Anyone who has an old fireplace that isn’t contributing anything to the home may want to find themselves a suitable wood stove insert. These appliances allow the homeowner to turn their old fireplaces into a useful tool for adding supplemental heating to the home. And since these products also look pretty good, they can transform that ugly old firebox into the focal point of a room.
There’s a little bit more involved in discovering a great insert than merely choosing one that looks good, however. It’s also important to choose one that fits your old fireplace and one that’s highly efficient. Although we can’t help you choose the right insert size, what we can do is list some of the top inserts currently available, so you can choose among some of the best models manufactured.
Most Efficient Wood Stove Inserts, Reviews
#10 Duluth Forge Dual Fuel Insert
This Duluth Forge Dual Fuel Insert is a great option if you’re looking specifically for a fuel-efficient fireplace. Especially if you live in a warm climate, you don’t necessarily need an extremely powerful fireplace. This fireplace does produce however about 32,000 BTUs of heat which adds a comfortable level of warmth to the room. It’s extremely efficient with a 99.9% rating and has a dual precision ported vent free gas burner. It doesn’t require an outside duct or chimney so you can easily install it just about anywhere in your house.
- Very economical
- Realistic wood logs
- Remote control thermostat
- Not ideal for main heat source
#9 PuraFlame Fireplace Insert
Although this insert doesn’t require the addition of real wood logs to operate, you wouldn’t be able to tell with its life-like log design. With optional heat settings, this fireplace can successfully add a little bit of heat to your space in the Winter or be used without heat to set the mood on a Summers night. A remote control is also provided for easy operation. This insert is 35.04″ x Height: 26.99″ x Depth: 8.78″ and is extremely easy to install. Especially if you live in a warmer climate and you’re looking for something more for ambiance and not necessarily for heat, this fireplace insert is definitely a great option.
- Custom options with heat control and flame colors
- Easy to install and uninstall
- Life-like logs
- Not to be used as main heat source
#8 Timberwolf Economizer EPA Fireplace Insert
The Timberwolf Economizer is a very nice-looking fireplace that is designed to be installed into an old fireplace with a minimum opening of 25-7/8-inches wide, 14-inches deep and 22-inches high. This product needs a 6-inch flue diameter and is a top vented insert. It’s capable of heating up to a 2,000 square foot home and comes with two 55 cubic-feet-per-minute blowers that help to supply the fire with oxygen and distribute the heat out from it.
- Powerful heat
- EPA tested
- Easy to install
- Very heavy
#7 EPI-1402P Napoleon Insert
Thanks to the EPI-1402P, no homeowner has to deal with an unsightly and inefficient looking masonry fireplace. This insert is designed to be easily fitted into an appropriately sized fireplace and to not only provide the homeowner with an attractive design to look at but also provide the supplemental heating they need.
It uses a 6-inch flue that makes it more efficient than other insert brands and allows it to deliver real cost savings to homeowners. It features two powerful blowers that are capable of moving up to 100 cubic feet of heat per minute and a cast iron door with a classic look to it.
- Easily fit your old fireplace
- Very efficient
- Classic design
- Not as powerful as some other models
#6 Osburn 1600 Wood Insert
Although this wood stove insert has a number of fascinating features to mention, probably one of the best features it has is its slim design. This product is designed to be placed into a fireplace that’s only 14-3/8-inch deep, which makes it an ideal solution for any homeowner with a smaller fireplace they need to update.
Despite its small size, however, it’s capable of delivering up to 65,000 BTU of heat an hour for up to 6-hours. It’s large enough to handle 17-inch logs, and it comes with a 130 cubic-foot-per-minute blower that helps keep its emissions low and improve its energy efficiency.
- Slim design
- Perfect for small spaces
- Energy efficient
- Not ideal for large rooms
#5 US Stove 2200iE Medium Fireplace Insert
This US Stove 2200iE insert is designed to make the homeowners’ old, inefficient fireplace and update it so it can provide the heating efficiency that’s required to keep any home nice and warm. This insert features a 1.2 cubic foot firebox that’s big enough to accept logs as large as 18-inches long.
This firebox is firebrick lined so that this insert has a long life and maintains its energy efficiency. Another positive about this insert is that it has a 120 cubic-foot-per minute blower that helps to adequately distribute heat.
- Long log life
- Energy efficient
- EPA certified
- Not the easiest to install
#4 Stove Builder International CW2900 Wood Insert
A home’s old fireplace can easily be updated using the Stove Builders International CW2900 wood insert. This product has a 2.4 cubic foot firebox that can produce up to 75,000 BTU of heat per hour for up to 8-hours at a time, depending upon the amount of fuel consumed. This means that it can easily heat a home up to 2,100 square feet in size.
Another positive feature found on this product is that it has a beautiful modern design that should fit in with the look of just about anyone’s home. Its box is also large enough to hold 18 to 20-inch logs, although for best fuel efficiency 16-inch logs are recommended.
- Long heat time
- Modern design
- Fuel efficient
- Heat doesn’t circulate as well as others
#3 Osburn 2400 Fireplace Insert
When it comes to raw heat output, few inserts can compete with the Osburn 2400. Using dry cordwood, this product is able to produce a heat output of up to 100,000 BTUs of heat per hour. This means that it can easily heat a 1,000 square foot home or can heat a home as large as 2,700 square feet.
It’s 3.4 cubic foot firebox is large enough to hold enough wood for even extremely cold winter nights, and it can produce a maximum burn time of up to 10-hours. This insert has a nice black trim kit that looks striking with the brushed nickel door overlay and thereby making it a beautiful focal point for any room.
