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Many Vermont Casting and Quadra-Fire Woodstove Clearance Opportunities Remain

Joseph Coupal - Thursday, December 30, 2010

We received feedback from customers that our specials on Vermont Casting Wood Pellet Stove are simply the best buying opportunity across the entire region.  The same is being said of our great deals on Quadra-Fire Gas Stoves.  Of  course we already knew this to be true, but it is great to receive your independent confirmation.

Take a look at our “Specials Page” and you will see that there are plenty of exceptional offerings still out there.  For instance, the St. Croix York Pellet Stove is still available at a STEEP 25% discount.  Vermont Casting products are still available at 20% discounts with floor models being offered at even better savings yet.   

Stop by or call (508) 969-4844 to discuss the wide range of clearance opportunities that are still available.  

Bring Back The Warmth And Coziness This Winter

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, December 28, 2010
If you have been thinking why all this hype about a vented gas fireplace, then it is time that you read the following. A Fireplace in general brings back memories of one's grandparents' hearth that radiated warmth, love and not to forget the never ending supply of warm cookies and milk! Well that is a thought that most people relate to when talking about a conventional fireplace. They also think about the times when their grandparents had to struggle on days when the fireplace's chimney was clogged and when it had to be cleaned.

Well, thanks to the advancement in technology, now you can actually have a vented gas fireplace in any room and not worry a bit about wood logs or cleaning out the chimney. All you would now have to do is turn it on, and play some good music while you enjoy the warmth of the fireplace with some nice cookies and warm milk.

Such fireplaces are also the best bet for people who are worried about the central heating system that runs on electricity. Conventional heating systems are popularly known to consume a lot of electricity and would end up heating rooms that are not even occupied. With a vented gas fireplace, you do not have to worry about your electricity bill, since they run on gas and you would not have to worry about the wrong rooms being heated unnecessarily, since each heater would heat only those rooms that you wish to have heated. So please feel free to contact us to find out more information on vented gas fireplaces or even any other fireplace questions you may have. We the experts at Fireplace Showcase would be happy to help.

Time for Tax Credit Running Out

Joseph Coupal - Monday, December 27, 2010



Click here for more information

Have A Wood Burning Fireplace? Then Here Are Some Cleaning Tips To Keep In Mind

Joseph Coupal - Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A wood-burning fireplace is by far the dirtiest fireplace there is. With the comfort and coziness of real wood burning comes soot, smoke, dirt, dust, debris -- even critters! Plus, it also requires constant maintenance throughout the winter -- removing ashes and adding new wood. However, when it is clean the rewards for having a wood stove far out weigh the maintenance factors.  So to help out our fellow wood fireplace lovers we will share with you all on how to prepare and clean your wood-burning fireplace.

  •  Give the exterior and interior a good once-over. Take note of any damage and missing or broken parts. Look outside at the exterior of your chimney. Any cracks will need to be repaired.
  • Check the flu for leaves, birds nests and other critters.
  •  Assess how much cleaning is needed. If you have layers of ash that are one or more inches thick, you're in for a dirty job. Cleaning a wood-burning fireplace is a messy task, so old clothing and rubber gloves are necessary. Place a protective drop cloth in front of the fireplace to protect your floors and carpeting from soot. Also, make sure to grab a shovel if your ash bed is high.
  • Remove the layers of ash and debris using a vacuum cleaner. Put it all into a trash bag and place aside.
  •  Scrub the fireplace. Using a scrub brush and a bucket full of soapy water, scrub the inside walls and floor of the fireplace.
  •  Don't scrub too hard on older brick. Doing this might cause it to crumble.
  •  Clean fireplace accessories. Screens, fireplace tools and log beds also get dirty and need to be cleaned. You can clean glass screens with a household glass cleaner. Mesh screens can be vacuumed. Tools can be cleaned inside or outdoors; give them a once-over with the scrub brush and soapy water, then spray them off with a hose. If you clean the tools inside, rinse each tool with water in your utility sink or using the spray nozzle in your kitchen sink.
Following these simple steps will ensure a nice and clean wood stove that everyone in the family can enjoy. Now, all you have to do is wait for the cold weather so you can curl up by the fire with a cup of hot chocolate! Also feel free to contact us if you have any questions about fireplace accessories or fireplace maintenance.

