Zero Clearance Fireplace Guide

Zero Clearance Fireplace Guide: Is It The Most Effective Option For Your Home?

Nothing is exciting as chilling in front of a cozy fireplace on a winter evening when the entire outdoor is fully covered with the blowing cold wind.

This sounds more interesting when you have a high-quality fireplace at home where you can relax when the weather is cold. The zero Clearance Fireplace is the most recommended and effective fireplace that suits your home.

A fireplace does not only add homeliness to homes and cottages but also keeps the whole place warm. Initially, having a fireplace at home was considered to be a lot of work, especially when it came to cleaning the ashes, fetching logs, and purging the chimney from time to time.

Most people considered a fireplace as the most expensive thing that one could easily afford.

In recent days, homes had several fireplaces depending on the size of the house. Also, a fireplace was considered a potential fire hazard that most homeowners were always cautious about to prevent fire outbreaks. Those days are now over, and now you can have a reliable fireplace for your home without being worried about fire accidents.

Zero clearance fireplace can be easily installed in any home and offer the best results. However, many people do not understand what kind of fireplace this is. Zero clearance fireplace, also known as zc fireplace, is a pre-manufactured type of heating device that comes with a firebox that can be placed directly against any combustible material without danger.

This type of fireplace is constructed from a unique material that prevents the fireplace’s walls from overheating, making it safe to install in apartments. Also, it takes up a tiny space at home compared to the other sorts of fireplaces.

Benefits of the Zero Clearance Fireplace

Benefits of the Zero Clearance Fireplace

It Fits in Tight Spaces

The zero clearance fireplace has comprehensive insulation when compared to the masonry fireplaces. The availability of enough insulation eliminates the need to leave space for the buffer zone installed between the fireplace and the combustible materials. Hence, it can fit in tight spaces pretty easily.

It Has Low Maintenance Costs

The appliance is designed in a manner that is easy to use and calls for less maintenance. By installing a zero clearance fireplace, you won’t be worried about chimney or masonry repairs at home. This saves you from incurring extra costs that could be spent on doing other stuff.

It is Available in Many Styles

Every homeowner has the designs that they like. The zero clearance fireplace is available in different styles and models to choose from that can easily fit your home.

However, it would be best to select the fireplace that fits perfectly in its respective space at home.  Going for a fireplace that is too big or too small for your home is not a good idea since it will inconvenience you.

Reduced Installation Cost

Note that there is very little labor required when it comes to the installation of a zero clearance fireplace. Also, the chimney system of this type of fireplace is closely similar to that installed for the masonry fireplace. Expensive concrete foundation are not needed to install this type of fireplace, thus cheap to install.

It Can Be Installed in Any Home

The initial fireplace types could only be installed in specific homes that have attained particular standards. The zero clearance fireplace can be easily installed in any home, including mobile properties. However, always check on the device’s details to ensure that you pick the appliance that fits any home.

Installation of the Prefab Fireplace

The zero clearance fireplace comes in different forms. Some of the devices come with a hearth, while others do not. However, if the device comes with a hearth, you ought to begin the installation process by anchoring it to the foundation walls.

If the zero clearance fireplace does not have a hearth, you must pour one similar to the traditional model of fireplaces.

Suppose you find out that the foundation is unnecessary; head straight to positioning the fireplace on the subfloor. For you to get perfect placement, use a plumb bob by dropping it from the top of the chimney to make it align with the fireplace and the immediate section of the flue.

Before you think of encasing the unit, you should erect the chimney fast and ensure it perfectly fits in its position. Remember that this is a job that needs a couple of individuals to be done correctly. One person should tightly hold the chimney section in place while the other one locks it down.

Begin by installing the first section of the chimney over the fireplace unit. When doing this, ensure that the pieces are perfectly locked together according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Continue locking every subsequent piece together as they go up throughout the chimney. When you reach the ceiling, you need to put up a firestop.

Once you have installed the device, and the chimney is already up the roof, close all the remaining openings. Next, apply flashing on the flue and nail it to the frame of the roof. Apply roofing on it to cover the flashing and ensure you avoid the lower flange by all means. To prevent water leakage, apply a storm collar over the flue and then put it on the chimney cap.

Considering the installation guidelines above, you will realize that the demands for masonry, carpentry, and roofing are high while installing the zero clearance fireplace.

To be on the safe end, hiring a professional to install the prefab fireplaces is recommendable. This will guarantee high-quality work and eliminate the chances of putting your home at risk due to a poorly done job.

Hacks to Consider When Choosing the Best Zero Clearance Fireplace

Hacks to Consider When Choosing the Best Zero Clearance Fireplace

Despite having many types of zero clearance fireplaces in the market, various factors need to be considered when choosing the fireplace for your home needs. Let’s shed light on the significant factors to consider before you acquire your fireplace.


When it comes to purchasing the zero clearance fireplace, cost should always be an immediate aspect to consider. However, the cost of the device is evaluated from different points of view. The first aspect is the cost of the insert, which is mainly shipped once you make an order. This means that you should also factor in the shipping cost.

