What to Know About Adding an Outside Fireplace

By Katie Conaway | fireplace
Apr. 62017

Spring has sprung and now is the time to start thinking of home improvement and/or which parts of the home are prime for remodeling projects. Take a moment and think back to the colder months and remember looking upon the deck or screened in porch with longing. Ever considered adding a heat source so you could enjoy your outdoor space all year long, no matter what the temperature outside might be?

Wonder no longer! Adding a wood burning fireplace to your outdoor space could be the solution to the cold weather/outdoor living dilemma. Now is the time to turn a winter daydream into spring/summer building reality.

Heat and Decoration

The most important thing before the placement and structure is decided upon, is what the main purpose of the fireplace will be for your outdoor space. Will it be for heat during the winter chill or primarily for decoration all year long? Determining the main reason behind the outdoor fireplace is a  key factor that will drive the cost and which contractor is best for the job.

Next it’s important to work with what is currently in place. A good rule of thumb is that the fireplace should be big enough to heat the space, but small enough that it doesn’t overwhelm the entire area. Take time to survey the space and carefully consider where the fireplace is most beneficial in relation to the space in question. Make sure the fireplace will “match” the existing decor so it will enhance the space and not stick out like a sore thumb!

Building and Zoning Codes

Before the design and construction is underway, make sure you know the building codes for your area. Reputable contractors will be able to take care of most of these concerns on your behalf, but it’s important to know if there are additional restrictions unbeknownst to you. For example, if the town you live in is considered a historical area, there will be additional zoning codes and restrictions to adhere to before building can begin. Make sure to check with your local building administrations to make sure the project is not halted before it can even begin!

Ground vs. Raised

Wood burning fireplaces can be added to both ground level and raised spaces. However, it is important to know the building regulations in your area before a specific design is determined. Area specific regulations can determine the construction cost for both types of fireplaces, so be sure to what you are getting in order to keep on budget.

When installing a wood burning fireplace in a ground level porch, the cost is typically lower than raised porches since there are not as many building requirements to adhere to as a raised porch. However,a ground level porch’s flue must typically be three feet above the roof line, so there ends up being a tower sticking up from the ground level to the roof level. This doesn’t have to be a hindrance, but it should be considered so the chimney is designed in the most aesthetically pleasing way possible.

Whatever type of outdoor space you are working with, there are talented masons that have experience making the most out any existing space and/or structure. The decision then becomes what works best for the visual expectations and ultimately the budget. Be sure to choose a reputable contractor and the dreams of an outdoor fireplace will become a reality!

Premier Firewood Has the Wood for Your Outside Fireplace

We’re proud of the fact that we kiln dry all of our firewood on location. For years we’ve been the trusted source for the best firewood in Connecticut and New York. See our delivery area to find out if we provide service to your residence. For more information, please call us at 203.866.4252.

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