Utilizing An Ash Bucket At Your Fireplace Can Help Prevent Fires

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Whenever you burn a solid fuel, such as wood, coal, or pellets, in your stove, fireplace, or insert, you will be left with ashes to remove. These ashes must be removed periodically as they can affect both performance and durability of the product. The frequency of this ash removal will depend on the product itself, the type of fuel being burned, and the species of the fuel. Small bits of hot coals removed, mixed and buried within the ashes, represent a hidden danger. What many consumers are unaware of is that these hot coals can stay dormant for weeks when buried in ashes. The ash acts as an insulator keeping coals from burning out. All these coals need to flare up once more is oxygen. It’s for this reason fire departments often return to a scene to place more water on smoldering timbers and newly flared coals.

The key is a safe removal of ashes and coals from the product, and from the living quarters. The proper type of ash “holder” or pail, for ash removal and storage should also be sheet metal. The bottom should be slightly offset from the bottom so that the actual bottom does not make contact with flooring. The edge will and should make contact, but the majority of the bottom is elevated. The pail should have a large wire handle for easy carrying. And, most importantly, the pail should have a lid that closes tightly. This is the key for safety. Spend the few extra dollars to purchase an ash bucket that has the features just mentioned. There are many ash buckets in our industry that are quite decorative as well so aesthetics need not be too ignored. And, do not place the bucket directly on a wood porch or breezeway floor, but instead, on a non-combustible surface such as stone, concrete, brick, or slate. Contact us today if you need any fireplace accessories or even questions about fireplace inserts and stoves.

Fireplace Showcase Presents: The One Match Fire Starter

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It does not require the skill of an Eagle Scout to make a good fire in your fireplace. You just have to use a tried and trusted fire-starting method and what better way than to use an easy one step method using fatwood?

Before you start your fire crumble two or three sheets of paper such as yesterday’s newspaper. Avoid burning plastics or paper with color printing (such as the Sunday comics, magazines, or gift wrapping paper) as they give off toxic fumes. Put the crumbled paper on your fireplace grate. The grate elevates your fire, allowing it to pull in plenty of air to keep a good draft going up the chimney.

On top of the crumbled paper place a couple of sticks of fatwood, a natural fire starter. Fatwood comes from the stumps of pine trees, the section of the trees that naturally collects the highly combustible resinous sap or pitch. It is a sap soaked southern yellow pine natural fire starter. Purchased in easy-to-use sticks about 8 inches long, fatwood is known as nature's one-match fire starter.

When using fatwood as your fire starter, add 3 pieces of split, dried firewood on top of the fatwood. This will ensure that the fire will start and heat the right way, and will help to avoid any smoke coming into the room. As the fire burns, use the tongs from your fireplace tool set to add more split firewood as needed. Place a fireplace screen in front of the fire to protect your home and loved ones. Now, sit back and enjoy your fireplace fire! If you have any questions about fatwood or any fireplace needs feel free to contact us and we’ll be happy to help.

One Stove That Can Meet All Your Heating Needs

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, November 23, 2010

For most people home heating is a necessity, and the traditional forms of heating are now for many simply unaffordable. Due to conflicts creating problems with fuel supply, and increasing global demand, the price of oil is generally increasing. There are several factors driving the rise in prices. The first is a limited supply of the resources, and year on year increase in demand.

Looking at this situation, Fireplace Showcase knows we need to diversify our sources of energy. Home and business heating for example is one area where we can make changes, with wood pellets and pellet stoves. Wood has been used for heating for thousands of years, but really burning logs is not a modern practical solution. Therefore processing the wood into wood pellets produces a modern fuel, which can be used automatically in a pellet stove.

A pellet burner is designed with an internal fuel hopper. This hopper can hold at least enough pellet fuel to run the stove for 12 hours. Hopper extensions are available, which can extend the running time of some pellet stoves up to a week. To remove the need to fill the pellet stove at all, it is possible to get a large external hopper fitted, which can feed the stove automatically. An external hopper can hold a years’ worth of fuel, you simply order a pellet delivery and a tank will fill the hopper.

The pellet stove can feed fuel automatically as well as start the fire on demand, running from a standard wall thermostat for example. Depending on what type of fuel you are running on, you may need to only empty the ash draw once a month. If you feel as though this is the right stove for you, or wish to know more information on pellet stoves contact us today and we’ll be happy to help.

Give The Gift of Ambiance This Holiday Season

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Per usual this time of year, The Fireplace Showcase telephones are "heating up".  Smart shoppers aren't waiting for the bitter cold to both beautify and increase the enjoyment of their home.  Consider the beauty and warmth that a Vermont Castings Sequoia EPA wood fireplace offer you today.

