As homes become more insulated and sealed to be energy efficient, few have given consideration to those that have solid fuel and gas fireplaces. To burn effectively a fire needs a source of fresh air (oxygen) to provide combustion.
Some fires have a built in air intake from outside to provide fresh air. However, it’s likely the majority of fireplaces simply take air from inside the home. Many in well-sealed homes will be experiencing fires that don’t burn robustly and often the owners blame the fuel (eg. firewood). This is becoming a particular problem in the cooler South Island of New Zealand where fireplaces are still very popular.
Using up the air trapped in the home is not a good idea, especially as it’s likely to be warm air that is costly to replace. It is also surprising how much toxic smoke and gases are released into the interior of the house if the ‘draw’ up the chimney is insufficient.
A simple solution to provide adequate fresh air to the fireplace cheaply and efficiently is with an Unovent fitted in the room where the fireplace is situated. For a few cents per month the Unovent will provide draft free fresh air from the ceiling space. If used as a dedicated air supply to the fire (recommended) it should be fitted with an on/off switch.
If the home is fitted with a multi-vent system, the single unit in the area of the fireplace can be wired to bypass the Unobrain. This would be necessary as in cold weather the ‘brain’ will have switched the system off.
This is an elegant and simple solution to a problem that is becoming quite common in modern insulated homes. Other ‘ducted’ ventilation systems cannot provide this solution.
Call us or have a chat to your nearest Unovent supplier to discuss this issue.
Image courtesy of BrianHolm at FreeDigitalPhotos.net