Saturday, September 18

Register Plate or Closure Plate: What’s the Difference?

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When you’re installing a stove in your home, there are many different parts and fixtures that you may need to buy. One of these may be a register plate or closure plate. But, what are they? What do they do? And, what’s the difference between them? If those are questions you’re asking yourself, then read this blog for all the answers.

What is a register plate? 

First off, let’s begin by looking at register plates. A register plate is a flat metal sheet that closes off the base of a chimney (it looks a bit like a ceiling above the main fireplace). It’s put in place when you are installing a stove within an existing fireplace.

A register plate is used when your chimney does not have a chimney flue liner. In other words, if your stove is venting its smoke and combustibles directly into the chimney cavity, you’ll need to install a register plate. 

The job of the register plate isn’t merely aesthetic. A register plate will prevent smoke from getting into your room. As such, a register plate must form a tight seal around the base of the chimney cavity.

1000mm x 500mm Register Plate Without Access

1000mm x 500mm Register Plate Without Access

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This means that even if smoke descends back down your chimney (which can happen if your stove is burning poorly or your chimney isn’t functioning properly), the register plate will prevent your room from being filled with smoke.

A quality register plate will be made of galvanised or stainless steel and will be at least 2mm thick. Register plates are robustly built; the reason being that they need to withstand falling debris, for example if a brick, stone or animal were to fall down your chimney. 

Many register plates feature small access hatches or doors. These are there to provide access to the chimney cavity so that a chimney sweep can still inspect and sweep your chimney etc.

You can find a wide range of register plates at our partner store Trade Price Flues here.

What is a closure plate? 

A closure plate also closes off the base of a chimney (again, it looks a bit like a ceiling above your main fireplace). Like a register plate, it’s put in place when installing a stove within an existing fireplace.

A closure plate is used when your chimney has a chimney flue liner connected to your stove. This means that your stove is venting its smoke and combustibles into the flue liner, and as such there’s no risk that smoke can descend back into your room. 

Therefore, a closure plate is more for aesthetic reasons – to seal up the base of the chimney cavity where the flue goes up into the chimney. 

A closure plate does also help to prevent heat from escaping up the chimney too.

Henley Oakwood Mini Wood Burning Stove

Henley Oakwood Mini Wood Burning Stove

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Closure plates tend to be more common than register plates as more and more people choose to use a stove with a chimney flue liner these days.

Because closure plates don’t have to completely seal up the chimney cavity, they don’t have to be manufactured to the same tolerances as register plates. 

Closure plates can be made from any non-combustible material. Many people choose to make their closure plates from cement board – made from a combination of cement and reinforcing fibres. Cement board can be painted with acrylic paint, so will help your fireplace blend in with the rest of your room.

Unlike register plates, closure plates do not require access hatches or doors. This is because with a chimney flue liner in place, you won’t need your chimney to be swept.

A note on sealing plates

In addition to a closure plate, you will usually need a sealing plate too (sometimes called a finishing plate). 

Think of it like this – the closure plate acts as a flat sheet that blocks up the base of the chimney cavity, however where the stove pipe passes through and connects to the chimney flue liner, you need to use a sealing plate.

Dura Flue 0 Degree Finishing Plate in Stainless Steel

Dura Flue 0 Degree Finishing Plate in Stainless Steel

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A sealing plate will protect the closure plate from the heat of the stove pipe as it passes through it and will also block up any gaps (the hole in the closure plate is usually a few inches wider in diameter than the stove pipe – so without a sealing plate you’d be left with an unsightly gap).

You can find a wide range of closure plates at our partner store Trade Price Flues here.

What’s the difference between register and closure plates? 

Now that we know what register and closure plates are, what’s the main difference between them? 

The difference can be summed up as follows:

  • A register plate is used to seal the base of a chimney cavity when you do not have a chimney flue liner in your chimney. 
  • A closure plate is used when you do have a chimney flue liner in your chimney. 

Do you have to use a register plate or a closure plate? 

If you are going to be using your stove without a chimney flue liner, then under the Building Regulations you have an obligation to fit an appropriate register plate. 

Should you be intending to use your stove with a chimney flue liner, then you do not need to use a closure plate, however many people choose to do so as a closure plate will prevent soot and other detritus from falling into your room, will prevent heat from escaping up the chimney, and it generally looks neater and tidier.

What size register or closure plate do you need? 

Once you’ve figured out whether you need a register plate or a closure plate to go with your stove, you need to make sure you buy the correct size register/closure plate. 

When selecting the size of your closure/register plate the most important thing is to figure out the size of the base of your chimney cavity; your register/closure plate will need to fully seal it up after all.

Register/closure plates are available in a range of standard sizes. You need to ensure you select the size that fits the internal dimensions of your chimney cavity. If your chimney cavity isn’t one of these standard sizes, then the best option is to buy a closure/register plate that is bigger than you think you’ll need, and then cut it down to size. 

1250mm x 600mm Register Plate with Cut-Out & Access

1250mm x 600mm Register Plate with Cut-Out & Access

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As well as thinking about the size of the base of your chimney cavity, you should also be aware of the diameter of your stove pipe; this will need to fit through the closure/register plate. 

Many closure/register plates come with pre-built holes and adapters – so, simply buy one that has the correct sized hole for your stove pipe. Alternatively, you can buy closure/register plates without a hole; you just need to measure the diameter of your stove pipe and make the hole yourself. 

Chimney flue liners to go with closure plates

If you’ve not yet installed your stove, then you may be deciding whether or not to use a chimney flue liner with it. 

We strongly recommend that you do use a chimney flue liner with your stove. This is because chimney flue liners provide a number of benefits such as improving the efficiency of your stove, preventing chimney fires, preventing the build of creosote, and much more. 

If you do decide to install a chimney flue liner along with your stove, what are your options? We present some below:

Dura Flue 6 Inch (150mm) 316 Grade Flexible Flue Liner

Dura Flue 6 Inch (150mm) 316 Grade Flexible Flue Liner

Dura Flue 6 Inch (150mm) 316 Grade Flexible Flue Liner

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This 6-inch 316 grade flue liner is constructed from two individual strips of 316 stainless steel. It also comes with a 15-year guarantee compared to the 10 years that you get with other brands of chimney flue liner. 

Dura Flue 6 Inch (150mm) 904 Grade Flexible Flue Liner

Dura Flue 6 Inch (150mm) 904 Grade Flexible Flue Liner

Dura Flue 6 Inch (150mm) 904 Grade Flexible Flue Liner

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This flue liner is the result of a unique manufacturing technique that uses two separate strips of steel (904 grade inner and 316 grade outer) to create a chimney flue liner that is incredibly strong, durable and comes with a 30-year guarantee.

When buying a chimney flue liner, make sure you purchase the correct grade. Buy 316 grade if you will only be burning seasoned wood on your stove. Buy 904 grade if you will be burning coal or other hot-burning solid fuels on your stove.

Guide – for more information on selecting the correct flue liner for your chimney and stove, read our guide here.

Get all your stove parts and accessories at Direct Stoves

By now you should have a good idea as to whether you need a register plate or closure plate to go with your stove. 

However, if you have any questions that this guide doesn’t answer, feel free to contact our expert friendly team who will be happy to help!

Shop stove parts and accessories at Direct Stoves now

Find more stove advice and buying guides on the Direct Stoves blog

Can You Install a Stove in an Existing Fireplace? | What Parts and Accessories Do I Need to Fit a Stove?A Complete Guide to Flue Liners for Your Stove

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