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Fireplaces and wood stoves present some interesting dilemmas when it comes to going green in your home. While wood is a far more renewable resource than the various forms of fossil fuels used to heat the majority of American homes, burning wood for heat releases higher levels of pollution into the air, can present a serious health risk to homeowners by compromising indoor air quality, and it can be a dramatic source of heat loss in your home. Thus, green fireplaces are rarely wood-burning, while green stoves are primarily concerned with energy-efficiency.
The Cost and Value of Green Fireplaces and Stoves
HomeAdvisor understands that it can be tough for homeowners to wade through all the "green" remodeling information out there, which is why we've teamed up with green remodeling expert David Johnston to provide you with the best, most accurate, green remodeling advice in the business. Johnston is the founder of the green consulting firm What's Working, Inc., the author of multiple books on green remodeling (including the Nautilus Award winner Green Remodeling: Changing the World One Room at a Time), and he happens to know a thing or two about how to green fireplaces and stoves.
With green stoves and fireplaces, you'll rarely end up paying more than you would for traditional alternatives, and you'll usually end up saving money in the long run. How? If you heat with wood, purchasing a high-efficiency pellet stove or an EPA-certified wood burning stove will reduce the fuel you need to burn to heat your home and will heat your home more efficiently in the process. Even then, when it comes to cost, the real value of going green with fireplaces and stoves isn't necessarily best expressed by scrutinizing your bottom line. Green fireplaces and stoves come with bigger and better benefits, including a healthier home environment for everyone that lives under your roof and the peace of mind that goes hand-in-hand with knowing that you're doing everything you can to pass a better world on to future generations.
Tips for Green Fireplaces
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Tips for Green Stoves
Final Thoughts for Green Stoves and Fireplaces
While thinking green when it comes to stoves and fireplaces is a smart choice for your pocketbook, your health, and the environment, it's not unusual for homeowners to feel a little overwhelmed when presented with the full scope of green remodeling options. If you're feeling unsure about how green you're willing to go when it comes to stoves and fireplaces, there's no need to worry. Going green is not an all-or-nothing proposition, and any step you take in a green direction is a smart one. If you think green is the right choice for you, talk with your contractor about adopting a green remodeling philosophy, find a contractor who specializes in green building and remodeling, or seek out the services of a green consulting firm so you can be sure that your new stove or fireplace ends up being as green as they come.