A wood-burning fireplace insert is a miraculous option to increase the efficiency of your fireplace. No doubt that it also improves your overall experience with the fireplace.
Our demand has increased with the continuous modernization process, but the time and mentality of putting physical effort into something have decreased. So nowadays, it seems almost an impossible scenario that someone is chopping wood for their fireplace. However, from the point of view of environmental concern, this is also prohibited. So what to do to get warmth on cold days and the classic wood flames to soothe eyes? The simple and smart answer is a wood-burning fireplace insert.
A fireplace insert will cut off the extra costs of heating your place. It will help to get the maximum output from the fuel or energy you use. Moreover, an insert also promotes easy cleaning and simple maintenance.
So to make your life simpler and your fireplace the ultimate charm of your house, a fireplace insert is the best thing you have. With this write-up on the 8 best wood-burning fireplace inserts, you will have the hot list of popular and user-friendly fireplace insert options out there. But first, it’s suggested to glance at the knowledge guide on the fireplace to know the perks of a wood-burning fireplace insert, its alternatives, and other considerable factors to know before buying the best wood-burning fireplace insert.
Let’s get started.
Things to Consider before Buying Wood Burning Fireplace Inserts
What is a fireplace insert
The fireplace itself is inefficient; you have to use an insert to burn your fuel to get effective heat output. The insert is normally constructed of metal like steel or cast iron and has a wide glass panel for view. This glass panel on insert can be fixed (electric fireplace) and openable (wood-burning and gas insert). This glass panel is securely attached to the insert structure to make close combustion, whatever the fix is. You will get a blower that will push warm air through front vents on some wood-burning and gas fireplace insert. An insert is also important for safety. It will be a barrier between the fire and any physical contact.
Wood burning fireplace inserts and alternatives
By the word fireplace, the first scenario that comes to our mind is the traditional wood-burning fireplace. Wood-burning fireplace and inserts are classical and have been trending for a long, long time. But nowadays, with the increasing concern on environment and air pollution, we rely on clean and sustainable fuel options. For example, gas, electricity, vapor, etc.
However, wood can stoop back in sustainability, but the visuals and vibe of wood-burning flame are eternal and uncompromisable. That’s why fireplace and fireplace inserts designers have featured wood-burning effects on every fireplace insert. It can be artificial logs or LED screens that portray a real-like wood-burning effect. Whether it’s a gas insert, electric fireplace insert, or anything else, you can have the pleasure of watching woods burning.
That’s why in general other inserts can deliver the vibe of a wood-burning fireplace. If you can’t match or think of sustainable energy forms, you can opt for the alternatives of wood-burning fireplaces. Besides wood burning insert, this alternative insert option is heat efficient, comparatively cost-effective, easy to install and maintain. We are not discouraging you from getting wood-burning inserts. We are suggesting competitive alternative options of fireplace inserts for wood-burning ones.
Compatible with an existing fireplace
If you already have a fireplace in your home, then before buying an insert, you have to match the length, width, depth, and design with your existing fireplace. Otherwise, the insert will miss fit to the fireplace. As a result, the performance, looks, and other features will be interrupted. The same suggestion is for the one who is planning to build a new fireplace. You also match the design and space with the insert option you want to buy.
Efficiency and Heat output
The efficiency of a fire feature means its ability to give off heat compared to fuel usage. And among the insert option electric option is the 100% efficient one. It utilizes the energy entirely and delivers the same amount of heat. Gas options come just after the electric fireplace and then the wood-burning ones. Propane and natural gases can burn up to 98% efficiently. Where the percentage for wood can differ from 60% to 85%
In terms of giving off heat, wood-burning inserts are the most powerful ones. Gas fireplace inserts, especially natural gas, are the closest match for heat efficiency. Electric fireplace delivers decent heat output, and it delivers the cleanest and environment-friendly heat.
