Saturday 13 July 2013

Ultiflame, Puraflame, Electriflame... What Is The Difference?

CELSI ELECTRIC FIRES use the most up to date technology to give you the most convincing real fire effect available. Celsi - not just a fireplace. It’s an experience.
Combining style with innovation, the Celsi range of  electric fires and heaters is the ultimate in high technology.

Celsi encoroprates three completely different ranges of electric fires.

The Celsi Puraflame range features LCD technology and gives you some  the most convincing real fire effect available today. A Celsi Puraflame electric heater is extremely versatile and creates a breathtaking feature virtually anywhere in your home, from your lounge to your bedroom. Celsi Puraflame is also the only electric fire to give you the astonishing look and sound of a real fire, combined with exceptional functionality. At the touch of a button you can control your roomtemperature, flame picture, flame speed, volume and brightness. Celsi Puraflame is not just a fireplace. It’s an experience.
The Ultiflame range of electric fires use innovative technology to create an ideal electric heating appliance that combines slim product depth with the appearance of an exceptionally deep fuel bed. The fascinating and highly realistic flame picture is created using LED projection technology to give the look of a full depth fire which can be viewed from any angle. Ultiflame
also benefits from a low power flame effect system which consumes 90% less energy than conventional electric fires when on the flame only setting. The heat output temperature can be adjusted between 0.75kW and 1.5kW and the brightness of the fuel bed glow can be customised too. Every model in this range can be operated by push buttons discretely hidden beneath the canopy of the fire or via an ergonomically designed remote control handset. With an overall product depth of just 3” this fire can be fitted against a flat wall with any 3” rebated surround with no requirement for an additional spacer.

The Celsi Electriflame is the latest flame effect from Celsi and features LED technology to create a unique flame effect, available in a number of different models, ranging from hang on the wall electric fires to inset electric fires. The Electriflame effect also allows 3 different brightness settings and a totally silent flame effect operation. With remote control as standard and concealed manual controls these fires can be fitted against a flat wall with any 3” rebated surround with no requirement for an additional spacer.

Thursday 11 July 2013

Ekol 'Crystal' Advanced Cleanburn Technology

The Ekol 'Crystal' range has been designed by Cleanburn Technology Experts to provide the ultimate Cleanburning Smokeless Woodburning Stoves suitable for use in all of the UKs towns and cities designated smokeless zones, including the strictly controlled Central London areas.
The Clean-Burn result of a highly advanced combustion chamber means your chimney will show a clear vapour escaping instead of black smoke associated with regular stoves and fireplaces. Switching your existing fireplace or stove to the Ultra Cleanburning effects of the Ekol Crystal can reduce asthma related symptoms and other respiratory problems, both inside the house and for those in the local area.
Officially recognised by DEFRA, making it legal to burn wood in any Smoke Control Zone area of the UK, the Ekol Crystal range showed through rigorous testing that their smoke particle emissions are as little as just one third of the amount allowed to pass the stringent DEFRA approval.

Ekol Stoves have developed a technology whereby wood can now be burned so efficiently and cleanly that it can legally over-ride this legislation - Once again people in these areas are able to burn wood legally, using an Ekol Stove. Ekol stoves are officially a 'DEFRA Exempted Appliance'.
Most of the UKs population lives within Smokeless Zones so will require a DEFRA approved stove to legally burn wood.
Ekol Cleanburn Technology is not just for those in Smoke Control areas though - any one can benefit from Ekol Stoves, and here are just a few of the advantages.......
Firstly you will notice the glass on your stove is incredibly clean even compared to other modern stoves with airwash systems - this is simply because there is no longer the same amount of smoke and tar present. Also, the pre-heated Tertiary air System ensures the gases in the stove are not allowed to solidify.
Secondly, the "Dancing Flame" effect created by the Hot Air Injection System will have you mesmerised watching the fire burn.
Less Maintenance - Because the level of combustion is radically increased, much less ash is produced so the whole stove requires less cleaning. Also, the huge reduction of smoke and solid particles from the chimney mean less chimney sweeping.
Ease of use - Woodburning with Ekol Cleanburn Technology has never been easier. With three sets of Air Supply Vents giving you maximum control, the firebox Airsupply is quickly brought up to temperature allowing the stove to rapidly get to its most efficient operating temperature making it easy to get going and to maintain and refuel the fire.

Tuesday 9 July 2013

No chimney, no problem

We are probably all familiar with a traditional brick built chimney which would have been a requirement in every period property as we would have relied upon them to provide warmth from the open fire. But with the switch to gas and central heating chimneys soon started to dwindle in modern properties and the traditional inefficient open fire made way for the new high efficient gas fire. As fashions change and we progress through the decades, new things become old and old things become new we have seen a resurgence of the open fire.
Twin wall flue system
Stoves have been a part of many home owners lives for a number of years, in fact the first stove was invented in 1741. But the stove largely remained in the country side where there were no smoke control laws imposed. Stoves were introduced into the more mainstream market as the demand for open fires increased and with the demand for more efficiency to meet those attained from gas fires. One of the problems being though that over the last 60 years the majority of new homes were rarely built with a traditional chimney, as they were not needed for new gas fires. Fortunately though for anybody who has a modern built home without a chimney there are a number of chimney systems available to give virtually everybody the chance to enjoy the magic of a woodburning fire. The most popular of the systems being a twin wall flue system. This is stainless steel solid pipe which is enclosed within another pipe and then insulated. This can be installed just about anywhere and is either taken through the wall and up the side of the house or through the inside of the house.
For those who don’t like the stainless steel appearance on the outside of the house then it may be possible for the flue to be supplied in virtually any colour from terracota to teal, but normally just in black. If you don’t have a chimney in your home but would love to have a woodburner installed just contact your local HETAS engineer and they can arrange a survey to run through different options and the best one for you.

