If you own a masonry fireplace, you understand the value that it brings to your home. The warmth and ambiance it creates just can’t be beat. Unfortunately, there are some drawbacks to owning a masonry fireplace. The maintenance associated with a masonry fireplace, especially an older one, can be costly. If you’re thinking of giving up on maintaining your older masonry fireplace, or have an older masonry fireplace that doesn’t operate anymore, The Chimney Guy have a solution – fireplace insert.

What is an insert?

wood insert

A fireplace insert is a heating appliance that is inserted into your existing firebox, essentially replacing your brick firebox. One of the benefits of owning an insert is that it consists of a steel shell that is specially designed to direct heat into the living areas. An insert also allows you the freedom to choose which type of fuel to burn. Wood, gas and compressed wood pellets are some of the popular fuel types. We can even install them into your home!


Most inserts that you find on the market, regardless of fuel type, are more efficient than masonry fireplaces. Masonry systems draw air from your home and heat it up before sending most of it out of the chimney. However, an insert fire burns in an insulated firebox that is airtight, allowing you to control the airflow. Most masonry systems are only 5 to 10 percent efficient compared to the 80 percent efficiency that inserts can achieve. If efficiency is important to you, then an insert is a good choice.

Can I install an insert in a prefabricated fireplace?

It would be nice if we were able to quickly switch out the firebox in your prefabricated fireplace, however, it isn’t possible. Inserts are designed to only set in a masonry firebox. The firebox in a prefabricated fireplace would have to be removed or an insert need to be attached to the prefabricated fireplace. An insert isn’t designed for a prefab fireplace, so attempting to do so is very dangerous. If your prefabricated fireplace is a bad shape, it’s likely time to replace it with a new fireplace or stove.

You should only have your an insert installed by a Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) certified technician. Only a CSIA certified chimney technician has the training and experience to properly install and maintain your insert. If you try to install an insert by yourself, any mistake in the installation process could lead to hazardous situations. It’s best to leave the work to the professionals at The Chimney Guy. Our CSIA certified chimney technicians have been installing inserts for over 20 years, so you can trust us to get the job done right.

If you think a fireplace insert is the right choice for you, call The Chimney Guy at 920-830-1920. You can also schedule an appointment online. We look forward to serving you today!