November 19, 2019
Coming home on a cold winter’s night after a day at the ski hill or an afternoon at the ice rink to frost covered windows and a fresh dusting of snow on your entryway porch may warm your heart but it certainly won’t warm you up. If only you saw the crackling glow of a fireplace past that frosty glass to welcome you home.
Instead, you open your front door to a room that’s cramped, unorganized and certainly not warm or welcoming.
Don’t pack up and move when your current reality doesn’t match your dream – renovate your home and create your very own cozy sanctuary.
Rekindling Your Love for Your Home
Unless your home was a custom build, it wasn’t made with you in mind. And while you may love your neighbourhood or certain aspects of your home, the whole thing may not be working for you.
Renovating your space to match your lifestyle gives your home the personalization you’ve been wanting. Creating that open-concept living space or adding additional storage to your bedroom are all ways you can customize your home to your needs. In the end, it’s the feeling of your home that matters. Does your home make you relax and unwind? Does it warm you up on a cold night?
Adding or revamping a fireplace can infuse your house with the ambiance it’s been missing! Beyond anchoring the design of the room or heating your home, a fireplace adds feeling. It welcomes you home and invites you to curl up and enjoy the warmth it brings to your space.
Choosing the Right Kind of Flame
In your bedroom, living room, office or basement, your fireplace needs to serve its function, but also fit with the style of your home. Different fuel sources can offer a variety of different ambience and heat options to best suit your decor and lifestyle.
Choosing between a gas, electric and wood will depend on where you put the fireplace and what you’re hoping to achieve.
At the touch of a button, you have a flame. Gas fireplaces are ideal for the convenience of turning a fire on and off without any clean up.
Gas fireplaces provide zone heating; producing heat in the rooms you use the most without needing to heat the entire home like you would with a furnace. They can also be set to run off of a wall or remote thermostat to automatically turn on when the temperature drops below your preferred setting.
These are easiest to install when your home has an existing gas or propane line and can be added just about anywhere.
Most modern gas fireplaces use a Direct-Vented system that keeps the fireplace sealed from the home and takes air from outside to fuel the fire rather than using pre-heated room air. These fireplaces have flexible installation requirements and can be installed by venting through an exterior wall or vertically through a roof.
If there is another storey above your desired location, it’s best to place it near an exterior wall for a simpler, more cost-effective installation.
A classic wood-burning fireplace might bring back memories of everyone snuggled up around the fire on a dark, starry night at your childhood cabin. The smell of freshly cut wood, a light crackle in the background and the ceremony of lighting your own fire are all draws to a wood fireplace.
A wood-burning fireplace can be either an open-faced style that is mainly designed for the aesthetics and ambiance or a sealed-door, high-efficient fireplace that is focused on providing heat.
An open-faced fireplace provides the snap, crackle and pop associated with a wood fire, but without being sealed, it takes air from the room and provides less heat.
A fireplace with a sealed door will dampen the sounds but concentrate the heat and provide a more complete burn of the wood – releasing more heat.
With both styles, the chimney location is an important part of the installation planning since the pipe needs to vent vertically, all the way through to the exterior of the roof.
Unlike gas or electric, owning a wood-burning fireplace requires a little more maintenance in chimney sweeping, access to a wood supply and cleaning the ashes after a burn.
To create a seamless focal point in a room with your TV hung directly above your fireplace, an electric fireplace can be a great option. While some gas fireplaces are designed to mount a TV above them without issue, the low heat output of an electric fireplace can simplify the design.
When your renovation budget is more focused on the functionality of the room than the ambiance and less heat is required in the room, an electric fireplace might be just the right compromise. These ventless fireplaces can be placed anywhere in your home where an electrical outlet is available or could be added during the renovation. They also come in a variety of designs, so finding one that fits your style is easy and comes with little to no maintenance.
Striking Your Perfect Match
The appeal of adding or sprucing up your existing fireplace is obvious, but there are a few other steps to be had before picking your favourite design.
Together with Diamond Fireplace, your renovation contractor will help you pick the best fit and placement of your fireplace based on your home’s current layout, your goals for the renovation and what can practically be installed.
Your contractor will ensure that your renovation follows all of the bylaws required in Calgary and area and flag any additional considerations like how a fireplace may affect your home insurance. They will also help you extend the value of your home by helping you price your renovation and finishes based on your neighbourhood resale brackets.
Find out How to Add a Fireplace to Your Home Renovation