It is impossible to imagine the life and development of mankind without the use of fire. Since ancient times, people have tried to preserve it, using it to heat their homes and cook food. At first it was a simple fire, made in the center of the cave, then a stone or brick area in the house, on which the brought firewood burned, filling the entire room with smoke. Centuries passed, and stoves appeared in private houses, and fireplaces appeared in impregnable castles and aristocratic estates.
In our time, it would seem, the need for these devourers of firewood and coal has disappeared. Indeed, in a modern country house, you can run heating pipes connected to a portable steam generator, or you can use a modern system with air heating. All this will allow you to warm up the room at a lower cost, but the desire still lives in the soul of a modern person to lean back in a rocking chair on the second floor of an old house and watch the game of an open flame in the twilight.
Of course, a fireplace on the second floor is an additional challenge, but modern technologies can solve this problem. If the main goal is the aesthetic desire to look at the fire, then an alcohol fireplace can be used. It does not require refractory structures, even an exhaust duct for the removal of combustion products is optional.
If such a device does not seem solid enough, you can make an island fireplace right in the center of the room. Since the foundation for the fireplace is quite massive, it must be placed on the load-bearing floor slabs; it is advisable to use a suspended chimney that goes to the roof through a decompression chamber.
Since this design deals with an open source of fire, there are some rules, the observance of which will allow you to admire this mesmerizing sight inside the house, reclining in a chair, and not running outside, giving instructions to the fire brigade.
Let's digress from building a fireplace on the second floor and consider any available options. These heating systems have been developing for centuries, but during all this time they have not been able to change the principle of operation, as a result of which they have remained devices with low efficiency and high fuel consumption.
Schematic diagram of the fireplace
Any fireplace is designed to burn fuel, while receiving heat, and to bring combustion products out into the street with the least inconvenience for those who are inside. The evolution has resulted in several standard solutions.
The main options for placing fireplaces
- Option A - built into the wall. For implementation, this design requires elaboration even at the design stage of the building, therefore it is completely unsuitable as an option for revising an existing house.
- Option B - fireplace against the wall. It can be made in an existing building, its advantages are a sufficiently large area of the surface radiating heat, which allows you not only to enjoy the beauty of burning firewood, but also to get practical benefits from a comfortable temperature in the room.
- Option B - corner fireplace. A special case, located not at one, but at two walls at once. In this regard, it is more economical to build, but for the same reason it has a smaller heating area.
- Option D - island fireplace. It can be located in the very center of the room, in fact it is a good old hearth of a primitive man in a modern shell.
Before you start building a fireplace, you need to calculate its dimensions.There are proven techniques to do this.
Dimensions of fireplace components
Firebox and its features
The size of the fireplace directly depends on the area of the heated room, while the size of the fireplace should be approximately one-fiftieth of the area of the room. For example, let's take its area equal to 25 m2, the area of the furnace in this case is 0.5 m2. Based on this, we find the rest of the dimensions. The ratio of height to width is usually taken as 2/3. Let's solve a problem for the 4th grade:
A / B = 3/2
A = 3B / 2
S = AB = 3B2 / 2 = 0.5 m2
B2 = 1/3 m2
B = 58 cm, A = 87 cm.
We check: 0.58x0.87 = 0.5046 m2, everything is correct.
So, we know the dimensions of the furnace, you can go further. The depth of the fireplace C should be equal to two-thirds of the found height B, in our case we get 58 / 3x2 = 39 cm. This parameter is very important. If you make the firebox too deep, then almost all the heat will go into the chimney, and too deep will be too small, then the smoke will go into the room.
Beginning at one third of the height of the firebox, the back wall should be tilted at an angle of approximately 20 degrees. In the drawing, this parameter is indicated by the letter L, and in our example it is 58/3 = 19 cm.
Sometimes they make fireplaces with a closed firebox, but in this case, the fireplace turns into a kind of stove. For them, they try to purchase ready-made doors with dimensions as close as possible to the calculated ones.
In order for the wood in the fireplace to burn, pleasing to the eye, and not to smoke, two conditions must be met: the access of oxygen and the removal of combustion products. As a rule, air enters the firebox directly from the room, this is natural forced ventilation, it does not require any special costs. However, if the capacity of the fireplace is high, and the room has few slots and holes, then smoke may occur, and in some cases, even reverse draft, when air, instead of leaving through the chimney, begins to flow through it from the street. In order to avoid such situations, duct ventilation is used. For this, a special air duct is made, which is led into the firebox directly from the street.
The dimensions of the chimney depend on the capacity of the fireplace. The pipe height should not be less than five meters. If the length of the chimney exceeds 10 meters, the draft can become so great that all the heat will simply "fly into the chimney" in the truest sense of the word. To avoid this, they resort to artificial bends and the use of special dampers. The cross-sectional area of the chimney should be 10-12 times less than the furnace area.
The fireplace works in high temperature conditions, therefore its masonry is made of special bricks. Red kiln bricks can withstand temperatures up to 1000 degrees Celsius.
When laying a fireplace, it must be borne in mind that during the heating process, solids (in our case, bricks) have properties to expand and, as a result, ordinary mortar cannot be used. Due to the different expansion coefficients of clay and cement, such masonry will crack and subsequently completely collapse. Making a real oven solution requires special knowledge and materials that are not always available, so it makes sense for an amateur beginner to purchase ready-made dry mixes.
When building a fireplace, you will need not only bricks and mortar, but also other components that will have to be purchased or ordered.
Additional equipment for the fireplace
Here's what you can't do without:
- Ash pan - a tray for collecting slag.
- Grate - provides air access to the burning wood, preventing them from falling down.
- A gate damper is a special device that is installed in the chimney to regulate the draft.
- Drawings and diagrams
- Fireplace working scheme
- Masonry scheme
- Coarse chimney fireplace.
- Corner fireplace drawing
Location rules and requirements
The podium in front of the fireplace should be at least 50 cm wide, and the projections on the sides should be 20-30 cm.The fireplace should not be placed in the path of movement of people, the distance from the edge of the fireplace to the end of the wall should be at least one meter.
Electric fireplace device
The use of electric heaters, stylized as a fireplace, helps to transform the interior, avoiding the negative features of their wood-burning counterparts. The electric fireplace does not smoke, does not require the construction of bulky chimneys, does not require firewood and coal. Its structure is quite simple. In fact, this is a conventional heating element that converts electrical energy into heat radiation. Using modern materials, rather elegant designs can be created without much expense.
Interesting interior solutions
The construction of a fireplace in the house gives an extraordinary scope for a flight of imagination. It cannot be limited in any way, but you can see samples, examples of how you can place this structure in a house.