Deciding what to use for a fireplace grate may seem uncomplicated, there are cast iron fireplace grates, steel fireplace grates, stainless steel fireplace grates and grate heaters or blowers. This selection does present a choice in the selection process. While you will find a 24 fireplace grate is the most common. All have benefits, and the choice may ultimately be made by what is expected from your fire place. For a pretty fire and room ambience using any grate will do the job, but if the expectation is for extra home heat the selection needs close examination.
CAST IRON FIREPLACE GRATES: The first thing we all think of when we hear the term cast iron is our mother’s skillet in the kitchen. Cast iron has properties of heat being spread evenly throughout the metal. That’s what makes a cast iron skillet cook so well. Those same properties can be seen in a cast iron grate. The grate itself will, when heated by a fire, radiate heat into a room. This is a passive approach to expelling heat into a room but it needs to be thought of when figuring the best ways to do just that, heat a room. This will help, but understand this should not be thought of as a major contributor for a room’s warmth.
STEEL AND STAINLESS STEEL FIREPLACE GRATES: These are available most everywhere and are reasonability priced. The steel grates are generally made with the bars wider apart than the cast iron cousin. The difference between stainless and regular steel is in the possibly of longer life. Also, the actual visual looks are different. The grate, stainless or not, will retain heat to radiate into the room. There is small difference between the steel and cast iron grate. Cast iron winning out but the amount is insignificant.
FIREPLACE GRATES BLOWERS: This is a product that serves two jobs. One, holds the wood that is being burned like a grate and two, takes the heat that is developed from the fire and sends it into a room with the use of a fan. This could be considered a turbo charged fireplace grate. There are many available and do a good job at moving warmth into a room. If you are thinking about this avenue then an actual fireplace insert might enter into the discussion.
A basic wood burning grate is a tool for your fireplace just like a fireplace tool set, fireplace screen and a fireplace hearth rug. All these items are fundamental to the success of heating your home and enjoying your fireplace. Keep the flue clean and happy warm nights!