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Date Created: 12/18/15
Technology To Create A Greener Fireplace One of the most cherished features of many homes is the fireplace, but incorporating it into your green lifestyle requires a few modifications to the traditional fireplace. Use the tips below to retain the charm of a fireplace while supporting your commitment to going green. If you have a traditional wood-burning fireplace the most obvious way you can turn it green is by choosing what you burn in your fireplace. While most people know not to burn garbage or newspaper, there are several choices you can make regarding the wood you burn in your fireplace. Today's technology can offer homeowners energy efficient and environmentally conscious ways of choosing what to burn in the fireplace. Manufacturers have produced a variety of logs for burning in your fireplace that are made of recycled materials. Sometimes you will see the letters WOCC on such products indicating they are made from waxed old corrugated containers. The ingredients in the logs are considered safe and the logs themselves produce less smoke than traditional fireplace logs. New technology offers homeowners the option of using wood pellets in traditional fireplaces. These pellets are made from leftover materials such as sawdust. You should not merely substitute wood pellets for traditional logs because you will first have to purchase a pellet basket that will make burning the pellets in your fireplace safe. Keeping the damper on a traditional fireplace closed when you're not using it can save a lot of heat and cooling loss through your open airway. Products such as a "Chimney Balloon" can be purchased and inserted up the chimney to produce a tighter seal and prevent air escaping through your chimney. These products must be removed before using the fireplace. Alternatives include repairing older dampers to make them fit more snugly and prevent heat and cooling losses. You can convert your fireplace into an electric fireplace by purchasing an insert. Electric fireplace inserts are very affordable and usually are fairly easy to install. There is no real "flame" created so that ventilation is not a factor. You can also buy fireplace tools and screens made from recycled materials so that you are a bit greener. The ashes from your fireplace can be used in a variety of ways from adding to your compost heap to specific additions to your gardening soil. The most important thing to do is to wait for the ash in your fireplace to cool. Once cool there are ash vacuums specifically designed to collect your fireplace ash. You can convert an old fireplace into a gas fireplace. These fireplaces require vents and installation by a professional who will hook them up to existing or new gas lines. More expensive than electric fireplaces, gas fireplaces have a real flame. The presence of a real flame often makes gas fireplaces preferable for homeowners over electric fireplaces. Enjoying your fireplace does not mean that you have to give up on going green. Use the tips above to consider how to incorporate green elements into your fireplace experience. Click here for more information
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