Do Existing Chimneys Work with Wood Stoves?

Existing Chimneys Work with Wood StovesToday, Chimney Sweeps of America sheds light on the question, do existing chimneys work with wood stoves? If you already have a fireplace but want to install a new stove, you may wonder if your existing system can be used instead of creating an entirely new hole to vent your wood stove. Take a look below at the information we put together and give us a call if you’re ready to get started on creating a whole new look together for your home.

Using your Existing Chimney

If you already have a masonry fireplace and want to install a wood stove or fireplace insert, why not use your existing chimney to vent the smoke? It makes the most economic sense, and it’s also just plain practical. However, for your new wood stove or fireplace insert to function best, you’ll need one with a vent pipe that closely matches the flue size in your existing chimney. This will ensure that existing chimneys work with wood stoves.

The Right Fit Wood Stove or Insert

Two main types of wood stoves can work with your existing chimney, either a freestanding stove or a fireplace insert. One isn’t necessarily better than the other – it mostly depends on the look you want to achieve.

The chimney can be either a masonry chimney or a factory-built metal system. The primary requirement is that the height and position of the stove’s flue collar will allow the stove to be correctly attached to the chimney. You should also ensure that if you have a factory-built system, it has been listed as being compatible with a wood stove.

When the Stove or Insert Isn’t the Right Size

Mismatched fits may end up being unavoidable, so you’ll have to choose a wood stove or insert with a flue much smaller than that of your existing chimney. However, you can’t simply install it and call it good. Here’s why. The interaction of cold air with hot air is what causes chimneys to vent correctly. Flues of different sizes will end up causing some of the smoke to sink and even condense into a hard creosote on the walls of the chimney. This stuff is highly flammable and difficult to clean. It is also corrosive and can cause damage to the chimney if left for a time.

Though it’s best to choose one the same size (or as close as you can get), there is a way to make a different size work. You can have a professional install your wood stove, including a stainless steel liner connecting the top of the chimney with the top of the stove. This creates a safe, efficient construction and is easy to maintain.

There’s nothing quite like curling up in front of a crackling fire with a cup of hot cocoa and your favorite book or movie. So, if you’re thinking about switching to a wood stove, you may be wondering, do existing chimneys work with wood stoves? The true answer is to talk to the experts here at Chimney Sweeps of America. We’ll come take a look at your current fireplace and chimney and see how we can make the transition for you. Contact us today for details.

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