Convert Fireplace to Gas
- Traditional fireplaces are heat thieves. The chimney sucks up 90% of the warmth a fire creates and siphons off some of your home’s heated air, according to the EPA. And that ratchets up your energy bills.
- Inhaling burning wood smoke is as harmful as smoking; wood smoke is loaded with carcinogens like benzene.
- Lighting up logs fuels global warming. The soot your fire creates is a heat-trapping pollutant.
- Wood-burning fireplaces need lots of maintenance, including routine ash cleanup and a professional cleaning every other year to keep combustible creosote at bay. (Both gas and wood fireplaces need an annual inspection.)
Enough buzzkill. Here are our three favorite alternatives to burning wood. And all are great solutions whether or not you have a working chimney and fireplace.
|Installation||Pro install required to properly vent fumes outside through the roof or wall. Also need a pro plumber to hook up the gas line. Permanent option.|
|Pollutants||Flame is behind glass, so pollutants are expelled via the vent, not into the house.|
|Fire||Produces a real fire.|
|Sound and Scent||No crackle or wood-burning scent.|
|Cost||Expensive. Including installation, prices range from $2, 000 to $5, 000. Since it uses gas, it could increase your utility bill a bit, but these units don’t have the heat loss associated with a wood-burning fireplace. To help offset the expense, turn down your thermostat while you’re enjoying your fire.|
|Maintenance||Before using each season, have a pro remove the dust that collected inside the fireplace around its internal components and on its glass screen.|
This video shows how a pro cleans a direct vent fireplace:
2. Electric Fireplace Insert
|Some just need to be plugged in to a grounded outlet, so you’ll likely be able to install it yourself. Can be moved to other rooms.|
|It’s faux for sure, but new models use LED lights to suggest realistic flames.|
Moda Flame Birch 18" Convert to Ethanol Fireplace Log Set Grate
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