columbus ohio

5 Unique Places to Install a Gas Fireplace

Gas fireplaces are great additions to a home because they are energy efficient, safe, and versatile. The versatility and safety of gas fireplaces is especially compelling because you can have them installed in a variety of areas around your home. You’re free to install a gas fireplace almost anywhere as long as there is access to a natural gas or propane. This freedom gives you the ability to heat unique areas of your home. Here are some interesting places you can warm up with a gas fireplace.

 

1. Bathroom. One way to make your bathroom warmer is by inserting a gas fireplace. This is an elegant addition to a master bathroom; however, we recommend that the fireplace is in a place where there is no danger of water contact or slipping near the unit.

gas fireplace in bathroom aspen fireplace columbus ohio

 

2. Kitchen. If your kitchen is a popular gathering place in your home, then a gas fireplace might be an appropriate addition. It’s also a great way to keep dinner guests warm without cranking up the heat.

gas fireplace kitchen avalon firestyle columbus ohio aspen fireplace

 

3. Outdoor Living Area. Adding a fireplace to your patio is a fantastic way to get more use out of your outdoor living area. Patios get plenty of use in the summer, but once some cold weather sets in they don’t get nearly as much use. A fireplace will keep the patio area warm and comfortable so that you use it more often.

isokern outdoor gas fireplace granville ohio aspen fireplace

 

4. Center of a Room. Adding a fireplace to the middle of an open space can tie a room together and provide a gathering place. People are drawn to the warmth which gives a room with a fireplace in the center a unique dynamic.

contemporary-indoor-gas-fireplaces  aspen fireplace columbus ohio

 

5. Bedroom. Don’t sleep in a cold bedroom. A gas fireplace will warm up your room so that it’s nice and toasty when you wake up in the morning.

Lennox hearth product gas fireplace in bedroom aspen fireplace columbus ohio

 

 

These are just a few of the many areas Aspen Fireplace can install your gas fireplace. Come visit at 5156 Sinclair Rd. Columbus, Ohio or contact us online to discuss which gas fireplace is best for your home.

Gas vs. Charcoal Grills: A Definitive Guide

Gas vs. Charcoal Grills

 

It’s getting to be that time of the year again, warm summer nights, evenings spent on the patio and dinners charred to perfection on the grill. Cookouts and social events in the summertime rely on the power of the grill, because nothing says “summer” like a grilled cheeseburger and shish-kabobs fresh off the BBQ. But, with that said, there’s an everlasting debate about the best type of grill for cooking: charcoal grills or gas grills. There is nothing that officially says one is better than the other, and it usually comes down to personal taste. Here are some tips about each type to decide whether a charcoal or gas grill is better for your cooking needs.

 

Round 1: Searing

Searing is one of the most common forms of grilling, where the meat browns evenly on both sides, offering a tasty crunchy texture to the outside of the meat. The best searing results can be achieved on a charcoal grill. More direct infrared heat is produced with charcoal grills, allowing for a more even sear across the meat without grill lines. Some gas grills offer infrared grilling options, but they come with a heavy price tag. Winner: Charcoal.

 

Round 2: Temperature Control

What many people don’t realize is that grilling doesn’t need to be used with extremely high heat. Some gas grills can reach up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit, or higher, and charcoal can reach up to 900 degrees Fahrenheit. However, the optimal grilling temperature for meat is between 225-325 degrees Fahrenheit. Gas grills are much more efficient with temperature control than charcoal grills because they often have gauges or thermometers that track the temperature. It is much harder to regulate a steady temperature on a charcoal grill. Winner: Gas.

 

Round 3: Flavor

Smoke is another major difference between gas and charcoal grills. Charcoal produces more smoke than gas, and smoke can alter the flavor of whatever is being cooked, so that also comes down to a personal preference. Unlike smoke, gas produces no flavor, so the organic flavor of the food is kept when cooking on a gas grill. For foods like slow cooked ribs, beef brisket or pulled pork, charcoal grills are usually more desirable so that the smoke flavor infuses into the meat, giving it a unique flavor. Winner: You.

 

If you are looking for the easiest, most reliable grilling experience, we recommend going with gas. If you are looking for something that will infuse the “BBQ” flavor into what’s cooking, we recommend charcoal. Whichever experience tops your list, Aspen Fireplace & Patio is here to help you with all of your grilling needs to make your summer BBQ a hit!