Sunday 7 July 2013

The electric stove just got even more realistic thanks to the Dimplex Oakhurst

The Oakhurst with the latest Opti-myst® electric flame and smoke effect is a compact traditional style stove and the latest addition to Dimplex's award winning collection of electric fires.
With compact dimensions but all the proportions of a classic, contemporary cast iron woodburning stove, the new Oakhurst is ideal for creating an instant focal point in all types and sizes of properties.

The Opti-myst flame effect is acknowledged to be the world's most convincing illusion of real dancing flames and wisps of smoke and it's featured in a range of fires styles including stoves, insets, suites and a new basket fire with cast iron grate.

Like all Dimplex electric fires, it needs no flue and can simply be plugged in and the flame effect used independently of the heat from the concealed 2kW fan heater if required.
The flame and smoke intensity control is fully variable and a remote control gives armchair selection of on/off and the two heat settings, governed by a thermostat.

For added authenticity, the Oakhurst (model OKT20) is finished in a matt black cast iron effect with opening doors. Its dimensions are H620mm, W480mm and has a depth of just 300mm. It is also BEAB approved, for an independently tested and monitored guarantee of safety.

Friday 5 July 2013

Dimplex Tahoe

Dimplex is extending its Display and Demonstrate range of fires with the launch of the stylish Tahoe wall fire, featuring the award-winning Opti-myst® smoke and flame effect, acknowledged to be the world’s most realistic.
The Display and Demonstrate range has been created to help drive sales directly through the independent retailer channel. All models are available at a competitive price for outlets committing to in-store displays, rather than internet sales. The range also comes with an extended guarantee, allowing retailers to offer their customers an extra edge of exclusivity. Now with an additional 2 years free warranty when purchased in store, further setting the Dimplex Display and Demonstrate fires apart from the rest.

The Tahoe’s chic black finish frame gives a stylish contemporary feel. It is one of three new wall fires from Dimplex featuring the revolutionary Opti-myst® smoke and flame effect; the first time the technology has been available as a wall-mounted design.
The open fronted design gives an uninterrupted view of the unique and amazingly realistic smoke and flame effect, and to create the right mood, the intensity of the effect is fully variable. For user convenience, a remote control gives armchair control over both ‘flames’ and heat.

The Opti-myst® smoke and flame effect is silent in operation, and can be used independently of the heat to give an instant focal point to any room. A concealed 2kW fan heater gives a fast warm-up when required, with an accurate thermostat to avoid overheating, keeping running costs down.

For the ultimate in straightforward installation, the Tahoe has been designed for wall-mounting only, and cannot be inset. A quick-fit IEC kettle-type connection ensures that the fire is ready in moments, and like all Dimplex fires the Redway is BEAB approved for an added extra reassurance of safety.
The Redway’s dimensions are 690mm high and 760mm wide, and with a total depth of just 181mm, the Redway adds contemporary style to any room, without taking up any floor space.

Wednesday 3 July 2013

Hiring A Chimney Sweep

What are the benefits of hiring a professional chimney sweep?

A good chimney sweep will have the necessary training and experience to notice problems which might lead to chimney fires or inefficient burning and will be able to bring these problems to your attention.

Most chimney sweeps will also inspect your chimney for potential problems from the roof. Even if you have an idea about what to look for, it might be problematic, or even dangerous, for you to attempt this yourself. It is also unlikely that your own untrained eye would notice more subtle problems, such as signs of freeze-thaw weathering. If a problem is noticed early, it will probably be easier, and cheaper, to fix.

It is also much more convenient to hire a professional to take what will inevitably be a time consuming, physically draining and messy job off your hands. Hiring a professional would also bring you the peace of mind of knowing that problems have not been overlooked and that your chimney is safe and well-maintained.

How often should I have my chimney cleaned?

At least once a year. Chimney sweeps usually advise that chimneys ought to be cleaned after a period of prolonged disuse (over the summer for example). Many also advise that chimneys should be cleaned before the end of the heating season to ensure that the chimney is clear of animal nests and prepared for the subsequent idle period.

If a chimney is used very often, it might be necessary to sweep it more often. A professional chimney sweep would be able to advise the optimum cleaning schedule for your chimney.

Do I need to have my chimney swept if I have a gas fire?

Yes, although less frequently. Blockages in chimneys connected to gas fires can lead to a build-up of carbon monoxide and other harmful gases. A professional chimney sweep can advise how often your chimney ought to be swept.

Where can I find a good chimney sweep?

As with many things, word o

f mouth is the best means of securing a reliable chimney sweep. If you do not know anyone else who has a real coal or wood fire, chimney sweeps can be found in the Yellow Pages, and most will be more than willing to provide you with a list of references. Do not be afraid to follow these up. It is also important to ask how much experience the chimney sweep has, and whether or not he or she is fully insured.

The National Association of Chimney Sweeps website also provides an excellent means of locating a reliable chimney sweep in your area. All members of the National Association of Chimney Sweeps are fully qualified and experienced, have full public liability insurance and issue certificates on completion of their work. For additional peace of mind, all members are also required to provide references on request. If you would prefer to contact the National Association of Chimney Sweeps by telephone, you can do so on +44 (0)800 833464.

