When you cozy up next to a crackling fire on a cold winter
day, you probably don't realize that your fireplace is one
of the most inefficient heat sources you can possibly use.
It literally sends your energy dollars right up the chimney
along with volumes of warm air.
A roaring fire can exhaust as much as 24,000 cubic feet
of air per hour to the outside, which must be replaced by
cold air coming into the house from the outside. Your heating
system must warm up this air, which is then exhausted through
your chimney. If you use your conventional fireplace while
your central heating system is on, these tips can help reduce
- If you never use your fireplace, plug and seal the chimney
- Keep your fireplace damper closed unless a fire is going.
- Keeping the damper open is like keeping a 48-inch window
wide open during the winter; it allows warm air to go right
up the chimney. ·
- When you use the fireplace, reduce heat loss by opening
dampers in the bottom of the firebox (if provided) or open
the nearest window slightly-approximately 1 inch-and close
doors leading into the room.
- Lower the thermostat setting to between 50° and 55°F.
- Install tempered glass doors and a heat-air exchange
system that blows warmed air back into the room. ·
- Check the seal on the flue damper and make it as snug
as possible. ·
- Add caulking around the fireplace hearth. ·
- Use grates made of C-shaped metal tubes to draw cool room
air into the fireplace and circulate warm air back into