Sunday, July 28, 2013

When we bought our house the instructions to the original fireplace were still hanging in the firebox. The house was about 10 years old and the fireplace untouched. We used that fireplace religiously until Samantha was a year old and she started to get bronchitis. The box was so small that the only way to get heat out was to first, buy walnut because it burned easier than oak, and to leave the doors open. (Not exactly child-safe.)

When neighbors were moving we bought a fireplace insert from them. It was still in the box--they never got around to installing it and weren't about to leave it with the new owners. We bought it for around $300 and thought it was a steal because the unit costs approx. $1500. It took us 4 years to get a contractor to install it because no one wanted to touch a unit that wasn't purchased from a dealer. Turns
out there was a reason for that. 

The contractor started in January and was done within a week, but the unit wouldn't stay lit. So we had to figure out what the issue was: flue venting, piping, etc. And we had to buy more parts because the unit came as itself. There was no remote to turn it on, there was no interior vent, the flue venting needed adjustment. And meanwhile we refused to pay the contractor because the fireplace didn't work properly. (The contractor wasn't at fault it was the wholesale unit!)

Finally, after forking out $800 more in parts and a three-month wait for the contractors to finish another job, it was installed. By then it was mid-April and the temperature was in the 70s! 

Three months later I'm still staring a drywall hoping that we get it tiled and finished before next April. 

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