Posted on: 26.05.2023 Posted by: Редакция Comments: 0

Wood burning stoves are an excellent alternative to traditional open fireplaces. If you have a traditional fireplace, you may be realizing the benefits of installing a wood burning stove in it.

To install a wood burning stove in a fireplace, you first need to determine a suitable location, plan for firewood, build secure hearths, and protect the walls. You also need to have the right equipment, measurements, and room ventilation.

The rest of this article provides a detailed explanation of:

  • What to consider before installing a stove in an existing fireplace
  • Steps to follow for the installation process
  • The issues that may arise when installing a wood burning stove

Considerations before Installing a Wood Burning Stove in a Fireplace

If you have an empty alcove or you’re opening a fireplace, consider the following things when installing the stove:

Room Ventilation: For your wood burning stove to work, it needs enough air. Lack of air in the room leads to issues like trouble lighting the fire and failure of smoke to rise through the chimney. When installing a wood burning stove into your traditional fireplace, check the air permeability of your space. If it’s not sufficient, add a small ventilation brick.

Chimney Diameter and Type: Your chimney type should be class 1 for you to install a wood burning stove into your fireplace. An open masonry fireplace usually belongs to class 1, but if you’re replacing the existing one, make sure it’s not a prefabricated fireplace or a class 2 fireplace as both are not suitable for a stove. Next, consider your chimney diameter. If it’s not matched with the right hearth insert or stove size, it will not only perform poorly but also be unsafe.

Many stoves up to 20 kW require a minimum flue diameter of 6 inches, but in some cases, a 5-inch diameter can be used if the manufacturer says it’s safe. Make sure the chimney diameter is not too small and watch out for cracks. They need to be repaired even if you’re installing a hearth insert. Some chimneys are not suitable for use with a wood burning stove. In this case, as an alternative, install a double-walled one.

Heat Output: Wood burning stoves can generate a lot of heat, although they’re more efficient than fireplaces. Just because your fireplace is big doesn’t mean you can fill it up with the biggest wood burner. To prevent your room from overheating, use a stove calculator to calculate the heat output of your stove and the best amount.

Stove and Surroundings: Your wood burning stove will most likely have different sizes and shapes. However, don’t assume it will fit. Follow the regulations when using a fireplace as a hearth during the installation of the wood burning stove. For stoves that reach 100 degrees Celsius, regulations require that they:

  • Have an area of at least 840 x 840mm.
  • On both sides of the stove, it should extend to at least 150mm and 300mm in front.
  • Have a thickness of 12mm.
  • Be made of non-combustible materials.

If the temperature exceeds 100 degrees Celsius, the minimum thickness should be 250mm. If you want to reuse the stove, make sure it doesn’t have any cracks as they can be a problem due to the heat emitted. If you have an existing fireplace surround in which you want to place your wood burning stove and it’s non-combustible, you don’t have to replace it. However, you can alternatively use a mantel beam.

Clearance Between Fuels: When installing your stove into an existing fireplace, make sure there’s enough space between it and combustible materials like wallpaper or plasterboard. Check the installation instructions as the required clearance will be different for each stove.

If your fireplace is made of non-combustible materials like bricks or stones, there are no legal regulations for the clearance of the stove. However, lack of space will affect the stove’s performance through inadequate heat circulation and airflow.

Follow Building Regulations: When installing a wood burning stove, you don’t require planning permission if the fireplace is already in place. However, you need to ensure it complies with building regulations. You can find this information on your local council’s website or visit their offices. If you’re building a new chimney, make sure to obtain planning permission before construction.

Consider whether your house is located in a smoke control area before installation. If you plan on burning wood instead of smokeless fuels, you can inquire from your council as you’ll only be allowed to use an exempt appliance.

Installing wood burning stoves has become easier over the years since they were invented in Europe in the 16th century. Back then, they could pose a danger due to smoke poisoning and the risk of fire. However, you can follow the steps below for proper installation.

Find a Suitable Location

Before installing a wood burning stove:

  1. Consider the location of your fireplace and your furniture.
  2. Ensure your stove is placed in a central area to effectively heat the room after installation.
  3. Arrange your furniture facing the wood burning stove and maintain distance for safety reasons.

Scattered sparks can easily fall on furniture and combustible materials, thus causing a fire. Additionally, they have a high heat output, which makes it uncomfortable to sit near the wood burning stove.

Prepare the Opening

Prior to installing a wood burning stove, clean out your fireplace opening and open it up to make room for the stove. If it’s an open chimney and a larger fireplace opening, it’s now possible to take measurements for your stove and insert a new fireplace or lintel.

Select an Appropriate Model Size

Wood burning stoves come in different sizes. Select one that has appropriate heat output and measurement for the room where you’ll be installing it. Ensure you measure your existing fireplace before installation. Calculate the heat output demand in kilowatts. You can do this by measuring the height, depth, and width of your area in meters, multiplying by 3, and dividing by 14.

If your room is larger and has high ceilings, choose a model that allows for higher output. If it’s smaller, go for one with lower output.

Design Your Fireplace

Your fireplace needs to meet certain regulations such as:

Add non-combustible materials first, like tiles, stone, or bricks on a bare section where you’ll be placing the wood burning stove. If your flooring is not fire-resistant, add a small section to ensure the safety of your home if sparks from the wood fall onto the floor.

Add protection to the walls of the fireplace behind the stove. Choose a heat-resistant material like tiles, bricks, or stone.

Protective materials shield the walls from high heat and stray sparks. However, you still need to install your wood burning stove a safe distance away.

Select an Appropriate Wood Type and Plan for Storage Space

You’ll need a lot of firewood for your stove. Instead of making multiple trips outdoors, you can create some space for drying firewood during planning and installation. Make sure you choose wood that has less moisture. Dried logs are the best.

