Fireplace Inserts

by Sal
(El Sobrante, Ca.)

Wood Burning Fireplace Insert

Wood Burning Fireplace Insert

I remodeled my home and removed my gas/wood burning fireplace insert.
I would like to use it to create an outdoor fireplace.
Would you suggest doing this?
My house was built in 1984.


Answer By Joe Trometer

Hello Sal, thanks for the question.

At first thought I would say, “sure, why not?”

The awesome thing about rehabbing is the ability to use your creativity not only in remodeling but also repurposing or reusing fixtures like your wood burning fireplace insert.

An outdoor fireplace adds ambiance, character to your property, and who doesn’t like to sit by the fire on a nice cozy evening,
sipping your favorite cocktails,
with friends?

That said, you may want to check with your City’s Building Department about local Codes like; distance from the house and the proper surrounding surface of your fireplace to name a couple things.

For example: the wood-burning insert is made of metal and probably wouldn’t look cool just sitting in the yard. What do you think?
It’ll probably get rusty although painting with fire-rated or hi-temp paint would be an easy maintenance fix for that.

If it’s placed freestanding on a cement or patio block patio,
it could look pretty okay.
It would be easy to place and easy to dispose of if you changed your mind or got tired of it.

On the Other Hand

How could you set that wood-burning insert (or gas) to add value to your home?

One thought might be to build a brick surround for it that compliments your yard, home, or patio.

With the brick surround I would venture to say that would make your insert a:
• Focal Point
• A Selling Point
• Add a little Value
• May Last Longer (weather protection)

At my house I have an open fire pit circled with granite rocks… for now.

I have an idea for a brick patio someday for my next rehabbing project.
I would love to place the enclosed fireplace insert concept we’re discussing here for a couple reasons:

• A brick surround would be safer around the children
• The controlled fire with the insert doesn’t need water extinguishing

I hope I gave you some ideas to think about.

I love questions like yours because we get to “Brainstorm” together and exchange ideas, but mostly it’s motivating to get our projects done and show them off.

Thanks for the question

Joe Trometer

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