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Old Smokey's Fireplace & Chimney's Blog

We have the Right Chimney Insert for You!

Nothing beats sitting around a nice warm fire with your family on a cold winter night. A fireplace can add warmth and ambiance to any home. Unfortunately, owning a fireplace can be costly and time-consuming to maintain. Or maybe you want to fix up a nonfunctional fireplace, but the cost getting it back in running order seems too pricey.  Have you ever thought about adding a chimney insert to your current chimney system? At Old Smokey’s we have the solution. Although we at Old Smokey’s love an original wood burning fireplace, there are a lot of benefits in considering a wood, gas or pellet stove insert.

What is a chimney insert?

A chimney insert is an appliance that is inserted into your current chimney’s firebox. The insert itself consists of a firebox which is surrounded by a steel shell. This outer shell helps direct more heat into the room, instead of into the masonry. The front of the insert contains a door where you can add fuel to your fire if you have a wood or pellet insert. Most inserts also have a window so that you can still see your fire.


Inserts on the market today are designed to be incredibly efficient compared to an open-hearth fireplace. Open hearth fireplaces pull air from your home and into the fire meaning they burn very fast and inefficient. FIreplace inserts, on the other hand, have a sealed, air-tight firebox. This means your fire will generate more heat and burn slower. In fact, some inserts can be up to 80 percent efficient. This is much better than the 5 to 10 percent efficiency of open hearth fireplaces.


Installing a chimney insert can be challenging. Although there may be a lot of “how to” videos and tutorials online, there are a lot of procedures that need to be followed exactly to manufacturer specifications. Besides fitting the firebox correctly inside the hearth, you also must be able to correctly install ventilation out of the top of the chimney. If any procedure is done incorrectly, it may become a fire hazard. That’s why it is important to have your insert installed by a Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) certified chimney technician. At Old Smokey’s, our chimney technicians have been trained and certified to install any type of chimney insert you like.

If you think that a chimney insert may be something you’re interested in. Don’t hesitate to call Old Smokey’s at 260-424-0009 or stop by our showroom today and let us help you pick out the perfect insert for your fireplace!

More Efficient Heat from a Fireplace Insert

Regency 1200A Wood Insert heating efficiency - Fort Wayne IN - Old Smokey's

Regency Classic™ I1200
Small Wood Insert

Not all fireplaces are created equal. Depending on the age of your home and/or the overall condition of your fireplace and all of its parts, you could be sending some serious money right up the chimney during the heating season; it’s estimated that a typical homeowner can lose up to 8% of valuable heated air from an typical open fireplace up the chimney. If reading this statistic has you even the slightest bit scared about using your fireplace as a heating source when the weather turns cold, don’t write it off just yet. The good news is you can transform your fireplace into an efficient room heater simply by adding a fireplace insert and increase your heating efficiency by up to 40%.


An insert is the answer to making your old fireplace more efficient without having to replace it, and, most of the time, they can be retrofitted to your existing wood-burning fireplace seamlessly. They solve two problems of heat escaping through the fireplace and up the chimney. First, inserts operate like stoves in the sense that you close the doors. Closing the doors allows the heat from the room to not flow up the chimney. Secondly, with the doors closed, they radiate the heat of the fire through circulating air vents to push the heat throughout the room, rather than just very hot in front of the fireplace.


Adding an insert will only slightly (in most cases) change the overall look of your fireplace; however, it can take it from a net energy loser to a helpful tool in keeping those skyrocketing heating costs at bay during the winter months. They can really add to the decor of a room and many very efficient inserts have old world traditional looks while some can be very modern looking to match your tastes and overall interior design of a room.


You’re probably sitting there wondering how much an insert is going to set you back. Nevertheless, they are affordable. Inserts can run anywhere from $2,000 to $4,000 depending on the time of year and your geographic location. This is an all-inclusive price, which includes installation and a new specialized chimney liner. In the US, sometimes there are tax breaks and deductions for moving into a more efficient burning appliance such as an insert, so check the most current IRS income tax code for some possible extra savings.


If you’re considering a fireplace insert, you have plenty of options from which to choose. Choosing the type of heater that best meets the needs of your particular application is as simple as deciding what’s most important to you:

  • If burning real wood and having heat even if the power goes out is your goal, choose a wood-burning insert.
  • If burning a bio-fuel without the hassle of wood in an attempt to minimize your carbon footprint is your goal, choose a pellet insert.
  • If flipping on fast heat in a particular portion of the home is your goal, choose a gas insert.

Because fuel prices are in a constant state of flux, any savings measurements are really just a moving target. Generally speaking, a homeowner who opts to have an insert installed is looking at an annual savings of anywhere from $75-$250 dollars. While this may not sound like a tremendous amount of savings considering the upfront costs of the insert itself, the savings over the long haul can and will really add up over the lifespan of the insert.

Your home is an investment, and, as such, any decision you make needs to include at least a small measure of foresight. Protecting your family and preserving your home and lifestyle is important. But what can you do to make sure that you’re enjoying the heating and venting systems in your home as safely as possible? That’s easy! Our technicians are certified, highly skilled, and extensively trained to provide you with the best in chimney care.

Our experts are ready and waiting to inspect, clean, repair, rebuild, or update your systems. Give us a call at 260-424-0009 or click here to speak with a team member or schedule an appointment!

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