You can also contact the Guild of Master Chimney Sweeps, the professional association of chimney sweeps in the UK. They train, assess and monitor their members to ensure that customers receive the best service. If you are looking for a chimney sweep in the UK, please check their database of chimney sweeps in your area.

Monday 1 July 2013

Guide to chimney sweeping

When most people think of chimney sweeps, they conjure an image of a soot-covered child in the midst of the Industrial Revolution. Chimney sweeping is an ancient profession. Records of people earning their living by clean chimneys go back as far as the 16th century.

in a world in which modern conveniences such as central heating have largely replaced the once ubiquitous coal and wood fires used to heat homes, one could easily assume that chimney sweeps no longer exist. This would, however, be a false assumption: chimney sweeps are not the anachronisms most people presume them to be, but thoroughly modern professional tradesmen. If you are one of the growing number of people who have a functioning coal or wood fire in your home, it might well be in your interests to acquaint yourself with a modern day chimney sweep.
Old-fashioned fireplaces are becoming increasingly coveted, and for good reason: a well restored fireplace can add great character to a room, and, if it is well-maintained, can be an excellent source of heat during the cold winter months. However, the benefits of having a real coal or wood fire in your home must be balanced by dedicating a little time and money to ensuring that your fireplace functions both safely and efficiently.
The National Association of Chimney Sweeps defines the primary role of the modern chimney sweep as "to aid in the prevention of chimney fires and reduce the risk of dangerous fume emissions from blocked heating appliances, flueways and chimneys." This article seeks to address some frequently asked questions, and to explain how a chimney sweep could help you to maintain a safer, more efficient fireplace.

How a fireplace works

As a fire burns in a fireplace, the air from the room goes through the grate and fuels the fire. As the fire burns, it releases numerous gases which rise, as they are lighter than the surrounding air. These gases then escape up the chimney and are released into the atmosphere. As these substances pass through the chimney, a substance commonly referred to as soot begins to accumulate on the walls. This includes a flammable substance called creosote. Over time, these deposits can begin to obstruct - and eventually completely block – the chimney.
Such an obstruction can lead to an inefficient, and potentially unsafe, fireplace. This can be explained by the fact that a well-functioning chimney is necessary not only to allow potentially harmful gases to escape from the room, but also to ensure that the fire burns efficiently. As hot air ascends in the chimney, the fire sucks in more air from the room through the grate, in order to fill the space that has been left. Without this continuous supply of air, the fire would burn itself out. Deposits of flammable substances such as creosote also have the potential to cause chimney fires. Thus, a clean chimney is also a safer, more efficient chimney.

Can't I clean my chimney myself?

If you have a day to devote to the task, lots of patience and the necessary equipment, it is possible to clean your chimney yourself. Bear in mind, however, that chimney sweeping can be a somewhat messy process! Make sure that you cover the fireplace and carpet with plastic or a dust sheet before you begin.
It is now possible to rent a vacuum cleaner specifically designed for cleaning chimneys from most DIY stores. This may be adequate if the chimney is in reasonably good condition, but it is unlikely to be of much use if the chimney has been neglected for a prolonged period or if there is a lot of impacted soot. If you cannot see far enough up the chimney to discern whether or not this is the case, or are unsure, it would probably be better to consult a professional chimney sweep than to risk overlooking an obstruction that might be a safety hazard.
It is also possible to purchase chemicals which can be put onto the fire before it is lit. When these chemicals burn, they produce a gas which breaks down most of the substances commonly deposited inside chimneys. It is worth remembering that it is inevitable that loosened soot will end up crashing down into your fireplace, so be prepared for a fairly time-consuming clean-up!
If you would prefer not to attempt either of these more modern methods, you could always hire some brushes. This takes a lot of patience and can be physically tiring. You will also need a sturdy ladder and quality footwear if you want to examine your chimney from the roof.
If you choose to maintain your own chimney, it is worth remembering that keeping the chimney clean will not be your only task; routine maintenance tasks ought not to be overlooked. For example, firebacks will inevitably become damaged by the heat of the fire, and cracks may begin to appear. It is possible to do a patch-up job on smaller cracks, but in the event of larger cracks appearing, it is best to install a replacement. Whilst it is also possible to do both of these jobs yourself with the aid of a good DIY manual, it might be more convenient to consider hiring a professional.

Saturday 29 June 2013

Broseley Lincoln Gas Stove

There are a few things you really need to see first hand and to touch in order to appreciate their true nature. A Broseley stove is one of them. This way you can have the pleasure of examining and comparing these pieces of technology, understand how they work and picture how agreeable they might fit in with your lifestyle.

A cast iron gas stove, such as the Broseley Lincoln, with real flames arising from hand crafted ceramic fibre logs or coals, the flame picture is incredibly similar to the real thing. The heat is comparable in quality, radiating through the cast iron body of the stove. 
The Broseley Lincoln is distinctive for its double doors with Victorian detailing to frame the flames inside. But what sets this stove apart from any other gas stove on the market is that the doors on the Broseley Lincoln can be run with the doors open, while not effecting the efficiency of the fire.

For a slimline stove its 4.6kW output is more than adequate to heat a typical room and with the balanced flue version, the Lincoln could be installed in practically any room of the house. Thermostatic operation optimises fuel consumption while the remote control gives you the freedom to change the view from balzing to smouldering and back from practically anywhere in the room.

Thursday 27 June 2013

High Efficiency Gas Fires from Verine

Verine has always had a reputation as a manufacturer of some of the most efficient fires on the market. Now they are setting new industry standards with the Verine HE high efficiency range: exceptional heat output combined with lower running costs compared to standard gas fires.

