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HPBExpo 2010 State of the Hearth

HPBExpo 2010 - State of the Hearth Industry

State of the Hearth Industry Report

The Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association (HPBA) has conducted the Fireplace and Stove Attitude and Usage Study on a biennial basis since 2002.  The State of the Hearth Industry Report reflects select information from the 2009 hearth shipment report, the 2008 Attitude and Usage Study and public data from other industry groups as referenced.

*Use of the HPBA State of the Hearth Industry Report findings should be credited to the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association. Visit for additional information.

The Industry is Hot

  • Nearly 1.2 million hearth appliances were shipped in 2009; more than 600,000 were gas-fueled models.
  • Fireplace sales and installations represent a $5 billion annual value.

Where the Hearth Is

  • Fireplaces rank second among the top features desired by buyers of new homes; they are only second to outdoor patios, porches and decks (National Association of Home Builders or NAHB).
  • More than half of U.S. households (53 percent) have at least one fireplace or freestanding stove.
  • There were approximately 1.2 fireplaces per home in 2008, with 79 percent of the homes having at least one fireplace or stove, and 21 percent having two or more.

Cleaner, More Efficient Options

  • A wide variety of clean-burning wood and pellet stoves and fireplace inserts that meet the 75% efficiency rating are eligible for consumers to earn a $1,500 federal tax credit through 2010.
  • The average age of a wood fireplace is 24 years, making them a target for updating to a more efficient and cleaner mode.  The average age of a freestanding stove is 12 years.  Gas fireplaces are an average age of 11 years. And, fireplace inserts average 12 years.
  • Residential wood-burning stoves and fireplace inserts are now certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to produce as much as 70 percent less wood smoke emissions than uncertified wood-burning appliances.
  • Sixty-nine percent of Americans consider installing a new technology (fireplace, stove or insert) to be more energy efficient.
  • Initial study shows that EPA-certified stoves can decrease the average wintertime fine particulate levels in the outdoor air by 28 percent and can make indoor air quality 72 percent cleaner.
  • 56 percent of those who modified their fireplace for efficiency installed a fireplace insert.

Heating Your Home

  • 32 percent of stove owners view their stove as a major heat source; 51 percent consider it to be a secondary source of heat.
  • The primary motivation of 51 percent of those that installed a hearth product in their home was to save on heating costs, while 20 percent wanted to make a cold room warmer or to use as a back up source of heat.
  • Using supplemental hearth appliances to heat the rooms used most allows a house's thermostat to be turned down, decreasing fuel bills.  This "zone heating" can provide energy savings of 20-40 percent (American Council for Energy Efficient Economy).
  • One in three Americans (36 percent) indicates they have and use hearth products in their home.

Increasing the Heat to a Home

  • 58 percent of hearth owners consider their fireplace, stove or insert to be a major design feature in their home.
  • 63 percent of wood fireplace owners primarily use their hearth product to enhance the atmosphere, compared to 57 percent of gas fireplace owners.
  • The master bedroom is the most desired room to add a second fireplace/stove (NAHB).
  • The consumer estimate for the average increase in home value from a hearth appliance is $3,120.
  • Fireplaces have a strong, positive effect on the value of a home, 46 percent of home buyers are willing to pay more for the feature, adding about $1,220 to a home's worth per fireplace (National Association of Realtors).

Stove and Fireplace Use

  • People that have fireplaces and stoves in their homes use them. Fireplace owners reported that they typically use their fireplaces 31 times per year, most often in the winter (average 23 times) and fall (average 5 times). Stove owners are even more dedicated, using them an average of 106 times per year, with the highest usage also in the winter (60 times) and fall (23 times).
  • 58 percent of stove owners use their stoves to save on heating costs.
  • Gas fireplaces users average 2.6 hours and cordwood users average 3.8 hours of use.

Adding a Hearth to a Home

Typical cost of a product including installation:

  • Fireplaces:  Open, EPA-certified wood fireplace $3-5,000, gas fireplace $3-5,000 and electric fireplace $500-3,000.
  • Stoves:  Freestanding wood stove with new chimney $3-4,200, pellet stove $3,500-4,000.
  • Inserts:  Pellet, gas or EPA-certified wood insert into existing fireplace with new liner $3-$4,000, and an electric insert into an existing masonry fireplace $100-300.
  • Log sets:  Vent-free gas log sets $400-$1,000 or electric log set $100-$300.
  • For estimating purposes, consumers can calculate the cost and energy savings of hearth appliances and different fuels using HPBA's online calculator (
  • Consumers can research placement, product and fuel choices online with the HPBA Consumer Guide that highlights the differences between appliance options, fuels, approximate efficiency and the estimated costs of product purchase and installation (

HPBA State of the Hearth Industry Report

This research was conducted online via the TSN - NFO Market Research Firm in August 2008 with a sample size of 1,642.  The sample size included households assembled to be representative of the latest U.S. Census in terms of geography, age of head of household, market size, annual household income and household size.  All respondents are 18+ years old.

About Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association (HPBA)

The Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association (HPBA), based in Arlington, VA, is the North American industry association for manufacturers, retailers, distributors, representatives, service firms and allied associates for all types of hearth, barbecue and patio appliances, fuels and accessories.  The association provides professional member services and industry support in education, statistics, government relations, marketing, advertising and consumer education.  There are more than 2,600 members in the HPBA.

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