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What is a Cast Iron Fireplace?

Article Details
  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 15 June 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2018
    Conjecture Corporation
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A cast iron fireplace is a stand-alone device that can be used as a fireplace insert or as a source of warmth outside. Available in several sizes and designs, this type of fireplace can be configured to work with different fuel sources and can often be used as a cook stove as well as providing heat in a cold area. Many home stores carry different makes and models of the cast iron fireplace, allowing consumers to select units that are ideal for use on the patio as well as in the home.

One of the benefits of the cast iron fireplace is the sturdiness of the device. Cast iron wears very well and will remain functional for many years with regular maintenance. The fireplace is not subject to chipping or other issues that are common with other multi-purpose stand-alone fireplaces, which allows the device to maintain a fresh and attractive appearance even when used exclusively outside.

Another advantage to the cast iron fireplace is the diversity in fuel options. It is possible to purchase a fireplace that makes use of wood in the same manner as a brick and mortar fireplace. This can be practical as well as esthetically pleasing when the fireplace is situated on a lanai or patio. The fireplace can cast warmth and a gentle glow that is ideal when family members want to spend some time enjoying the space during chilly evenings.

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The outdoor fireplace can also be outfitted with gas jets or even with electricity if the homeowner prefers. These models are ideal when there is no desire to clean up ash created from the use of a wood fireplace. A gas fireplace of this type can even make use of fake logs that are situated among the flames, giving the cast iron fireplace the look of a real fire without the mess.

Many designs of the cast iron fireplace make it possible to use the device as a stove as well as source of heat. Generally an outdoor fireplace of this type fill have a flat surface that makes it possible to place pots or pans above the fuel source and slowly cook a wide range of foods. Indoor models can also be used as inserts into a traditional fireplace, leaving a section protruding onto the hearth that serves as a cooking surface. With this application, the cast iron fireplace serves the same function as a wood stove or a full sized cast iron stove.

Because of the variety of sizes and designs, it is possible to purchase a cast iron fireplace that is ideal for just about any situation. There are smaller and more compact models that work well for camping trips or on the small patios found with apartments or garden homes. Larger models can be used to warm a larger area or serve as a central fire pit on a full sized patio. Some designs are strictly utilitarian, while others may feature graceful scrollwork or other decorative accents. In addition to purchasing the cast iron fireplace at local home stores, it is also possible to order them directly from manufactures via the Internet or by mail order.

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