Verine's R&D team has invested in developing the technology to meet the key objective of producing gas fires that save energy and as a result, help keep costs down.

So how does a Verine fire work? HE inset gas fires provide a hight efficiency as they produce both radiant and convect heat. Radiant heat is generated by the fuel bed and reflected into the room by the glass front of the fire. At the same time convected heat is produced from cool air which is drawn through a heat exchanger and emitted through a canopy at the top of the fire as warm room air.

The Verine Orbis HE and Midas HE are the two most efficient gas fires from Verine, both offering a staggering 89% efficiency, while the full depth Orbis HE has a 4kW heat output and is suitable for Class 1 or 2 Chimneys and Flue, the Midas HE is also suitable for a precast flue and will give up to 3.2kW of heat output. Both these fires are available in a wide choice of trim and fret finishes so the same fire will look stunning in both a traditional and contemporary setting. Both the Verine Orbis HE and Midas HE are also available with a choice of hidden manual control or convenient slide control and boast the 5 year guarantee that makes Verine fires so special.

Also available from Verine is the Meridian gas fire which boasts an efficiency rating of up to 84% with a highly realistic log fuel effect. The Verine Meridian is available both for standard Class 1 or 2 Chimneys and Flue as well as in Balanced Flue, for houses without a chimney. Boasting remote control as standard, the Meridian can be controlled without having to get up from your armchair.

Wednesday 26 June 2013

The Drugasar Metro 80e and Metro 120e

The DRU Metro 80e can be installed into an existing or false chimneybreast. It has a frameless design with a full width, glowing fire bed, together with a unique, realistic LED flame picture with choice of twigs or pebbles.
Like all of the DRU Electric Collection, the Metro 80e is operated by remote control. The flame picture only requires 15 watts of electricity, less than an average light bulb! This makes it both practical and economical to use.
There are16 flame height settings and up to 100,000 different flame variations. The Metro 80e can be used simply as a decorative fire or it can be adjusted to produce up to 2 kW of heat.

Metro 120-e is an electric version of one of our most popular luxury gas fires. It is for homes that want the beauty of a classic fireplace without the expense of gas connections and chimney conversions.
Metro 120-e e has an impressive flame picture created using LED technology that replicates the warm glow of a real fire. At 1.2 metres wide it is the largest electric fire in the DRU collection. It can be used simply as a decorative fire during the spring and summer, but will also provide either 1 or 2 KW of heat during the winter months.
Like all DRU fires, Metro 120-e is glass fronted with a remote control for easy operation.

Tuesday 25 June 2013

Gallery Baskets Featured on Film and TV

Large Nexus Basket

Judi DenchLarge Nexus BasketIn 2006 we saw the Debut of Daniel Craig in ‘Casino Royale’ as the new James Bond in what was actually the 21st film in the Bond series, and I’m proud to say that the Gallery Large Nexus Basket (as right) made a fantastic impression as it set a light in a tense character building scene between M and the new blond 007, the scene was is actually the first time that M’s home appears in any of the Bond films after 007 breaks in to use her computer.

Small Cottage Basket

Peggy MitchellSmall Cottage BasketAnd speaking of famous Gallery Firebaskets keep a look out in the queen Vic on Albert square for the Small Cottage basket (as above), some time ago during one of their comical escapades Gary and Minty fitted this fire for Peggy, please take this as a lesson of how not to fit a fire, always speak to your retailer and make sure a competent Hetas or Corgi fitter completes your installation!

Sunday 23 June 2013

Fit an Alarm

Carbon monoxide is a highly poisonous gas that has no colour, taste or smell, making it impossible to detect without an alarm. Carbon monoxide alarms must be audible – they make a loud noise if gas is present. We do not recommend the use of ‘Black Spot’ indicators as these are not as accurate and will not alert or wake you if there is carbon monoxide in your home.

Where to buy a carbon monoxide alarm

Carbon monoxide alarms are available from £15. They can be bought at DIY stores and some supermarkets, or directly from energy suppliers.
When you buy a carbon monoxide alarm, make sure it meets current European safety standards. Look for alarms marked with the ‘EN50291′ standard. This may be written as BSEN 50291 or EN50291 and with the ‘CE’ mark, both of which should be found on the packaging and product. Alarms will have either a Kitemark or Loss Prevention Certification Board (LPCB) logo to show independent testing and certification.

Where to put a carbon monoxide alarm

When placing and using an alarm in the home it is best to follow the instructions that were supplied with the alarm. If you can’t find these then here are a few guidelines that will help you install your alarm in the home:
  • Follow alarm instructions and place alarms in rooms with fuel burning appliances such as boilers in kitchens and fires in the lounge
  • If you want to fix the alarm to a wall then position it at head height ( i.e. your breathing level), however the alarm does not need to be fixed on a wall (e.g. it can be placed on a table, shelf or bookcase)
  • If you have a portable battery alarm you could place this in the room that you spend most of your time such as a lounge or bedroom – you can even move it from room to room with you
  • As with smoke alarms, test your carbon monoxide alarm regularly with the test button (follow manufacturer’s instructions) and replace the batteries annually or when the low battery signal sounds
  • Do not place the alarm in a cupboard, behind furniture, near an outside door or ventilation ( e.g. extractor fans or cooker hoods)
  • Do not place alarms directly next to fires, boilers, cookers or heaters – the alarm should be at least 1 meter away from any of these appliances
  • Do not place an alarm in an area of high condensation and steam such as a bathroom or kitchen or sources of steam and condensation
  • The alarm should not be placed on a ceiling like a smoke alarm
You should never ignore a carbon monoxide alarm. Check the manufacturer’s instructions to make sure you can recognise the alarm sound emitted when carbon monoxide is present as well as the low battery signal to avoid any confusion. If the alarm sounds, call the relevant fuel advice line for help and seek medical advice urgently if anyone is feeling unwell.
If you are a tenant, carbon monoxide alarms may also be available to you from your landlord or local council.
If you are worried about the threat of carbon monoxide poisoning whilst on holiday in the UK or abroad, you may wish to take a battery-operated carbon monoxide alarm with you. Just take out the batteries whilst travelling. The same battery alarms can be used at home and on holiday.
Remember that carbon monoxide alarms must never be used in place of annual safety checks. They are a second line of defence. There is no alternative to proper installation and maintenance of your appliances.

