There’s something special about houses with wood-burning stoves. They fill a home with warmth and a sense of comfort. They’re in such high demand because they pull people back to a time where groups gathered around fireplaces, bonding as they soaked in its heat. It’s been a while since wood-burning stoves were a standard part of home construction, especially since central heating has replaced much of the practical need for a fireplace.
Even people in houses with fireplaces don’t often use them. However, more and more homeowners are installing wood-burning stoves because they are practical and have old-time allure. There’s something that appeals to the primitive part of our brains when it comes burning wood to keep warm.
Maintaining a wood-burning stove isn’t easy, though, and where it’s installed will have a big impact on its performance. Here are five designer tips on where to place a wood-burning stove.
- Decide How Many Rooms You Want Heated
The stove might look perfect in your living room corner next to the sofa where you can stare at mountain views in front of the fire. It could be great in the basement where the family spends all of its time watching TV and playing board games. You might know a few places in the house where it would look awesome, but the first thing you need to decide is how much of the house you want it to heat.
It may be obvious, but how close rooms are to the stove will determine how much heat they get. Rooms farther away will be colder. Some houses try to position wood-burning stoves in a central location so that the heat touches as many rooms as possible. If one room needs to be shortchanged, let it be the kitchen because it will warm up when you’re cooking.
One thing to keep in mind too, is that different models of wood-burning stoves are capable of heating larger areas. Have a general idea about how much square footage you want heated before you make a purchase.
- Consider How Air Temperature Will Affect Drafts
It might seem odd that the best place to install a wood-burning stove is in a central location, but that’s where it will be most efficient. When chimneys are placed on the outside or adjacent to the exterior of the house, they are more easily impacted by cold weather.
Hot air rises, and cold air falls. As the heated air from the fire makes its way up the chimney, cold outside air cools the chimney. The hot air struggles to make its way up the chimney and can reduce draft. Smoke can retreat back down and into the house. By installing a wood-burning stove in a central location, the chimney stays warmer and creates a good upward draft that carries smoke out.
- Don’t Install Near Anything Combustible
A capable virtual room designer will let you know that you should never install a wood-burning stove near a bunch of stuff that can catch fire easily. Burning wood snaps, breaks, and pops, shedding sparks that can be a fire hazard. Keeping a stack of old newspapers near the stove isn’t the brightest thing a homeowner can do. This goes for combustible walls too. Wood-burning stoves should be installed at least 36 inches away from combustible walls. A lot of homeowners with stoves also place sheet metal on walls around the stove to prevent them from absorbing too much heat. There needs to be enough room around the stove so you can tend the fire and respond quickly if anything gets out of control. Placing your wood-burning stove on a surface that is non-flammable, such as limestone, is also very important.
- Placing Stove Near Ceiling Fans Will Improve Air Flow
We’ve touched on the consideration of how many rooms you want to heat with the stove but thinking about airflow is also important. The way a house is built will affect how heat moves through rooms. Some people with wood-burning stoves experience significant drops in heat just twenty feet from the stove because of air flow in the house.
Walls, doorways, and even leaky windows that suck hot air outside can reduce heat throughout the home. Installing the stove near ceiling fans is a great way to spread hot air evenly as it’s generated. The fans will help push heat around corners and into adjacent rooms. Some wood-burning stoves come with blowers that do the work for you.
- Place in an Area that will Minimize Upkeep
Remember, having a wood-burning stove means carrying wood inside from the cold, dirty, and even snowy outdoors. Wood flakes and splinters fall all over the place. As wood burns, it creates ash and dust that spreads over the stove and around the floor. You probably don’t want to install a wood-burning stove next to a white carpet or light blue sofa.
Wood-burning stoves work best when they’re placed where they can be tended to easily. You don’t want to worry about where you’re dropping a pile of logs to use for the night. It also needs to be somewhere you can sweep and dust regularly, so that hard to reach corner probably isn’t the best spot.
Installing a wood-burning stove is a great way to warm your house and keep energy costs low. They’re a wonderful throwback to older times. Homeowners all love to have coffee or read a book as they relax in front of the fire and enjoy its warmth.
Choosing the right place for installation is an important choice if you’re thinking about getting a stove. The right location will heat the house effectively and keep you safe from fire dangers. Luckily, the growing popularity of wood-burning stoves means that designers have more experience placing them. Virtual room designers are a great choice for recommendations because they can give you several options on possible installation spots. Take the leap and get one installed so you can start enjoying all the benefits of a great wood-burning stove.