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A zero-clearance fireplace (“zero-clearance” means that it has its own insulation, and needs zero inches of clearance — or distance — from combustible materials in the home) is a self-contained, prefabricated firebox which is designed to be installed almost anywhere. It does require a chimney for venting, but it does not need a traditional masonry chimney or significant amounts of insulation.


A zero-clearance fireplace can be installed almost anywhere that needs a little extra warmth or which could just use the ambiance of a roaring fire.BIS “Tradition” zero clearance prefabricated fireplace (room heater style, with doors).


There are two general types of zero-clearance fireplace. The traditional style resembles a classic masonry fireplace — it looks just like the one Santa generally falls asleep in front of. These fireplaces can heat just with radiant heat or can use blower fans to circulate warm air around your room. 

Traditional zero-clearance fireplaces can burn wood fuel, or can be fitted with a variety of gas log models or hearth appliances to use natural gas or propane.

Newer models are designed to be more efficient room heaters — they have heavy cast-iron doors in front to minimize the loss of room air up the chimney. (They also have a lot of other technical features which increase burn efficiency and help heat your home.)


These fireplaces generally only burn wood fuel. (If you desire a heating appliance which uses propane or natural gas, you may wish to consider.

Zero Clearance Description

These fireplaces generally only burn wood fuel. Both the traditional and newer types of prefabricated fireplace are great in any room, but if you want to heat your home with your fireplace, the room heaters are the way to go. Some of these fireplaces can even be hooked up to your central heating, to help your furnace along during the winter and reduce your electric or gas bills.


If you are looking to install a fireplace in a room which does not have a chimney or firebox already installed, a zero-clearance fireplace is a great choice. They work well in both large and small rooms and even in some mobile homes. CLICK on the button to return to our Zero Clearance Wood Fireplaces.

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