Types of wood-burning fireplaces and their characteristics

Wood-burning fireplaces have always been the most effective and interesting solution to enjoy a pleasant environment and especially at a good temperature during the cold months.

For that reason we are going to analyze the main advantages of this heating system, in addition to taking into account all the types of wood burning fireplace that exist, assessing the main characteristics of each of them.

Wood-burning fireplaces, an economical and ecological solution

Wood-burning fireplaces have accompanied man in much of his evolution, and that has allowed that, today, we can enjoy much better optimized, safe and efficient systems.

In fact, more and more people are opting for this heating system, and it not only allows to increase the temperature during the winter months, but also adapts to the decorative style while providing a much more pleasant and comfortable environment.

Among the main advantages of the wood burning fireplace we highlight:

  • It is a much cheaper heating system, since its maintenance is simple while the fuel can be obtained at a very low price.
  • It is a more ecological alternative, since it is a renewable energy source that also favors cleaning and pruning in forests, which improves the environment while also preventing fires.
  • It brings great elegance to the room where it is placed.
  • It has a great ability to adapt to different decorative styles.
  • It helps to get a more pleasant feeling.
  • It offers a heat of very good quality, and that is distributed homogeneously.
  • In addition to the heat, firewood offers other advantages for the senses such as the noise of wood when burning and even the smell of the burned firewood itself, which helps to offer an environment away from stress and much more comforting.
  • Depending on the model of wood burning fireplace, it can also be used for cooking and even as a forced heating system for the whole house.
  • It can also be used to support the heating system that we already have installed, which will mean a very substantial reduction in energy consumption, which affects both the pocket and the environmental impact.

As we can see, wood fireplaces not only aim to produce heat, but it is also a fantastic alternative that favors the family to gather around them, creating that pleasant feeling that only a wood burning fireplace can offer to any room.

Types of wood burning fireplace

Mainly we will find three types of wood burning fireplace, which are:

1. Open wood burning fireplaces

Let’s start with the most traditional type of wood burning fireplace and that is undoubtedly the best known, which is none other than open wood fireplaces.

An open wood burning fireplace is basically the fireplace that was formerly installed in homes, and that today is also used very frequently.

Its main feature is the fact that the fireplace is completely open, which means that there is no type of door or element between the room and the place where the combustion is taking place.

This type of fireplace is characterized by being more cozy, since it allows you to enjoy both the heat and the smell of firewood and even hear the sizzle during the burning, which can be very relaxing.

In the market there are different models with different characteristics, including from those that are designed to give a more classic and traditional touch, to others with modern touches and perfectly adapted to the latest decorative styles.

An advantage of this type of fireplace is its comfort, since you do not have to be opening or closing the door to keep the firewood burning, to which we must add another important benefit that is the fact that we will be able to cook with a simple grill, clay or iron saucepan and cast iron pan.

But we must also bear in mind that it has some drawbacks with respect to the other two alternatives, such as the fact that it is easier for the smoke to leave the room if it does not have a good shot, in addition to achieving lower efficiency at the level of heating, and firewood is consumed much more quickly.

Fireplace without door

2. Wood-burning fireplaces with closed chamber

The wood fireplaces with closed chamber are an evolution of the previous ones, and they are basically the same type of fireplace, but with a watertight door that separates the room from the place where the combustion is taking place.

This means very important advances such as the fact that the gases are maintained for much longer, which means that combustion will be slower, we will spend less firewood and at the same time we will take much better advantage of the heat it gives off, without forgetting that the gases are prevented from entering the room, avoiding fumes and bad odors.

On the other hand, we continue to enjoy good comfort, since to control combustion or add more firewood, we just have to open the door, and it will also serve us to cook if we wish.

For this type of chimney we find even more varieties with very varied shapes thanks to the fact that the combustion chamber is closed, so it does not have to have a shape as defined as in the case that it was opened, since the gases will be forced to leave through the place enabled for it.

This means that we can find square, round fireplaces for placement in the center of the rooms, inside work fireplaces, outside them and practically any other alternative we can imagine.

In short, it is one of the most interesting solutions to enjoy all the advantages of the traditional wood burning fireplace but with a better adaptation to both the decoration and the choice of place for its location.

Fireplace with closed chamber

3. Wood-burning fireplaces with double chamber

Finally there are the double chamber chimneys, which have been designed to generate a double combustion.

In the first chamber the firewood is introduced and is where the first combustion takes place, which causes the gases to pass to a second chamber where in turn the second combustion is generated, burning the residues of the first.

This has some very important advantages such as the fact that, by performing the second combustion, it is possible to increase the temperature more efficiently.

In this way we reduce wood consumption very substantially, the amount of waste produced is drastically reduced since even these gases are used from the second combustion, and in short, it is a more intelligent and complete system.

With it you can enjoy the highest quality of operation with minimum consumption and with a minimum generation of harmful gases, which also makes it a more ecological system.

Double combustion chimney
Image: cheminees-axis.com

Now that we have seen the different models, which one do you choose?

The solution will depend largely on the use you are going to give it. A home that is used sporadically is not the same as another in which we are every day.

My recommendation is that, if you are going to use the fireplace a lot, go for the dual camera model. It will be a larger initial investment, but in the long run it will be worth it.

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By Catharine Bwana