Practical Guide To Gas Fireplace Conversion
In a bid to convert your wood-burning fireplace to propane gas, youll need to choose your preferred line of action.
The byline of action means choosing the kind of gas fireplace you want to install. Several types are ranging from vent-free as well to vented .
Theres more! Other options you can choose from include inserts, built-ins, and log sets. These are all gas fireplace variants that can be introduced to an existing wood-burning fireplace.
Lets briefly discuss each of these for better understanding.
Seal Off Your Ash Dump
If your firebox has an ash dump, it will need to be sealed off. The access door is usually located in the center of your firebox. An ash dump is used to collect ash from your wood burning fire, making your fireplace easy to clean. But with gas logs, gas can pool up inside it and create a potential hazard if the situation is not addressed.
What Are The Hazards Of Burning Real Wood In A Gas Fireplace
Gas-powered fireplaces do not have the mechanism to burn real wood, they will not be able to withstand the heat generated by burning wood. On top of this, there is no mechanism to safely take care of the ash or smoke generated by the burning firewood.
Placing firewood in a gas fireplace will also disturb the positioning of the fire retardant ceramic or fake wood pieces kept in there which can affect the aesthetics of your fireplace.
There is also no mechanism to deal with the smoke or carbon monoxide generated by burning wood. This can start accumulating inside the fireplace and fill your room with it. This also increases the chances of house fires.
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Inspect Your Fireplace Fully
Often, you can tell whether your fireplace is gas or wood-burning based on the gas supply. If your fireplace is truly gas-only, there will be some clear signs. These do not support wood-burning and you should not risk adding wood to this style of fireplace.
- There will be a fitted gas supply.
- The fireplace will have smaller vents, a smaller chimney, and dampers
- A gas-only fireplace usually has fake logs instead of a metal grate that allows for ash to fall through.
Overall, if you see any form of gas pipes, this is most likely a gas fireplace. If you arent sure, then there is some paperwork you can check.
Nothing Is Quite As Warm And Cozy As A Crackling Fire In Fall But Before You Touch Match To Kindling Take A Good Look Around Your Fireplace And Chimney To Make Sure You’re Following These Essential Guidelines For A Safeand Warmseason Poorly Maintained Fireplaces Can Cause House Fires Or Other Dangers So It’s Important To Take Precautions Now Before The Season Really Kicks In Whether Your Fireplace Is Gas Or Wood
Arrange a yearly inspection: All chimneys should be inspected and cleaned by a chimney cleaning professional at least once a year, or about once every 80 fires. A thorough cleaning will remove any buildup of creosote, an oily and highly flammable byproduct of burning wood, giving you a safer fireplace.
Check for cracks and damage: Check for cracks and loose joints of the firebricks inside the fireplace, and check the exterior masonry for damage. Hire a professional mason to do any repairsnever try to repair firebrick with regular mortar, as the mixture cannot stand up to high heat.
Inspect the chimney cap and damper: Make sure the fireplace damper is working properly and that there is no debris preventing it from opening and closing. Confirm that the chimney cap is firmly attached and in good condition. The cap should include protective screening to keep birds, squirrels, bats, and other pests from entering the chimney.
Clear away tree limbs: While you are outside checking the chimney cap, prune any overhanging tree limbs that may be encroaching on the chimney. Not only do tree limbs present a fire hazard, they can also restrict the proper draft of the chimney and damage the cap.
Clean out ashes: Clean out the firebox once a week, or whenever ash is more than an inch deep. Coals can remain hot for up to three days, so make sure everything is completely cold. Sweep or vacuum the cold ashes and dispose of them outsidewood ashes are perfect for garden beds and compost piles.
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Find The Perfect Log Lighter And Other Fireplace Accessories At Fireplace Doors Online
Whether you have damp firewood or you dont have time to hand-select the perfect pieces of tinder, kindling and wood logs for burning, a log lighter has the fire up and running in no time. A wood-burning fireplace with a gas log lighter installed means youre spending more time cozied up enjoying the fire with your loved ones and less time in the firebox working to get the wood to ignite.
Luckily, we have the log lighter you need to quickly get those fires started right at your fingertips. At Fireplace Doors Online, we carry log lighters in a range of different sizes and lengths designed to match your firebox and the design of your wood-burning fireplace.
You can even further customize your fireplace by choosing from our assortment of decorative valves, valve keys and escutcheons. We carry top products from brands such as Dante, Blue Flame and more. We even offer FREE SHIPPING on all orders within the continental US!
Have questions or need help finding something? No problem. Our dedicated customer service team is standing by ready to help you find everything you need for designing the custom wood-burning fireplace of your dreams.