Friday 21 June 2013

Napoleon® Grills – new to the UK but thirty-six years in the making.

There’s a new kid on the barbecue block and it is comes with every knob, grate, grill, bell and whistle you can imagine. Designed and refined in Canada, Napoleon® Grills offers a premium range of charcoal and gas barbecues that has been developed over many years to meet the demands of the North American market.

The Napoleon® Grills gas barbecue range takes no prisoners.  The focus is on packing a punch with features included as standard – not as extras, yet with prices that start at just £449 for the SE series.
Napoleon® Grills uses the best materials; double-lined steel lids means they hold their heat and add strength and durability. There are large cooking areas with warming racks; side burners are standard and perfect for side dishes and grates are cast iron – the best material for transmitting heat evenly. Ignition is electronic, there’s utensils holders, bottle openers, temperature gauges, the list goes on and all as standard.
It does not need to cost much more before rotisseries, ice buckets, cutting boards and infrared SIZZLE ZONE™ for perfectly seared meat, also become standard. Take the LE, it even has backlit control knobs, and two halogen lamps at the back, darkness is no excuse to stop grilling!
Top of the range and retailing at £3499 is the Prestige II PT750. This is engineered to meet the exacting standards of the died-in-the-wool barbecue enthusiast.  The PT750 is not for lightweights, but for those that like to buy the very best tool for the job and truly enjoy outdoor living and cooking. There are two quite separate cooking zones each having its own lid allowing the chef to use just some or all of the grill depending on numbers. There are a total of six burners, including a side burner and infrared SIZZLE ZONE™. Its specification ticks all of the boxes and without doubt it will impress the neighbours!

The best of both worlds?  Why not.  Check out the Charcoal Smoker Tray it turns a gas barbecue into a charcoal one and can be used in conjunction with several gas barbecues in the Napoleon® Grills range.

  • A full selection; charcoal starters to get barbecues going, covers to protect and scrapers and brushes to clean and maintain.
  • Tongs, forks, slices, basting brushes – all the standard tools the griller expects and needs.
  • Cooking aids such as fish baskets, woks, chicken roasters, toppers, shish kebab sets, pizza stones, rib pans, frying pans and griddles.

Wednesday 19 June 2013

Manufacturer Focus: GB Mantels

GB Mantels Ltd. is a leading manufacturer of timber fire surrounds with an established reputation for quality and excellence.

Based in the heart of Yorkshire, their modern factory blends the latest technology with the age old experience of quality British craftsmanship to create the most versatile and varied ranges of wooden mantelpieces available today. 

Established now for nearly 15 years, GB Mantels aim to stay ahead of the market by introducing stylish and original designs manufactured in Yorkshire using only the most reliable and majestic woods sourced from around the world. The beauty of natural timbers ensures that each mantel bears distinctive hallmarks bestowing its own unique character and identity. The current GB Mantels collection offers over 50 mantelpieces with a full range of designs from classic to contemporary to the distinctively ultramodern. So let GB Mantels help you to create that warm welcoming fireplace you’ve always wanted, then sit back and relax safe in the knowledge that your fireplace has been crafted from the finest natural materials and treated with absolute tender loving care.

Monday 17 June 2013

What does ‘fireplace rebate dimension’ mean?

Understanding the fireplace rebate you require is essential in ensuring your fireplace/fire will fit your required application.

The dimension you need to work out is the depth needed to fully recess you fire against your flat wall or in your chimney recess. If the fireplace is being fitted against a flat wall then the full depth of the fire needs to be recessed within the fire surround. However, if the fire surround is being fitted against a chimney then the depth of the fire can be recessed within the cavity of the chimney.

The rebate is the distance from the back of the wall to the front of the back panel. Deeper rebates allow the back panel to be brought forward, creating a void between the panel and the wall. Deep rebates are popular where inset electric fires, or flueless gas fires are to be installed onto flat walls.
To work out the fire recess, you subtract the rebate by 20mm to accommodate the thickness of the panel. Therefore 100mm rebate gives you 80mm fire recess depth (100mm - 20mm for the back panel).

Saturday 15 June 2013

Buyers Guide: Fireplaces

A new fireplace is an exciting addition to any home. Whether you are buying a fireplace to enhance your decor, heating, or both, there are many options available from us here at  From easy to use and install electric choices to clean and efficient gas fires, our fireplaces are available in attractive and varied styles that will add beauty and style to any room.  Choose with care.  Fireplaces can last for many years and often increase your home's value. Be sure to select a fireplace with the technology and performance you’ll want long term.
Take advantage of our many years of experience to make what at first appears to be a difficult purchase a simple and enjoyable experience.