Wood with high moisture content produces a lot of smoke, which causes creosote build-up in the chimney and blackens the stove glass. With space next to the wood burning stove, you can place firewood to dry before burning.

Plan for Ash Disposal

Expect your wood burning stove to produce large amounts of ash. Plan ahead for how you’ll dispose of it or use it to keep your house clean and prevent filling up the stove. Ash can remain flammable and hot for days. Handle it with caution and place it in a non-combustible container. You can reuse the ash as compost for your garden or dispose of it as trash.

Find a Professional Installer

Look for experts in wood burning stove installations who ensure it works efficiently, adheres to regulations, and protects your home. You can search online for companies that offer these services and check reviews to ensure their reliability.

A professional installer can obtain the necessary permits, issue a building compliance certificate, and inform local authorities that the installation has taken place on your behalf. You may need to present this certificate during the sale of your home and have your insurance validated.

Plan for Maintenance and Operation

Once the installation is approved for a wood burner in a fireplace, you need to plan for routine maintenance such as regularly cleaning the chimney. Additionally, your wood burning stove should be inspected annually by a certified chimney sweep (CSIA) to ensure it’s functioning safely and efficiently.

Step-by-Step Installation Process

  1. Purchase the right wood burning stove and fireplace. The efficiency of your wood burning stove depends on whether it’s properly matched with a fireplace opening. Otherwise, a lot of energy will be wasted. Consult with your supplier.
  2. Have the fireplace or chimney flue checked. Make sure this is done by a professional installer before you install the wood burning stove. The fireplace efficiency depends on it.
  3. Have the chimney swept. Ensure your chimney is in good condition for a wood burning stove. Oversizing can cause excessive cooling of the flue gases due to the large surface area. Cooling reduces the velocity of the flue gas, the low-draught airflow, condensation, and the buildup of creosote. In this case, add a small liner or draught inducer to avoid these issues. Alternatively, you can install a stovepipe in the chimney of the fireplace.
  4. Install a stovepipe through the chimney. Install it above the fireplace damper through the masonry hole cut above the throat. To prevent gases from entering the room, provide a seal or close the damper tightly using a fiber insulation like rock wool or sheet metal. This type of installation is more energy-efficient and preferable to installing the stovepipe inside the firebox or through the damper.
  5. Mount a fire surround. The material used should be non-combustible and fit around the wood burning stove’s flue, sealing the chimney opening completely. Install a steel frame to hold the register plate that keeps the chimney insulation intact and prevents objects from falling into the chimney and fireplace.
  6. Attach the chimney outlet on the top of the wood burner. Do this in a slight recess and place a fire rope in a specific length in between. Tighten the flue, and push the rope firmly, which you’ll find when purchasing a wood burning stove. It serves as a seal between the frame and the stove. Measure 100mm clearance inside the flue from the top of the register frame and cut off any extra flue casing. Similarly, cut the flue pipe.
  7. Fit the register plate into the frame. Use the rest of the flue pipe as a template and draw a line around it. Cut the circular shape using a coping saw, jigsaw, or reciprocating saw. There are two parts of the plate that surround the flue pipe. Do this for each; adjust straight lengths to close gaps. Use fire cement to seal any gaps and joints on the register plate.

Reasons to Keep Your Existing Fireplace

  • It preserves the originality of your fireplace and home. It’s a shame to destroy classic and original tiles.
  • Ensures your fireplace’s style matches that of other rooms.
  • Keeps all options open in case you ever want to use your fireplace again.
  • If you move homes, you can easily relocate the wood burning stove to the next house or another room of your choice.
  • Allows you to give the room a new style. Many wood burning stoves come in various sizes and colors, giving you a variety of options.
  • Saves costs on installation and renovation.

Average Cost of a Wood Burning Stove Installation

Wood burning stoves are an attractive element for your home, especially during winter when you want to cozy up and keep warm near the fire. However, how much are you willing to spend on having one installed into your existing fireplace? While many installers and contractors hesitate to post their costs online, this article covers average costs.

Each installation project is unique, so costs may vary. Activities like opening an existing fireplace, adding a new hearth, and a new fuel lining will have different prices. Installation costs average as follows:

In an existing fireplace How much it will cost $1,361

Installation activities will cost on average:

Job Description Cost
Waste disposal $30
Expanding the opening if necessary $110
Flue liner $360 – $665
Removing the old fireplace and opening for builders opening $54
Supplying and delivering limestone stove $180 – $360
Installing and delivering lintel at new height $70
Installing and delivering wood store stand $240
Providing bricks, stones, and plastering to the surroundings $340

Factors That Can Affect the Cost of Installing a Wood Burning Stove

Required Type of Fireplace Insert: The fireplace insert causes some of the significant cost differences during installation. It’s located inside the chimney and acts as a barrier to protect the chimney and its walls from corrosion, combustible products, and heat. Depending on the condition of your chimney, a flue pipe may be recommended.

If you have a chimney, the flue liner goes downward to connect it with the stove. Costs go up when there’s no existing chimney, and one needs to be created with a double-walled exhaust system.

If your chimney has a small opening or is blocked, it’ll need to be opened up to install a wood burning stove. There are two types of fireplace linings: 904 grade and 316 grade linings. 904 grade linings are more expensive as they are a higher quality liner. As a result, it’s more resistant and thicker. You’ll have to pay about $157 extra for this.

Access Requirements: Installing more than two meters high requires scaffolding. Additionally, using specialized equipment incurs additional installation costs. If you’re converting a gas fireplace to a wood fireplace, there’ll be extra costs for replacing stainless steel cladding and parts, masonry repairs, and building or replacing a chimney.

Quality of the Stove: Selecting an efficient

Leave a Comment