Which fireplace door is best?
In spite of today’s modern conveniences, the timeless warmth of a flickering fireplace is a hallmark of the winter season. From lovers of the outdoors to city dwellers all over the country, there’s something about a fireplace that warms more than just the room. However, an open fireplace can be dangerous and inefficient. To use your fireplace safely, you need a fireplace door.
The Pleasant Hearth Alpine Fireplace Door offers an affordable and modern way to get the most out of your fireplace. It’s easy to install and matches almost any interior space.
What to know before you buy a fireplace door
Why use a fireplace door?
- Safety. Fireplace doors keep ashes and sparks in and pets, kids and objects out.
- Draft blocking. Without a door, cold air can come down through your chimney and into your home. Glass fireplace doors keep the cold air out.
- Adjustability. Some doors let you customize how much air you allow into your fireplace. By adjusting the airflow, you can change the intensity of your fire.
- Looks. While some may like their decor to be rough around the edges, many prefer the finished look that a fireplace door gives a brick and mortar hearth.
Fireplace doors vs. fireplace screens
- Fireplace doors are installed as permanent or semi-permanent fixtures. Most contain at least one hinged glass panel in addition to a hinged mesh panel, giving you the option of completely sealing your fireplace. Fireplace doors are designed for use with fireplaces that are a part of your home’s structure, not prefabricated units.
- Fireplace screens are movable items that you place on the hearth. These mesh walls do not create a seal, but they do still prevent sparks from leaping out of the fire and keep pets and children from reaching into it. If you aren’t concerned about keeping drafts at bay, or prefer not to deal with any installation, a fireplace screen with built-in doors can be economical and attractive solution.
Carefully measure your fireplace before shopping so that you know what size door you need. Most are able to accommodate a range of dimensions. A door that is too large will not fit into your fireplace, whereas one that is too small will not seal appropriately.
Some fireplace doors feature glass that is slightly tinted, while others include crystal clear panes. The glass panels are to remain open while the fire is lit. If you find the interior of your fireplace to be unattractive or messy, opt for tinted glass that will keep it obscured while the fire is out.
What to look for in a quality fireplace door
A matching fireplace door can tie together a room’s decor. Choose one that fits in with your existing aesthetic. Most fireplace doors come in either a black or bronze finish and you can find them with single-pane or cabinet-style panels.
If you want to be able to have better control over the size and burn rate of your fire, choose a door that features an adjustable damper. More airflow makes for a more intense fire, while less allows you to enjoy your fire longer.
Choose a fireplace door that uses magnets to stay closed. Avoid doors that require you to use a manual latch to keep the doors shut, as handling hot metal can burn you.
Select a fireplace door that can be installed without any drilling or power tools. Many only need a few thumbscrews to be tightened to securely clamp into your existing fireplace. Since they are heavy and glass panels can be chipped if dropped, have someone assist you with the installation.
How much you can expect to spend on a fireplace door
Fireplace doors typically cost $300-$500.
Fireplace door FAQ
Why do I need to keep the glass doors open while my fireplace is lit?
A. Wood burning fireplaces need a steady supply of oxygen to stay lit. Keeping the glass doors closed greatly impedes airflow and smothers the flames.
Can I install my own fireplace door?
A. Yes. While every manufacturer is different, most fireplace doors can be installed using little more than a screwdriver and don’t require any professional expertise.
What’s the best fireplace door to buy?
Top fireplace door
What you need to know: This door mounts to your existing masonry with its included brackets.
What you’ll love: This fireplace door has a minimalist look and includes glass and mesh door panels that open with a pair of tasteful, rounded handles. It comes in three sizes and is available in either black or bronze.
What you should consider: Some buyers have had to modify the installation process to ensure that the door fits securely.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top fireplace door for the money
What you need to know: Technically a fireplace screen, this accessory has built-in doors and does not require permanent mounting.
What you’ll love: With thick mesh and adjustable feet, this screen greatly improves the look and safety of a wide range of fireplaces without the need for measuring or elbow grease. It uses strong magnets to keep its doors secure and features an ornate design.
What you should consider: Some buyers report that their door was missing pieces when it arrived.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you need to know: Sophisticated and stylish, these doors can breathe new life into even the oldest fireplaces.
What you’ll love: Featuring both glass and mesh cabinet-style panels, these fireplace doors seal up tightly to prevent drafts. A discreet airflow adjuster can be used to control the size of your fire and the doors can be opened and closed with their 5-inch handles and magnetic latches.
What you should consider: These doors are more ornate than many alternatives and therefore, more expensive.
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Derek Walborn writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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