The installation cost is also another area to be considered. Note that the installation cost will also depend on the type and model of the fireplace you acquire.  Finally, the cost of maintenance takes over a large proportion of your budget. Following all the above aspects will help you make a prudent decision.

The Type of Fuel

Before you decide on buying the device, always check to see the type of fuel used. You need to understand that every zero clearance fireplace uses a different kind of fuel.

Also, go for the one that uses the fuel that you can easily afford without much struggle. Besides, you should ensure that the type of fuel you choose is safe for your well-being and the family in general.

The Size of the Appliance

Zero clearance fireplaces come in different sizes. Choose the size that fits your needs and your house. Acquiring a small or a large fireplace is not wise, and it may end up causing more inconveniences.

Best Recommended Types of Zero Clearance Fireplaces

Below are some of the best zero clearance fireplaces that we highly recommend. This list is based on the customer reviews of the products and their durability. They are worth your hard-earned money. They include:

Pacific Energy FP25 Wood Burning Fireplace

Pacific Energy FP25 Wood Burning Fireplace

Are you in search of a more traditional fireplace design that suits your home? Look no further because the Pacific Energy FP25 has all your needs backed up. The fireplace is a combination of a traditional design and a modern set up forming a wall-mounted fireplace. The Pacific Energy FP25 is highly recommended and certified by EPA.

It comes with a high-capacity baffle system that enhances extended burn times. The fireplace gives room for homeowners to supplement the amount of heat produced by the device with optional heat distribution channels.


  • It can be installed in any home
  • It is certified, hence safe for use
  • Promotes extended burning, thus keeping your home for long
  • It comes with optional heat distribution channels


  • It is relatively expensive

Supreme Galaxy Zero Clearance Fireplace

Supreme Galaxy Zero Clearance Fireplace

This is a new model in the market. Due to its high-quality functioning, the device received an award for the best new product in the hearth section. The Supreme Galaxy comes with a hearth, thus easy to install and operate. The fireplace comes with a modern design that has made it stand out on the market and the best option.


  • It comes with a modern design
  • It does not overheat; hence safe for use
  • Easy to install; thus, the installation cost is low
  • Simple to maintain and operate


  • Not easily found
  • It is expensive

Montecito Estate Fireplace

Montecito Estate Fireplace

This type of fireplace comes with different kinds of heating capacities. It is designed to produce heat and ambiance that is just enough to warm the entire house without bringing discomfort. The fireplace sets a relaxing mood at home that spreads throughout the rooms making the whole home comfortable and warm.

The fireplace has a beautiful design that makes your indoors more attractive and completes your home design.


  • It comes with different heating capacities
  • It has a beautiful and modern design
  • Simple to install and operate
  • Relatively cheap


  • Not easily found

Pacific Energy FP16 Wood Burning Fireplace

Pacific Energy FP16 Wood Burning Fireplace

This Pacific Energy FP16 fireplace is pretty modern and built to serve you on a lifetime basis. The Pacific Energy FP16 is an outstanding home heating solution that is good for small-medium houses and spaces.

It is a highly efficient appliance that has been tested and certified by EPA. It uses the pacific energy heavy gauge steel floating firebox that enhances its quality and the capacity for the baffle system.

It has an EBT2 system that makes it burn for a long time compared to the other fireplaces. The Pacific Energy FP16 has a popular clean air wash technology that transmits dirty air outside, making the home setting relaxed and warm.


  • Highly efficient and certified by EPA
  • Long-lasting
  • It comes with an air wash technology
  • Burns for a long time
  • It is affordable


  • It is limited to smaller spaces


Question: What Does the Term Zero Clearance Mean?

Answer: Zero clearance means that the fireplace has insulation and does not require any space for clearance. During the zero clearance fireplace installation, the appliance does not require space from the combustible materials found at home.

Question: How Do I Identify If My Fireplace is Zero Clearance?

Answer: The simplest way of identifying if your fireplace is zero clearance is to check the availability of the black metal on the appliance. The metal is either exposed on the face of the fireplace or available inside the firebox.
Note that some manufacturers tend to hide the metal hence manufacturing fireplaces that look precisely like masonry.

Question: Does a Zero Clearance Fireplace Require a Hearth?

Answer: Note that the zero clearance fireplaces are pre-manufactured, whereby the firebox can be placed directly against combustible materials such as walls. Remember that the zero clearance fireplace does not require a hearth to function correctly. However, some zero clearance fireplaces come with a hearth.

Question: How Long Can a Zero Clearance Fireplace Last?

Answer: Like other home appliances such as refrigerators, a zero well-maintained clearance fireplace can last between twenty and thirty years. Note that this will only depend on the type of care and maintenance that you give the appliance.

Question: Is a Zero Clearance Fireplace Efficient?

Answer: The zero clearance fireplace is more efficient when compared to the open-hearth masonry fireplace, which is 10% efficient, while the zero clearance fireplace is 70% efficient.

Zero Clearance Fireplace Guide: Bottom Line

Zero clearance fireplaces are the most recommended types of fireplaces to be used at home. However, there are things that one needs to learn and comprehend before acquiring them.

The aspects discussed in this article are of great importance to help individuals have a detailed understanding of the zero clearance fireplaces. Try one of our recommended options above and let us know how they serve you.

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