Boy, it’s cold outside! It seems people always start considering the purchase or conversion to a gas fireplace when snow is eminent. Why would you be partial to gas fireplaces over other options?
They are easier to start.
They are environmentally friendly.
They are simple to clean.
They require simple maintenance.
Types of gas fireplaces
Basically, there are three types of gas fireplaces:
Inserts are used when converting to gas from a wood-burning or factory built metal fireplace. Chimneys are relined with an appropriate vent when an insert is installed. They usually have glass doors and decorative trim for viewing. The gas burner and logs are in special metal units that fit into the existing fireplace.
Zero-clearance gas fireplaces are used in new construction or renovation projects. The imitated logs and burner have their own box in which there is an inner and outer shell. This type of fireplace must be installed inside the house envelope, even against an outside wall. An experienced installer must carefully follow correct installation requirements ensuring proper clearances and venting resources.
Free-standing gas fireplaces look a lot like a wood-burning stove. All surfaces are exposed to the room therefore; a free-standing gas fireplace is highly effective in providing heat to a house.
Two other things to remember1. There are a variety of vent types which send combustibles in and out of the house. Make sure your installer knows the requirements of your unit.2. Before purchasing a new gas fireplace make sure you know the input and output ratings. An input rating is the amount of fuel energy the fireplace can consume in one hour. Output is the heat supplied by the fireplace to the house. A high input rating does not mean that you will have high heat output. Heat output is dependent upon both input and the fireplace’s effectiveness.
Once everything is installed remember that preventative maintenance and gas fireplace repairs are important. These should be done by a certified service technician.
Here are a few reasons to make a call to the technician:
If you smell an unusual odor or notice an unusual flame.
If your glass doors break or crack.
If you are using your fireplace for the first time and it has not been inspected. Continue this inspection on an annual basis; just like your furnace.
If your pilot light goes out on a continual basis you should have your gas fireplace repaired.
Before those snow falls get too deep do some homework and you’ll find that a gas fireplace fits the bill!