Fireplace Fitter UK: Installing a new fireplace or restoring a dormant one in your UK property is an exceptional means of infusing charm and a welcoming ambiance into any room. Should you choose to pair your new fireplace with a back boiler, you'll reap even greater benefits. Not only will you relish the cozy warmth and atmosphere of an open fire or stove on those frosty winter nights, but you'll also have an abundant source of piping hot water at your disposal. This dual functionality not only enhances your living space with nostalgia and allure but also bolsters practicality and eco-friendliness, ensuring your home remains snug and eco-efficient while providing ample hot water for various needs. It's a delightful fusion of comfort and functionality that elevates your property's appeal and livability.
Prior to embarking on the task of unblocking a sealed chimney, several preparatory steps are essential to ensure the safe and effective installation of your new fireplace. In the United Kingdom, any work involving your chimney breast, fireplace, flue lining, and hearth must strictly adhere to the country's building regulations, specifically Part J, which pertains to combustible appliances. Compliance with these regulations is vital to guarantee safety and proper functioning. For properties located within conservation areas or classified as listed buildings, an additional layer of consideration comes into play. In such cases, it's crucial to ascertain whether planning permission is required from the local authorities before commencing any construction. This step ensures that your fireplace installation aligns with the preservation and architectural standards set forth in these special zones or heritage-designated properties. By meticulously addressing these aspects, you can embark on your fireplace project with confidence, knowing that it complies with all regulatory requirements and aligns harmoniously with the unique attributes of your property, whether it holds historical significance or is situated in a conservation area.
PROFESSIONAL OR DIY FIREPLACE INSTALLATION?
A simple remodeling of an existing fireplace can generally be executed by a keen DIY person, but if any building work is necessary there's the possibility of encountering structural problems that will have to be addressed by a professional. If you're lucky when you open up a stopped up fireplace you might find a decent chimney breast, lintel and hearth that needs nothing other than the services and advice of a chimney sweep to get it ready for use. What is more common however is an area of old brickwork that conceals a stopped up flue, and needs some form of structural reinforcement before it can be safely used.
An improperly fitted fireplace poses significant risks, including serious fire hazards and potential respiratory health issues, underscoring the importance of installation by a professional fireplace company in the UK. Such a company should possess the requisite expertise and experience to ensure the job is done correctly. Adequate ventilation in any room housing a fireplace is crucial to ensure there is sufficient oxygen available for the fire to burn safely. Without this, there is a risk of dangerous carbon monoxide build-up, resulting from an inefficiently burning fire in a room that lacks proper air circulation. It is vital that these installations adhere to strict safety standards to prevent such hazardous situations, highlighting the need for expert handling and installation to safeguard against these risks.
It may be necessary to fit airflow vents in walls and floors to enable the fireplace to receive adequate oxygen to burn effectively and safely at all times. Blocked off and unused chimney flues may also have to have air vents installed since they can trap moist air within them and cause damp to build up inside the chimney breast.
BEFORE WORK STARTS
It's amazing just how much soot and dirt can accumulate inside an old fireplace and you won't know precisely what is there until you uncover it. Even with dust sheets for your home furnishings, the chance of impairment from soot and muck is still possible and it's advisable to remove your furniture and carpets before any fireplace renovation work starts. If you are installing a fireplace as part of an overall home renovation project then it ought to be one of the first things to be done once you have taken the room back to bare floors and walls. This helps to prevent any discolouration damage to any restored work you might have already done.
CONSTRUCTION & STRUCTURAL WORK
Now that you are able to see the opening of your fireplace it is time to clean and sweep the hearth and chimney and identify what is fit for refurbishment. Contacting a chimney sweep to de-soot your chimney is one of the first things on the checklist. They'll be willing to provide you with professional guidance on the chimney and flue after sweeping, as to the state of the chimney and whether you need to switch the existing flue liner.
It could be essential to put in a new flue liner to observe the all important Building Regulations, and work might also be needed to beef up the original chimney and chimney breast. A reliable fireplace installer and builder in UK will be required to complete this work, and will have the knowledge and skills in construction to closely follow all regulations.
If the size of the original fireplace is bigger than your requirements, a supporting concrete lintel will need to be put in. When this is complete the next step of your fireplace installation in UK will be to update the hearth. In earlier times the hearth would be set into a hole in the floor, however current building regs demand that it is raised above floor level. You can find custom-made options to fit virtually any size and style of fireplace, or you can select from a variety of common sized hearths to match your decor.
DESIGNS AND STYLES OF FIREPLACE
Choosing your ideal fireplace can be difficult amongst the various styles and designs available from an online shop or fireplace showroom. The suggestions and advice from your installation team, which will be in line with your particular requirements, will help you to choose a fireplace that is both perfect for your chimney and flue, as well as for your decor.
Whether you go with a wood burner, an open fireplace or a multi-fuel stove will be based on the all round style you're trying to establish, your existing decor and perhaps even, your home's age. For instance, a cast iron wood burner looks great set into an inglenook fireplace, which highlights the charm of the stove and also deflects the heat into the room effectively.
Even if you don't have a chimney breast in your UK property, it's still feasible to put in a multi-fuel stove or a wood burner. A chimney is not needed in this instance as the flue is fitted to the rear or top of the stove and taken out through an outside wall.
GAS, WOOD, ELECTRIC, MULTI-FUEL OR OPEN FIREPLACE?
The charm and look of a "real" fire can't be surpassed, but what alternatives are out there if this kind of fireplace isn't possible in your UK property?
