Freestanding or Built-in Fireplaces? Which One to Get?

Before we knew it, summer had long passed us and the winter chill had finally come. If you’ve been thinking about upgrading your home’s central heating, then look no further than a fireplace. Fireplaces are greatly aesthetic landmarks in your home that can provide copious amounts of heat through a variety of methods. 

With gas or wood powered fireplaces in mind, the two types of fireplaces you can get are freestanding, or built-in. Keep reading as we explore the pros and cons of each, to help you decide on the best fit for your space.

Freestanding Fireplaces

There are many modern freestanding fireplaces in today’s market, which may be the perfect heating solution for your home. These fireplaces tend to fit into a more traditional aesthetic, but there are also modern designs fit for a contemporary feel.

Freestanding fireplaces can be positioned in a way which allows heat to radiate from all sides. If you have a two-storey house, the second level will get its heat from the flue pipes (pipes which expel exhaust gases out) with a freestanding Lopi wood heater.

In terms of safety, modern freestanding fireplaces are built to contain and prevent certain toxic fumes such as carbon monoxide (harmful gas) from coming into contact with anything outside it. If you are worried about the safety of your pets and children, you can invest in a fireguard or safety gate to keep them at bay, to avoid any risks of burns. 

When considering costs and installation times, freestanding heaters are quick and easy to install. They only require installation of flue pipes up through the ceiling and roof. Maintenance and repairs on freestanding fireplaces are also relatively simple and inexpensive


  • Can be placed in most places around the room
  • Generates heat throughout the home
  • Available in both gas and wood varieties
  • Needs a safety gate or careful positioning to keep children and pets from touching it
  • Quick installation
  • Relatively cheaper to install and maintain

Built-In Fireplaces

Built-in fireplaces can always achieve a timeless, cozy fit with many aesthetic designs to enhance the decor of the room. With a variety of styles to choose from, you can opt for a traditional wood-burning, or gas-powered fireplace to brighten up your home.

For the most optimal heating experience, you can have gas fire inserts installed into the fireplace. This is basically a smaller metal box inserted into the fireplace which heats the air in between the box and fireplace, which is then emitted as warmth. This ensures no heat is lost through the chimney.

In terms of safety, the fireplace is in the wall. Pets and children won’t be able to run around it and risk burning themselves unless trying to reach for it. Of course, you can still put up a fireguard for those particularly curious ones, but there is less risk with a built-in fireplace over a freestanding. One of the most popular styles is the Lopi built-in gas fireplace.

If your home doesn’t already have an existing brick chimney, then the installation costs of a built-in fireplace can be somewhat high. Gas-powered fireplaces may also be installed into timber stud work, making the installation process easier, but at a higher cost. 


  • Limited to a wall installation
  • Generates heat throughout the home
  • Available in both gas and wood varieties
  • Considered to be safer than freestanding fireplaces
  • Costs more than freestanding
  • Inexpensive to maintain

Whatever your heating needs are, you can always rely on a quality fireplace to add an extra level of ambience to your setting, and most importantly warmth.

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