Contact us online or give us a call at to speak with a member of the Fireplace Doors Online team of professionals.
Can You Burn Wood In A Gas Fireplace
Gas fireplaces cannot burn any form of wood, whether thats firewood logs or wood pellets.
For example, firewood logs typically used in wood burning fireplaces, wood burning stoves or multi fuel stoves, or wood pellets used in pellet stoves, cant be used in any form of gas fireplace.
As gas fireplaces are setup with a gas line to provide a constant supply of gas, this is the only type of fuel that can be used in a gas fireplace.
For example, when our gas fireplace was installed in a living room masonry open fireplace, a gas line was also installed as a separate line from the house gas main to the new gas fireplace insert.
This gas line supplies the fuel required for a gas fireplace and is the only source of fuel that can be used safely.
Although many gas fireplaces provide the look of real wood logs to help create the fireplace experience, these are fake and serve no purpose other than aesthetics. These logs are made from fire resistant materials such as ceramic and cant burn.
The main reasons why gas fireplaces cant burn wood are that:
The manual for our own gas fireplace explains:
Do not burn any foreign material on this fire, the coals or pebbles must be of the correct type and laid out in accordance with the relevant section of these instructions. Failure to do so could create a hazard or lead to sooting.
Focal Point Fires
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Your Log Lighter Needs An Upgrade
If you already have a gas line run to your fireplace with a log lighter attached to it, thatll make installation easy since you wont have to run a new gas line. However, you wont be able to use the existing log lighter to light your gas logs. Instead, youll need to replace it with a gas log burner system. Its a simple swap, but one you must make to use your converted fireplace safely.
How Does A Blue Flame Log Lighter Work
A blue flame indicates that the burner is providing an air-fuel mix with sufficient oxygen for complete combustion right out of the nozzle. The flame burns the fuel completely to carbon dioxide and water. One house we lived in had a couple of decorative gas fireplaces which contained two different sets of burners.
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Pros And Cons Of Using A Log Lighter
Are you thinking about installing a log lighter in your wood-burning fireplace or outdoor fire pit and want to learn more before moving forward? Theres no doubt that installing natural gas or propane log lighters for your features means no more fighting with kindling or buying expensive fire starter logs. But how do you know if a gas log lighter is right for you?
A great place to start is looking at some of the advantages and disadvantages of using a gas log lighter for your wood-burning fireplace or outdoor fire pit. To help you decide if a log lighter is the best choice for you, were breaking down some of the pros and cons of using a log lighter.
Can You Burn Wood In A Propane Firepit
Can I burn wood in my gas fire pit? No, a wood burning fire generates too much heat and can damage your fire pit or cause a fire accident in your home. Even though it may seem harmless considering how the fire pit is already used to a flame, a wood-burning fire produces much more heat compared to the typical gas flame.
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Gas Or Wood Fireplaces: Which Is Better For You
Gas and wood fireplaces both have unique traits that can either benefit you or act as a drawback, depending on your specific wants and needs. When youre faced with the question, Which is better, a wood-burning or gas fireplace?, review the pros and cons discussed above to determine which is best for you.
Do Gas Fireplaces Need To Be Cleaned
While gas fireplaces dont produce creosote, they do still need annual cleaning. A chimney sweeping in your gas fireplace will help remove items like birds nests, animals, and any debris that may have gotten trapped in there as well any potential soot. Furthermore, a chimney sweeping is often also an inspection.
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How Do You Log A Fireplace Starter
You can simply set up the logs over the log lighter, rotate the key to turn on the gas and the fire will quickly light up. Once your fire is going, simply rotate the valve key to lock the gas line and enjoy the crackling wood fire. Fireplace log lighters work immediately and can easily get your fire started.
Dangers Of Burning Wood In A Gas Fireplace
Before moving forward with information on how to convert your fireplace from gas to wood, lets break down the common dangers of using a gas fireplace incorrectly.
- Excess smoke and gas If your gas fireplace is not ventilated properly to burn wood, there will likely be excess smoke. This cannot only lead to a mess, but it can also cause carbon dioxide and monoxide to build up.
- It can damage the fireplace Wood burning inside a fireplace can actually lead to much higher temperatures than gas. Burning propane or natural gas functions at lower temperatures, which is how gas fireplaces are designed. When you start burning wood, it can destroy the internal components as well as the lining of the fireplace.
- It could start a house fire This is perhaps the biggest risk. With the lower heat output that comes with gas fireplaces, the unit might have less clearance to furniture and the walls than needed. By burning firewood, you run the chance of the nearby surroundings getting too hot.
