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Kiva Fireplaces

Kiva fireplace

Kiva fireplace

Kiva fireplace

Kiva fireplace

“The kiva or bee hive fireplace with their distinctive arched firebox door is typical of southwestern design and most often placed in a corner. Historically these kiva fireplaces were constructed of the same adobe material used to construct the home.

Custom bee hive fireplaces can be found in almost limitless styles and must be installed by a mason and require a solid foundation to hold the great weight of the entire fireplace and chimney all the way through the roof. Today we have more options available to us. All kiva fireplaces should be installed only by a qualified contractor.

A modern option to a mason built kiva fireplace is a prefabricated masonry firebox with double wall chimney pipe which creates a relatively lightweight fireplace weighing about 650 pounds and can even be installed on the second floor of a wood constructed home. The traditional kiva shape is formed using a metal mesh lath facade covered with stucco or plaster.”

Kiva fireplace insert

Kiva fireplace insert

A third option, and the main reason for writing this blog post, is to install a steel fireplace insert inside the kiva. You could make the kiva fireplace yourself and then install the insert for improved heating efficiency. The kiva inserts are somewhat difficult to find. Most of the ones I managed to find are rectangular and not as aesthetically pleasing as the arch shaped inserts. Please leave a comment below if you find some good brands.

Source: Western and Southwester Decorating
Image source:
Image source:
Kiva inserts:
Image source: Clients First Real Estate
Heat & Glo

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4 Responses to “Kiva Fireplaces”

  1. The site is

  2. This site has an arched fireplace insert that’s propane and ventfree. We are nearly done renovating our mobile home into a house. It came with a wood=burning fireplace in the living room corner, takes up too much space. We’d like a kiva fireplace, and a small ventfree propane insert would be ideal. We’re thinking of this model:

    Hearth Sense A-Series Propane Arched Vent Free Millivolt Fireplace – ALI

    A prefab kiva fireplace is overkill, we don’t need the full firebox. Any suggestion for building our own kiva fireplace? Is there a form we can use? Thanks for suggestions!

  3. craig wingate says:

    I am looking for ANY solution to have a fireplace insert in my kiva fireplace except the rectangular box. Has anyone given suggestion about how to accomplish a heat-efficient solution that has incorporated the aesthetics of the kiva shape and design? Are there any solutions for custom inserts even if more expensive than rectangular inserts?

    • Owen Geiger says:

      I saw one brand about 13 years ago, but unfortunately have not been able to locate one lately. I googled for 1-2 hours and never found it. The only other solution to my knowledge is to build something from scratch.

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