Multi-Fuel Stoves - Provides you with options to use oil, gas, coal and wood to deliver a multi-purpose stove for any property in UK. The AGA range for instance is well known as being capable of providing heating for an entire home, a constant hot water supply and an oven and hob for cooking all in one useful appliance.
Gas Fireplaces - There are a variety of designs to suit all types of house and their efficiency to warm a room is superior to wood burning stoves. Gas fireplaces must only be fitted and maintained by a certified Gas Safe registered engineer, (Gas Safe replaced CORGI registration in 2009).
Electric Fireplaces - A wide variety of electric fireplaces to suit any property in UK, can easily be fitted by anybody who's reasonable competent. Modern electric fires can provide "real" looking flame effects and and sometimes even the crackling sound of wood to replicate a real open fire when set into into an old fashioned fireplace.
Wood Burning Stoves - These have become "the in thing" in a lot of homes in UK, and can have classic or modern design to suit your furnishings. If coupled with a back boiler these can provide piping hot water for radiators or for other use around the home.
Open Fireplaces - Provides a stunning focal point for a room and can utilise an assortment of solid fuels. An expertly installed open fire will be no comparison to the smoky old fireplace that was perhaps bricked up by past owners, and its warm elegance is a delightful addition to any room in UK.
Put in to improve the safety and efficiency of your chimney structure, a flue or chimney liner is vital and should not be omitted in any circumstances. With the purpose of carrying toxic fumes safely to the outside of a building, flue liners are ducts made from metal, ceramic material or clay which are installed inside chimneys. Depending on their age and condition, older chimneys in the UK might have to be re-lined, or might not be fitted with a liner at all.
The hazardous fumes and gases that are created when burning a fire can cause damage to your fireplace's flue. A good time to check for damage is while your chimney is being swept - so ask your sweep to do this. A flue that's been compromised could enable those hazardous gases to leak into your living space, rather than expelling them outside. There can be an increased risk of house fires when flu linings are damaged, because extreme heat is able to reach the chimney structure, sometimes with deadly results.
How To Preserve Your Fireplace And Lower Your Heating Bills
The classic fireplace may have lost a certain amount of of its glamour as a result of environmental concerns but it's still loved by many in the UK. Sitting near the warmth of a fireplace, brings back many cherished memories for lots of people. The fireplace can offer many benefits for your home, but there are also a couple of major downsides that might need to be fixed. As power costs go up, you should ensure that your fireplace is producing heat in an efficient way. When you have a fire going in the fireplace, it can actually remove warm air out of the room, making your heater work harder. The chimney damper is supposed to prevent cold air from coming in to your home when you haven't got a fire going in the fireplace. Unfortunately, fireplace dampers can often be inefficient in keeping warm air in the home and cold air out.
Many house owners that have a fireplace in their home in the UK don't realize how the fireplace can cause their utility bills to rise. Instead of keeping heating expenses down, it may actually do the complete opposite if one isn't careful. There is a way to take your ineffective fireplace, and turn it into a heat generating system that your budget will love. There are at least four simple things that you are able to do to improve your fireplace. These definitely will make your current fireplace a lot more effective, and lower your heating bills.
The first point is to change your fireplace damper with a more efficient top sealing damper. This style of damper is set up at the top end of the chimney, and works like a storm door. It helps prevent the internal air from coming out, and the outside air from going in, and performs in hot weather or cold. It is not that tricky to install and may be easily purchased from a fireplace supplier or on the internet. An additional thing you could choose to do is fix a fire-back in the back of your fireplace. It is manufactured from cast iron and it is used to help the appearance of your fireplace while at the same time protecting the back wall from fire damage. The fire-back also absorbs heat right from the fire and channels it back into the room, making the fireplace more effective.
Another way to save money is by using a fireplace heater/fan, which heats the area by pulling the air into a heat chamber and recycling the air back into the room. These heating devices don't release any smoke and should be very successful in keeping your family home warm and toasty. The fourth thing that you can do is to fix glass doors, which might be a bit on the expensive side. Searching around, you will be able to locate a bargain, and with an instruction manual, you could install them yourself. These doors create a screen between your living space and the hearth, not only making the area less for the fire to heat, but also affording some protection to the inhabitants.
The information we just gave is not difficult to put into action, and most of the required products can be purchased online, or from your local stockist. Look after your fireplace and observe your energy bills fall.
Chimney Cowls UK
The hood-shaped cover that can be installed over your chimney to improve the draft and stop smoke from backing up is known as a chimney cowl. It's designed to stop the wind blowing smoke down the chimney, and is normally made of galvanised iron. You should install a cowl on your chimney in the UK if you want to enjoy the many benefits of a fireplace.
A chimney cowl can also help protect your home and keep you safe. There are several types of chimney cowls available on the market, each designed to address different issues. Before you purchase one, consider a few aspects to ensure you get one that will help protect your home. Once you know what you need, you can then choose a chimney cowl based on your budget and needs.
One of the most common types of chimney cowls is the H-style. This style is the most effective at stabilizing the draft and allows your fireplace to function more efficiently. It is made from a series of H-shaped pipes that isolate the combustion gases from down drafts. It originally served marine applications but has become popular among homeowners due to its energy-saving functionality.
Another type is the Aerodyne cowl. It works by drawing air into the chimney cowl and reducing downdraught. It is available in a variety of colours. Its venturi shape draws air into the chimney cowl, creating a drop in air pressure that draws air upward from the stove.
Chimney cowls are a simple way to prevent birds from nesting in your chimney in the UK. They are inexpensive and easy to install. You should make sure you have easy access to the area above the chimney to install one. It can also prevent debris from accumulating inside the chimney. READ MORE HERE
UK Fireplace Related Tasks
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