- Risk of igniting the gas line Theres a reason why gas fireplaces come with a pilot light. Its best not to introduce another flame source if you can help it.
So, as you can see, there are plenty of safety issues that come with using wood in a gas fireplace. However, there might be some ways around it.
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You Need To Leave Space Around The Gas Logs
While its tempting to install the largest gas logs that will fit inside your fireplace, you need to size down. Why? Because gas logs require air circulation in order to vent safely. Each gas log system requires a different amount of clearance on the sides of the logs, so be sure to measure before you purchase.
Different types of systems may require more clearance than others. For example, a system requiring a safety pilot will need more room around them than a match-light system without a safety pilot. Plan for the entire system, not just the width of the logs themselves.
Which Is Better: Gas Or Wood
You might be considering a fireplace as a home heating system, but you seek another option. In terms of aesthetics, efficiency, and maintenance, you might wish to compare the benefits and drawbacks of gas versus wood-burning fireplaces.
- In terms of aesthetics, a wood-burning fireplace is the greatest option if you prefer a traditional rather than a modern fireplace style.
- Their heating capability varies as well. Although gas fireplaces produce less heat than wood fires, the heat produced by the former is more consistent.
When compared to wood-burning fireplaces, which require frequent cleaning, a gas fireplace is easier to maintain because it creates a minimal amount of soot, if any at all.
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Converting Your Fireplace To Gas Logs Might Require A Permit
Because gas lines are involved, converting fireplaces to gas isnt always a simple DIY. Many municipalities will require you to take out a permit before you convert your wood-burning fireplace to gas logs.
Youll also want to check your local building codes to see if there are any restrictions about the type of gas logs you can install. Ventless gas logs, for example, are not permitted in California and some other states and Massachusetts has special requirements for all gas logs.
Do You Have To Have A Chimney Inspection To Burn Wood
Chimney control. Although your fireplace can be converted to wood, you should inspect your fireplace and fireplace to make sure they are in good condition Otherwise, noxious fumes and smoke can enter your home if you burn a fire. The chimney inspector can determine whether the masonry, tiles and grate are in order.
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Reasons To Replace Wood
There are several reasons why anyone will want to have their old wood-burning fireplace converted to gas. These have to do with the inconvenience of usage.
First, theres a need to tend the fire as it cannot be left unattended.
Theres a need to clean up accumulated ash after each use. Wood logs have to be chopped to smaller sizes to feed into the fire. Sometimes, you have to wait until the fire burns out.
Theres also a problem with the storage of seasoned wood. This could take up valuable space.
Also, a more frequent cleanup of the flue is needed to avoid creosote and soot accumulation. All of these are reasons why people switch from using wood-burning fireplaces to gas fireplace.
Can You Burn Real Wood In A Gas Burning Fireplace Box
The answer to the question “Is it possible to burn wood in a gas fireplace?” Strong NO! That is, if your installation is a real gas fireplace. In this type of installation, burning wood is extremely dangerous. Other types of gas fireplaces allow you to burn wood, but only if certain conditions are met.
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Is A Propane Fire Pit Worth It
Compared to the wood-burning version, propane fire tables take a lot of the work and maintenance out of enjoying a cracking fire on the back deck. Fire pits are great but if the weather is too hot, you may not want to have a fire. … They are useful anytime even if you don’t want to have a fire.
What Is The Key For On A Gas Fireplace
They burn cleaner than a traditional wood-burning fireplace and produce no ash or soot to clean up. Although many gas fireplaces have a knob or ignitor switch to light the fire, some older gas fireplaces units have a metal key that is inserted into a keyhole which turns on the gas flow to start the fire.
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Can A Gas Log Lighter Be Used In A Wood Burning Fireplace
How to Install a Gas Lighter in a Wood Burning Fireplace With a gas lighter you can avoid the hassle of starting a fire in a wood burning fireplace. Perhaps you’ve been thinking about integrating this convenience into your home for a long time. They know that changing the settings of the chimney and other gases can cause delays.
Gas Lines Will Need To Be Converted
A major part of converting your gas fireplace to wood burning is to stop the input of gas into the fireplace. This is done by capping off the gas line completely, which will stop the flow of the gas.
Only those who have experience working with natural gas should take on this work, as it can be dangerous if not done correctly. If your gas line is not capped properly, it can lead to leaks or even a fire.
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How Do You Start A Gas Fireplace Without A Key
Its quite easy to turn a fireplace on without its key. Simply remove the key valve flange by turning it using your hand or any other tool. Next, light a piece of paper and put it in the middle of your fireplace where the pilot light is located. Lastly, gently turn on the gas using a little wrench.
How do you use a fire starter in a fireplace?