Wood burning stove vs. wood burning insert

Old 07-02-07, 10:32 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 850
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Wood burning stove vs. wood burning insert

Can someone explain the difference?

I have a chance to get a free wood burning stove in really good condition. Can I use it in my existing fireplace chimney?
Old 07-03-07, 12:53 PM
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 1
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
what about Enerzone

Hi Stumped,
I had the same question. What do you think about these stoves?

Last edited by DIYaddict; 07-03-07 at 01:55 PM. Reason: Advertising link removed. This is not allowed. Please read the rules
Old 07-03-07, 01:54 PM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA - N.E.Tn
Posts: 45,166
Received 742 Upvotes on 648 Posts
An insert is designed to fit in the firebox. I've seen wood stoves piped into the firebox but you have to use metal to block off the rest of the firebox opening. You would also need a good safe place to set the wood stove as the hearth is likely too narrow.
Old 10-10-07, 02:43 AM
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: WA
Posts: 37
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
I agree with "marksr". I've installed a Jotul wood stove and connected it to the existing chimney of the masonry fireplace.

At a minimum this means extending the hearth (typically 18" beyond the front and sides of the stove, to protect the floor from sparks) and blocking the chimney with a metal plate (to block the smell of creosote dripping into the old fireplace).

In addition, I had to install a single-wall stainless steel chimney inside the old masonry chimney, since it was difficult to determine the condition of the old chimney (previous damage from excessive heat). In a single storey house, the old masonry chimney might not be tall enough, if the wood stove is to draw properly with the door open.

To your original question: The virtue of a wood stove (vs. fireplace insert) is that the wood stove throws off a lot more heat. With a fireplace insert, most of the heat goes up the chimney.

The only negative of a wood stove is appearance: A wood stove sitting in front of a fireplace doesn't look quite right. Architects and interior decorators worry about such things.
Old 10-10-07, 06:11 AM
logcabincook's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Rocky Mountain Foothills
Posts: 517
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
lary described the heat issue well. Friends have a stove insert and our wood stove kicks their heat output to the curb. Up here in the hills, most folks have wood or pellet stoves since we use them as primary heat sources (especially with the high gas prices!). The stoves have a nice old fashioned look and feel to them, even if they are a modern design. I personally do not like inserts because they look like a retrofit.

Check out the age and specs on your free wood stove - some burn more efficiently and/or put out less smoke than others. Ours is a modern Morso with a catalytic converter which burns off the off-gasses. Because of this it's EPA approved and you can neither see nor smell the smoke when the stove is going (except when it first starts up or starts to smolder). Then again we had a very old potbelly stove in a very old previous home and that thing worked like a champ.

Regardless of your choice, be sure you use well seasoned wood. We burn pine because we have so much (too much) and it takes about 6-8 months to fully season, hardwoods could take longer. Burning wet wood will just frustrate you.

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Ask a Question
Question Title: