How to Install Fireplace Heat Exchangers
Installing fireplace heat exchangers in a home is safer than installing traditional wood-burning fireplaces. When it comes to producing heat in a room, traditional wood-burning fireplaces are inefficient at producing enough heat and are dangerous fire hazards too. Fireplace heat exchangers are able to circulate more warm air into the room from the fireplace, thus heating the room more efficiently. It is a safer alternative because it uses a series of tubes and pipes that are inserted around the firebox or the chimney. Installing fireplace heat exchangers are not difficult. Simply follow the step-by-step instructions below.
Step 1 – Bend the Pipe
Bend the 5 galvanized threaded steel pipes into "C" shapes of equal sizes with a pipe bender. As the fire will be at the bottom of the "C" section, let the bottom section of the "C" be longer than the top section when bending the pipes. Curve and make the pipe into a "C" until its ends are approximately 24 inches apart from each other, ensuring that they point in the same direction.
Step 2 – Drill Holes
Use an electric drill to drill 2 bolt holes through the walls at the top and bottom section of each "C" pipe. Then, drill 5 holes, equally spaced out, into the steel bar. Measure 1 inch with a measuring tape from one end of the steel pipe, and drill a hole. Then, drill 4 holes 5 inches apart from one another. Then, drill a 1-inch hole in all the 5 end caps. Use the filer to file the hole edges smooth.
Step 3 – Assemble
Screw the 5 end caps onto the top section of each C-shaped steel pipe. Then, use a bolt and nut to bolt one 22-inch steel bar vertically (bolt it in such a way that it creates a 90-degree angle to the pipe) to the bottom section of each "C" pipe. Do the same across the top section. This will form a 22-inch wide fire heat exchanger which consists of 5 "C" pipes spaced out equally.
Step 4 – Paint the Heat Exchanger
Paint the fireplace heat exchanger with a heat resistant metal paint and paint brush. Painting prolongs the life of the exchanger.
Step 5 – Set Up
Put 4 bricks, side by side to form a square, into the fireplace. Place the heat exchanger on top of the bricks, with the ends of the pipes facing outwards (towards the room). Elevating it improves the flow of air in the fireplace. Set the fire inside the "C" area at the bottom. As the fire heats up the pipes, the hot air will be forced out of the top section through the end caps. The cold air will be sucked in through the holes at the bottom of the pipes.