Except for the electric fireplace insert, others need maintenance regularly. If you use a wood-burning fireplace insert, it is better to clean the firebox after every ignition. For gas burning, you can schedule cleaning after every week or twice a week. However, every individual product has its procedure of cleaning, follow that strictly. Also, don’t change any part of a fireplace insert without consulting the professionals. Arrange mesh guards and protective screens when your fireplace is in use and as well as not in use.
Budget is an important consideration for fireplace insert. Because of its installation and maintenance, a fireplace is often considered a luxury item. But the service and purpose of a fireplace insert are worth it. Moreover, you will find a range of options at different prices to provide you with value-effective service. So getting the best out of your budget before buying a wood-burning or other fireplace, explore the marketplace. Also, compare the prices and consider the options that are bought and reviewed the most.
10 Best Wood Burning Fireplace Inserts
1. PuraFlame Western Electric Fireplace Insert
- Dimension: 29 59/64″ W X 23 3/16″ H X 7 51/64″ D
- Insert Type: Electric
For getting the cleanest warmth with the ultimate vibe of a traditional wood-burning fireplace, this PuraFlame Western electric fireplace is matchless. This fireplace insert can give you supplementary heat output to warm up to 400 sq. ft area. So this fireplace insert is an ideal option for living, bedroom, and other relaxing zones.
This 30-inch insert fits perfectly in any space because you don’t have to follow any strict assembly option. You can make it a free stand, wall recessed, or fit in an existing fireplace. Additionally, when the brick wall interior of this fireplace inserts pairs with a real-like resin log bed, it creates an exact ambiance of a wood-burning fireplace. However, with different flame, intensity, and brightness settings, you can attain the perfect ambiance every time with or without heat.
The heater on this fireplace insert is featured in high (1500W) and low (750W) heat settings. When not needed, you can easily go with an energy-saving mode. An inbuilt thermostat on this insert regulates the perfect inhouse temperature continuously. With a control panel on the top outlet, you get the convenient remotely operating option with this one.
2. Modern Flames Built-in Electric Fireplace Inserts
- Dimension: 27″ H x 39 3/4″ W x 9 7/8″ D
- Insert Type: Electric
The Modern Flames 42-inch electric fireplace insert is another favorite option for wood-burning fireplace insert alternatives. This insert will instantly change the outlook of your space. As it’s an electric insert, it will keep your place warm and cozy yet free of smoke, flying embers, and gas.
You can install this Modern Flame Redstone electric fireplace insert in any wall of your home that has a 10-inch depth. However, fitting it in an existing fireplace is easy and fun. The sleek black steel construction with a glass front will complement your place. And the flame you see in the display is powered by award-winning Hybrid-FX™ flame technology. You can customize and control the visual output as you like it. With the life-like artificial log set, the display effortlessly creates a surreal wood-burning fireplace view.
Moreover, this fireplace insert can get you up to 5000BTUs heat output for a 400 sq. ft. supplementary zone. It has two different heat output settings. 1465W for maximum heat output, and 750W for the low setting. Additionally, with the featured thermostat of this insert, you will get automatically optimized heat output. Other than these exclusive services, this insert has more to offer you, like the remote control, sleep timer, without heat flame option, and so on.
3. Dynasty Forte Electric Fireplace Insert
- Dimension: 30″ H x 34″ W x 12″ D
- Insert Type: Electric
For an existing fireplace, the Dynasty Forte electric fireplace is a deserving option. You can update your wood-burning or gas fireplace with this electric fireplace insert. The installation process is easy and less time-consuming. We don’t have to spend extra bucks for a vent or chimney and not even a special power outlet. This electric fireplace insert is compatible to use in regular household power outlets of 120V.
This Dynasty Forte fireplace insert is all way energy saving and CSA certified. You can get up to 5200BTUs heat output per hour to warm a 400 sq. ft. space. Moreover, it has a thermostat to balance the optimum temperature. This insert is also protected from overheat and circuit breaks. You can opt-out for high and low heat settings. And whatever the heat is, this fireplace insert’s front glass panel is always cool to touch.
