Qualified Remodeler Magazine

JUN 2019

Qualified Remodeler helps independent remodeling firms to survive, become more professional and more profitable by providing must-have business information, namely best business practices, new product information and timely design ideas.

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Code requires that all wood-burning fireplaces be placed at least 10 feet away from residential structures. If they are placed inside of 10 feet from the home, they must be converted to gas-fed in- stead of wood-burning. Alternatively, a chimney must be built to exceed the height of the adjacent building by 2 feet. "If you can imagine that you are building a screened-in porch, if you are right up against the house wall and you are within 10 feet, you will have to build a chimney that goes above your house," Kent says. "If you have a two-story house, a struc- ture of this size becomes costly. So more than likely if you wanted it to go in that location, you would go with a gas fireplace and then the code goes away." Kent's typical client is a suburban homeowner in a single-family detached structure with a large yard. In these cases, requests for wood-burning units far exceed gas-fed solutions, he notes. Special care should be given to placement. As out- door living spaces have grown more robust—some- times including several distinct living areas for cook- ing, dining and gathering—design and placement considerations have become much more complex, particularly in the case of fireplaces. Because they are larger structures, it is important to keep them from potentially blocking views. Conversely, large fireplace structures can be seen as a way to create additional privacy in a yard, Kent says. "OƁentimes people will begin to think about, What don't I want to look at? They will use a 4- or 5-foot wide structure as a privacy wall or a screen- ing wall. You don't want to put it right smack in front of a window because now you have lost that potential view that you now may want to see. We oƁen place it on a 45-degree angle or backed up toward a neighbor's house—something they don't need to see." Outdoor Fireplaces in Manhattan Joshua Wiener, owner of SilverLining Inc., in New York City, is well known for major remodels among a well-heeled clientele. They are not a design firm, but rather take on major projects designed by architects. As has been well-documented in QR Outdoors in recent months, outdoor living is also an urban trend. It is common for homeowners and remodeling clients to build out rooƁops and terrac- es for these purposes. And, Wiener says, they seek the same amenities found in the suburbs—outdoor cooking, dining and gathering. "In addition to penthouse and rooƁop situations in apartment buildings and co-ops, we also do a lot of brownstones," Wiener explains. "And with brownstones, you also have the option of exterior wood-burning fireplace in a small yard; but, gen- erally in Manhattan and Brooklyn, 99 percent of the time we do gas just because it is so much easier. With gas there is no smoke to control when you are living in close proximity to people. Having a smoky fireplace is not the best." According to Wiener, the city of New York offers clear guidelines on placement and safety relating to rooƁop and terrace fireplaces. Buildings have their own rules as well and sometimes prohibit them. Design aesthetic tends to take on an added Gas-fed fireplaces, like the one above by SilverLining Inc., are the only option for city rooftops and terraces. Code prohibits wood-burning options. In New York City, a linear gas burner offers a design accent to a dead space created by a chimney top. Photos: SilverLining Inc. QualifiedRemodeler.com June 2019 29

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