 

5 Big Green Egg Recipes for Spring

The Big Green Egg is one of the most versatile and consistent grills money can buy. A Big Green Egg can be used as a grill, an oven, or even a smoker.

When it comes to springtime cooking, that versatility can come in handy. Pulled pork for graduation parties, BBQ chicken for a get-together with friends, or burgers for the family are all dinners made fun and easy with a Big Green Egg. Here are 5 great recipes you can enjoy in the spring with a Big Green Egg.

1. Dr. BBQ’s Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Pulled pork sandwiches are a springtime staple. Whether it’s a graduation party or a family reunion, pulled pork sandwiches are a crowd pleaser.

In this recipe, Dr. BBQ creates his own unique BBQ sauce and uses the Big Green Egg to smoke the meat for about 10 hours. This recipe is for the hardcore grill-lovers, but the end result is worth the wait.

2. Island Burger

Burgers are a necessity for spring grilling and a burger made with a Big Green Egg will be one of the best burgers you’ve ever eaten.

This unique burger recipe is a fresh take on a traditional recipe. Throw a pineapple ring on the burger to give it a bold, sweet flavor.

3. Veggie Noodle Stir-Fry

This recipe for a stir-fry shows the versatility of a Big Green Egg. The temperature control on a Big Green Egg is so accurate you can cook with a pan over top like a stove. You could make the same recipe on your stove, but with a Big Green Egg, you can enjoy the spring weather in Columbus while cooking a delicious meal.

4. Gourmet Pizza

This recipe is another example of the all the freedom you have with Big Green Egg. You can use the grill just like an oven to cook a homemade pizza. The temperature precision of Big Green Egg means you can cook a pizza just as well as you would inside an oven.

Pizza is a great meal any day of the year, but with a Big Green Egg, you can relax outside while your pizza cooks.

5. Strawberry Pound Cake

You can even bake desserts with a Big Green Egg. Prepare your desserts just like you normally would, but instead throw it inside the Big Green Egg to bake your dessert like it’s an oven.

 

Aspen Fireplace offers a wide variety of Big Green Eggs and BBQ grills. Come visit our showroom at 5156 Sinclair Rd. Columbus, OH 43229 to view our selection!

Why to Buy From a Local Supplier

Aspen Fireplace is proud to be a locally owned independent Columbus Ohio business that caters to Ohio and its surrounding areas for all of their fireplace and patio needs. We are proud to be impacting the growth of the Columbus economy, and we encourage all of our customers to purchase their fireplace and patio supplies from a local supplier like Aspen Fireplace. Here are some benefits to buying locally that the national and Big-Box stores cannot offer:

 

Strong Customer Service

Since we have a passion for our business, we hire only those who share our knowledge and understanding of every single one of our products and services. Our installers have been expertly trained as well as our sales staff and design team. When you speak to one of our staff members, you can be sure they’re sharing the most up-to-date information and knowledge of the product.

 

Quality Product

Our suppliers do not use third party products or allow distribution to discount websites or bargain stores. We distribute only the highest quality products and if you find the same thing at one of the big-box retailers, you’re getting a counterfeit.

 

Inventory Flexibility

Since we don’t partner with any national chain stores, we have the power to offer a variety of products and services, based on our past and current customer feedback. We have the independence to update our products and services regularly, depending on the season, trends and demand.

 

Aspen Fireplace has been serving the Columbus community for over 25 years, and we continue to grow and expand our products and services thanks to our loyal customers. With a wide range of products including fireplaces, stoves, patio furniture, grills and custom fireplace and patio designs, we are sure to have something that fits your design taste! 

Benefits of Fireplace Doors

In the dead of winter, is there anything cozier than a warm, crackling fire? We don’t think so, but we’re a little biased! While fires are a great way to warm a chilly house and provide a beautiful backdrop in the fireplace, there are some dangers. The most common danger is embers that come outside of the hearth and ignite on nearby carpet, rugs or anything else that is easily flammable. One simple solution, and a design addition to the fireplace, is to install fireplace doors for safety, among many other benefits. Here are some benefits of adding glass doors to your fireplace:

 

Safety

As we stated before, adding doors to the fireplace adds to the safety of a live burning fire. It catches embers or sparks that may exit the fireplace and keeps the fire more contained. If you’re using real logs, as the fire progresses the logs are burned down and tend to shift throughout the burning process. The doors will also keep the logs in place and greater assurance that a log will not leave the area in which it is burning. Glass doors also offer a protective barrier for pets and children while the fire is burning.