Your key consideration will be whether to purchase an electric fireplace or stove, or gas fireplace.  Make sure you choose the size and style that is right for your needs.

Style vs. Heating

In the past, it may have been necessary to choose between these two goals.  Today electric and gas options provide both ambience and efficient heating. However, if you are on a budget, you might find that you need to be willing to prioritise a bit. For example, you may have to choose a less expensive mantle design in order to afford a large enough fireplace to heat your room properly.
Style and Appearance
There are as vast a range of fireplace styles as there are interior design styles, spanning from casual to more formal looks. Regardless of gas or electric, offers many choices. The material and style of the mantel or surround will play a major role in a fireplace’s appearance; though keep in mind that you may need to purchase these separately. Whether you like clean lines or ornate details, rustic or contemporary styling, we can provide a beautiful fireplace that suits your taste.
For both electric and gas fireplaces, with the flick of a switch or even a click of a remote control, you’ll have your fire and heating source working in an instant. are the UK’s largest retailer of electric and gas fireplaces, offering the convenience of online shopping with home delivery, or the opportunity to visit our showroom to select and/or collect your purchase.
The Look of the Flame
The winner for a realistic flame is, of course, a real flame in a wood burning fireplace.  Today however, through the use of updated technology, you too can experience a beautiful and realistic looking flame effect.  Purchase one of our electric or gas fireplaces and benefit from a warm room and the good economy of saving on heating costs.
Keep in mind that high ceilings, as well as square footage, will play a part in heating ability. Other factors include home insulation and the number of windows. Overall, the larger the room, the larger the fireplace needs to be to heat it well. Of course, if you are buying a replacement fireplace for an existing chimney area, this will determine the size needed.      

General Quality Considerations

Our high quality fires and fireplaces include the following features: strong and solid construction, heavy duty faces, quality materials and CE-certification. In gas and electric fireplaces, realistic flames are another measure of sound workmanship and quality. Our fireplaces are designed to increase heating efficiency.
Installation and Maintenance – Safety First
Keep in mind that gas fireplaces are subject to rigorous safety codes and installation should be carried out by a gas safety registered installer. They also require regular maintenance in order to operate properly and safely. It is vital to have a gas fireplace installed and maintained by a qualified, licensed, and experienced professional. Electric fireplaces generally need no installation other than plugging them in.

Electric Suites
Electric Suites are complete, freestanding, electric units. They are the simplest type of fireplace to install. In fact, you could describe them as 'Plug and Play'!
All you need to do is place the electric suite in the correct location and plug it in. Nothing could be simpler. You just need a flat wall and a nearby plug socket. There is no need to inset the fire into the wall, so there is no mess or fuss. Ideal for anyone who wants a complete fireplace, with the minimum of effort, at an unbelievable price.
Most Electric Fires and electric suites have a 1kW and 2kW setting, but you can also have the flame effect or light on without any heat being emitted. This is ideal if you want to give the sense of warmth without actually using the electric fan heater.
Wall Mounted Electric Fires

Ranges of wall mounted electric fires are designed to be installed up off the floor, wall mounted for maximum impact and maximum style for your home.
All our Electric Fires and electric suites have a 1kW and 2kW setting, but you can also have the flame effect or light on without any heat being emitted. This is ideal if you want to give the sense of warmth without actually using the electric fan heater.

Inset Electric Fires
All of our inset Electric Fires are extremely flexible. They are designed to be inset into a backpanel with the standard opening of 22" high by 16" wide, but can also be used as a freestanding unit.
Again, these electric fires are simply plugged into a mains electrical supply. This allows the fire to be fully freestanding, semi-inset or fully inset.
Most Electric Fires have a 1kW and 2kW setting, but you can also have the flame effect or light on without any heat being emitted. This is ideal if you want to give the sense of warmth without actually using the fan heater.

Living Flame Gas Fires

A Living flame gas fire is the staple of the fireplace industry. Being much cleaner than solid fuel, and giving out more heat than an electric fire, a gas fire is the optimal choice for most homeowners.
However, all gas fires available do not necessarily fit all types of flue system. Our gas fire guide will help you to understand what flue system you have in place at present, and which types of gas fire are suitable.
If you have no flue at all, don't worry! We have gas fires with catalytic technology, fan flue or power flue systems to accommodate any situation. They also come with a choice of trim and fret so you can give your living flame gas fire whichever appearance you prefer.

Limestone Fireplaces

Another popular line is Limestone fireplaces range, imported directly from Portugal or Turkey. The demand for these products is so high because of the natural beauty of limestone.
However, many do not understand that this is a natural product and so every piece of limestone is unique. Limestone is actually made at the bottom of ancient oceans, by the gradual layering of marine organisms on the seabed. As a result, natural limestone will contain fossils, coal seams and fault lines. This is part of the beauty of the product. There will never be an exact replica of your fireplace.
Please note that the sizes of each fireplace may vary due to manufacturing.

Solid Fuel Limestone Fireplaces

The solid fuel limestone fireplaces are not recommended for high usage with solid fuel. We only recommend occasional use.
Limestone is naturally porous and will age (discolour) and mark over time with the use of solid fuel. Please make sure you are happy with limestone as a solid fuel product before buying.

