If it's time to replace the firebrick in your wood stove or fireplace you may be tempted to just buy standard firebrick. Before you do that you may want to consider soapstone firebrick.
Soapstone is not only a beautiful stone used for carving and sculptures. It also has physical and chemical properties that make it a superior lining for a fireplace or wood stove firebox. Soapstone is very heat resistant and it will absorb a large amount of heat and radiate it into your room long after the fire has died.
Soapstone forms deep within the earth under intense heat and pressure. It is non porous and very heat resistant. It maintains it's strength and stability even under the extreme temperatures in a firebox. It's also chemically inert so it will not be effected or break down from the chemicals in ash and creosote. Standard firebrick is usually made out is a ceramic or clay and they do break down over time with intense heat.
Soapstone is well known for it's ability to absorb large amounts of heat. This dense rock will act as a heat reservoir and absorb the heat from your firebox and distribute an even comfortable heat into your room, even up to 12 hours after the fire has gone out. This can help the problem with wood heat where one minute it's too hot and the next it's too cold.
A soapstone lined firebox reaches higher temperatures which produces a cleaner and more complete burn. Since the wood burns more completely you will end up with more heat from less wood and less smoke and pollution going out your chimney.
Some stove manufacturers are making stoves that are made from large slabs of soapstone. Soapstone stoves are not only great for heating they are also beautiful with their polished soapstone surfaces.
Instead of replacing your stove you can get soapstone firebricks to line your existing wood stove or fireplace. You can also get soapstone slabs to put on top of your stove or pieces to put under a fireplace grate. Either way it's a good way to get better performance out of your existing stove or fireplace.