Design Guide: The Different Types of Fireplaces

Kitchens are often said to be the heart of the home but we can definitely make an argument for fireplaces too. A focal point to a space and a great area to gather, fireplaces enhance ambiance and add value to your home.

Cooler weather is approaching and there’s just something so cozy about sitting near a warm fire, chatting with family and friends. Making s’mores is also a fireside activity both adults and kids alike enjoy! There are many fireplace options you could incorporate into your home or outdoor space but there are three main types you should consider. Understanding which style is best for you can be overwhelming so we’ve laid out a quick guide on all the types of fireplaces available as well as some additional options. Take a look below!

Electric Fireplaces

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An electric fireplace is simply an electric heater that mimics a fireplace burning coal or wood. When renovating a home, people often opt to replace their old, conventional fireplace with an electric one because of the various benefits they have to offer. Electric fireplaces are powered by a plug in your wall, so no fumes are being released into your home. Because it is not actually burning wood to produce heat, it is low maintenance and easy to clean. Using an electric fireplace is extremely simple, and its appearance can be designed in a wide range of unique ways! They are a great, stylish and safe choice for your Atlanta home. Interested in visiting an Atlanta fireplace store to learn more? Visit CR Lighting to speak to a specialist!

Gas Fireplaces

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Gas fireplaces look like real wood fires and act alike, too! They produce a small amount of smoke that requires venting, but the fire is produced by (…you guessed it…) gas! A gas-burning fire is more manageable than a wood-burning fire because you can control the amount of gas being used to ignite the flame. If you want more heat, all it takes is a simple adjustment. The second you would like to cease the fire; you can turn off the gas and the fire will quickly dissipate.

There are two options within this fireplace category to consider: gas logs or gas inserts. Stop by our CR Home Design Center to see our selection of both!

Gas Log Fireplaces

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Gas logs offer all of the ambiance and warmth of a real, wood-burning fire but without the mess! Gas logs are typically made up of ceramic but can be fashioned to look like any type of wood from oak to driftwood or more. Gas fireplace logs in Atlanta are a great option for several reasons:

  • They are less effort than wood-burning fires because you won’t have to lug around heavy bundles of wood.
  • There is no dust or soot produced, so it is a much easier clean up (if you need clean-up at all) and lower maintenance.
  • No wood needs to be chopped!

Gas Fireplace Inserts

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Gas inserts are extremely popular but often mistaken for a regular fireplace. Gas inserts are exactly what they sound like – an insert that is installed into an already-existing fireplace. It requires very little, if any, construction because it is made to fit into any opening. Inserts are designed to replace wood fireplaces for a cleaner alternative.

Wood Fireplace

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The classic of all fireplaces is the wood-burning fireplace. It is hard to replicate the beautiful ambiance that a wood fire creates. The atmosphere, the warmth, the sound and the smell are all things that people love about natural wood fires. Although new alternatives have become increasingly popular, wood fireplaces are still a beneficial and one-of-a-kind choice to have in a home. The cost is unbeatable, as you only have to pay for the logs when you want to use it. Or you can buy chopped fireplace wood in bulk and store it in the garage for a long-lasting supply. You also do not need to depend on electricity for its use. Use a wood fireplace when the power goes out for lighting, to keep warm, and maybe even cooking!

Fireplace Mantels

A mantel, also known as a chimneypiece, was traditionally designed as a hood to catch the smoke of a fire. With the innovative fireplaces that the current day market offers, mantels are becoming more evolved and changing into elaborate designs for style purposes rather than sole functionality. It represents a decorative framework for the focal point of your home. The option for mantel renovations are limitless!

Fireplace Surrounds

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The surround of a fireplace is the outer part of the wall that surrounds the opening of the fire. This is typically made up of brick or durable stone, such as limestone, granite, marble, etc. Nowadays, surrounds can be made from various materials and are most popularly chosen by personal design preference and overall room aesthetic!

From traditional to contemporary and everything in between, porcelain fireplace surrounds are becoming one of the most popular trends in home decorating. Whether your fireplace is indoors or outdoors on the patio, Infinity porcelain can turn any fireplace into a work of art. Find this alluring porcelain exclusively at UMI Atlanta!

Outdoor Fireplaces

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Outdoor fireplaces come in all different styles from wood to electric, gas and more. Although very similar, outdoor fireplaces differ from indoor fireplaces for a variety of reasons:

  • Outdoor fireplaces are generally less expensive than indoor ones
  • They are typically larger in size and contain a voluminous firebox in comparison to indoor counterparts
  • Because they are located outside, outdoor fireplaces may require a chimney cap to prevent the spreading of sparks on a windy day
  • Durability is a top priority when building an outdoor fireplace because they need to withstand weather related elements and climate change exposure

Decorative Chimney Tops

There are two types of fireplaces that result in different chimneys: masonry fireplaces and prefabricated fireplaces. Masonry fireplaces are the traditional fireplace that you may envision made up of bricks, blocks or stone. Prefabricated, or factory built, fireplaces are the “newcomers” to the fireplace scene, made mostly from metal. Depending on the type of fireplace you have installed in your home, there is an extensive array of chimney top options for you to change the outer look of your fireplace. From tall ribbed shroud, masonry shroud, king chimney top and more, your home will appear different and more unique than the neighbor next door.

Drastically improve the aesthetic and resale value of your home with a fireplace!

If you’re looking to upgrade an existing system or add some warmth to your space we carry a number of options for all types and our installation teams are factory-trained to ensure safe installation.

Fireplaces can be an essential element to a home and its overall function and appearance. Fireplaces aren’t as commonly placed in modern day home builds as they were in older homes. For this reason, it’s ok to be picky about the type of fireplace you install in your home to ensure you get the best use and value from it!

Talk with a professional team member at one of our many fireplace showrooms, in Atlanta/Buckhead, Decatur, Norcross, Destin, Santa Rosa/Miramar Beach, to find the best style to suit your needs and to browse our extensive collection in person.

You can also view more of our blog for other useful information for your home renovation.