What Venting System Should You Choose for Your Fireplace?

December 30, 2020 6:53 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

When you have a fireplace installed at your home, it is important that you plan for proper ventilation. While there are a few types of fireplaces in Seattle, WA that do not need any venting to the outdoors, all traditional fireplaces with gas, wood or pellet fuel sources will need to be able to circulate air to prevent the byproducts of combustion from getting into your home’s air and potentially causing illness.

There are several methods of ventilation you can choose from, and each of these fireplace vent types in Seattle, WA has their own advantages to consider. Here’s a quick overview of what you should know.

Venting gas fireplaces

There are three common ways for natural gas fireplaces to be vented:

  • Direct vent technology: In this type of ventilation system, there’s a sealed combustion system that draws outside air for the fire and then expels all of the combustion exhaust and other byproducts to the exterior of the home.
  • B-vent/natural venting: This type of system is not sealed. Instead, it draws air from the room into the combustion chamber, and then any exhaust is routed out through the roof via a pipe.
  • Ventless: This method requires a much higher burn temperature, which prevents combustion byproducts from getting into the air.

Of these three, direct vent technology is both the newest and by far the most common. It is popular due to its high level of efficiency, combined with its safety and versatility. It does not require an existing chimney, which means it can be used in just about any home.

Venting wood fireplaces

While wood-burning fireplaces are much easier to install and maintain now than they were in years past, they do not have quite as many options for ventilation as gas fireplaces.

All wood-burning hearths need to be vented vertically through the roof to the outdoors. This means construction of the fireplace must occur through the roof, and there needs to be some additional finishing in the interior and exterior of the home after installation of the hearth.

The firebox must be surrounded by non-combustible board, framing and header, and there must be a metal vent pipe that runs from the fireplace through a flue and chimney liner that gets installed within an existing masonry chimney. The liner will then be topped with a vertical termination cap.

Wood-burning stoves require some similar ventilation needs as wood fireplaces, as they require a chimney that vents vertically over the roof line. However, a standalone stove features a closed system, so it vents through a ventilation pipe to the chimney, versus a wood-burning fireplace that only needs a chimney liner for its ventilation. A pipe will connect the firebox to the chimney and then release smoke and draw in fresh air.

Interested in learning more about how to ventilate different types of fireplaces? We encourage you to contact Custom Fire Art to learn more about fireplace venting in Seattle, WA and the specific type of ventilation system that will be best for your setup.

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