Posted on: 30.07.2023 Posted by: Редакция Comments: 0

So, you’ve installed a wood-burning fireplace to give your room a rustic and cozy look that harkens back to simpler times. But, like with other fireplaces, you may find that it doesn’t efficiently heat the room. Can you add a fan to your wood-burning fireplace to make it more efficient?

You can add a fan to most types of wood-burning fireplaces. To do so, you’ll need a fireplace-compatible fan and a fire-resistant cable that runs underneath the firebox. If your fireplace is not compatible with a fan, you can install a blower kit that includes a fan, a thermostat, and the necessary cables and connectors.

Keep reading to learn more about how a fireplace fan works and how it can help make your room warmer. I’ll also give you some tips on how to get the most out of your wood-burning fireplace.

What Is a Fireplace Fan and How Does It Work?

A fireplace fan is an accessory that maximizes the heating performance of your fireplace. It can help circulate the warm air inside the fireplace more quickly.

You can mount the fan outside of the fireplace or inside of it. If you choose to place it inside, it should go outside of the firebox.

A fireplace blower doesn’t improve the device’s ability to generate warm air. Instead, it simply moves the air around to make the airflow around the fireplace and the room more efficient.

The fan draws in ambient air from the room and pushes it out of the fireplace. As the air circulates inside the fireplace, it becomes hot and warms up the room. The warm air rises near the ceiling and pushes down the cold air, which goes through the same process, making the entire ambient air warm and comfortable.

In addition to making the room warmer, it contributes to the circulation of air in the room by replacing the previously heated air with newly heated air.

Without a fireplace blower, you rely on the radiant heat of the fireplace to warm up the room. Radiant heat travels in a straight line, heating up furniture or people in its direct path without affecting other parts of the room.

The fan converts radiant heat into convective heat, which circulates through a fluid like air.

Does a Fan Work for a Wood-Burning Fireplace?

Some people think that only gas-burning fireplaces can work with a fan, which is not true. Almost all types of fireplaces support fans.

You can equip wood-burning fireplace inserts and stoves with a fan. An insert is a sealed firebox that is inserted into an existing masonry fireplace to increase its heating efficiency. Wood stoves are freestanding fireplaces with vertical ventilation openings.

Even if your fireplace does not come with the essential parts for a fan, you can add a fan kit to the device. You can even install a fan in handmade brick and mortar fireplaces, although the task is somewhat more challenging.

But first, you should ensure that there is electricity running under the fireplace in the form of an outlet. To check the outlet, plug in a lamp in the outlet and turn it on and off. If there is no power, fix the issue and then order a kit.

You’ll need a fireplace fan that fits your device. To install the kit, you can follow the instructions in the device’s user manual or ask a certified fireplace dealer to install your fan correctly and safely.

When purchasing a fireplace, look for one with an option for a fan. Even if you don’t initially want to add a fan, you can decide later. Having a device with this option gives you the flexibility to upgrade it.

Some fireplaces already come with a fan. This way, you always have the option to use it whenever you want.

However, you should know that a fireplace fan operates on electricity. So, if you are off the grid or live in an area with frequent power outages, you won’t be able to use your fan often. In that case, opt for a solely radiant fireplace or install an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) in your home.

Various Parts of a Fireplace Fan

Although there is a variety of fireplace fan models, they all function essentially the same.

Fans have multiple heat-resistant metal tubes connected to a motor. When you turn on the fireplace fan, it sucks cool air from the room into the lower tubes. The cool air circulates through the tubes and gets heated by the fire below the tubes. Then, it exits through the upper tubes into the room.

How Does a Fan Help Your Fireplace?

A fan can boost the efficiency of your fireplace. Since most fireplaces rely on radiant heat to warm up areas, they can efficiently heat up entire rooms. Most of the heat generated is lost through the chimney before it has the chance to be emitted into the room.

A fireplace fan can make the heating process more efficient by reducing the upward flow of warm air. Some warm air still goes out through the chimney, but much less with a fan. However, since it is located outside the firebox, it doesn’t affect the burning rate or heat output. So, you don’t have to worry about your firewood burning faster than usual.

Another advantage of a fireplace fan is that you don’t have to always turn it on when you use the fireplace, which means you can use the fireplace in warmer months and prevent your room from getting too hot.

Additionally, these fans are discreet, meaning they don’t disrupt the aesthetics of your space. The fan and its lower tubes go underneath the fireplace, and the upper tubes are located inside the fire chamber.

And if you’re concerned about the fan making noise, rest assured. Like any other motor-operated fan, it does generate some level of noise. However, modern models are significantly quieter than older ones. They are also smaller, more durable, and more powerful. Additionally, most models come with variable speed control, allowing you to adjust the fan’s speed and, therefore, the noise.

How to Make Your Fireplace More Efficient

In addition to using a fireplace fan, there are other ways to increase the heating performance of your fireplace. Here are some:

Installing a Fireplace Plate – A fireplace plate is a metal insert made of cast iron or stainless steel that is installed at the back of the firebox. It absorbs the heat that can escape through the chimney and reflects it into the room. 

When you add a fireplace plate to your device, you’ll feel the effect immediately. And the thicker or larger the fireplace plate, the stronger the radiation, as it can store more heat over a longer period of time.

Using the Right Type of Wood – The amount of heat your fireplace generates depends on the type of firewood you use. For example, hardwood generally produces more heat than softwood, as hardwood is denser and can burn for longer. 

Additionally, hardwood varieties are less resinous, meaning they produce less creosote that builds up in the chimney. Creosote can also decrease the efficiency of the fireplace, which leads us to the next efficiency-maximizing factor.

Keeping the Flue and the Fireplace Clean – Over time, creosote and soot can build up inside the flue lining, obstructing the airflow into and out of the fireplace. When less air flows into the fireplace, the fire becomes smaller, and you get less heat. Since you can’t precisely tell how much creosote accumulates in your chimney over a specific period, it’s best to have it professionally checked at least once a year.

Cleaning the fireplace regularly also maximizes the airflow by removing excess ash. However, don’t remove the ash completely, as you’ll need it to insulate the hot coals, creating a new bed and boosting its heat output.

Building the Fire Correctly – The way you build the fire affects its efficiency. Place some small crumpled pieces of newspaper at the bottom and put small pieces of dry kindling on top. Then, lay the firewood on top of them. 

Don’t pack anything tightly, as it will block the airflow. There should also not be too much space between the materials, as the airflow won’t efficiently transfer the heat.

As the fire heats up the chimney, you can add more firewood to keep the fire going.

Place larger pieces crisscross on top of smaller ones to increase the airflow. But the large pieces can be close to each other, as they’ll keep the fire going longer and increase the heat output, leading to higher efficiency. 

Using Dry Firewood – Everyone knows that dry wood burns better than wet or damp firewood. Although all types of firewood contain some moisture, the values vary depending on the type. 

The best type of firewood is kiln-dried wood, which is processed in a hot kiln to remove the moisture from its pores. Besides boosting your fireplace’s efficiency, kiln-dried firewood is easy to use and naturally seasoned.


A fireplace fan can help make your room warmer by overcoming the biggest problem with fireplaces: inadequate heating. You can add a fan to a wood-burning fireplace as long as it has an electrical outlet box underneath. However, you can add the fan kit during installation to other types that are not compatible with a fan.

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