The catalytic Sequoia can heat up to 2,500 square feet of your home as efficiently as a wood stove. It’s a new tradition in fireplace design and it’s only available from Vermont Castings. Just some of the features and benefits include:

  • Heat output: 11 ,300 to 75,500 BTU/hr (based on EPA ratings)
  • Less than 2.5 g/hr particulate emissions
  • Ceramic glass window features glass air-wash system
  • Arched cast iron doors are air sealed
  • Burn time up to 14 hours
  • Size of logs up to 24”
  • Large ash handling system with two removable ash pans
  • Uses Majestic triple wall chimney system
  • Twin outside air kit (AK-MST)
Of course the Vermont Castings Sequoia is just one of many remarkable additions that you can add to your home.  We carry an assortment of  Quadra-Fire fireplaces, Napoleon Wood Fireplaces, and the ever popular Monessen's brand gas vented and vent free fireplaces. 

Cleaning Up Ash Is Easy With The Ash Vacuum

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Fireplaces are amazing to use during those chilly days by all, unfortunately no one enjoys cleaning them either. Ashes are such fine particles that they tend to go everywhere when trying to scoop them up into the garbage. The mess is only part of the problem as the coals can typically remain hot for many days adding to the difficulty of cleaning. Most household vacuums can't withstand the heat to vacuum the ashes and there aren't any commercial vacuums either. The Ash vacuum is designed to handle the heat from stoves and fireplaces while cleaning without any ashes flying around the room!

The Loveless Ash Vacuum is one of the safest ways of cleaning stoves and fireplaces. The entire vacuum is made of metal to withstand the highest of temperatures. The fire resistant filter is so fine that no ash will escape back into the room. Cleaning the filter is simple so as to allow the entire cleaning process to be completed without having to stop and clean the filter. The machine is designed to also hold up to 3 gallons of debris safely and securely. The vacuum is not designed to vacuum up wood or larger coal as they recommend leaving that to burn later. The unit operates very quietly and comes in several different styles that look appealing when left out. The device has many fire resistant plastic accessories to allow for easier cleaning based on the area size.

The Loveless units are the safest and easiest way for you to clean your ash contraptions in your home or office. This vacuum is designed with safety in mind and homeowners love it. No homeowner enjoys cleaning, though this vacuum series has definitely made it a much easier task. Contact us today to find out how you can get a ash vacuum or if you have any fireplace or chimney needs.

Interested In A Pellet Stove? Use The $1,500 Tax Credit!

Joseph Coupal - Monday, November 01, 2010

Included in the 2009 Economic Stimulus legislation signed into law by President Barrack Obama on February 17th, 2009, is a 30% (up to $1,500) consumer tax credit in 2009 and 2010 for the purchase of a 75% efficient biomass-burning stove as measured using a lower heating value. The Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association and the Pellet Fuels Institute, succeeded in their efforts improving the tax credit to promote renewable energy and help consumers fight rising year to year home heating costs.

The pellet stove biomass tax credit provisions in this new legislation contain improvement amendments to the legislation passed back in October 2008. The major changes made were an extension of the credit to 2010 and an increase of the credit from $300 to 30% of the total cost of stove.

Guidelines for determining what pellet stoves meet the efficiency requirements to qualify for the credit are determined by the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the IRS. The pellet and biomass tax credit took effect January 1st, 2009. These guidelines were released on March 31, 2009, and the credit applies to all qualifying pellet stoves sold in 2009 and 2010. Make sure you contact us soon as this tax credit will only be in effect for a couple more months. So be sure to check out our selection of pellet stoves and take the government up on this terrific offer! Below we have added in a couple important questions that were asked about this tax credit.

Q: What is a federal consumer tax credit?
A: Consumers claim the credit on their federal income tax form at the end of the year. The credit then increases the tax refund or decreases the amount the taxpayer has to pay.

Q: When does this pellet / biomass tax credit go into effect and how long will it last?
A: The pellet tax credit goes into effect January 1st, 2009 and is valid only for the purchase of a qualifying stoves in 2009 and 2010. The sales receipt must indicate that the purchase was made between January 1, 2009 and December 31, 2010.

Q: How does the language in this legislation differ from what was passed in October 2008?
A: The new legislation 1) increases the pellet - biomass tax credit from $300 to 30% of the total cost of a biomass-pellet burning stove, 2) extends the tax credit to purchases in 2010, and 3) measures the pellet-biomass stove’s efficiency based on the lower heating value.