 

Energy Efficiency

 

Glass doors provide a great seal that does not let cold or hot air enter into the home through the chimney. Even if the damper is closed, the draft from the outside still comes in through the fireplace, which can make utility bills jump each month. Glass doors provide the insulation needed to ensure you are not paying any more than necessary for the HVAC bill each month.

 

Reduces Smoke

Whether a fire is burning or not, often times after a rainy or windy day, a draft of smoke will come through the chimney and penetrate to the surrounding area. Soot particles can also escape even after the fire has been extinguished, which can stain carpet, furniture and window treatments in close proximity to the fireplace.

 

Aesthetic Appeal

The fire is beautiful while it’s burning, but after, it leaves a mess of ashes and burnt logs. The glass fireplace doors hide the imperfections and provide a nice aesthetic addition to any room.

To see a selection of our fireplace doors, visit our showroom or give us a call to speak to a professional about a variety of fireplace options for your home.

The Difference Between Vented and Ventless Gas Logs

If you decide to install a gas fireplace, one of the first questions you’ll be asked is what kind of gas logs are you interested in: vented or ventless? Most people aren’t prepared for this question. This blog will break down the differences between vented and ventless gas logs so that you are prepared to make a choice.

 

Vented gas logs look more realistic. The first major difference is that vented gas logs look more like a real flame than ventless gas logs. Vented gas logs dance around the logs and the flame is much taller. The flame is also more realistic in color than ventless logs.

 

rugged oak vented gas logs

 

 

Ventless gas logs are more efficient. Vented gas logs are more realistic, but ventless are the way to go if you’re looking for efficiency. Ventless logs disperse almost all of the heat into the room and use slightly less energy than vented logs.

 

shadowdance ventless gas logs

 

Burn vented gas logs with the damper open. Vented gas logs produce exhaust that goes up the chimney. One nice thing about ventless logs is that they are so efficient that they can be used with the damper closed.

 

Ventless gas logs need some ventilation. You can burn ventless logs with the damper closed, but that means the water vapor and carbon dioxide (CO2) that are byproducts can get into your home. You should make sure a room with ventless gas logs is properly ventilated to prevent mold or mildew caused by excess moisture. Some people are also irritated by the smell of CO2 which makes ventilation even more important.

 

Vented logs are great if you want a realistic looking fireplace, and ventless are better if your main concern is energy efficiency. We have both at Aspen Fireplace and would be happy to assist in the decision-making process. Visit our showroom to check out our selection and feel free to contact us with any questions.

Fireplace Doors Style Guide

Fireplace doors are a combination of style and function. They make your fireplace safer and more energy efficient, but they also contribute to the style of whatever room they’re in. Fireplace door style mostly boils down to personal preference, but it’s good to know what options are out there so that you can make the optimal choice for your home. One choice is bi-fold or cabinet door style which is described in this blog post. Then you have a choice between an arched fireplace door design or a non-arched design. Finally, the finish is a big stylistic factor when choosing between fireplace doors.

arched door design

Above is an example of fireplace doors with clear a natural finish, strap hinges (notice the handles at the top) and an arched window pane design. This is a pretty standard set of fireplace doors that is appropriate for a wide variety of home design styles. These fireplace doors are also an example of cabinet-opening style doors.

StollFireplace-1

This next example is of a set of fireplace doors with an antique brass finish, non-arched, strap hinges, and a bi-fold design. These doors are not too different than the first example, but you can see that the finish has a pretty dramatic impact on the style. These doors would be better suited for a traditional style home.

lancaster brushed brass

This final example is of bi-fold, non-arched, and brushed brass finish fireplace doors. The minimalist design and 3-D appearance makes these doors perfect for a modern-looking home.

 

At Aspen Fireplace, we have fireplace doors that suit any home design style. To find the perfect set, come visit us at our showroom. You won’t find a better showroom selection of fireplaces anywhere in Columbus, Ohio. If you have a specific question or would like to learn more about our fireplaces or fireplace doors, you can also contact us here and we’ll respond as soon as possible.

