you need a new one, or you finally decide to take the plunge and invest in a fire for your new house or upgrade old faithful that has been sat on the hearth for the last decade or more.
Most people (including myself before I started this down this career path) have very little idea of the technical complexities that are accociated with purchasing a new gas, electric or solid fuel fire or stove.

So what do you need to know before buying a new fire, stove or fireplace? We have a look at some of the major sticking points or complicated details.

Do I Want Gas, Solid Fuel, Electric Or Bio-Ethanol?
This is probably the most important decision as it effects everything from then onwards, electric fires and suites are becoming increasingly popular as they can be placed anywhere with a standard 13amp plug socket and the flame effects are getting increasinly realistic.
Also becoming increasing popular is people returning to solid fuel or wood burning stoves. This follows on from increasing pressure in the media to reduce carbon footprint, as burning wood from a sustainable source is carbon neutral.

What Type Of Flue or Chimney Do I Have?
As gas fires in particular are designed for varying types of flue or chimney and depending on what type you have can greatly reduce the options available. Flueless, Balanced Flue and Powered Flue appliances are suitable for most modern houses that are built without a chimney, where as some properties may come with a prefabricated or precast flue and most older properties tend ot have an open brick chimney.
More detailed is usually readily available on most Fireplace websites such as Fireplace Megastore, Fireplace Supermarket Or Fireworld.

Hole In The Wall Or In A Surround?
This is mainly down to personal preference as gas, solid fuel and electric fires are all available in these styles. Whether you want to purchase a hang on the wall balanced flue fire such as the Verine Marcello or a unique hang on the wall electric such as the Apex Inception. Likewise if a surround and fire is more appealing you could opt for a fire and surround such as the Drugasar Cara Suite or the Europa Sofia Gas Suite.

Who Do I Geed To Fit It?
Depending on what you've purchased obviously depends on who is needed to fit it. Gas Fires will need to be fitted by a Gas Safe Registered installer, and likewise a solid fuel or woodburning stove would need to be installed by a HETAS engineer. When it comes to surrounds and electric fires, most companies will recommend the surround is fitted by a qualified installer to ensure the perfect finish is achieved. But when it comes down to electric fires, a majority of them come with a standard 13amp plug as standard and simply require plugging in to work.

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