Air Conditioners Keeping Bugs Out Without Restricting Air Flow Answering Your Frequently Asked Questions About Gas Fireplaces

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Answering Your Frequently Asked Questions About Gas Fireplaces

One of the best ways to find a product that will work best for you is to ask questions about it. And when it comes to gas fireplaces, there can be many questions to ask. Here are answers to some of the questions you may be asking:

What is the difference between a gas fireplace insert and a zero-clearance gas fireplace?

Many people confuse the two units or think they are the same. But actually they are two completely different types of units. The term zero clearance comes from the ability to install within zero inches of surrounding combustible materials. A gas insert can be considered as an appliance installed in an existing masonry or wood burning unit. Typically they are installed as a way to upgrade or convert a wood fireplace to a gas unit.

Can I convert my wood burning fireplace to a gas fireplace?

yes Gas inserts are designed to help homeowners convert their existing wood-burning or masonry fireplaces into efficient gas fireplaces. Manufacturers offer gas inserts in a variety of sizes to ensure homeowners can easily find a gas unit that fits their existing fireplace.

How long does a gas fireplace take to heat a room?

The answers to these questions depend on which unit you have installed and the heat output of the unit. For maximum heating efficiency you must match the heat output measured in BTU’s (British Thermal Units) with the features and characteristics of your home. These include the size of the area you’re heating, how well your home is insulated, and the climate where you live.

What is a BTU?

BTU stands for British Thermal Unit. BTU is a unit of measurement for thermal energy or heat. For example, one BTU is the amount of energy used to raise the temperature of one pound of water one degree Fahrenheit above sea level.

Can gas fireplaces be installed in multiple rooms in my home?

yes Gas fireplaces can be installed anywhere, depending on the gas unit you purchase. These units can be installed in bedrooms, bathrooms, living rooms, kitchens, etc.

Can gas fireplaces be free-standing or do they have to be built into the wall?

Where a gas fireplace is installed depends on what venting is required. Vent-free gas fireplaces can be free-standing because they do not require the use of a chimney or vent. Direct vent units require a wall for venting but dual glass or triple glass screens can give a unique look to the interior walls of a home or room. Natural vent, or Class B, vent gas units require the use of an existing chimney and therefore must be housed within a specific wall.

How hot does the glass get when the unit is running?

The glass face on your unit will reach very high temperatures while it is running and will remain hot until the glass has had a chance to cool after the unit is turned off. Be sure to keep children and animals away from the glass surface as the heat content of glass is high. A safety screen can be used as a barrier to help reduce the risk of burns.

Does a gas fireplace or furnace cost less to run?

It is very difficult to give a definitive answer to this question. There are a few things to consider when making a comparison. You need to know the system BTU consumption rating and the efficiency rating of each system to determine which heating unit is cheaper to run. Another thing to consider is the amount of heat loss, which is very difficult to measure.

Some people argue that furnaces are more expensive to run because so much heat is wasted in duct work. The technology used in modern gas fireplaces and the efficiency of these modern gas units will often keep the cost of running an efficient and well-maintained gas fireplace lower than the cost associated with running a furnace. But once again, considering all the factors, it is almost impossible to determine which heating unit will cost less to run.

Is it OK to turn off pilot lights during non-use seasons?

The pilot light can be turned off and the manufacturer’s instructions can be followed to relight the pilot. However, before deciding to turn it off, there are some pros and cons.

Pros:

  • You’ll save energy, which means you’ll save money.
  • Turning off the pilot light when the gas fireplace is not in use for long periods of time can reduce film development on the inside of the glass face.
  • When the pilot light is on, the glass is usually slightly warm to the touch. No pilot light means cold glass in hot weather.

Cons:

  • There are safety hazards associated with re-igniting the pilot light. If you’re not familiar with your gas fireplace’s pilot light and settings, you, your home, and your gas unit can be at risk.
  • If you choose to turn off your pilot light, for an extended period of time, you may have trouble turning on the pilot light later.
  • When you go to heat your home, spiders and other insects build nests in the pipes and block the flow of gas. If this happens, you will have to spend money to have a professional come and inspect your gas fireplace.

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