Warm Up Your Valentine with a Fireplace

Valentine’s Day is almost here and many of us will try to find the perfect greeting card, gift, or night out to show appreciation to our loved ones. While these offerings may provide a brief spark in your relationship, may we suggest a more permanent Valentine’s Day gift that will enhance your home and bring you and your loved one closer for much longer than a holiday? . . . . A Fireplace!

On chilly winter nights, nothing adds as much ambience to your home as a roaring fire. Year-round, a fireplace adds beauty, dimension, and a focal point for your room. While there are a number of federal and local regulations that restrict the construction of old-fashioned masonry fireplaces in new and remodeled homes, there are a number of EPA-certified wood-burning fireplaces that provide the richness only a real wood fire can impart and, at the same time, curtail the particulate matter in the smoke by as much as 70%. Two are shown in the photos at right. Additionally, there are a number of ways to retrofit an existing wood-burning fireplace to comply with current regulations. Most will require glass or metal doors and an insert or retrofit to contain the particulate matter. See the list of EPA-certified Fireplacesfor more information.

Renaissance Rumford EPA

Gas fireplaces are also a great option if you do not want to be concerned with obtaining a consistent supply of dry, seasoned, firewood or with cleaning the ashes from the fireplace. In the past, gas fireplaces failed to provide anything close to the experience of a wood burning fireplace. Today, there are a number of greatly-improved gas and electric fireplaces options from which to choose. See the EPA Website for a list of EPA-certified choices.
To help our customers sort through the maze of options and regulations, Hammerschmidt Construction has teamed with Blaze Fireplacesbecause of their expertise and superior customer service.

Blaze will walk you through the five steps of selecting the right fireplace for your space and make the installation easy and enjoyable.

    1. Is a fireplace or fireplace insert needed? A fireplace insert is installed in the existing wood burner. A regular fireplace is installed in the framed opening.
    2. Are you looking for a traditional or modern style?
    3. Are you using the fireplace for heat, and if so, how much heat will be required?
    4. What options (log set, brick, doors and control functions) would you like installed?
    5. Review the flue piping and the installation parameters.


Blaze Fireplace is a family-owned and operated full service contractor and supplier of fireplaces, mantels, insulation, and garage doors. Blaze provides onsite consultation, installation, service, warranty, and after-sales support. Their 6,000 sq ft designer fireplace showroom features more than 60 active burning fireplace displays and over 40 mantels. The Blaze San Francisco Office and Showroom is located at 101 Cargo Way in San Francisco, CA 94124 Phone: 415-495-2002.

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