Thursday 13 June 2013

Manufacturer Focus: A.J Wells - Charnwood

Opened in the '70s by the Wells family, A.J. Wells & Sons Ltd. Back then, no one then could have guessed that one day a small company could become one of the most important sources of income on the Isle of Wight. However, as the times changes the workshop expanded its business for the sale of free-standing stoves. And so it began.Alfred Wells, father of the current director, John Wells and now retired Alister Wells (director of production), founded the workshop on 16 February 1972, located in the village of Niton, on the above-mentioned, the picturesque Isle of Wight. In addition to auto repair, workshop dealt with agricultural equipment repairs, manufacturing, gates, balustrades and handrails, and emergency exits.In the seventies Britain facing a crisis, as a consequence there has been a rise in oil prices. Then its toll also met Dutch elm disease, which has caused wither about 25 million trees across the country. These two economic factors contributed to the fact that the family, interested in free-standing stoves and soon began selling them.Offered by heating devices have one significant drawback weakening sales - too large size. Customers wanted to have a smaller furnace and it was at their request, Alfred and his sons - a trained engineers - they decided to design the stove. And that was Beacon - The first Charnwood.The device is selling well, which contributed to the development of the company. It took the new manpower and greater accommodation. For this reason, the company, located just on the surface of 139 m2, in 1980, changed its office in Newport - where there was a slightly larger plant.In the 80s Most enamel finishing was carried out by local businesses. However, it was difficult for reliable subcontractors, so the company decided to invest in their own enamelling equipment. Quite unfortunately happened that shortly after this investment, another crisis hit Britain and sales plummeted furnaces. The Wells family was forced to look for new jobs. In this way, managed to win a tender for the London Underground, for which today produces enamel signboards and various characters (a division Specialists Signage & VE).In 1997, the factory moved to the seat, which is today, a company has 4645 m2 area. Although a greater number of employees, A.J. Wells & Sons Ltd still remains a family business. Currently, the company manages the second and third generation of Wells family members. In the past, for 16 members of the family were all working at A.J Wells at the same time. There are differences of opinion between them. Fortunately, on matters of opinion there is no difference. Undoubtedly, the great advantage of a family business is that it is composed person can fully trust each other. In addition, the management of large plant requires the involvement of staff at various levels and levels, and the family atmosphere fostered by. Although not all of today associate the name A.J. Wells & Sons Ltd - in turn Charnwood brand is well known in the global market.Wells factory is located in three buildings: the largest, single-storey production hall is Charnwood stoves, with office space on the first floor. The second building is a warehouse, which stored up to 6000 devices. In the last formed enamel and metal department, and at the floor, in the so-called. studio houses a permanent exhibition of products and training room. In addition to study is quite interesting room where you can see the imitation of the London Underground station (called by most workers - station Wight).The company A.J. Wells & Sons Ltd, in addition to Charnwood and enamel, consists of two divisions dealing with the import and sale of chimney systems, and Fair Trade products Bodjani. The business operates in this manner supports small family company in Cambodia, since the terracotta tiles and hand-woven baskets Bodjani manufactured in Asia.The production process begins with the body sheet metal with laser cutting machines. Then cut elements are formed using presses and welding. Welding line is divided into several stations, where each welder combines certain elements. This increases efficiency and allows fine control of the quality of the product, in the case of any errors - also respond quickly. Some welding is done using modern robots. After initial purification reach the sand bodies, which are for a period of 3 - 7 minutes. Metal shot gives them a specific finish (the so-called. Peel oranges). After this step, the body reaches the paint, and then into the tunnel, where it is pre-dried. As in the case of welding, the assembly line is equipped with special rollers. The body is moved and gradually increases are the other elements. Before the oven is completely folded, it is re-coated and dried. Are installed at the end of the other internal components and windows, and the furnace is given a serial number, confirming compliance with the quality standards. Then, the machine goes to the store.Currently branch Signage & VE Specialists, in addition to furnaces, enamelling deals with stoves, bathtubs, but most of all the panels and characters. Performs order companies and individual clients. This sector is also working with a group of artists who perform a very interesting project: an example could be the work of a well-known Laura Boswell and Michael Forrest. Among the customers, but the London Transport Company (London Metro), include, for example National Railway, ABB - an international working group including in the automation industry and energy, BAM Nuttall - a company in the construction and engineering.Using the highest quality materials piecom Charnwood provides high strength, attractive appearance, and above all, excellent heating properties. Selected raw materials come from local UK market. Most parts of the furnaces and basic accessories are manufactured in the factory on the Isle of Wight. The exceptions are the elements iron, which comes down from the middle of England (Birmingham), and glass - Schott shipped from the factory in Germany. With this independence, we can fully control the production process and the quality of equipment.Charnwood has won numerous awards. In 2009, the company has received, from the hands of the same Elizabeth II, The Queen's Award - for excellence in the field of international trade. The prize entitles the winner to use the royal logo in all promotional materials for the next 5 years.The Company continues to invest and modernize its plant. Over the past three years paved the capital nearly 4 million pounds of modern, high-tech machines (presses, welding robots, laser cutting) and the modernization of the production line, making almost double increase in performance.Annually, A.J. Wells & Sons Ltd sells about 20,000 stoves Charnwood, which represents 80% of company revenue. The remainder of the budget is income from enamel and - to a lesser extent - with branches importing chimney systems and products Bodjani Trade.This year is a special time of up to five reasons. First, the company celebrated the 40th anniversary of their business. Secondly, family-owned company has been recognized by an independent bimonthly "Sublime Magazine" as "Outstanding Company 2012". Third activity A.J. Wells & Sons Ltd was awarded The Print & Design Awards 2012 - the directory Charnwood, who won in the category "Best use of recycled paper." Fourth, August 13, 2012, His Royal Highness, the Duke of Edinburgh, Philip visited the headquarters of Charnwood. Finally, the two branches of the fifth - Charnwood and enamel Signage & VE Specialists - were invited to participate in an exhibition at London's Science Museum, which promotes British manufacturing industry. The company was among 39 exhibitors (including next brand Rolls-Royce, Jaguar, Land Rover).Charnwood also won numerous local awards in the field of ecology. The Company does not underestimate the impact of their activities on the environment. Therefore, the factory has introduced an integrated management system that focuses on two aspects: quality control and nature conservation. It is based on the international standards ISO 9001 and the environmental impact of ISO 14001.The company helps local businesses using their services, and supports initiatives rustic - Charnwood is a local sponsor for the club rugby. In addition, factory A.J. Wells & Sons Ltd cooperates with the Department of Production Engineering, University of Cambridge. Almost every year, students come here to carry out on-site projects and work on the heating technique.Charnwood products are sold in 80% of the local market - in the UK and Ireland. In addition, the device is exported to many European countries, mainly France, Belgium, Holland, Germany and now also to the Polish market. Outside Europe - also arrive in South Africa, Canada, Japan and the Middle East.The idea was to create a founder of the company providing maintenance Wells family. After 40 years of working here for about 180 people, which means that the company is one of the major employers in the Isle of Wight and almost a recognizable global brand furnaces.