- Powerful heat
- Heat large homes
- Long burn time
- Need to purchase additional accessories
#2 Breckwell Matte Black Wood Pellet Insert
If you’re looking for a fireplace insert that has the ability to heat up a large room, this is the insert for you. This Breckwell insert can heat up to 2200 square feet easily. It releases around 50,000 BTUs of heat and with auto-ignition, getting your house warmed up has never been easier. With custom options, you can have the metals compliment your existing decor with the gold and nickel options available.
- Easy to Maintain
- Great for large spaces
- Custom exterior options
- Not as powerful as other models
- Heavy for installation
#1 Drolet Escape Wood Insert
The Drolet Escape Wood Insert is a great all-around fireplace insert. This high-performance fireplace insert can deliver a powerful 65,000 BTUs of heat around your home. It has an average emission rate of 1.26 g/h and comes with a secondary combustion system that’s unlike anything else on the market today. Both the black faceplate and the premium blower are included with the unit as well which ensures that your fireplace insert is ready to go right when you get it. The instructions are easy to follow and very clear, which helps make this a very stress-free fireplace to install.
- Mid-size unit
- Energy efficient
- Secondary combustion system
- Easy to install
- Additional optional accessories not included
What is a Wood Stove Insert?
Fireplaces, in general, not only look beautiful but also help in keeping the room warm in winter. It’s also a great place for family members to gather and celebrate during the holidays. It is not without any flaws though as it can’t keep you warm on a consistent basis. Here is where a wood stove insert comes in. You can get one that will fit into your fireplace and considerably upgrade its heating capability.
Wood stove inserts are a great alternative to traditional fireplaces and are far more efficient when it comes to heat production. As far as heating is concerned, they are one of the most efficient ways to consistently keep warm. Compared to traditional heating appliances or even an open fire, a wood stove insert can do so much more while wasting lesser fuel.
Things to Consider Before Buying One
There are several factors to consider when buying a wood stove insert or generally any type of fireplace inserts. A fireplace insert isn’t just about heating, as it also brings a certain aesthetic value to your room. Most of these products are designed to be installed into existing fireplaces and you will need to make sure that you have all the measurements with you when you are about to buy one.
Some fireplaces may prove to be more complicated when it comes to installing a stove insert, which may lead to higher costs. Some of the features that come with fireplace inserts are the ability to remotely control them, adjusting the flame size and better thermostat control.
It’s very important to consider the size of the chamber when it comes to investing in a wood stove insert. Most of them can take the standard 16-inch log, but if your requirement is different, then you need to make sure that your needs are met. Luckily, most of the fireplace inserts come with a standard arch door and all you have to do is look for additional adornments for better functionality and aesthetic value.
When Should You Buy a Wood Stove Insert?
There are 3 main types of fireplace inserts in the market today and they are wood, pellet and gas. Pellets are quite popular as they are cheaper to install, while gas has better compatibility with existing heating systems. However, if you live in an area where you have consistent access to wood, then a wood stove insert is the best option to go for.
It will help you to save a ton of money in the long run when it comes to energy costs. There is also the fact that the other two types can never replicate the heat produced by a wood stove insert. If you live with lots of trees around and need an efficient heating system to warm you up during the harsh winters, then a wood stove insert is a great choice to go for. However, you do have to clean it pretty regularly to ensure its longevity.
There are different types of wood stove inserts too. The cleanest ones use a 3-stage combustion burn technology that burns everything including gas, smoke and ash to provide more heat and limited emissions. These, however, will come at a higher price. The better the technology, the more expensive it will be.
Wood inserts are designed to be installed into old and low-efficiency open hearth fireplaces, so you usually won’t run into issues of installation unless it is a very rare case. Moreover, wood stove inserts can even be used to create whole new fireplaces that didn’t even exist in the first place.
Every type of stove insert has its pros and cons. You need to buy the one that best suits your needs while being affordable and bringing great value. Make sure you do your research diligently before buying one to ensure a decade of hassle-free and efficient heating.
What are Some of the Benefits of a Wood Stove Insert?
Filling an Empty Firebox – Rather than having a traditional fireplace that directs heat out through the chimney, you can install a wood stove insert that directs heat into your home.
Better Efficiency – Wood stove inserts are about 74 percent more efficient than traditional heating sources and can provide more heat at a significantly lesser cost.
Environment Friendly – They produce less emissions than other sources and the byproducts can be re-burned for more heat.
Power Resistant – Wood stove inserts will keep burning even when there is no power. This comes in handy during winter storms when there can be power failure for extended periods of time. With a wood stove insert, you will get guaranteed heat no matter what the weather is outside.
Lower Running Cost – If you live in a place with an abundance of wood, you will be able to cut down on costs significantly. It may require some hard work, but you will be a lot richer at the end of the year.
Common Questions and Their Answers
What is the Average Installation Cost of a Wood Stove Insert?
The average cost of installation and purchase of a wood stove insert is often between $1800 and $6400. The range is quite large as the overall cost is based on a number of factors such as location, type of fireplace, aesthetic quality, additional functionality, technology, etc.
What is the Biggest Factor when it comes to Determining Total Cost?
The type of fireplace you have is the biggest factor when it comes to determining cost. If you don’t have a fireplace, you need to build one by hiring a mason and a contractor. This can significantly increase the overall cost.
What is the Most Important Thing to Consider Before Buying a Wood Stove Insert?
It is extremely important to check with your fire department and local building code to see if wood burning constructions are allowed in your area. Do not proceed forward without letting the concerned authorities know. Most places do not require permissions per se, but you do have to let them know as a legal requirement.