On the display specification, you will get 4 flame settings. You can adjust the brightness, flickering speed, and flame height. Along with the heat, you can enjoy the wood flame visuals without heat. This fireplace insert also offers a timer setting, temperature control, and a thermostat with remote control.
4. Comfortbilt HP22i Pellet Stove Insert
- Dimension: 24.5” H x 21″ W x 18″ D
- Insert Type: Wood/ pellet stove
The comfortable HP22i pellet stove insert for the fireplace is a conclusive option for a wood-burning fireplace insert. The design, build quality, and material all fall in the line of an ideal fireplace insert. Moreover, this ComfortBlit pellet stove comes in a basic dimension of 24.5-inch high, 21-inch wide, and 18-inch that is perfect to put-in in any existing fireplace or free-standing.
It’s a heavy gauge material-made insert that uses wood pellets as fire fuel. Pellet is a firewood alternative that burns more efficiently without producing more smoke, ash, or chars. With its inbuilt blower, you can get 42000BTUs heat output from this fireplace insert. However, this amount of heat is adequate to warm up 2000 sq. ft easily.
This wood-burning fireplace insert option is EPA, and CSA certified, so you can use this without worrying about the local rules. Additionally, this fireplace insert has a thermostat and five different power settings to serve you warmth with more safety and efficiency. Also, this ComfortBilt pellet stove fireplace insert has an individual chamber for holding the ash. And each HP22i model insert comes with a $59.99 worth of free ash vacuum.
5. Ashley Hearth AW1820E Wood Stove Insert
- Dimension: 20.2” L x 27.2” W x 22.4” D
- Insert Type: Wood Stove
For making your fireplace more efficient and getting the maximum heat output, no doubt this Ashley Hearth wood stove fireplace insert would be the best. This wood-burning fireplace insert is an EPA-certified fireplace insert that encourages great output with less emission and harm to the environment.
From this 75 percent efficient fireplace insert, you will get 69000BTUs output per hour. And that is enough to warm up an 1800 sq. ft area well. It comes with a 100 CFM blower so you can get maximum warmth. This 23.25-inch deep insert accepts logs up to 18-inch length, and it has a fully airtight combustion chamber, so you will not lose any heat at all.
This wood-burning fireplace insert is made with a heavy cast iron body with an air wash ceramic glass door. The construction is powerful, and it delivers amazing views of wood flame. The door has a cool-to-touch wood handle, so you can open the door easily to manage the burning woods.
6. Vogelzang Plate Steel Wood Burning Insert
- Dimension: 26.31” W x 21” L x 21.5” D
- Insert Type: Wood/ pellet stove
The Vogelzang wood-burning fireplace insert is an EPA-certified option to make your home warm and cozy with the minimal environmental threat. It’s a well-constructed fireplace insert and has 75 percent heating efficiency. However, it’s a highly considerable option for wood-burning fireplace lovers.
This fireplace insert is enclosed with a heavy gauge reinforced steel plate with fire brick lining. You can put up to 18-inch logs inside. This insert is suitable for an 1800 sq. ft area, and it can deliver a heat output of 69000 BTUs per hour. Additionally, an adjustable high-speed (100 CFM) blower is included with this insert to facilitate more warmth.
You can install this 26-inch dimensional wood-burning insert to your new fireplace. However, it is also compatible with existing fireplaces that had previously featured the TR004 colonial model of Vogelzang and other 2200IE models. In every way, this insert’s large 16.5-inch ceramic glass window offers great visuals.
7. Duluth Forge Dual Fuel Ventless Fireplace Insert
- Dimension: 29.5″ H x 29.1″ W x 15.6″ D
- Insert Type: Ventless Gas
The Duluth Forge ventless fireplace insert is a great option to give your space warmth and a nifty look. This insert is remarkably efficient in delivering heat up to 32000BTUs per hour. A 1500 sq. ft will swiftly come under the coverage. So you can opt-out for this one for a large living, lobby, or common corporate space.