Tuesday 11 June 2013

The new range of Infinity Fires. Warmth, with infinite style and vision.

What better way to make your house a home than with one of the stunning range of modern high efficiency fires from Infinity Fires

The Infinity range boasts seven models offering a wide choice of sizes, styles and finishes. The fires are all British-made and although they have the contemporary European look, each model is designed to fit perfectly in a British home.
The fires can be fitted into walls for a modern clean look; they can also be incorporated in fireplace suites in a choice of traditional or modern styles.

The models are designed to fit most chimneys and 5" flues and are suitable for existing fireplace openings. The Infinity 480FL and the 660PC are also designed, and suitable for use with a pre-cast flue chimney offering a stunning fire and another option to home owners who until now have only had a very limited choice of traditionally designed fires to choose from.

Every fires comes with a thermostatic radio frequency remote control that allows you to set the perfect temperature for your room and the fire will regulate itself to achieve this. The remote can also be high level wall mounted, to be used as a wall switch, using the fixing kit supplied.

All fires in the range are designed to give a very realistic flame picture from a modest gas input which means no ventilation is usually needed in the room and greater efficiencies are achievable.

The Infinity range are exclusive to showrooms and cannot be purchased online or over the telephone. Why not pop into your local store and purchase one of these stunning gas fires today.

Sunday 9 June 2013

Choosing between contemporary and traditional fireplaces

Generally, the outside of your house dictates the type of decor inside the house. This in turn reflects the type of fire and fireplaces suitable for that particular room.
However, today’s trends are contradicting these rules where you can have a contemporary setting within a traditional building. The combination of decor, furniture and fireplace will contribute to the overall character of the room.
With fireplaces, materials such as white marble and limestone together with straight lines and square edges portray a minimalistic look. Chrome and brushed steel fires would compliment these types of fireplaces and would create a modern contemporary designer look.

On the other hand, traditional fireplaces use curved lines in their designs. Typically, they consist of cream marbles, light and dark oak and mahogany surrounds, black granite back panels and hearths, black cast iron backs and brass fires.

Friday 7 June 2013

It could be time to get rid of that old fireplace

When you moved into your home, you might have taken one look at your fireplace and resolved to replace it. Perhaps it just doesn’t fit in with your style preferences and spoils the way your living room, dining room or bedroom looks, or maybe the object doesn’t work properly because it’s old and broken.
Fireplaces like this can stop you from making the most of your home. It they don’t function correctly, you might be missing out on the simple and yet important pleasure and comfort that the warmth from electric fires, gas fires and stoves can provide. Also, the whole look of rooms can be ruined by ugly fires. Outdated versions can drag your home back decades in terms of appearance.
The trouble is, it’s all too easy to get used to these problems and to put them out of your mind, learning to live with the dissatisfaction you feel with your fireplaces. After a few weeks of inaction turns into months and then into years, you might find the issue slips out of your radar completely.
This would be a great shame. After all, there are so many fabulous electric fires, gas fires and other products out there for you to choose from. Here at Fire4less we offer a great range of fires at superb value prices.
By making the most of these items, you can dramatically enhance the look of your property and you’ll be able to relax and enjoy cosy evenings in the warm glow of the fires.

Wednesday 5 June 2013

Powerflue and Balanced Flue Explained

Power Flue gas Fires are ideally suited for homes without a chimney or flue (flat wall gas Fireplaces). The main advantages of a power flue fire are that the flame is open and not hidden behind a glass screen (living flame effect). This makes the flame picture much clearer and realistic (looks more like a real fire as its open). Power flue Fires work by venting the fire externally through an outside wall. Essentially this elevates the requirement for a chimney or flue and means you can have a open living flame gas fire in your living room.
1. Power flue gas fires use a fan (electrical supply needed) to remove the fumes emitted by the gas fire (whilst in use). This is arguably one of the criticisms of the fire as it requires a power supply to work and hence some homeowners that prefer a backup
2. Balanced Flue gas fires on the other hand are glass fronted & much higher in efficiency than the open fronted power flue alternatives. These fires do not require an electrical fan to operate and hence can be used in the eventuality of a power cut in the area (can provide back-up source of heat for boiler)