Gas Fireplace Maintenance
The ease and simplicity of owning and maintaining a gas fireplace are the main reasons many people prefer them to traditional wood burning fireplaces, but even gas fireplaces need yearly maintenance to keep them safe and in proper working order.
The most important part of gas fireplace safety is making sure the installation is correct. By hiring a certified fireplace professional you can insure that your fireplace will be hooked up securely and safely. Before using your gas fireplace for the first time each season, there are a few routine checkups which should be made to make sure your fireplace is running as cleanly and safely as possible.
First off, make sure all of the vents are working properly. You can reduce drafts and heat loss by installing glass doors in front of the gas fireplace, but the doors must remain open while the fire is burning. This prevents smoke and carbon monoxide from entering your home. Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless, odorless, potentially lethal gas produced as a byproduct when fuels such as natural or propane gas, kerosene, and wood are burned. It's important to follow the manufacturer's instructions exactly when using any type of fuel-burning appliance. In some areas, local building codes may require the damper in your chimney to be permanently blocked open if you install gas logs. Another key part to the safety of your fireplace is the cleanliness of the chimney. Having a chimney sweep come in once a year assures that no flare-ups start in the chimney.
The burner is another crucial part of a gas burning fireplace that needs to be checked and cleaned annually. A dirty or poor working burner can lead to soot buildup and even carbon monoxide. This is why it is important to have a carbon monoxide detector in the home. Another way to make sure your home is safe is by having the gas lines checked yearly to make sure no leaks have occurred.
Another part of the fireplace to keep clean are the ceramic logs themselves. Using a soft brush to wipe away any soot that has built up will keep your fireplace not only looking clean but also burning clean.
As for glass fireplace doors or covers, it is important to check the seal of your doors to make sure you are not letting cold air in while the fireplace is not in use. Wiping down the glass doors with a soft cloth and water will allow you to enjoy your safely burning gas log fireplace all winter long.
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