This insert is rated 99.9% efficient, and it has a dual-ported vent-free gas burner so that you will get adequate and even warmth. Additionally, it’s a dual fuel-enabled insert option. You can use either natural gas or propane, whichever is convenient for you. With this fireplace insert, you will get 6 hand-painted ceramic fiber logs. That will give you a perfect wood-burning flame effect in no time.
The Duluth forge fireplace insert is a complete vent-free option. You don’t need to spend money or time on any duct or chimney. Additionally, this gas fireplace insert is featured with O.D.S. and automatically shuts off to ensure your reliable safety. However, along with secure piezo ignition, you can operate this insert with a remote controller.
8. Real Fyre Valley Oak Vent-Free Gas Log Set Insert
- Dimension: 24″
- Insert Type: Ventless Gas
The Real Fyre log set fireplace insert is a simple and minimal option for light users. The set is perfect to put in an existing wood-burning fireplace or ventless firebox. In every way, this logs set portrays an outstanding vibe of real-like wood-burning flames.
You can fuel this ventless fireplace insert with propane or natural gas. In both fuel supplies, this insert can deliver warmth up to 9500BTUs. So you can use this insert for your wide living space, lobby, and home library. Besides decent warmth, this fireplace insert is easy to install and maintain.
This log set fireplace insert has a convenient ignition process. You can follow the manual process or go for the remote control option. For manual lighting, you will have a simple push-button ignitor. Moreover, this fireplace insert is CSA and ANSI-approved. And this one is also featured with O.D.S. (Oxygen Depletion Sensor) for a secure and safe experience.
Frequently Asked Question
Can you put a fireplace insert in an existing fireplace?
Yes, you can put a fireplace insert in an existing fireplace. Moreover, to the most extent, it is the convenient, time and budget-worthy way of building, rebuilding, or renovating your fireplace. This insert comes in various designs, sizes, and shapes. All you have to do is select a perfect fit for your existing fireplace according to the design and dimension of the fireplace.
What is the purpose of a fireplace insert?
The purpose of a fireplace insert is to make your existing fireplace efficient and active. The insert is a completely sealed box that works as the combustion chamber for your fireplace. It keeps the fire or heating mechanism inside and provides you with favorable heat and warmth. A fireplace insert also elevates efficient fuel use, clean heat output, and convenience.
Are fireplace inserts worth it?
Yes, for sure, a fireplace insert is worth it. Compared to the total maintenance cost of a traditional fireplace, an insert delivers you decent payoff in less cost and effort. However, in the long run, an insert is a flexible option. You can change it any time and install the latest one with more features and outputs.
Are fireplace inserts a standard size?
No, fireplace inserts don’t come in a specific size. They come in different dimensions, designs, heat and fuel specifications. You have to choose the ideal one suitable for your existing fireplace or the place you want to have a fireplace. While selecting, you can maintain harmony with your interior. You can select by the size of your space. Or you can opt-out for the efficient one compatible with your existing fireplace.
Does fireplace insert increase home value?
For sure, a fireplace insert increases the home resale value up to 6-12 percent. It is stated by the top-notch appraisers of the real estate industry. However, you can get up to 100 percent recovery of the expenses of the total set up of the fireplace and insert.
In this review guide, we have included other fireplace inserts that are competitive with wood-burning fireplace inserts. Along with remarkable heat output, these alternative inserts are harmless to the environment (especially electric ones), easy to install, offer user-friendly operative features, and low off and maintenance. Besides these amazing features, every insert option will give you an uncompromisable wood-burning flame effect. And the rest, wood-burning fireplace inserts, are efficient, affordable, and less contradicting environmental concerns.
We hope this article might be helpful to you in selecting an ideal fireplace insert option for your fireplace. Wish you the best for your purchase. Keep exploring!