If you’re in the market for a fireplace insert or gas logs, it can be tempting to head to a big-box store, select a model and be on your way. Big-box stores offer convenience and try to sell customers on bargain-basement prices. In reality, purchasing a fireplace appliance through a big-box store can be a big mistake that costs you money and causes you problems in the long run.

Lack of expertise

Gas fireplace insert in Independence MOThe biggest problem with purchasing your fireplace insert or gas logs from a big-box store is the lack of expertise that comes with the purchase. When you’re selecting a fireplace appliance, you need to select one that is suited for your home and fireplace. Inserts and gas logs must be properly sized for your existing fireplace, and the heat output must be suited to your home’s living space.

The employees at big-box stores may have some general knowledge about fireplaces and gas logs, but they aren’t experts. They don’t know what your fireplace space looks like or how to it relates to the rest of your home and the space you are looking to heat. If you have any detailed questions, they likely won’t be able to answer them accurately. When you shop with a dedicated fireplace retailer, you can be sure that you’re getting the best advice and expertise.

Lack of selection

While big-box stores may have a few models of fireplace inserts and gas logs, they simply can’t match the selection of a dedicated fireplace retailer. Your selection will be narrowed further when you consider how many of those models are suited to your fireplace space and home-heating needs. The lack of selection also can leave you with a fireplace or set of gas logs that looks like everyone else’s on the block.

Lack of installations services

Installing a fireplace insert or gas logs is a big job. Doing it incorrectly can compromise the safety of your home and your family. Additionally, installing a fireplace insert often comes with the need for installing a new flue liner to match. Generally, installing a fireplace insert or gas logs is not a do-it-yourself project. When you hire a certified fireplace retailer, you can be sure that your insert is installed safely and correctly.

The other problem with installing an insert from a big-box store is lack of service down the road. If you have a problem with your fireplace, you’re left with no one to call. The components of an insert purchased at a big-box store often can’t be easily replaced, leaving you with a major, and potentially expensive, problem if one of those components fails.

Lack of quality

The bargain-basement prices found at big-box stores come at a price. The appliances they sell are lower quality than the stoves, inserts and gas logs you would find from a dedicated fireplace retailer. While it may save you money now, it likely will cost you down the road, with additional service costs or a lowered life expectancy for your fireplace insert or gas logs.

If you’re in the market for a fireplace insert or gas logs, be confident that you’ve selected a quality product that’s right for your home. Avoid the big-box store and choose a dedicated fireplace retailer.