How to Chimney Sweep: Weight Method

So far, we’ve talked about two similar chimney sweep methods: the Top Down method and the Bottom Up method. The Weight method is most similar to the Top Down method, but you will need some different materials. Instead of the flexible metal rods, you need rope and a weight (minimum of 20 lbs.). Like the Top Down method, the Weight method requires you to sweep your chimney from on top of your roof. As always, the most important thing is to be careful. If you are not comfortable on top of your roof, Aspen Fireplace provides professional chimney sweep service and can do it for you.

ChimneyProvidenceProspectPark

For the Weight chimney sweep method, you will first assemble the rope, pull rings, weight, and brush. Then, drop the weight and brush inside your chimney and raise and lower the brush so that it scrubs the inside of the chimney walls. Work your way down to the bottom.

 

One benefit of the Weight chimney sweep method is that you can close your fireplace doors to contain the mess. Before you get started just close your doors and then when you are done, open the doors and scoop out all the soot and debris. Make sure to dispose of the soot and creosote in accordance with your local laws.

 

The weight method is a popular type of chimney sweep because it usually cleans thoroughly and it’s easy to assemble the parts together. If you are not as much of a do-it-yourself person, don’t feel like you have to do a chimney sweep on your own. Aspen Fireplace will come out and perform a chimney sweep for you. We recommend you get a chimney sweep at least once every year, and even more if you use your fireplace often. To schedule your chimney sweep, contact us and we will respond quickly to find a time that works for you.

Taking Care of Wood Inserts: Ash Disposal

Wood inserts are great for those who have always felt attached to classic wood burning fireplaces, but want a heating source that is more energy efficient. Energy efficiency is one of the main benefits of wood inserts while still allowing you to enjoy the comfort of a traditional wood burning fireplace. To keep wood inserts healthy, there are some ways to take care of it that you should know about. One of these fireplace care concerns is ash disposal.

Fireplacex-Gallery-541 wood insert

If you use your wood insert regularly, ashes should be removed every few days. There are several ways that you can safely dispose of ash including using a pot of water and using sand. On some models of wood inserts there are ash drawers that allow you to easily remove ash. Be careful to only remove ash when the fire has died down, and even then you should expect there to be some hot embers.

 

Don’t let ash buildup in your wood insert. Especially don’t allow ash to build up to the loading door or around the start-up air housing located near the pilot. Make sure you don’t start a fire in your wood insert unless the ash plug and ash door are in place.

 

It’s a good idea to keep about 1-2 inches of ash at the bottom of your firebox to make it easier to start a fire the next time you use your wood burning insert. Fireplace ash is also a good source of fertilizer so disposing it by sprinkling along your lawn is a good idea.

 

Aspen Fireplace is here to help with any of your fireplace maintenance needs. To purchase a wood burning insert or to schedule maintenance for a wood insert fireplace, contact us and we’ll be happy to help yo0u any way we can.

Understanding the Difference between Cabinet and Bi-Fold Fireplace Doors

In the process of choosing fireplace doors, there are a number of choices to make including how much you want to spend and style. When trying to decide what style of fireplace doors you like best there are a number of considerations. One of the main considerations is cabinet vs. bi-fold. These two types of fireplace doors have both differences in look and function that you should think about before deciding what to go with.

Bi-fold_DoorTracked Bi-Fold Fireplace Doors

Bi-Fold

Bi-fold fireplace doors have two options: tracked and trackless. They both open accordion-style in which they fold into themselves, and both types are good for homes with small children because they are more difficult to open than cabinet doors. The difference between tracked and trackless is that tracked fireplace doors are attached to a track that keeps them in place. Because of this, tracked is usually preferred because they won’t break if the fireplace has a rough or uneven surface. The advantage of trackless fireplace doors is that they open wider and are easier to clean because of this.

trackless bi-foldTrackless Bi-Fold Fireplace Doors

 

Cabinet

Cabinet fireplace doors swing open 180 degrees. These doors are easier to open than bi-fold. One significant advantage of cabinet-style doors is that they are slightly more energy efficient because there is only one crack for heat to escape through. These are the most popular style of fireplace doors because of their elegant look and simplicity.

StollFireplace-26 cabinet doorsCabinet Fireplace Doors

 

Fireplace doors are important for the heating efficiency and safety of your fireplace. Aspen Fireplace offers a wide selection of fireplace doors that will suit any style you are looking for. To find the perfect fireplace doors for your home, contact us and we’ll be happy to help you with any of your fireplace needs.