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Pellet Burning Fireplace Inserts

Quick, easy, and effective: those are some of the words you expect to see a lot when you start looking into pellet burning fireplace inserts. Here are a few you might not expect to see: beautiful, elegant, stylish. Modern pellet burning fireplace inserts are designed with homeowners in mind to provide that perfect look in your fireplace, just like the look you'd get with a gas- or wood-burning insert - you just don't have to provide plumbing for a fuel source. You get to use handy, compact, and easily stored fuel pellets that burn cleanly and efficiently. If getting all of a high-quality fireplace insert's benefits without tearing out a wall to run gas lines is something that's crossed your mind, check out our selection of affordable, home-ready pellet burning fireplace inserts and choose the model that's right for your home.
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By Donna from Gastonia, NC on November 14, 2013
I currently have an FMI Builder Series Bungalow 42" woodburning fireplace #ER-3507. I would like to convert it to a pellet fireplace. Is that possible?
By Collin C. - NFI Master Hearth Professional on November 14, 2013

Unfortunately, the firebox dimensions of the Bungalow are too small to house even the smallest pellet burning insert. There is simply not enough space to house both the insert and the venting components. If you definitely want to use a pellet burner, I recommend using a free standing pellet stove and venting it horizontally through an outside wall. This would be your next best alternative.

By Doyle from LA on December 15, 2015
I currently have a wood burning fireplace insert and want to replace it with a pellet burning fireplace insert. My chimney is wood framed with a double pipe. Can this be done with my existing chimney?
By Chris C. on December 15, 2015

Most wood burning fireplaces utilize an 8" diameter chimney system which is much too large for a pellet appliance to vent into as pellet appliances utilize either a 3" or 4" system. If you were to install a pellet appliance, I would advise on using the 3" or 4" pipe the manufacturer suggests to ensure proper operation of the appliance.

By Norma on November 9, 2012
Hi, I have a propane fireplace and would like to but a pellet stove insert in it. Can I do that?
on November 9, 2012

Generally, you are indeed able to install a pellet burning insert into an existing fireplace, but the type of fireplace will be the determining factor as to whether or not this can actually be accomplished. Is the fireplace that you have a brick and mortar type or a manufactured (metal) box? If it is manufactured, do you have the model number and manufacturer name from the box? What are the dimensions of the fireplace?

By Dennis from West Jefferson, OH on November 30, 2015
If I purchase a pellet burning fireplace insert for my fireplace, would I need to run an exhaust tube through my wall?
By eFireplaceStore on November 30, 2015

Correct. A pellet insert can be vented vertically through the existing chimney by means of a flexible stainless steel liner. Either a 3 or 4 inch liner will be needed based on the appliance you utilize.

By Stephanie from Dallas, TX on November 17, 2013
I have a propane fireplace. DESA modal #M36 (B, H). What exactly are pellets? How much do they cost? How long do they last? How do you add the pellets? Is it hard to switch out?
By Collin C. - NFI Master Hearth Professional on November 18, 2013

Pellet burning stoves and inserts utilize small, cylinder shaped compressed wood or biomass pellet fuel. The pellets resemble the shape of small oblong pills. The pellets are made from reclaimed bark and sawdust the accumulates at saw mills. Because of how dry the fuel is, as well as its superior density, it is an excellent fuel source.

Pellets are typically sold in 40 or 100 pound bags. They can also be purchased in bulk, if you happen to live near a pellet mill. A 40 pound bag usually sells for 6 to 10 dollars a bag and can last for a couple of days during peak season or a couple of weeks during the marginal use time of the year. A pellet stove and insert will have a special hopper that holds the pellet fuel. You simply open the hopper lid and pour the pellets into the hopper basin. The unit will then meter an exact amount of fuel into the burn pot to generate the amount of heat requested. Adding a pellet stove or insert requires a venting system to be installed, which can be challenging. It is recommended that installation be completed by a licensed contractor.

By Tim from Pennsylvania on October 21, 2013
When installing a pellet stove insert, what type of flue liner is required? Also, is it necessary to run the flue liner all the way the the top of the chimney, and cap it? Or, can you run the flue liner to just below the chimney cap?

Also, I have the same questions as above, only for a wood burning insert.
By Collin C. - NFI Master Hearth Professional on October 22, 2013

Both wood burning and pellet inserts are very much the same in the fact that they should use a 304 or 316 stainless steel liner system, flexible or rigid, that is sized to the opening of the flue collar on the appliance. The liner can indeed be supported and terminated just below the existing chimney cap. It is not necessary to use a factory top plate and cap, if the existing cap is in good condition. Metal strapping or fabricated brackets can be used to support the liner.

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