There are over 180 United Fireplace and Stove member stores across the US and Canada. Benefit from the buying power of North America’s largest network of independently owned hearth stores, UFS is a brand that you can trust for dependability, value & experience.
UFS Member Stores all across the U.S. and Canada offer a wide range of both inexpensive & top-of-the-line Zero Clearance Fireplace units. Stop by a showroom near you to view beautiful and economical Zero-Clearance Fireplaces in action.
Zero Clearance (z/c) Fireplaces provide the greatest flexibility with home fireplace installations. Z/C appliances are the perfect solution for many homeowners who have limited space or no existing fireplace. These units are specially designed to be built into a frame wall. There are wood burning zero clearance fireplaces and z/c units that are direct vented natural or LP gas models.
There might be certain building restrictions in some areas for this type of equipment. It’s always a good idea to check the building codes and regulations before purchasing a zero clearance fireplace. Of course your UFS Member Store will likely be aware of these requirements and would be more than happy to assist you.
Some benefits include the versatility of the technology, the space saving design, the efficiency and the lower installation costs. Read on to learn more about the many benefits of zero clearance fireplaces.
Versatility and Appearance
Because of the design and engineering used to manufacture these fireplaces, zero clearance appliances can be built right into a conventionally framed wall. The exterior walls of the fireplace act as an insulated cabinet that houses the firebox. This provides a tremendous advantage for many homeowners because it opens up many more possibilities of where the fireplace can be installed.
A zero clearance fireplace can also be integrated nicely into a wall with faux stone or brick facia treatments that recreate the look of a masonry fireplace. Or if you prefer, marble or granite surrounds would that add a beautiful special touch for finishing around the fireplace. The mantle, hearth, finishing materials can all be fully customized to create some truly amazing fireplaces.
An important benefit is the efficiency of the fireplace. Many zero clearance wood burning fireplaces are highly efficient and certified by the EPA. These fireplaces will provide significantly more heat than traditional masonry fireplaces. The efficiency of many EPA certified fireplaces is over 70%. Other z/c wood burning fireplaces may heat a modest size room but are more decorative and will not deliver the amount of heat from a more efficient unit.
Most zero clearance gas fireplaces will have steady state efficiencies in the range of 75% – 85%. Most of these fireplaces will come equipped with adjustable gas valves so the heat output is easy to control.
Installation and Appliance Costs
Compared to labor intensive masonry projects, zero clearance appliances are relatively quick and less expensive to install. Since there are many codes and clearance requirements that must be followed, only a qualified fireplace professional should install a z/c gas or wood burning fireplace.
As with most purchases, you get what you pay for. Fireplaces included. The cheapest zero clearance fireplaces will not provide most efficient heat or last very long. There are many other points to consider besides price: the warranty, quality of materials, installation details and performance specifications all help determine the best appliance for your needs.
While these fireplaces provide many opportunities, there may be a few other details that should be mentioned about zero clearance appliances.
These fireplaces will provide some radiate heat from the front of the unit. Most wood burning and gas fireplaces will use a fan to circulate air through a convective air chamber designed into the equipment. Obviously the front of the fireplace will get very hot. This must be kept in mind when determining where the fireplace will be installed, how it will be finished and where furniture can be positioned. Generally speaking, there should be a zone of three to four feet (or more) in front of and to the sides of a fireplace.
A More Modern Look
Depending on how a fireplace is finished, these appliances can have a traditional or a more modern look to them. Cultured or real stone or brick, marble, granite, slate and ceramic tile are all popular choices for the finished “look” of the equipment.
When shopping for a zero clearance fireplace, take a look at all of the available styles, features and options to find the model that has the right look for your home.
Your UFS Member Store will be glad to show you several zero clearance fireplaces and is happy to answer any other questions you have.