I love to light a fire in my fireplace on chilly Winter nights — it's a great way to keep cozy. Or is it? Did you know that fireplaces are actually notorious for wasting energy? Much of the heat they produce goes up the chimney. When they're not in use, they also often allow cold drafts to sneak into your home through the chimney and suck warm air out of your living space as well. Don't abandon your fireplace, though. There are many ways you can make your fireplace more efficient and leave you with a much cozier home this holiday season!
- Ditch the throat damper on your fireplace in favor of a top sealing damper. It'll keep indoor air from escaping and outdoor air from entering, year-round.
- Although the look of fireplace glass doors is not everyone's style, they do maximize your fireplace's efficiency. By creating a barrier between the chimney and your room, they will cut back the amount of area that your furnace has to heat. They also create a safety barrier between you and the fire. This is especially important in homes with young children.
- Install a fireback on the back of your fireplace. It absorbs the fire's heat and sends it back into the room. It also protects the back wall from damage from the fire.
- Invest in a fireplace heater, which will heat the room's fresh air by pulling it in and sending it through a fire-heated chamber, without creating smoke.
- Install a chimney balloon. When positioned in the chimney, the chimney balloon prevents drafts from entering your house as well as heat from escaping when the fireplace isn't in use. When you want to start a fire, simply deflate it and remove.